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BSc Management (Accounting and Finance)

Year of entry: 2024

Course unit details:
Digital Transformation in Accounting

Course unit fact file
Unit code BMAN30151
Credit rating 10
Unit level Level 3
Teaching period(s) Semester 1
Available as a free choice unit? No


Accountants play a critical role in helping organizations undertake digital business transformation and to understand and apply digital technology advances.  Furthermore, accounting associations such as ICAEW, CIMA, ACCA and the accounting professional service firms (e.g. the “Big 4”) are calling for recognition of the changes to roles, activities, and competencies of accountants as a result of digitalisation.  This course unit provides in-depth insights into the increasing use of digital technology that the modern accountant should be familiar with.  Whether you become an auditor, a management accountant or consultant you are likely to be called upon to address digitalisation or at least be able to deal with those who are.




The course unit aims to:

  • Enable students to understand how digitalisation impacts the accounting function
  • Enable students to practice initial skills of applying models to support digitalisation

Enable students to gain practical experience on writing a case study report


1. IT, Information Systems, strategic information systems, digitalisation, digital transformation and   fourth industrial revolution: relevance to accounting

2. Impact of digitalisation on the role of accountants: digital leadership

Introduce changing role of accountants and different technologies adopted e.g. IT strategy, ERP systems.

3. Building and managing systems

Introduce systems development process for modelling and designing information systems

4. Big data analytics

Define and introduce Big Data, Data Management, Data analytics and visualisation.

Applications of BDA in Accounting practices such as audit

5. Blockchain

Introduce the concept of blockchain and applications of blockchain in accounting

Case study on blockchain use in accounting

6. Artificial intelligence

Introduce the concepts and examples of applications of AI in accounting

7. Outsourcing and the cloud

Discuss potential benefits and drawbacks of outsourcing accounting practices.

Introduce the concept of cloud accounting and discuss the potential issues.

8. Cybersecurity, privacy

Discuss the potential issues and risks related to security and digitalisation, and different ways to overcome

9. Ethical and social issues

Highlight the importance of ethical safeguards raised by information systems for accounting professionals


Teaching and learning methods

The course will taught over 12 weeks.   Students will have 100 hours of activity hours based on

-             Classroom based face-to-face lectures and workshops including guest lectures

-             Online lectures (asynchronous) for discrete, standalone topics.

-             E-learning materials in the form of short form quizzes, longer online question and answers, and discussion forums.

-             Group case study

-             In preparation for the examination the students will be given mock exam questions and guidance on the approach to be taken to the questions and exam technique

-             Directed independent study.

Students will receive a minimum of 20 hours of activity hours in the form of lectures and workshops

Students will have 80 hours of independent study hours. Activities during this period will include directed reading, e-learning materials including webinars, videos.

Knowledge and understanding

Students will gain detailed knowledge in relation to the following areas of digitalisation of accounting: trends in digitalisation in accounting; changing role of the accountant to digital leadership; big data analytics; outsourcing; artificial intelligence, IoT, blockchain.

Intellectual skills

Students will apply their technical knowledge to a case study identifying and using relevant information, to develop solutions and applying judgement in relation to the case, leading to a credible conclusion.

Practical skills

Students will apply technical knowledge to support reasoning and conclusions.


Transferable skills and personal qualities

  • Access relevant academic literature using the Internet and appropriate databases.
  • Present evidence and appropriate theoretical concepts forming the basis of critical analysis, argument and commentary in a form appropriate to the intended audience.
  • Interpret, structure and present ideas effectively correctly citing, acknowledging and referencing sources.
  • Undertake groupwork, manage time and work to deadlines

Employability skills

This course has been designed with the aim to enhance students exposure to digitalisation that is a feature of the contemporary role of an accountant. The methods of assessment engaged in this course will also enhance students employability skills as the exam questions will be based around problem solving and the case study will enable a real life application with a written response.

Assessment methods

50 %  1-hour unseen examination, 50% 2000 word group case study report

Feedback methods

Formative feedback will be given by:

•            Informal advice and discussion during a lecture and workshop.

•           Responses to student emails and questions from a member of staff including feedback provided to a group via an online discussion forum.

•           Feedback for the group case study report.

•            Students can discuss questions with their course lecturers during office hours and receive verbal feedback on work they have attempted.

Recommended reading

Laudon, K and Laudon, J (2020) Management Information Systems: Managing the Digital Firm. Pearson.

Richard Busulwa; Nina Evans (2021) Digital Transformation in Accounting.   Routledge

ICAEW technology

Moll, J and Yigitbasioglu, O (2019) The role of internet-related technologies in shaping the work of accountants: New directions for accounting research The British Accounting Review,


Study hours

Scheduled activity hours
Assessment written exam 1
Lectures 20
Independent study hours
Independent study 79

Teaching staff

Staff member Role
Brian Nicholson Unit coordinator
Sung Hwan Chai Unit coordinator

Additional notes

Pre-requisites: None

Co-requisites: None

Dependent course units: None

Optional course BA Econ Accounting and Finance, BSc Management and Management (Specialisms), BSc International Management, BSc International Management with American Business Studies and BSc Accounting.   

BMAN30151 is available to study abroad and exchange students admitted through the University of Manchester International Programmes Office.

For Academic Year 2024/25

Updated: May 2024

Approved by: March UG Committee


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