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    • 2014
David White

Student Profile

‘The skills I learned in team management will stick with me for the rest of my life...’

David White BCom, BSc in Computer Science, MEM
Finance Graduate, ANZ
(read profile)

Taxation and Accounting




The New Zealand Institute of Chartered Accountants (NZICA) and Certified Practising Accountants (CPA) Australia recognise the importance of studies in taxation, with courses containing taxation content included in their ‘core’ and ‘accounting and/or business related’ academic requirements. Studying taxation will equip you with the skills and knowledge to become a taxation specialist within the accounting profession, a commercial professional or a chartered accountant.

Recommended background

While some previous study of accounting is useful preparation, it is not essential to have studied accounting at secondary school level.

Competence in spoken and written English communication is essential for both taxation and accountancy studies. With the growing importance and use in accountancy of mathematical methods and statistical tools, a background in mathematics and statistics is strongly recommended.

Students with very good Year 13 results in accounting may be offered direct entry to 200-level Accounting courses at the discretion of the Head of Department.

100-level courses

The first-year, 100-level courses required to complete a Bachelor of Commerce majoring in Taxation and Accounting are:

  • ACCT 102 Accounting and Financial Information
  • ACCT 103 Introduction to Financial Accounting
  • ACCT 152 Law and Business or LAWS 101 Legal System: Legal Method and Institutions
  • ECON 104 Introduction to Microeconomics or ECON 105 Introduction to Macroeconomics or ECON 199 (a STAR course for secondary school students)
  • INFO 123 Information Systems and Technology
  • MGMT 100 Fundamentals of Management
  • STAT 101 Statistics 1
  • Plus 15 points from 100-level Commerce or any other UC courses. If LAWS 101 is studied instead of ACCT 152 (as above) these 15 points are not required as LAWS 101 is a 30-point course and ACCT 152 is a 15-point course.

If you are planning to major in Taxation and Accounting you should take ACCT 102 and ACCT 103 in your first year. ACCT 152 or LAWS 101 should be taken in either your first or second year of study.

For the complete, three-year BCom Taxation and Accounting major degree plan see the School of Business and Economics website.

200-level and beyond

Later courses provide a more detailed treatment of the topics introduced at 100-level. At the conclusion of ACCT 254 Introduction to Taxation you will have a working knowledge of income tax (income and deductions), the Goods and Services Tax and Fringe Benefit Tax. You will also understand the concepts of residence and source, and aspects of tax administration. Tax courses at 300-level build on the foundations laid in earlier study, considering a range of topics including tax planning, avoidance and evasion, taxation of e-commerce, taxation of investments and tax compliance.

Further study

Once you complete your BCom with good grades in 300-level Accounting courses, you are eligible to enrol in the Bachelor of Commerce with Honours. An honours degree will help you distinguish yourself in the marketplace.

If you have further academic ambitions, it is also the next step to a Master of Commerce and/or a Doctor of Philosophy.

Career opportunities

As a specialist in Taxation and Accounting you will be able to enter a variety of organisations. For example, as a taxation specialist or accountant in chartered accounting firms, accountancy practices, government organisations (including Inland Revenue and the Treasury), business and commercial enterprises, non-profit organisations, banking and financial services, management consultancies, education organisations and law firms.

Many Taxation and Accounting students aspire to become chartered accountants through the New Zealand Institute of Chartered Accountants (NZICA) or Certified Practising Accountants (CPA) Australia. For both NZICA and CPA Australia memberships your BCom degree must include specific courses. For further details contact the Department of Accounting and Information Systems.

For further career information, please go to


The student advisors in the School of Business and Economics can assist you in a variety of ways from planning your degree to helping with special applications regarding your course of study.

Department of Accounting and Information Systems
Telephone: +64 3 364 2613