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Subject Choice

Leaving Certificate

Accounting

Career Zone
QQI
NFQ Level
Duration
2 Years

Summary

Leaving Certificate accounting provides students with the knowledge, understanding and skills in accounting and financial management necessary for managing personal and basic company accounts. The learning experiences in accounting develop students’ organisational, logical thinking, planning and problem-solving skills for their future life, work and study. It also develops their numeracy skills within the context of business and enterprise.

Why Study Accounting

For those considering studying accounting, actuarial studies or finance after the Leaving Cert it would be unwise to leave accounting out of their subject choice. It is also be an important subject choice for those thinking of starting their own business.

While not required specifically for studying any third level college course, it is recommended if Accountancy is the career path you want to follow. 

What kind of Student would Accounting suit

Commonly seen as the mathematical side of business, accounting attracts the more numerate student. It teaches students the bookkeeping side of business but delves deeper, teaching you to analyse and interpret the figures. Once you can understand and adhere to the basic rules of accountancy, it is a subject that you can do very well in.

Recommendations/Tips

The course is numerically based but theory and procedures must be learned also.

While the student needs to be comfortable with numbers he or she does not need to be at higher maths level.

While the Junior Certificate Business Studies Course provides a foundation for this course, it is not essential and it is possible to take accountancy up at senior cycle.

This course offers a hard working student the real possibility of high grades because of the unambiguous nature of the questions. An organised student who likes order will be particularly suited to this course.

This subject builds skills and knowledge that are particularly useful for careers in the following Career Sectors:

Grades Awarded

Marks Distribution 2019:

Listed below are the percentage distributions of marks from the 6095 students who sat the Higher Level Accounting exam in 2019.

Listed below are the percentage distributions of marks from the 1812 students who sat the Ordinary Level Accounting exam in 2019.

 

Explore Marks Distribution for all Subjects:

Course Overview

Accounting is a business studies option within the Leaving Certificate programme. It covers aspects of business and social life which are not dealt with in any other subject in that programme. It is concerned with the preparation, recording, extraction, presentation and analysis of financial information for the purpose of making economic decisions.

The course also involves a Management Accounting section where the student will learn how to analyse business costs and how to prepare budgets.

This business subject teaches the skills and knowledge needed to understand how business works.  Accountancy has the highest percentage of A grades among the Leaving Cert business subjects and one of the highest among all Leaving Cert subjects. The syllabus will help you:

  • To contribute to a balanced and appropriate general education, leading to the personal and social development of each student together with a fostering of the concept of accountability
  • To create awareness of the business environment and to provide each student with the knowledge, understanding and skills leading to a personal competence and responsible participation in this changing and challenging environment.
  • To encourage the development of self-reliance, mental organisation and agility, clear and logical thinking, planning habits, methods of investigation and processes whereby accuracy can be ensured
  • To enhance numeracy skills and promote awareness of the use of figures computations and statistics in the world of business and enterprise
  • To expose students to aspects of business and enterprise with a view to career and working life, additional studies in accounting or as a basis for further education.

Course Content

Topics covered include:

Financial Statements Preparation, Farm Accounts, Club Accounts, Company Accounts, Manufacturing Accounts, Financial Statements Analysis and Interpretation, Budgeting, Break-even Analysis, Cost Classification, Accounting Theory and Principles.

Exam Structure

The subject is examined at higher and ordinary level. Both levels involve one exam of three hours duration. The exam paper is made up of three sections, the first two are based on the Financial Accounting section of the course and the third covers the Management Accounting section. Questions must be answered from all sections of the exam paper.

Career Possibilities

Accountancy provides a valuable foundation for all business functions and many top executives have an accountancy background. Most chief executive officers of public limited companies have some sort of accountancy qualification.

Career pathways might include accountancy, actuarial studies, marketing, business or finance.  It would also be an important subject choice for those thinking of starting their own business

Career Guidance

Subject Group: Business

These subjects teach the skills and knowledge needed to understand how business works.

Required for 3rd Level?

Although not required for studying accountancy at third level, it is highly recommended if this is the career sector you wish to pursue.

Accounting

Interviews

What subjects did you take in school and how have these influenced your career path?

Damien Mason, Mechanical Engineer

The subjects which I had control of choosing and which influenced my career path were:

Secondary School: Technical Graphics, Construction Studies, Engineering, Physics. These were an excellent base for my degree course in Mechanical Engineering in University.

University: Mechanical Engineering - choose fluids stream instead of solids stream half way through my degree course. In my current career, choosing the fluids stream has not had any significant bearing on my ability to perform my job.

If I had the choice in Secondary School, I would have chosen Spanish as a language to study. This allows a lot of extra opportunities to travel globally.

If I had the opportunity to change my choices in University, I would have done a years post grad in buisness studies and accounting after my degree in mechanical engineering. I belive this would have given me a competitive advantage in aspiring to a career in management.

... View Full Interview

Claire Hanrahan , Auditor
I chose a mixture of subjects. I chose a science subject & accounting as I was unsure in 5th year in school what I wanted to do.

By 6th year, I knew I wanted to work in Accounting. It was good that I chose accounting as well as the science subject and didn't rule anything out.

Looking back now, I should probably have gotten extra career guidance to help me. I wouldn't have taken the science subjects but instead Business Org.

... View Full Interview

Jack McGovern, Garda Trainee
I took business, accounting and economics as I was preparing for a Plan B i.e. working in the private sector or becoming a secondary school teacher.

... View Full Interview

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