Accounting is more than just financial statements.
Did you know that accounting has grown from simple bookkeeping to being applied in system development? In 2018, Jason Sian and Ricky Wijaya created Workspez Cloud Accounting Solution to help accountants and business owners manage their financial accounts via a friendly UI.
The system, now adopted by large enterprise clients such as United Overseas Bank, Maybank, and Astra Ventura, allows accountants to scan and upload business transaction documents for the purpose of their extraction and conversion into digital data - automatically inputting it into existing accounting solutions in the market.
Have our fundamentals changed with the modernisation of accounting?
While technology has become the forefront of development in the business and finance sectors, the fundamentals of accounting remain constant in the field.
What are these fundamentals? Can we learn about accounting online? What are the important online resources to prepare for the ACCA exam?
What are the fundamentals of accounting?
If humans were to use a single way to describe what accounting is, it would be through the Fundamental Accounting Equation. Very simply put, the fundamentals of accounting can be united into one equation:
Assets = Liabilities + Equity
What does the fundamental accounting equation mean?
The equation denotes the relationship between the three elements of a balance sheet: assets, liabilities, and shareholders' (owners') equity. According to the formula, assets have economic value and can be used to benefit a business now or in the future - this can mean fixed assets like buildings, financial assets such as stocks, or intangible assets like patents and trademarks.
Liabilities refer to the debts the business has incurred, such as loans, warranties, mortgages and deferred revenues. Equity is the amount that would remain if the business liquidated all its assets and settled all debts. This remainder, which would be returned to the shareholders, depicts the total value of the business expressed in the local currency.
Why is the equation fundamental to accounting?
This straightforward formula tells us that the total assets of a business are equal to its liabilities plus its shareholders' equity. Hence, the assets of the business increase in the presence of more equity, and vice versa. In addition, more liabilities will decrease equity; with fewer liabilities, this equity increases.
These concepts are fundamental to modern accounting methods - the most popular one being the double-entry bookkeeping system. Now adopted around the globe, the double-entry bookkeeping system is designed to accurately reflect the total assets of a company.
Did you know you can access these online resources to learn about accounting and ACCA?
Is there foundation in accounting?
There is! You might be wondering what the first few steps are to get onto an accounting degree in Malaysia - taking a foundation in accounting is one way to start, although there are also other pre-university courses you can enrol in to kickstart your career in accounting.
To get onto a foundation in accounting, you will need at least 5 credits in relevant subjects from your SPM results or other equivalent qualification, including Mathematics, Additional Mathematics and English. However, another option is to take A-Levels, such as the GCE A-Level in Accounting - this would also lead you towards taking an accounting degree.
For a more cost-friendly option, you can opt for STPM instead of taking a foundation in accounting. All you need is a compulsory credit in the Malay subject and a pass in Sejarah from your SPM examination. With STPM, you can apply to both public and private universities or colleges that are offering an accounting degree in Malaysia.
However, if you'd like to learn just the basic knowledge of accounting for a job related to the fields of accounting and finance, you can spend 2 years studying for an accounting diploma and skip the accounting degree. You will need to pass your SPM or another equivalent with a minimum of 3 credits, including English and Mathematics, to get onto a diploma in accounting.
Learn fundamentals of accounting
Can I learn about accounting online?
The great news is that you now can! Even if you are taking an accounting degree in Malaysia, having access to online resources can help increase your understanding of the concepts and practical applications of accounting. Here are some important ACCA resources that are available online:
The ACCA Study Guide covers the broad goals and rationale of the syllabus, which will guide you on how syllabus areas are linked, detailed content about the subject areas, and the learning outcomes. There is also a list of relevant readings provided in the guide.
A paper-based exam, the ACCA Pilot Paper is an indicative exam to represent future exams (think of it like an SPM trial paper). The sample answers are also accompanied by a rationale to help candidates understand questions they are unable to answer correctly.
The Examiner's Report is written after every ACCA exam session - the examiner analyses exam statistics to find questions in which candidates had the most difficulty, then with a representative sample of these questions, explains misunderstandings or clarifies specific areas of knowledge.
Examiner's Approach Interview
Using professional actors, the examiner responds to the interviewer by introducing the paper related to the ACCA qualification and highlighting its links to other papers. The overall concept and main themes of the paper, the main content areas, the structure of the exam, and study tips for the paper are covered.
These ACCA resources are available for free on the study support resources page of the official ACCA Global website. You can even read books to study accounting and ACCA in 2021.
Online accounting degree in Malaysia
Can I take accounting classes online?
Yes! Some universities and colleges are now offering fully online courses to students who want to study for an accounting degree in Malaysia. Let's take a look at some tertiary institutions in Malaysia that are offering online accounting courses at the bachelor level.
Open University Malaysia
OUM offers a Bachelor of Accounting with Honours, which is accompanied by accreditation from CPA Australia. The programme structure covers five main areas, including accounting and finance, organisational and business knowledge, IT, and communication skills.
The course can be completed in a duration of 5 years. If you are a Malaysian resident, the total cost of studying for an online degree in OUM's Bachelor of Accounting amounts to RM30,016 in tuition fees.
UOW Malaysia KDU
UOW Malaysia KDU's Bachelor of Accounting (Hons) programme has been designed in collaboration with the ACCA, making this online course a sensible choice for those who want to earn a globally-recognised professional accounting qualification.
Graduates who have completed the programme will be granted exemptions (not having to sit for certain papers) in qualifying for the ACCA, CIMA and CPA Australia. However, this 3-year course will cost you a total of RM69,330 in tuition fees.
Swinburne University of Technology (Sarawak)
Swinburne University of Technology Sarawak offers an online course for a Bachelor of Business in Accounting, which is professionally accredited through CPA Australia, CIMA, ACCA and Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand (CAANZ).
Students who have successfully graduated are therefore eligible to apply for membership with these professional bodies. For Malaysian students, the annual tuition fee sits at RM25,680 (RM77,040 for a total of 3 years) whereas the annual tuition fee for international students is RM32,520 (RM97,560 for 3 years).
You can also look for accounting tutors in Malaysia to guide you through your accounting degree.
How to study accounting degree in Malaysia?
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When you are ready to book a lesson with a Superprof tutor, remember that you'll have to sign up with Superprof - after that, feel free to schedule a class with your tutor. Get in touch with your accounting tutor for free and make learning accounting easy!
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