Graduate Certificate in Professional Accounting (GCPA)

CRICOS Course Code: 097841A

The Graduate Certificate in Professional Accounting (GCPA) has been designed as a stand-alone accounting qualification or a PATHWAY to the MPA and accreditation with all the major professional bodies. The subjects have been aligned with the first trimester of the MPA. Students have the option of either continuing through to the MPA or graduating with the GCPA after completing one trimester.

For local students, the GCPA provides the opportunity for experienced paraprofessionals with further education (or similar) qualifications in accounting or a closely allied area, to enter into higher education at the graduate level. In this context, the GCPA has deemed a TIIS pathway program.
For international students, the GCPA also provides a short-term professional development opportunity and a graduate award exit point. However, it may also afford entry for those students whose undergraduate degrees do not meet the required standards for automatic entry. This entry point will be determined on a case-by-case basis.
For students who are enrolled in the MPA and choose to exit, or fail to satisfy course requirements, the satisfactory completion of the four subject GCPA provides those students with the option of receiving a formal graduate-level qualification.

The Four Units Comprising The GCPA are Outlined Below:

UNIT CODE Unit Name Credit Pts.
MPA501 Accounting Principles 6
MPA502 Business and Company Law 6
MPA503 Economics for Business 6
MPA504 Business Finance 6

Learning Outcome

Graduates of the GCPA will:

  • critically evaluate and transform information from a range of data sources to complete specified accounting tasks;
  • apply their knowledge of accounting systems to develop responses to selected complex accounting problems;
  • Interpret and effectively communicate accounting information for a selected audience.

Subject Descriptions

The Graduate Certificate in Professional Accounting (GCPA) is a four unit, one-trimester award, nested within the MPA. The GCPA can be used as an entry and/or exit qualification. Conceptually, the GCPA has been developed to provide graduates with the capacity to operate in a narrower range of business environments. The degree of independence will be more limited and the scope of activity constrained. GCPA graduates will manage business problems and provide advice in more restricted professional contexts. Typically they work under the supervision of a CPA.


This course introduces students to the principles and processes of financial accounting the processes and interpretation of financial statements and other financial accounting information. Students engage with the accounting process to prepare and present appropriate accounting information and acquire the analytical skills needed for interpretation of that information.


The subject is introduced with a discussion of the importance of accounting information to decision makers and an introduction to the principles of accrual accounting.


Throughout the subject, special emphasis is placed on examining and evaluating different accounting methods and the impact of accounting choices on business, social, and ethical decisions.



Welcome to MPA502 Business Company Law. This subject is designed to introduce students to the fundamentals of Australian legal system, contract, tort and company law, and to enhance their insight as to how company law influences practices and policies of business organisations. It provides foundation knowledge of the Corporations Act 2001 – vital to understanding how companies operate in Australia. An understanding of company law is essential for students who are aspiring to a senior position within a company, NGO, or government organisation.



Economics is concerned with the efficient use of limited resources for the optimal satisfaction of material wants. Economics as a discipline is studied for several fundamental reasons foremost among those is the pursuit of knowledge regarding our social environment and economic behaviour within this environment.


This subject provides students with a solid foundation to the vast array of economic analysis. The Unit starts with an introduction to the method and subject matter of economics and an analysis of the economising problem.


Throughout the subject, special emphasis is placed on exploring current global and ethical issues and analysing real world events such as the Global Financial Crisis (GFC) and the Covid-19 pandemic.



A core assumption of business management is that managers seek to maximise shareholder wealth by (in operating terms) maximising the market value of the company’s shares in an ethical manner. This goal is best achieved when management and their financial advisers have a good understanding of how financial markets work.


Students are introduced to principles of corporate finance and investments and seeks to equip them with the skills needed to advise managers and investors on key financial decisions that firms must make. Students are also introduced to issues relating to the financial decision making of investors, including portfolio and risk decisions and asset pricing decisions.

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