School amends QAAP courses

New graduate diploma replaces CA designation courses

Students taking the Queen’s Advanced Accounting Program (QAAP) will be able to receive a graduate diploma in accounting starting next summer.

The University Senate approved the proposed program at its Oct. 22 meeting.

The diploma will replace the four QAAP courses students seeking a Chartered Accounting (CA) designation by the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Ontario (ICAO) are required to take, School of Business Dean David Saunders said.

The courses for the diploma will fulfill requirements for designation and provide some additional material, he said.

“It will satisfy the minimum requirements and give them more because at this level of accounting it becomes more conceptual. … It will take them farther.”

Saunders said he thinks it’s an innovative initiative because the diploma will be structured so that students can apply the courses towards a master’s degree later.

“Rather than simply offer four courses that just hang out there, now you get a diploma and a leg up,” he said.

Saunders said he expects 60 to 80 students to enroll in the diploma, adding that QAAP takes roughly that amount every year.

Offering a diploma program instead of a new degree will save the University some money, he said.

“It’s such a small program that we’re not going to make a lot of money here,” he said. “We need a multi-faceted approach [and] this would be a piece of it. … We have to create programs that are financially viable.”

Lianne Lew, ICAO Board of Associates member and Comm ’11, said she thinks the diploma is a good idea.

The bachelor of commerce is set up so that first- and second-year students take required courses, she said. Students who want to earn the CA designation have to take the QAAP courses in the summer of their fourth year because they can’t fit it into the regular commerce track. “Any student interested in accounting would have to take it anyways and now it would just be an additional advantage,” she said. “You don’t have time in your undergraduate degree so you have to take summer courses to catch up.”

Lew said she thinks this program could make Queen’s School of Business more attractive to potential students.

Students may have seen additional summer courses as a disadvantage but now they can earn an additional diploma, she said.

“It would probably strengthen the argument for choosing Queen’s.”

—With files from Gloria Er-Chua

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