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Our rankings

Global leaders in business education

  • No. 1 in Australia

    The University is ranked 1st in Australia and 4th in the world for graduate employability in the QS Graduate Employability Rankings 2022.

  • Top 25 globally

    Our Accounting and Finance subjects are ranked #24 in the world in the QS World Rankings by Subject 2022.


In response to COVID-19, the University of Sydney has reviewed the availability of courses to be delivered remotely. 

This course will be available for students to study remotely during 2022 if they are unable to undertake face-to-face study. Please note that some units of study that are not essential to completing the degree may not be available to be studied remotely. For the latest updates on course availability, visit the COVID-19 information page

About the Graduate Diploma in Professional Accounting

The Graduate Diploma in Professional Accounting will help you develop the skills and expertise you need for a rewarding career in accounting. Based on our Master of Professional Accounting, but requiring fewer units of study, you will start to develop the knowledge and expertise to future-proof your career.

The Graduate Diploma in Professional Accounting will expose you to the broad organisational, regulatory, market and technological contexts in which accountants operate. You will pursue advanced learning in professional practice, the theory that underpins it and the people skills that make accounting information most effective.

This course will enhance your career and enable you to progress to the Master of Professional Accounting.

Subject areas
Shared pool

Entry, fees, funding & how to apply

Depends on your qualification, citizenship status
The details on this page based on your selections are a guide only, and are subject to change.

Your entry requirements

English language proficiency

Find out if you need to prove English language proficiency (depends on your country of origin and educational background).

For academic requirements check the ‘Admission requirements’ section on this page.

Your fee

Your funding and scholarships

Explore your options.

Explore your options.

How to apply

Apply online or for more information visit our how to apply page.

Standard closing dates

Semester 1 - 31 January of the commencing year

Semester 2 - 15 July of the commencing year

We strongly encourage applicants to apply as early as possible, Offers are made on a rolling basis and places are limited. Separate scholarship deadlines may apply - check the scholarships website for details

Starting date

Semester 1 (February) and Semester 2 (August)

This course is currently not available to international students.

Starting date

What you'll study in the Graduate Diploma in Professional Accounting

Through theory and professional practice, you will be exposed to the broad organisational, regulatory and market context in which accountants operate, and learn to solve accounting and business problems in innovative ways.

Core units of study

  • Accounting Principles
  • Managerial Accounting and Decision Making
  • Intermediate Financial Reporting
  • Legal Environment of Business
  • Capital Markets and Corporate Finance 

Elective units of study

Completion of three electives is also a requirement of the course selected from:

  • Contemporary Issues in Auditing 
  • Advanced Financial Reporting 
  • Critical Thinking in Business 
  • Firms, Markets and Business Management 
  • Corporate Structures in Practice 
  • Taxation Law and Practice 
  • Accounting Information Systems
  • Quantitative Methods for Accounting

Visit the Business School handbook for unit of study descriptions and progression guides.

Units of Study

Completion requirement

The Graduate Diploma in Professional Accounting requires the completion of 48 credit points comprising:

  • 30 credit points in core unit of study, and
  • 18 credit points in elective units of study.


Admission criteria

To be considered for admission, an applicant is required to have:

  • Australian bachelor's degree or higher (minimum 60 percent average) or equivalent qualification, or
  • Australian bachelor's degree or higher with a pass average (minimum 50 percent) or equivalent qualification, and satisfactory performance in the GMAT (for guidance, the class average score is 590) or equivalent Business School approved admissions test.

Students are able to apply to upgrade from the graduate diploma to the master's degree.

Any grade requirements listed are based on the University of Sydney guide to grades.

Credit for previous study

For more information about the University’s credit policy, please see the Credit for Previous Studies page.

Professional accreditation

The Graduate Diploma in Professional Accounting is partially accredited by the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA), CPA Australia and Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand (CAANZ).

You need to complete the compulsory units of study to satisfy professional accreditation requirements. For more detailed information download the Professional Accounting Accreditation Guide (pdf, 201KB).

Career pathways

Graduates from the Graduate Diploma in Professional Accounting are well equipped for careers in accounting practices, including as financial controllers, company secretaries, financial analysts and planners, tax and estate advisers, financial and management accountants and auditors.

Future study

The Graduate Diploma in Professional Accounting is a pathway option for the Master of Professional Accounting.

A postgraduate degree can open doors to further study, whether you are interested in pursuing a research degree, or expanding your postgraduate qualifications and skillset by embarking on a management degree, MBA or specialised business masters.

The Business School offers two research degrees, the Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) and the Master of Philosophy (MPhil), which may be studied full-time or part-time. Embarking on a PhD or masters by research is an opportunity to join a community of recognised leaders in scholarship and make a significant contribution to your area of study. We are home to many leading researchers and attract generous funding in support of our research projects, and the University of Sydney is consistently ranked among the best research universities in the world.

If you are interested in pursuing further postgraduate study, our postgraduate coursework business degrees cater to students from any background and career stage, with pre- and post-experience options available, to help you achieve the future you’ve imagined. Combine your interests and develop specialised skills to be well positioned in an increasingly competitive business environment.

Domestic students

International students

Adam Aziz

Adam Aziz
Master of Professional Accounting
Auditor (Assurance) - PwC Australia

“During my time at the University of Sydney Business School, I grew to understand the sheer scope of the accounting profession and I have a better appreciation of the role accountants play in society. My postgraduate study has also placed me in a strong position to pursue my entrepreneurial ambitions.

“I now have a greater knowledge of how companies operate and profit. With my blend of accounting and economics expertise and my passion for consumer behaviour, I am much better equipped to embark on my entrepreneurial pursuit.”

To help you understand common terms that we use at the University, we offer an online glossary.