The University of Pretoria (UP) has maintained its lead from 2016 when it was once again ranked number one in South Africa for accounting and finance in the 2017 QS World University Rankings. UP was also placed in the top 4% of all participating institutions worldwide.
The Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) Rankings are world-renowned for evaluating the performance of universities from across the world, covering a range of subjects from accounting to theology and sciences. The rankings are based on the quality of the institution’s research outputs in each subject area and also consider the reputation of the university based on the results of surveys of academics and employers.
Following the release of the rankings, Prof Elsabé Loots, Dean of the Faculty of Economic and Management Sciences (EMS), said: “These rankings are a testament to the Faculty’s efforts to ensure that the programmes offered remain globally relevant and that our graduates can confidently compete in the job market.”
The testimony of the rankings was affirmed when UP celebrated the highest cumulative pass rate in South Africa in this year’s Initial Tests of Competence (ITC), administered by the South African Institute of Chartered Accounts (SAICA). The ITCs are the first of the two professional examinations required to complete the Chartered Accountant (CA) qualification and UP achieved an excellent 99% pass rate after the cumulative results for the January and June 2017 ITCs were released. UP also had two of the top ten candidates in this exam, with Megan de Vries taking the first position and Michael Mills taking the eighth position.
Prof Johan Oberholster, Deputy Dean for Teaching and Learning and CA Programme Coordinator in the Faculty of EMS, notes that UP is as committed to producing exceptional graduates as it is to supporting the ongoing national efforts to transform the CA profession in the country. He explains: “UP has collaborated with various partners in government and the private sector to offer several holistic support programmes directed at financially challenged students.” This, he says, ensures that students who otherwise would not have had access to quality tertiary education are granted the opportunity to study for a recognised accounting and finance qualification.
Some of the support programmes available to students at UP include:
- The Ikusasa Student Financial Aid Programme (ISFAP), which is a national bursary scheme for ‘missing middle’ students who struggle with paying tuition despite their household income being ‘too high’ to qualify for National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS).
- The Finance and Accounting Services Sector Education and Training Authority (Fasset) bursary scheme, which is aimed at increasing the flow of new accountancy, economics and finance entrants into employment, as well as developing and growing the skills required in the sector.
- The Thuthuka bursary scheme offered in association with SAICA in order to attract more black and coloured students into the CA profession.
Visit https://www.up.ac.za/-accounting to find out more about the programme.