Applied Empirical Accounting

Module description

BEAM056 aims to equip students with the knowledge and abilities in order to undertake applied empirical research. During this module students will be introduced to various statistical techniques which are common within the accounting discipline and will be provided with coded STATA examples, tasks and relevant reading material.


The latter part of the module introduces students to the practical process of collecting data from database resources, and using this data to create and test empirical models using STATA software. Combining knowledge and understanding from the first part of the module with larger worked-examples from the latter part, students will be able to independently conduct empirical research and apply the necessary statistical techniques.


This module prepares you for the dissertation stage of the Accounting and Finance MSc program where you are required to conduct empirical analysis based upon a particular research question. This module will provide the basic skills and knowledge-set required to perform this task. More broadly, the course will help you later in your career to perform independent empirical research as well as to be able to read and understand published academic research in Accounting and Finance disciplines.

Full module specification

Module title:Applied Empirical Accounting
Module code:BEAM056
Module level:M
Academic year:2020/1
Module lecturers:
  • Dr Anthony Wood - Convenor
Module credit:15
ECTS value:






Duration of module: Duration (weeks) - term 1:


Module aims

The module objectives are fourfold:

  1. Equip students with the basic statistics and econometrics knowledge in order to undertake independent empirical research projects.
  2. Understand and critique published research in the fields of Accounting and Finance.
  3. Provide students with the ability to access and retrieve data; create and manage large datasets.
  4. Understand and apply basic methodological skills to be able to conduct and understand qualitative research in Accounting and Finance.

ILO: Module-specific skills

  • 1. recognise the usage and context of contemporary accounting research;
  • 2. distinguish between quantitative and qualitative research processes and techniques;
  • 3. recognise the theory and rationale behind various analysis and research methods;
  • 4. identify practical issues and limitations surrounding research projects;
  • 5. identify, critique and develop research papers and research methodology;
  • 6. interpret and apply data sources, statistics, and relevant;

ILO: Discipline-specific skills

  • 7. critically evaluate techniques and methodology used within accounting research;
  • 8. identify research questions and opportunities for new and exciting disciplinary research;
  • 9. bring together, summarise and critique a rounded body of independently sourced material.

ILO: Personal and key skills

  • 10. demonstrate key skills in analytical practices including data handling and statistical techniques;
  • 11. demonstrate effective use of learning resources and independent research skills;
  • 12. pursue and deliver on a sustained program of individual work successfully;
  • 13. complete multistage tasks within a defined period whilst assisted by supervision.

Learning activities and teaching methods (given in hours of study time)

Scheduled Learning and Teaching ActivitiesGuided independent studyPlacement / study abroad

Details of learning activities and teaching methods

CategoryHours of study timeDescription
Scheduled Learning and Teaching Activity20Lectures
Scheduled Learning and Teaching Activity10Practical exercises and/or workshop
Guided Independent Study120Reading, preparation for classes and assessments

Formative assessment

Form of assessmentSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
Weekly help hour and progress checks10 x 1 hour1-6Verbal

Summative assessment (% of credit)

CourseworkWritten examsPractical exams

Details of summative assessment

Form of assessment% of creditSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
Coursework804,000 word individual research project1-13Written feedback
Class tests204 x multiple choice/short format tests1-6Written feedback

Details of re-assessment (where required by referral or deferral)

Original form of assessmentForm of re-assessmentILOs re-assessedTimescale for re-assessment
Coursework (80%) and in-class tests (20%)Coursework Re-submission (100%)1-13July/August Assessment Period

Re-assessment notes


Syllabus plan

  • Week 1 - Basic Statistics, including distributions, inference and hypothesis testing.
  • Week 2 - OLS Regression, including correlation, multicollinearity and regression techniques.
  • Week 3 - Dummy Variables, including use of dummy variables, fixed effects and interactions.
  • Week 4 - Binary Choice Models, including linear probability, logit and probit.
  • Week 5 - Model Testing, including contingency tables, ROC curves, training vs validation sampling.
  • Week 6 - Assignment Preparation, including resource access, effective writing, referencing, literature focus.
  • Week 7 - STATA Practice, including practical guidance on STATA combining Weeks 1-5.
  • Week 8 - Data Collection, including a discussion of available databases and their content.
  • Week 9 - STATA Focus, including detailed use of STATA specifically in order to complete the assignment.

Indicative learning resources - Basic reading

Basic reading:  lecture notes, textbooks and academic papers

ELE – College to provide hyperlink to appropriate pages

STATA (or equivalent software package)

Web based and electronic resources: eLibrary, electronic databases

Module has an active ELE page?


Origin date


Last revision date