Contact Details: 

Howard College Campus
Tel: 031-260 2151/2

Pietermaritzburg Campus
Tel: 033-260 6207/5014

Westville Campus
Tel: 031-260 2216


Postgraduate Admissions
Tel: 031-260 7644


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Howard College Campus
Tel: 031-260 1500

Pietermaritzburg Campus
Tel: 033-260 5739

Westville Campus

Tel: 031-260 2216


Postgraduate Admissions

Accounting, Economics & Finance
Tel: 031-260 7644
Welcome to the School of Accounting, Economics and Finance

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The School of Accounting, Economics & Finance offers undergraduate and postgraduate programmes on the Pietermaritzburg and Westville campuses. The School offers programmes in the disciplines of Applied Economics; Auditing; Economics; Finance; Financial Accounting; Managerial Accounting and Finance; and Taxation.


The School offers diverse courses towards the training of professionals in the field of Financial and Management accounting as well as Taxation. Its core business, however, is the training of Chartered Accountants. The Accounting Programmes offered by the School are accredited by the South African Institute of Chartered Accountants (SAICA).

Accounting Graduates from UKZN are in demand by the accounting profession and other businesses. They are found in senior positions around South Africa and in the financial capitals of the world. The School also consistently produces leading taxation experts.


The discipline of Economics offers programmes from undergraduate to doctoral levels. Key specialisations include Environmental Economics, Labour Economics, Maritime Transport Economics, Industrial Organisation and Health Economics. These, together with core modules in Econometrics and Micro- and Macroeconomics, provide students with a buffet table of options and electives unmatched at other Southern African universities. 


The Finance programme is one of the fastest-growing at both undergraduate and honours levels within the College, and has become the most popular stream in the prestigious Bachelor of Business Science degree. The finance courses are structured to prepare students for careers in the financial services industry but with exposure to both investment and corporate finance, students are also well-suited for employment in finance departments in organisations in other sectors. The programme is well-respected by industry with our students taking up positions in the major financial institutions in South Africa as well as those in the fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) industry. 

Research Initiatives and Partnerships

In an effort to transform the accounting profession in South Africa the School works closely with SAICA and we are proud to have produced a significant number of black Chartered Accountants in South Africa. 

The School and its associated Units contributes to research in the College. 
Colleagues within the School are engaged actively with the Economic Research Southern Africa (ERSA) network, which aims to stimulate research in South African institutions and provides a vehicle for publications. ERSA workshops, targeting senior post graduate students and young academics, have been held in the School. 

The School is also intimately involved with the Economic Society of South Africa with members of the School serving on the Board of the Economic Development Strategic Research Initiative (EDSRI). Many of our finance staff are also active participants in the Southern African Finance Association (SAFA). 

Academics in the discipline of Taxation are active members of the South African Taxation Educators Association (SATEA).

Academic colleagues maintain research links with a number of universities abroad, in Europe, elsewhere in Africa and in the United States.

National and Community Engagement

Academics in the School of Accounting, Economics and Finance engage actively with the community as part of their teaching and research. These links include a long-term involvement with the Competition Tribunal, strong links with the eThekwini Municipality, with provincial structures, with the National Department of Transport, and with the national maritime and port-ancillary community.

The School offers a full range of undergraduate and postgraduate qualifications. These include:

  • Bachelor of Commerce (Accounting)
  • Bachelor of Business Science
  • Postgraduate Diploma in Accounting
  • Postgraduate Diploma in Maritime Studies
  • Postgraduate Diploma in Financial Planning
  • Postgraduate Diploma in Finance, Banking and Investment Management
  • Bachelor of Commerce (Honours) in Accountancy
  • Bachelor of Commerce (Honours) in Economics
  • Bachelor of Commerce (Honours) in Finance
  • Master of Commerce
  • Master of Commerce in Maritime Studies
  • Master of Accountancy in Financial Accounting
  • Doctoral Studies in Accounting, Economics and Finance

Professor  Mabutho Sibanda

Professor Mabutho Sibanda joined the University of KwaZulu-Natal in September 2007 and is currently Interim Dean and Head of the School of Accounting, Economics and Finance in the College of Law and Management Studies. Mabutho is a blended academic with six years of investment banking experience and 12 years of lecturing experience. Prior to his appointment as Interim Dean and Head of School, Mabutho served as Academic Leader – Finance for two and a half years, Programme Manager for the Postgraduate Diploma in Finance, Banking & Investment Management for three years,  and postgraduate coordinator in the Finance discipline for three years. As an investment banker, Mabutho rose through the ranks from being a Corporate Finance Analyst to become Investment & Portfolio Manager. Mabutho has hands-on experience in commercialization of state enterprises, structured finance, financial modelling, investment analysis and portfolio management.

Mabutho’s research area is in financial markets with a particular focus on institutional investment. Mabutho has published articles on the role of institutional investors and mutual funds in the finance-growth nexus, and the herd behavior of mutual funds on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange. Mabutho is currently researching dividend clientele and institutional stock selection in South Africa. Mabutho also has an interdisciplinary research focus having published articles on teaching and learning, small to medium enterprise development, financial literacy and development studies. He has presented papers on Finance and interdisciplinary research at several international and local conferences. He is also supervising Masters and PhD students working on the niche area of institutional investment and financial literacy.  

On the teaching and learning front, Mabutho teaches Corporate Finance at Honours and MBA levels, Investment and Portfolio Management at MBA level and Financial Risk Management at undergraduate level.  Mabutho believes in an inclusive participatory pedagogic approach to teaching and learning that suits dynamic and diverse student backgrounds.    Mabutho has also developed a new programme – the Postgraduate Diploma in Financial Planning, which is aimed at improving the skills base in the financial planning fraternity in South Africa and beyond, in line with the National Development Plan.

Mabutho holds an Advanced Diploma in Banking; a Bachelor of Commerce (Finance) Honours, and MSc in Finance and Investment from the National University of Science and Technology; and received a PhD in Finance and Postgraduate Diploma in Higher Education from the University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa. Mabutho is a Member of the Investments Analysts Society of South Africa and an Associate Member of the Institute of Risk Management of South Africa.  

  • Discipline of Accounting The Accounting Discipline at the University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN) is mainly in the business of producing Chartered Accountants. It's graduates are in demand by the accounting profession and other businesses. They are found in senior positions around South Africa and in the financial capitals of the world.UKZN is registered with the South African Institute of Chartered Accountants (SAICA), and provides courses in accordance with its curriculum. 

     Discipline Website

    The Graduate School of Business and Leadership
  • Discipline of Economics The Economics section comprises of academics with a diverse range of research interests and who are wideley published in their fields of specialisation. Students therefore can choose from a broad array of research areas in pursuing further academic study including: trade and industry; environmental economics; labour economics; health economics; transport economics; conflict and security and macroeconomic policy.

     Discipline Website

    Model 2
  • Discipline of Finance Finance considers how individual organisations earn or raise money, how they employ or invest their money and how they distribute the money that they earn. Financial decision-making is complex because of the need to balance wealth creation against risk. Finance develops the principles and practices required by firms and investors in making financial decisions.

     Discipline Website

    Model 3
  • Unit of Maritime Law and Maritime Studies The Unit of Maritime Law and Maritime Studies at UKZN’s Howard College campus, is a strategic research and knowledge initiative through its close proximity to the most active general cargo port and the most extensive port-ancillary maritime “Cluster” in the southern hemisphere. 

     Unit Website

    School of Applied Human Sciences
  • HEARD HEARD is a leading applied research centre with a global reputation for its research, education programmes, technical services, partnerships and networks, devoted to addressing the broad health challenges of Africa. HEARD’s aim is to shape public health policy and practice in order to reduce health inequalities in Africa and to improve the reach, comprehensiveness and quality of health services delivery throughout the region.


    School of Applied Human Sciences

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