The Faculty of Economics first offered instruction in Accounting in 1907 as a component of the BEcs degree. A full programme of Accounting was first offered in 1953 with the possibility then of a major in Accounting within the BEc degree. A separate Department of Accounting occurred in 1960 when Raymond J. Chambers was elevated to the foundation Chair of Accounting. To this day the mission remains to provide students with an education in Accounting as well as training in its current technologies and practices. Accounting is viewed as a service function providing useful data for ongoing and strategic business decisions.
Renamed a Discipline within the Faculty of Economics and Business (now the University of Sydney Business School), Accounting is regarded as an established leader in teaching and research, as well as having an outstanding international reputation in research, learning, development of resources, and journal publishing, including the leading journals; Abacus and Australian Accounting Review.
The Discipline works in close cooperation with industry, commerce and the accounting profession. Graduates and staff have served continuously on the committees of the Australian Professional Bodies, CPA Australia (and its predecessors) and Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand (CAANZ) (formerly the ICAA). Ten Discipline staff are Fellows in one or the other of the professional accountancy bodies.
Our graduates in Accounting have distinguished themselves in the profession as senior partners in major international accounting firms and Australian second-tier firms; in executive positions in national and international commerce, industry, arts organisations and public sector trading enterprises; as senior officers in Federal and State government agencies; and as leading nationally and internationally recognised academics.
Fifteen of our PhD graduates have been appointed to Chairs in Accounting in Australia, New Zealand, United Kingdom, and the US. Two staff have served as President of the 'Australian Society of Accountants' (predecessor of CPA Australia); the current CEO of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in Australia is a Sydney graduate; and the former Dean, Professor Peter Wolnizer is outgoing Chair of the Education Committee of CPA Australia - a position he has held for nearly ten years. Professor Sid Gray recently held the prestigious position of AAA Vice-President International; and Professor Graeme Dean was Chair of NEMAC, the immediate predecessor committee of the current CPA Education Committee.