BBUS 4251
Advanced Management Accounting

3.0 Credits


This is an advanced course in strategic management accounting. The course examines the integrative and interdisciplinary role of management accounting and its contribution in the strategic management process. The course focuses on cases that deal with management's need for information for planning, control and decision making using both quantitative and qualitative information.

Delivery Method

Online, Paced.


BBUS 3251 or equivalent. Strongly recommended: BBUS 3211, BBUS 3121 and BBUS 3331.


On successful completion of the course, students will be able to:

  • Apply management accounting concepts in a case-based, collaborative setting, communicating the results effectively both orally and in writing.
  • Locate the role of management control systems (MCS) in both strategy and operations.
  • Describe results control and its applications.
  • Distinguish indirect controls from the direct controls, based on action and personnel/culture.
  • Determine whether an entity or an area is better suited to tight or loose controls, and the types of action and/or personnel/cultural controls that ensure the desired level of tightness.
  • Design and evaluate management controls in terms of methods applied and tightness, and the indirect costs of a poor MCS design and/or implementation.
  • Select the best type of financial responsibility-centre, based on desired levels of control, and identify behavioural impacts of different transfer pricing schemes.
  • Prepare and interpret budgets, and identify their limitations.
  • Design and evaluate various types of incentive systems.
  • Evaluate financial performance market and accounting measures in terms of seven criteria to determine optimal performance metrics.
  • Analyze and apply six financial results control remedies to alleviate myopic behaviour.
  • Assess the ways that performance evaluators can reduce, and perhaps eliminate, the distorting effects of uncontrollable factors on measure performance.
  • Critically analyze corporate governance structures of various companies and common management-control related ethical issues.

Course Outline

Introduction to Case-Based Collaboration

  • Module 1: Introduction to Case-Based Collaboration

Control function

  • Module 2: Introduction to Management Control Systems (MCS)

Control Alternatives and Effects

  • Module 3: Control Alternatives and Effects--Results Controls
  • Module 4: Action and Personnel/Cultural Controls
  • Module 5: Control System Tightness
  • Module 6: Control System Design, Evaluation, and Indirect Costs

Financial Results Control Systems

  • Module 7: Financial Responsibility Centres and Transfer Pricing
  • Module 8: Planning and Budgeting (Performance Definition and Measurement)
  • Module 9: Incentive Systems (Performance Rewards)

Performance Measurement and Issues

  • Module 10: Financial Performance Measures
  • Module 11: The Myopia Problem
  • Module 12: Controls and Risk
  • Module 13: Corporate Governance and Ethics

Maximum Completion

17 weeks.

Required Text and Materials

Merchant, K. A, Wim A. Van der Stede. Management Control Systems: Performance Measurement, Evaluation and Incentives. 3rd ed. Pearson Education Canada, 2012.
Type: Textbook, ISBN: 978-0273737612

The Business Strategy Game (BSG) at

Note: You will be able to purchase your simulation package online once your Open Learning Faculty Member has organized the competing companies and generated a purchase code to share with you. BSG costs approximately $45 US per student. Your Open Learning Faculty Member will send you your purchase order number within the first ten (10) days of the start of this course.

Open Learning Faculty Member Information

An Open Learning Faculty Member is available to assist students. Primary communication is through Blackboard's "Mail" tool or by phone. Students will receive the necessary contact information when starting the course.


To successfully complete the course, students must achieve at least 50% on the mandatory final exam and in the overall course.

The final grade for the course is determined on the following basis:

Case Assignment 1 6%
Case Assignment 2 10%
Case Assignment 3 10%
Case Assignment 4 10%
BSG Simulation 24%
Online Discussions 10%
Final Exam 30%