Fraudsters of the world, be forewarned. A new master’s program launching next fall at U of T Mississauga will train the next generation of forensic investigators in the latest techniques to detect financial discrepancies and apprehend criminals around the world.
Admissions open Dec. 15 for the new two-year Masters of Forensic Accounting program, a specialized distance education program that begins in September 2017. The program features nine online, plus one in-residence, courses that cover investigative techniques and cost valuation of businesses, along with cyber crime, data analytics and the psychology of white-collar crime.
Aimed at forensic accountants, the program also has applications in a wide variety of related fields, says program director Len Brooks. “The MFAcc program is also extremely valuable for people working in risk management, compliance for banks, insurance and brokerages, as well as those who handle business valuation, fraud investigation and securities enforcement.”
The master’s program replaces the fifteen year-old Diploma in Investigative & Forensic Accounting program, and is one of only a handful of programs to offer forensic accounting as a stand-alone graduate degree. “The MFAcc program is designed to provide skills, knowledge, insights and professional training recognized both in Canada and around the world,” Brooks says.
The majority of the program is delivered through online classes where students interact with instructors and classmates over a computer interface. “The distance education component is a big draw, as it reduces opportunity costs,” Brooks says, noting that the program has generated interest from students around the globe, many of whom are already working within their fields. “With the MFAcc program, students can work towards a master’s degree from anywhere in the world.”
The program culminates in a week-long residency on the UTM campus which finds students working in role-play scenarios with professional volunteers including lawyers and judges, to learn techniques for questioning and how to give evidence and be cross-examined in a courtroom setting.
“These skill-building sessions will bring together key points that students have learned during the program,” Brooks says. “We are educating people to be the most competent forensic investigators and expert witnesses on financial crime in the world.”
Application for admission to the MFAcc program begins Dec. 15, 2016.