SOAS University of London

Centre for Financial and Management Studies (CeFiMS)

Postgraduate Diploma in Public Financial Management

(Endorsed by ACCA)

This programme takes a minimum of one year to complete. Each module lasts eight weeks. You are registered for a maximum of five years.

2017 Entry requirements

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  • Overview
  • Structure
  • Teaching and Learning
  • Fees and funding
  • Employment
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Start of programme: November / February / April / June / August

Mode of Attendance: Distance Learning

Organisations need managers with a thorough understanding of public finance so that they can make financial decisions and design and operate financial systems for collecting, spending and accounting for public expenditure. Depending on which options you choose, this programme will enable you to make decisions about investment projects, when and how to use privatisation and public-private partnerships, and how to manage the financial relationships between national and sub-national governments.

Find out more

To find out more about this programme, including module details, fees and entry requirements, please visit the PG Diploma Public Financial Management section of the Centre for Financial and Management Studies website.


You will study four modules selected from the list below:

  • Decentralisation & Local Governance
  • Environmental and Social Impact Assessment
  • Financial Reporting (International Financial Reporting Standards – IFRS)
  • Financial Reporting (International Public Sector Accounting Standards – IPSAS)
  • Privatisation & Public-Private Partnerships
  • Project Appraisal
  • Public Financial Management: Audit & Compliance
  • Public Financial Management: Planning & Performance
  • Public Financial Management: Revenue
  • Public Policy & Management: Development Assistance

To find out more about this programme, including module details, please visit the PG Diploma Public Financial Management section of the Centre for Financial and Management Studies website.


Teaching and Learning

Teaching & Learning

The Postgraduate Diploma is made up of four modules. Each module is studied in eight-week sessions. You can only take one module at a time, but each module is typically available in at least two of the year's study sessions. This gives you the flexibility to plan how you study during the year, enabling you to fit your study in with your professional, family and personal commitments.

You will be individually assigned an online academic tutor for the duration of each module with whom you can discuss academic queries at regular intervals during the study session. You will also have a named administrator providing you with help and advice throughout your studies.

Before the start of each module you have enrolled in, you will be sent a package containing all of the study materials that you need to complete the module – the core text, textbooks, a collection of key articles, and any module related software. 

To make your experience as a distance learning student more complete and rewarding, we provide access to the Virtual Learning Environment, which is a web-accessed learning environment. Via the VLE, you can communicate with your assigned academic tutor, administrators and other students on the module using discussion forums. The VLE also provides access to the module Study Guide and assignments, as well as a selection of electronic journals available on the University of London Online Library.

For each module, you will sit a three-hour examination, held on a specified date in September/October, and complete two assignments during the module study session. Assignments are submitted and feedback given online. Examinations and assignments are weighted 70:30.

For more information about studying with us, please visit the Frequently asked questions section of the Centre for Financial and Management Studies.

Fees and funding



Students of this programme will receive an invaluable preparation for high-level appointments in government, public services, international organisations and NGOs. The programme is endorsed by the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA). If you are already an ACCA member, the qualification will be a useful way to improve your expertise to enable you to practise in government finance.

Find out more by visiting the Careers section of the Centre for Financial and Management Studies website.

A Student's Perspective

I can assure my sponsor that the studies I undertook were value for money and have helped me tremendously in my career development. I would recommend studying through CeFiMS to anybody.

Brechtje Swart


Find out more

  • Contact us
    By phone:
    +44 (0)20 7898 4098
    By email:
  • Got a question?

    If you still have questions about this programme or studying at SOAS get in touch.

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  • Apply

    CeFiMS distance learning applications should be made through our online application form.

    Start your application