Program Overview

Offered jointly by the Rotman School of Management and the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Arts and Science, our program provides a balanced approach to business that is unique within undergraduate business education in Canada. In pursuing your BCom with us, you will receive a solid grounding in business fundamentals, while having the freedom to choose from a flexible and innovative curriculum.

You’ll spend your first year getting introduced to the major areas of business study, as well as exploring subjects that appeal to you in the arts and sciences. In your second year, you will pick a specialization in one of three core areas: Accounting, Finance and Economics, or Management. Depending on your own personal interests, you may also choose to minor or major in a second subject. Your third and fourth years will be spent in advanced courses to satisfy your specialist, major or minor (if applicable), and elective requirements.

Students graduating from the Public Accounting stream of the Rotman Commerce Accounting Specialist, along with accounting specialists from UTM and UTSC, have priority access to the Rotman School’s twelve-week Graduate Diploma in Professional Accounting (G.Dip.P.A.).The G.Dip.P.A. offers advanced standing with the CPA, enabling students intending to pursue a CPA designation to advance directly to the Capstone 1 module in the CPA Professional Education Program. Read more about the G.Dip.P.A. at

In addition, your academic program will be complemented throughout by extensive professional and personal learning opportunities, as well as many extracurricular programs, events, and workshops organized by our Rotman Commerce staff and our student groups.

Specialist in Accounting

The Rotman Commerce Accounting Specialist program exists to provide in-depth accounting education to students wishing to pursue careers or graduate studies in accounting. Students enrolled in the specialist must choose one of the two streams discussed below: Public Accounting or Financial Reporting and Control. To review the specific requirements of both streams, please visit the Faculty of Arts and Science Calendar.

Public Accounting

The Accounting Specialist in Public Accounting provides advanced training in accounting, particularly in the public accounting fields of financial accounting, tax, and audit, complemented by exposure to economics, finance, and other management disciplines. It is especially recommended for those wishing to become licensed public accountants and/or train in public accounting firms. This stream has the same requirements as the singular Accounting Specialist program that existed prior to the introduction of the two streams.

This stream was accredited by the Chartered Accountant (CA) legacy program by the Chartered Professional Accountants of Ontario (CPAO, formerly the Institute for Chartered Accountants of Ontario or ICAO) and also continues to meet the requirements for direct entry into the Chartered General Accountant (CGA) program at the PACE level.

During the transition period for the new Chartered Professional Accountant designation (CPA), this means that students can obtain advanced standing in the new CPA Professional Education Program (CPA PEP). In addition, this stream allows students to complete the requirements for entry into the new CPA Professional Education Program (CPA PEP).

This specialist stream is highly structured and requires 15 Full-Credit Equivalents (FCEs), culminating with an existing capstone course: RSM426H1 Critical Thinking, Analysis, and Decision Making.

Financial Reporting and Control

The Accounting Specialist in Financial Reporting and Control meets the needs of students who intend to pursue careers in accounting, but not necessarily in public accounting. It is primarily aimed at students who wish to pursue careers as financial analysts, managerial accountants, financial statement preparers, controllers, internal auditors, or financial professionals in general.

Compared with the accredited Public Accounting stream, the Financial Reporting and Control stream offers greater flexibility for students to take non-accounting RSM courses (both through an increased breadth requirement and through a larger number of elective RSM courses). It provides a greater emphasis on management and financial accounting in lieu of tax and audit.

The stream also has a new capstone course: RSM429H1 Financial Statement Analysis and Valuation. The overall objective of this new capstone course is to help students valuate businesses using financial statements. It includes discussion of how accounting regulations and managerial discretion influence presented financial statements.

In addition, students will understand how to interpret financial statements, analyze cash flows, make judgments about earnings quality, and uncover hidden assets and liabilities. Students will also be exposed to research from accounting and finance that focuses on how financial statement analysis can be used in devising trading rules. Finally, the course will use financial statement analysis prospectively to forecast and valuate firms using cash-flow-based and accounting-based-methods.

>> View Accounting Specialist Overview documents

Specialist in Finance and Economics

The Specialist in Finance and Economics is designed for those who wish to pursue graduate studies or a career in finance or economics. Faculty are drawn from the Rotman School of Management – the leading business school in Canada for finance – and the Faculty of Arts and Science, which boasts the nation’s top-ranked economics department.

Moreover, Rotman Commerce is a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) Institute Program Partner, an internationally recognized designation certifying that the Rotman Commerce BCom has covered the generally accepted body of knowledge required by CFAs. To learn more about the CFA Institute Program Partnership, visit the CFA Institute’s website.

>> View Finance and Economics Specialist Overview documents

Specialist in Management

The Specialist in Management is intended for students who wish to capitalize on the flexibility of pursuing either a broad business program or who are interested in bridging the connection between business management and other Arts and Science disciplines. The program consists of 12 credits out of the 20 credit BCom degree.

As of September 2018, students pursuing the Specialist in Management may choose to focus in one of four areas: Finance, Leadership in Organizations, Marketing, or Strategy and InnovationIn order to satisfy the requirements of each of these Focuses, students will need to complete specific RSM (Rotman Commerce) courses, as well as a communications skills course. Once completed, the focus will appear on your official transcript.Note that students do not have to pursue a focus and may continue to pursue the BCom with a Specialist in Management as outlined in the Arts & Science Calendar.

>> View Management Specialist Overview documents