Accounting Degree Study Options at Accredited Schools
Students in the field of accounting can major in business, with a minor or emphasis in accounting, or major in accounting and apply for jobs later in that field. The best way is at an accredited university in a four-year degree program, where students will earn a Bachelor of Sciences in Accounting that will qualify them for an entry-level position in nearly every and some of the top fields of accountancy.
Earning An Accounting Degree Online
Another option is to go through an online education program, especially if students live in a remote location or have a very busy schedule. Always check with Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business that the program and school you are looking at is accredited. Also, look into community colleges where you can earn or work towards earning an associate’s degree in accounting and transferring into a four-year college or university.
Master Of Science And Doctorate In Accounting
A Master of Science (M.S.) degree in Accounting generally takes a full year to complete at an accredited school. A Ph.D. in Accounting, which takes about four years to finish, involves studying accounting theory and research techniques, as well as teaching fundamentals. Each degree requires coursework and a thesis, depending on the individual program. Other degree options offer a variation on accounting, such as a Ph.D. in Business Management with an emphasis in accounting.
Master Of Business Administration In Accounting
Those who want to further their education can attend business school and earn a Master’s of Business Administration with a strong focus in accounting or MBA in Professional Accounting. These programs incorporate business management skills with accounting theory and practice and usually offer a broader range of topics, ensuring a less specialized field of study. In order to earn an MBA, you will need to have a degree in a business-related field like accounting and take the Graduate Management Admissions Test, or GMAT to apply for business school.
Choosing A Focus In Accounting
Specialization is very important to accounting, with several major areas of study. Forensic accounting analyzes documents and establishes evidence of criminal activity, such as tax evasion or fraud. Management accounting deals with providing managers in organization with accounting information so they can make an informed business decision. Financial accounting involves preparing financial statements for people outside of the organization, such as suppliers, banks, stockholders and the government. Choosing a focus will help students find the career path as an accountant and help them determine if they need to take any kind of certification exam.
Earning an Accounting And Bookkeeping Certification
Accounting and bookkeeping certificate programs prepare accountants to work in practically any corporation, business or organization in an entry-level position. Students learn about journals and ledgers, preparing payroll documents, the theory of double entry and reconciling banking statements.
Graduating from an accounting and bookkeeping certificate program means you have learned theoretical and practical applications of recordkeeping and accounting systems for business, along with maintaining financial records of expenditures, profit and loss and payables and receivables. You will also become familiar with computer programs like database software and spreadsheets to help keep track of bookkeeping and accounting operations. Having the certification gives you an employable edge, besides learning and practicing the same skills you will need on the job.
Certified Public Accountants
Certified Public Accountants (CPA) offer general services ranging from corporations to private individuals, advising on financial plans and investments. Other responsibilities could include preparing financial reports like personal tax returns or checking up on peopleís tax returns for the IRS.
In order to become a CPA, those with a degree in accounting need to take the CPA exam, designed and graded by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, as well as a separate exam on ethics. Only licensed CPAs can provide opinions on financial statements, including auditing, in most U.S. states. While CPAs often serve as business consultants to the public and corporations or associations, they also provide services such as assurance, financial accounting, merger & acquisition, financial planning and analysis, tax preparation and more.
Other Certifications For Accountants
Certified Management Accountants (CMA) and Certified Internal Auditor (CIA) exams differ in their legal status and the kind of services they provide. CMAs work with accounting management while CIAs focus on internal auditing. Both certifications require passing arduous, four-part exams. Accredited Business Accountants (ABA) specialize in small to mid-sized businesses and must take an eight-hour comprehensive exam testing financial accounting, reporting, statement preparation, taxation and business law.
Coursework In Accounting
Most accountants specialize in one area, but general accounting education covers all of them so students can get a better idea of what kind of work they would want to concentrate in later. No matter where students earn an accounting degree, they will need to put in a great deal of time and effort learning the material.
All accounting students will need to take specific courses, such as accounting basics, information systems, managerial accounting, economics, financial reporting, forensic accounting, payroll administration and cost accounting. Other possible coursework includes international business, regression analysis, forecasting, tax law, business law for accounting, income taxation, financial statements, mergers and acquisitions, compensation and bankruptcy.