Friday, December 26, 2008

Acadmic Programs in Accounting

There are many academic options for those who want to pursue a career in accounting. In particular, public accounting in many states requires five (5) years of college education, thus many colleges and universities have created Masters in Professional Accountancy or equivalent degrees, so students can fulfill the CPA requirements as well as get extra practice for the exam.

Currently, many academic programs are offered throughout the nation for aspiring professionals. Certificate programs are offered by many two-year colleges usually leading up to a nontransferable Associates degree in accounting or a transferable business accounting degree many four year universities will accept. These programs prepare students for transfer to four year universities or positions in bookkeeping and accounting clerks. Four year universities typically offer majors in accounting normally through their business department.

After completing a Bachelors degree in accounting, many universities offer a fifth-year postgraduate professional degree in accounting to help students prepare for the CPA exam. In addition, many universities offer one to two year MBA programs that allow one to specialize in accounting in addition to business management. Typically MBAs can also be pursued as three-year evening/weekend programs for busy working professionals.

Last but not least, there are numerous PHD/DBA programs which typically span for four to six years in length and as a result, prepare students for careers in academic or research situations. Usually the first two years of a doctorate program comprise of graduate level coursework and seminars followed by the two to four yearlong research cornerstone, the dissertation.

Friday, July 20, 2007

CPA and Postgraduate Degrees

These days, in many states, you would need 2000 hours or about one (1) year of accounting experience and about five years of college for a CPA license. Not to mention the CPA exam as well. But the truth today is that a four-year degree just isn't going to cut it. Many universities and colleges offer the one-year master's degree in Accouting or Professional Accountancy so that CPA wannabes can get enough credits for the education requirements while preparing for the exam. Overall, these new degrees seem great and would add a great selling point to one's resume, especially if you are in the business field.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

The CPA Exam

Main article: Uniform Certified Public Accountant Examination

In order to become a U.S. CPA, it is mandatory to sit for and pass the Uniform Certified Public Accountant Examination (Uniform CPA Exam), which is set by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and administered by the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy.

Eligibility to sit for the Uniform CPA Exam is determined by individual State Boards of Accountancy. Typically the requirement is a U.S. bachelors degree in accounting with an additional 1 year study. This requirement for 5 years study is known as the "150 hour rule" and has been adopted by the majority of state boards, although there are still some exceptions. (for instance, Delaware).

However, Colorado State Board of Accountancy allows Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA), together with Chartered Accountants from eligible jurisdictions that are automatically eligible to sit for the Uniform CPA Exam as a Colorado candidate.

Certain overseas qualified accountants seeking to become U.S. CPAs may be eligible to sit for the International Qualification Examination as an alternative to the Uniform CPA Exam.

Source: Wikipedia. All text is available under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License. (See Copyrights for details.)

Sunday, October 29, 2006

What is a CPA?

Certified Public Accountants (CPAs) are qualified accountants in the United States who have passed the Uniform Certified Public Accountant Examination and have met additional state education and experience requirements for certification as a CPA. In most U.S. states, only CPAs who are licensed are able to provide to the public, attestation (including auditing) opinions on financial statements. The exceptions to this rule are Arizona, Kansas, North Carolina and Wyoming, where although the "CPA" designation is restricted, the practice of auditing is not.
Many states prohibit the use of the designations "Certified Public Accountant" or "Public Accountant" (or the abbreviations "CPA" or "PA") by a person who is not certified as a CPA in that state. According to the National Society of Accountants, the "public accountant" does exist nationwide subject to certain exceptions. However the majority of states have closed the designation "Public Accountant" to new entrants.
While CPAs are known by the general public in part for their business consultants, finance and tax expertise, as well as for "doing the books" of small organizations, they are uniquely educated for the attestation function discussed above. Because accountants are educated on the foundational levels of a business, they are commonly called upon for general business knowledge. Increasingly, CPAs are employed by corporations in finance functions such as Chief Financial Officer (CFO) or finance manager, or CPAs are employed as CEOs subject to their full business knowledge and practice, and do not provide services directly to the public.
Although some CPAs serve as business consultants, the consulting role is under scrutiny following the corporate climate in the aftermath of the Enron scandal. This has resulted in divestitures in the consulting divisions by many accounting firms. In audit engagements, CPAs are (and have always been) required by professional standards and Federal and State laws to maintain independence (both in fact and in appearance) from the entity they are conducting an attestation (audit and review) engagement. However, most individual CPAs who work as consultants do not work as auditors, or vice versa.

All text is available under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License. (See Copyrights for details.) Wikipedia® is a registered trademark of the Wikimedia Foundation, Inc.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Big 4 CPA Firms

The Big 4 Certified Public Accountant (CPA) firms are as follows:

Deloitte & Touche

Ernst & Young LLP