To the outside world, an accounting degree may seem like it’s all about boring number crunching completed by socially awkward students. This perspective could not be further from the truth!
In reality, a Bachelor’s degree in accounting is ideal for those not only comfortable with calculations, but also for those who like helping others while explaining complex matters in a way they’ll understand, figuring out puzzles and solving problems, paying attention to detail, and predicting and planning for the future.
A Bachelor’s in Accounting not only prepares future accountants, but also a range of other successful professions.
Bachelor’s of Accounting Degree Prerequisites
Admission requirements for Accounting Bachelor Degree programs vary from school to school. Generally, you will need to have graduated from high school or the equivalent (i.e. your GED), and some universities and colleges will require a minimum grade point average. Additionally some schools will require that you take the SAT or ACT standardized tests and meet minimum scores. It’s also a good idea to take related courses in high school, such as advanced math and business or finance courses if available.
Why Pursue an Accounting Bachelor’s Degree?
Accounting Bachelor’s Degrees include a versatile curriculum. “Many students are surprised to find that an accounting major includes a variety of business courses such as marketing and international business, plus liberal arts courses outside of the business school,” states The American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA)’s Start Here Go Places website. “You’ll graduate with a well-rounded education and a whole lot of business savvy.”
A Senior Manager, Audit/Assurance and Consulting, Jamie McCoy (CPA), perhaps says it best:
“Accounting is a business degree with a tangible skill that is always in high demand…The credibility that comes with the designation will open doors and expose you to career defining experiences very early on in your career. These experiences will form a foundation from which you can ultimately succeed in any business endeavor you pursue.”
[Source: AICPA’s Start Here Go Places website http://www.startheregoplaces.com]
What Kind of Courses Will I Be Taking?
Generally speaking, students in Bachelor of Accounting programs complete a series of core/foundation courses; they also complete electives, which may fall under other areas of business or even completely different faculties. The electives they complete can reflect their career goals. For example, someone who is interested in being an accountant in the professional sports world might pick courses from a sports industry management program. Additionally, some schools offer concentrations as part of their accounting degree programs, allowing students to specialize.
Core Course Examples
- Principles of Accounting
- Intermediate Accounting
- Business Communication
- Management/Leadership Theory & Practice
- Business Law
- Micro & Macroeconomics
- Financial Planning/Analysis
- Corporate Taxation
- Accounting Information Systems
- Financial Analysis
- Public Accounting
- Corporate Governance
- Information Systems/Technology
- International Business
- Managerial Accounting
What Kind of Careers Can I Pursue with a Bachelor’s in Accounting?
The first career that comes to mind, naturally, is accountant. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the number of accountanting and auditing jobs is expected to increase by 16% between 2010 and 2020; the BLS adds that the median annual salary for accountants and auditors was $61,690 in May 2010. If you become designated as a CPA (Certified Public Accountant) it will make you much more desirable for future employers and generally will earn you a higher salary. (For more information on earning this designation, visit our Certified Public Accountant page).
Accountants work in a variety of intriguing industries, including:
- Information Technology
- Criminal Investigations/Forensics
- And More!
Additionally, those who graduate with an accounting degree pursue other careers as well. For example:
- Fraud Examiner
- Assurance Specialist
- Financial Analyst
- Cost Manager
- Business Analyst
- Business Consultant
- FBI Agent
- Risk Manager
- IRS Agent
- Business owner/Entrepreneur
- Pricing Specialist
- And More!