The accounting faculty support and recommend academic study leading to the CPA designation for all accounting majors. The requirements to sit for the CPA Examination are:
- 150 credit hours at a higher-education institution,
- At least 33 credit hours in accounting courses (3 of which must be auditing), &
- At least 27 credit hours in other general business courses.
The accounting curriculum is designed with significant flexibility to allow each student to prepare for their career in the best possible way. Although no one 150 hour path is “right” for every student, the faculty recommends the following approaches in order of priority:
- BSBA in accounting & the MBA accounting track
- BSBA in accounting & the MBA general management track
- Double major for undergraduate degree (with second major to be decided in conjunction with advisor.
- BSBA in accounting with other accumulated hours to total 150
All evidence points to the fact that becoming a CPA offers the opportunity for success in the profession. CPAs earn more money, enjoy greater prestige, and have more job mobility than accountants who do not choose to become CPAs. Consequently, accounting majors should concentrate their efforts and set their sights on becoming a licensed CPA.
A pathway through public accounting is considered the best career avenue for our accounting graduates. However, not every student is suited or ready for this type of work at graduation. It is recommended that these students not lose site of the importance of the CPA. In Missouri, experience in government, academics, or commercial business can count for the experience requirement for CPA licensure.
Twenty accounting and accounting related certifications exist to support the CPA license. Areas of concentration leading to certification with considerable acceptance in the marketplace include: fraud, technology, valuation, financial planning, government, business management, and internal auditing.
For more information on becoming a CPA, visit the following websites:
- American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA)
- Missouri Society of Certified Public Accountants (MSCPA)
- Becker CPA Exam Review
- Kaplan Schweser University
- Bisk CPA Review