Master of Science Degree in Accounting

Sum Up Your Pathway to a Dynamic Career in Accounting

From balancing budgets and managing corporate finances to filing taxes and conducting audits, businesses of every size and type require highly skilled accounting professionals to ensure they function efficiently and profitably. National University’s Master of Accounting (MAcc) program is designed to prepare you for a career in auditing or public, corporate, and nonprofit accounting.

Our curriculum is based on published content specifications of the uniform CPA and CMA exams and is designed to prepare you with the industry-current knowledge you’ll need to pursue positions in state and local government agencies like the IRS, FBI, CIA, Franchise Tax Board, Defense Contract Audit Agency, and many others.

NU’s Master of Accounting program is unique in that it offers two pathways towards completion. If you have little or no previous accounting background, you’ll learn the basics in the core courses of your program before taking advanced courses and electives. If you already have an undergraduate degree in accounting, you’ll start by learning advanced topics in accounting without having to repeat any fundamental courses. Whichever path applies to you, you’ll receive an industry-current education from an experienced faculty and be mentored by practitioners with years of real-world experience in the accounting profession.

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Learn more about NU’s Master of Accounting degree, which can prepare you for a wide range of careers, including public accounting and corporate accounting.

Program Learning Outcomes

As a graduate of National University’s Master of Accounting program, you will develop the following skills:

  • Integrate current information technologies to report and analyze financial information
  • Evaluate accounting information based upon mastery of a common body of accounting knowledge
  • Analyze ethical issues within the accounting profession
  • Effectively conduct and present accounting research
  • Collaborate effectively as a team to enhance critical thinking

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National University’s Master’s in Accounting program is structured to prepare anyone with an interest in crunching numbers for a future in accounting, auditing, and many other in-demand, finance-related careers. Whether or not you have any previous accounting experience or schooling, NU offers a career-focused pathway to an industry-current understanding of today’s complex marketplace.

You’ll also benefit from learning from faculty members who have real-world experience in accounting and bring their passion and expertise into their classrooms. You’ll be mentored by experienced professionals who’ve been there, done that, and are ready to support you in your pursuit of your MAcc degree. With your master’s credential, you’ll be able to pursue positions like:

  • Financial Analysts & Managers
  • Accountants
  • Controllers
  • Directors of Finance
  • Tax Managers
  • Budget Analysts


SOURCE: Emsi Labor Analyst- Report. Emsi research company homepage at https://www.economicmodeling.com/company/ Report viewed: April 19, 2022. DISCLAIMER: The data provided is for Informational purposes only. Emsi data and analysis utilizes government sources to provide insights on industries, demographics, employers, in-demand skills, and more to align academic programs with labor market opportunities. Cited projections may not reflect local or short-term economic or job conditions and do not guarantee actual job growth. Current and prospective students should use this data with other available economic data to inform their educational decisions.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, globalization, a growing economy, and a complex tax and regulatory environment are expected to continue to lead to strong demand for accountants and auditors. About 135,000 openings for accountants and auditors are projected each year. The BLS also notes that the median annual wage for accountants and auditors was $77,250 in May 2021, while the highest 10 percent earned more than $128,970.

SOURCE: https://www.bls.gov/ooh/business-and-financial/accountants-and-auditors.htm#tab-1

People with accounting skills are needed in every industry, and professionals who earn their master’s in accounting can expect their knowledge and credentials to be in demand throughout the industry. From financial managers and accountants to auditors, controllers, tax professionals, and investment analysts, you’ll find myriad opportunities in consulting firms, finance organizations, insurance companies, manufacturing companies, and many other types of organizations.

Some of the top employers of accounting professionals in today’s marketplace include:

  • Wells Fargo
  • Deloitte
  • Ernst & Young
  • Anthem
  • Amazon
  • BDO
  • Humana
  • Northrop Grumman
  • PricewaterhouseCoopers
  • RSM
  • Citigroup
  • SOURCE: Emsi Labor Analyst- Report. Emsi research company homepage at https://www.economicmodeling.com/company/ (Report viewed: April 19, 2022. DISCLAIMER: The data provided is for Informational purposes only. Emsi data and analysis utilizes government sources to provide insights on industries, demographics, employers, in-demand skills, and more to align academic programs with labor market opportunities. Cited projections may not reflect local or short-term economic or job conditions and do not guarantee actual job growth. Current and prospective students should use this data with other available economic data to inform their educational decisions.

Accounting careers with higher levels of responsibility and pay tend to go to professionals with certain specializations, and each accounting specialization serves different purposes and has its own certification exams and licensing requirements.

You should know that NU’s MAcc program focuses largely on the published content specifications of the uniform CPA Exam and the CMA exam. (Students should enroll in an external, recognized exam review course to fully prepare for CPA and CMA exams.)

  • A Certified Public Accountant (CPA) provides assurances to external parties about a company’s financial information and health. Often employed by a public accounting firm, a CPA examines a company’s financial statements and attests to their integrity. CPAs also prepare and file taxes for companies and individuals. Many CPAs hold high-level positions within corporations and government organizations.
  • A Certified Management Accountant (CMA) has expertise in advanced accounting and financial procedures in critical areas such as financial planning, analysis, control, and decision support. They analyze budgets, assess risks, and make strategic decisions based on internal financial data.

Click here to learn more about specializations in accounting.

To receive a Master of Accounting degree from National University, students must complete at least 45 quarter units of graduate work. A total of 4.5 quarter units of graduate credit may be granted for equivalent graduate work completed at another institution, as it applies to this degree and provided the units were not used in earning another advanced degree. Students should refer to the section on graduate admission requirements for specific information regarding application and evaluation.

Students with an undergraduate degree in accounting are also required to take 10 courses, 7 are specifically supplemented by 3 electives. Students with a BS in Accounting (BSACC) from National University, who have taken ACC 515 Accounting Ethics, and ACC 555 Data Analytics as part of their Undergraduate degree requirements CANNOT retake these courses to satisfy degree units for MAcc.

The Academic Program Director, or a designee, shall review the application and transcripts of every new student to determine the correct pathway and any necessary electives and prerequisites.

Total Requirements (10 courses; 45 quarter units)
Requirements for Students WITHOUT an Undergraduate Degree in Accounting
Core Requirements – (9 courses; 40.5 quarter units)

Preparation for the Major

Course Description Quarter Units
ACC601M Foundations of Financial Accounting 4.50
ACC657 Accounting Information Systems
Prequesite: ACC 601M
4.50
ACC610M Financial Accounting I
Prequesite: ACC 601M
4.50
ACC611M Financial Accounting II
Prequesite: ACC 610M
4.50
ACC621M Taxation of Bus & Other Entities 4.50
ACC630M Cost Accounting
Prequesite: ACC 601M
4.50
ACC651M Auditing Procedures 4.50
ACC515 Accounting Ethics 4.50
ACC555 Data Analytics 4.50

Capstone Requirement (1 course; 4.5 quarter units)

Course Description Quarter Units
ACC695M Cases in Accounting & Auditing
Prequesite: Completion of all core and elective
courses
4.50

Requirements for Students WITH an Undergraduate Degree in Accounting
Core Requirements – (6 courses; 27.0 quarter units)

Course Description Quarter Units
ACC652M Forensic Accounting 4.50
ACC631M Advanced Managerial Accounting 4.50
ACC653M Internal Controls 4.50
ACC654M Legal Issues in Accounting 4.50
ACC615M Advanced Financial Accounting 4.50
ACC640M Acc for Gov’t & NFP Entities 4.50

Electives for Students WITH an Undergraduate Degree in Accounting (3
courses; 13.5
quarter units)

***Students who received a BS in Accounting degree from National University, and already completed ACC515 and ACC555 as a part of your undergraduate degree requirements, CANNOT retake these courses to satisfy graduate degree units for the MAcc.

Course Description Quarter Units
ACC515 Accounting Ethics*** 4.50
ACC555 Data Analytics*** 4.50
ACC620M Taxation of Individuals 4.50
LED 604 Legal Issues in Accounting 4.50
LED 605 Conflict and Power Dynamics 4.50

Capstone Requirement (1 course; 4.5 quarter units)

Course Description Quarter Units
ACC695M Cases in Accounting & Auditing
Prequesite: Completion of all core and elective
courses
4.50

Introducing the Opportunity Scholarship

In honor of our students, and in celebration of our 50th anniversary, National University is investing $30 million in new student scholarships. To learn more about the Opportunity Scholarship, how you can apply, and how much you can save, inquire today.

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Why Choose National University?

We’re a veteran-founded, San Diego-based nonprofit. Since 1971, our mission has been to provide accessible, achievable higher education to adult learners. Today, we educate students from across the U.S. and around the globe, with over 185,000 alumni worldwide.

FAQs

If you’re focused on a career in the accounting industry and interested in pursuing
positions at the top level of the industry, earning your MAcc can help lay the
groundwork for your professional trajectory.

While many MBA programs require coursework in accounting and auditing, NU’s Master of
Accounting curriculum is based on published content specifications of the uniform CPA
and CMA exams. It’s designed to prepare you for a future in accounting, regardless of
whether you have a background or bachelor’s degree in accounting.

You’ll need to have earned a bachelor’s or master’s degree in accounting and then sit
for and pass all four parts of the Uniform Certified Public Accountant (CPA)
Examination. Fortunately, NU’s MAcc curriculum is based on published content
specifications of the uniform CPA and CMA exams. (Students should enroll in an external,
recognized exam review course to fully prepare for CPA and CMA exams.)

The Association of International Certified Professional Accountants (AICPA) does not
specifically require CPA candidates to have a graduate level degree. However, you’ll
need to complete 150 credit hours of college coursework before you start taking the exam
and complete 150 credit hours before you can become a licensed CPA.

Since most bachelor’s degrees require about 120 hours to complete, you’ll need to fill
that 30-hour gap. A master’s degree in accounting, like NU’s MAcc program, offers
numerous benefits. For one thing, you’ll develop a stronger understanding of high-level
accounting concepts and principles. A Master’s in Accounting can also position you to
pursue senior-level positions throughout your career and, correspondingly, earn a higher
salary.

Having a CPA credential on your resume means a lot in the world of business and finance.
It’s considered to the gold standard of expertise in the field and can have a positive
impact on your salary, job security, and can expand your career opportunities as
globalization continues to create a demand for International Financing Reporting
Standards around the world.

According to a published report in the Wall Street Journal, about 36% of the CFO’s at America’s top 1,000 public companies are Certified Public Accountants. However, the Journal also points out that the typical role of a CFO has broadened to include increasingly complex expertise in areas such as taxes and treasury and investor relations – the types of knowledge and skills that can be acquired through an industry-current master’s curriculum.

Program Disclosure

Successful completion and attainment of National University degrees do not lead to automatic or immediate licensure, employment, or certification in any state/country. The University cannot guarantee that any professional organization or business will accept a graduate’s application to sit for any certification, licensure, or related exam for the purpose of professional certification.

Program availability varies by state. Many disciplines, professions, and jobs require disclosure of an individual’s criminal history, and a variety of states require background checks to apply to, or be eligible for, certain certificates, registrations, and licenses. Existence of a criminal history may also subject an individual to denial of an initial application for a certificate, registration, or license and/or result in the revocation or suspension of an existing certificate, registration, or license. Requirements can vary by state, occupation, and/or licensing authority.

NU graduates will be subject to additional requirements in a program, certification/licensure, employment, and state-by-state basis that can include one or more of the following items: internships, practicum experience, additional coursework, exams, tests, drug testing, earning an additional degree, and/or other training/education requirements.

All prospective students are advised to review employment, certification, and/or licensure requirements in their state, and to contact the certification/licensing body of the state and/or country where they intend to obtain certification/licensure to verify that these courses/programs qualify in that state/country, prior to enrolling. Prospective students are also advised to regularly review the state’s/country’s policies and procedures relating to certification/licensure, as those policies are subject to change.

*Positions may require additional experience, training, and other factors beyond successfully completing this degree program. Depending on where you reside, many positions may also require state licensure, and it is the responsibility of the student to ensure that all licensure requirements are met. We encourage you to also review program-specific requirements. Any data provided on this page is for informational purposes only and does not guarantee that completion of any degree program will achieve the underlying occupation or commensurate salary.

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