Online Accounting Certification

Becoming a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) requires passing a certification exam which is not available online. However, you can enroll in an online accounting certification program that will help prepare you to sit for the exam. Read about the prerequisites for enrollment as well as the course topics. Learn about salary potential and employment outlook for accountants and CPAs. Schools offering Accounting degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

How Does The Program Work?

Programs generally include 3-4 core classes and 2-3 elective courses, although the number does vary from school to school. In some cases, you'll be able to specialize in a sub-field of accounting, such as accounting for controllers or accounting for financial and business analysts. You may be able to complete the certificate program in one or two years.

Although you can complete many of these programs entirely online, some schools require students to take certain courses on-campus. For online courses, you will need to have access to a reliable Internet connection and typically use a browser that is equipped with media plug-ins.

Specializations Accounting for financial and business analysts or controllers
Prerequisites Bachelor's degree, possibly in accounting, might be required; prerequisites accounting courses may also be expected.
Common Courses Taxation, auditing, managerial accounting, forensic accounting, tax research
Career Outlook (2014-2024) 11% (for accountants and auditors)

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Does An Online Accounting Certificate Program Have Any Prerequisites?

Although some programs don't have any prerequisites for the online accounting certificate program, many recommend that you have at least a bachelor's degree. Other schools do require that you have a bachelor's degree prior to enrolling in the program, however it doesn't need to be a degree in accounting. Depending on your experience, you may need to complete some prerequisite courses such as financial accounting and managerial accounting.

What Type Of Courses Will I Take?

Accounting certificate programs are comprised of foundational and advanced accounting classes. Most programs require a managerial accounting course, where you study the ways in which organizations depend on their managerial accountants to control costs and provide financial data that informs large-scale decision-making. You are also likely to find courses in intermediate and advanced accounting, taxation, auditing, tax research and forensic accounting.

What Will This Certificate Mean For My Career?

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that employment of accountants and auditors is expected to grow 11% from 2014 through 2024. The agency reported that changing financial laws coupled with an increase in the number of global businesses would create a demand for accountants of all skill levels, including accountants who have earned an online accounting certificate. In 2014, the BLS reported that accountants and auditors earned median annual wage of $65,940.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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