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Online Certificates in Taxation

Designed for working professionals, certificate programs cover the basics of preparing and understanding state and federal tax returns for individuals and businesses, as well as more in-depth accounting topics, such as international or estate taxation. Read on for program details and career information.

What Levels and Types of Online Taxation Certificates Are Available?

An online taxation certificate program is designed to meet your needs as a working professional. Some certificate programs are available to bachelor's degree holders, but other online programs are open only to those who've earned a graduate degree.

Depending upon the online school, courses in many taxation certificate programs are also offered through Master of Science curricula. You may have the option of applying your certificate credits toward a degree if you so choose.

Many online certificate programs provide a general overview of taxation. However, some programs focus on more specific topics, such as federal taxation, corporate returns, capital gains, real estate or tax strategies. Other online programs allow you to focus on state and local tax preparation.

Degree LevelsGraduate certificate; can be applied toward a Master of Science program
Career RequirementsUndergraduate degree for accounting, master's for management positions
Job Outlook (2016-2026) 10% (for all auditors and accountants*
Median Salary (May 2018)$70,500 for accountants and auditors*

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Can I Prepare Tax Returns?

You won't be able to prepare tax returns for individuals unless you're a Certified Public Accountant, but you can help employers prepare tax returns if you have an undergraduate degree in accounting. Most tax preparers are accountants, and you'll need a 4-year degree before entering this profession. You may also need a master's degree for many management positions. Some employers may look for specialized training when staffing their payroll departments, which may include coursework in an online taxation program.

Why Might I Earn a Certificate?

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), demand for accountants and auditors is expected to increase by 10% between 2016 and 2026, and specialized training beyond a 4-year degree can improve your employment opportunities (www.bls.gov). You can demonstrate additional competency by earning an online taxation certificate. The BLS also reports that accountants and auditors had a median wage of $70,500 as of May 2018.