Business Administration Major with an Accounting Concentration

What Accountants and Auditors typically do

  • Examine financial statements to ensure that they are accurate and comply with laws and regulations
  • Compute taxes owed, prepare tax returns, and ensure that taxes are paid properly and on time
  • Inspect account books and accounting systems for efficiency and use of accepted accounting procedures
  • Organize and maintain financial records
  • Assess financial operations and make best-practices recommendations to management
  • Suggest ways to reduce costs, enhance revenues, and improve profits

Many accountants and auditors specialize, depending on the particular organization that they work for.

Examples of types of accountants and auditors

Public accountants perform a broad range of accounting, auditing, tax, and consulting tasks. Their clients include corporations, governments, and individuals.  Public accountants, many of whom are Certified Public Accountants (CPAs), generally have their own businesses or work for public accounting firms.

Management accountants, also called cost, managerial, industrial, corporate, or private accountants, record and analyze the financial information of the organizations for which they work. The information that management accountants prepare is intended for internal use by business managers, not by the general public.

Government accountants maintain and examine the records of government agencies and audit private businesses and individuals whose activities are subject to government regulations or taxation.

Internal auditors check for mismanagement of an organization’s funds. They identify ways to improve the processes for finding and eliminating waste and fraud.

Information technology auditors are internal auditors who review controls for their organization’s computer systems, to ensure that the financial data comes from a reliable source.

Accounting major concentration: Complete all of the following courses (18 hrs.):

ACTG 320 Intermediate Accounting I 3 hrs.
ACTG 321 Intermediate Accounting II 3 hrs.
ACTG 322 Cost Accounting 3 hrs.
ACTG 340 Introduction to Federal Tax 3 hrs.
ACTG 360 Accounting Information Systems 3 hrs.
ACTG 431 Auditing, Principles & Procedures 3 hrs.

You are encouraged to take additional accounting classes.  While the six classes (18 credit hours) listed above earn the student an Accounting Major concentration, we encourage students to complete any or all of the following additional accounting classes:

  • ACTG 342 Advanced Federal Income Tax — 3 credit hours — recommended for those pursuing EA (Enrolled Agent) certification
  • ACTG 380 Topics in Accounting — 3 credit hours — recommended for seniors as the main topic is CMA/CPA exam preparation
  • ACTG 440, 441, 442 Experiential Learning — Career Applications — 3+ credit hours — recommended for those employed full-time and seeking career enhancement experiences
  • ACTG 450 Governmental and Nonprofit Accounting — 3 credit hours — recommended for those pursuing careers in the governmental / NFP sector

Note: those pursuing CPA certification should complete most or all of the above.

Requirements to sit for the CPA Exam.  CPA(Certified Public Accountant) licenses are issued by state.  For many states, such as Iowa and Missouri, you may sit for the CPA exam after earning a bachelor’s degree along with 24 semester hours (beyond accounting principles) in accounting courses.  However, to earn a CPA license requires 150 credit hours.  Students often reach these 150 credit hours by pursuing an advanced degree, such as an MBA or an Macc.

CPA License In Iowa. Iowa requires 150 credit hours to earn a CPA license, however, you may sit for the CPA exam after earning a bachelor’s degree along with 24 semester hours in accounting courses. The work experience requirements are pretty standard and require one year of public or non-public accounting experience.

CPA candidates at Iowa Wesleyan University.  You can complete the 24 semester hours (beyond accounting principles) needed to sit for the CPA Exam.  Our BS degree in Accounting requires 18 credits hours (beyond accounting principles) and we offer several other elective accounting courses to prepare you to become a CPA. These course include: Advanced Federal Income Taxation, Topics in Accounting, and Governmental & Nonprofit Accounting.

Another accounting certification option is the CMA.  The CMA (Certified Managerial Accountant) certification is yet another well recognized credential that several students choose to pursue.  It covers financial: planning, performance, control, and decision-making — all topics covered in Iowa Wesleyan University’s accounting program.  A CMA candidate must hold a bachelor’s degree.