There is always need for a good accountant, and studying accounting at business school can help provide many job opportunities. Accountants organize, summarize, and interpret information about economic activities for individuals, companies, and organizations. Corporations need accountants to review monetary information within the business and then to offer relevant advice to decision makers. Individuals and businesses need accountants to provide taxation services, money management, and independent audit services.

If you enjoy business mathematics and are interested in the role accounting systems play in the business world, then accounting may be a good major for you. Within the realm of accounting, you can specialize in auditing, governmental accounting, certified public accounting, taxation, and more.

To be an accountant, you must be detail-oriented. You must like math. It helps if you are analytical. You must also be able to recall federal and state laws that control accounting systems. In addition, you need to be able to see the “big picture”—how business organizations function.

Students who major in accounting have an above-average amount of coursework. In general, they must do well at business school, because the firms that hire them will want graduates who have maintained a high GPA.

If the idea of creating and analyzing balance sheets sounds exciting to you, then an accounting major may be perfect for you. You will have to study tax law and learn how to prepare tax filings. You will also have to use accounting information systems.

The three main types of accountants are the Certified Public Accountant (CPA), Certified Management Accountant (CMA), and Certified Internal Auditor (CIA). The CPA is the most popular accounting type, but the CPA exam is quite difficult. CPAs help individuals and corporations with their taxes and other monetary issues. If you want to become a CPA, you’ll need to spend up to five years in business school.

A CMA works specifically with a company to offer advice about financial issues. A CIA provides independent audits to businesses.

Accounting majors take courses such as economics, marketing, computer systems, auditing, finance, management, and accounting information systems. After you graduate, your starting salary will depend largely on the company that hires you, your chosen career path, your experience, and your location. The median starting salary in the United States for an accountant is $46,500. In the middle of your career, you might make about $77,600.

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