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some questions about CPA and MS

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some questions about CPA and MS [#permalink] New post 23 Oct 2009, 18:35
As I was reading the posts on this site (they are amazing), I got confused about couple things about CPA requirements and a master degree in accounting.

1) many posts say the requirement for CPA exam is 150 credit hrs. and i also read in many other places that the requirement for the exam is 25 units of accounting and 25 units of other related areas. what are the difference between them?

2) as i was researching for macc programs, many require an accounting background. if the main purpose of macc program is to fulfill requirements for cpa exam, why would accounting undergraduates pursue this degree? does an undergraduate in accounting major not satisfy the req. for cpa exam?

3) if one obtains a macc degree, does he/she get one of the two years of experience required by cpa licence out of the way?

many thanks!!
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Re: some questions about CPA and MS [#permalink] New post 03 Nov 2009, 09:09
monkeydjasmine wrote:
1) many posts say the requirement for CPA exam is 150 credit hrs. and i also read in many other places that the requirement for the exam is 25 units of accounting and 25 units of other related areas. what are the difference between them?

2) as i was researching for macc programs, many require an accounting background. if the main purpose of macc program is to fulfill requirements for cpa exam, why would accounting undergraduates pursue this degree? does an undergraduate in accounting major not satisfy the req. for cpa exam?

3) if one obtains a macc degree, does he/she get one of the two years of experience required by cpa licence out of the way?

many thanks!!


I'm not an expert on all of this but it's been 10 days and you haven't had an answer yet, here's what I know --

1) the requirements vary from state to state;
2) do you have examples of that accounting background requirement? AFAIK, many MACC programs are targeted to non-accounting majors (if not non-business majors) who want to become accounting professionals. Quite a few people on this forum have actually mentioned that if you're an accounting undergrad, you usually have done enough (except for specific exam prep) to sit for the CPA exam, and a MACC (as opposed to working) is not the most productive thing to do, if not a waste of time.
3) I wouldn't think so but it likely depends on what state you're talking about. For example, I know California has 2 pathways to get the licence trading off work experience with "education": http://www.calcpa.org/Content/licensure/requirements.aspx
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Re: some questions about CPA and MS [#permalink] New post 03 Nov 2009, 11:20
monkeydjasmine wrote:
1) many posts say the requirement for CPA exam is 150 credit hrs. and i also read in many other places that the requirement for the exam is 25 units of accounting and 25 units of other related areas. what are the difference between them?

Significant majority of the states in US require 150 hour education requirement for certification. Out of this 150 credits (varies by state) specific number of credits must be in accounting or taxation from accredited programs. (that must be why you are reading 25 units of accounting etc)

monkeydjasmine wrote:
2) as i was researching for macc programs, many require an accounting background. if the main purpose of macc program is to fulfill requirements for cpa exam, why would accounting undergraduates pursue this degree? does an undergraduate in accounting major not satisfy the req. for cpa exam?


Some require ACCOUNTING background while other don't. It depends on the program. Many great programs don't require accounting major as undergrad, but business major. Otherwise, there are additional courses you have to complete and if that is true, one might as just go for MBA in Accounting.

Undergrad accounting majors need 150 credits. 4 year undergraduate accounting program will probably have 124-130 credits. To get additional credits for 150hr requirement, many undergrad accounting students go onto MS program in Accounting or Taxation to meet this requirement. For audit, all Big 4 firms now pretty much won't hire anyone who can't sit for CPA exam by the time of employment.

monkeydjasmine wrote:
3) if one obtains a macc degree, does he/she get one of the two years of experience required by cpa licence out of the way?

[/quote]

If one satisfies 150hr requirement through 4 yr college degree and MS degree, then in some states, your experience requirement is reduced to 1 year from 2 years. This depends on which state you are in.
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Re: some questions about CPA and MS   [#permalink] 03 Nov 2009, 11:20
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