The accounting profession is one of the most stable and well-paid jobs in any country. Despite the general belief, accounting is not just about numbers and calculus, and involves a certain amount of creativity and business acumen. And numerous cups of coffee, but you’ll discover that along the way.
If you always liked to work with numbers and loved the idea of finding financial clues and solutions, but you are also interested in the business area, in general, then you might be the perfect fit for an Accounting Bachelor’s degree. Care to find out more?
What do public accountants do?
A certified public accountant (CPA) can work in any company or public organisation. *Ends conversation*
Still, the duties of an accountant may vary according on the area of expertise, as some are specialised on tax issues, while others can work with income tax returns and file taxes, or can be involved in forensic accounting (a branch that requires investigating financial fraud). Imagine a less bloody CSI series, and you get the general gist of it.
Also, your responsibilities will extend to:
- Preparing and verifying financial documents;
- Analysing budgets and planning finances;
- Giving advice and offering financial information to clients (that can be individuals or companies);
- Performing bookkeeping, consulting, and auditing tax;
- Coming up with suggestions and problem-solving ideas to reduce costs, enhance revenues, and improve profits;
- Making sure financial statements and records are in accordance with current laws and regulations.
How to get a job as an accountant
A certified public accountant is one of the most sought-after jobs these days, so it won’t be too hard to find one. Prospective accountants can find job opportunities in public or private accounting firms, as well as in the Accounting Departments of any company.
The career options that await you as a certified public accountant are in:
- Internal auditing
- Forensic accounting
- Managerial accounting
- Information Technology
- Environmental accounting
In terms of salary, the average income of certified public accountants is over 58.350 EUR / year, so that’s not bad at all.
Where to study a Bachelor’s in Accounting?
Before you start your search for the perfect Bachelor’s degree in Accounting, you need to make sure this field is suitable for you, in terms of study preferences and career goals. As a future public accountant, you should consider how much you like to work with numbers and make calculations.
An undergraduate degree in Accounting usually covers knowledge about:
- Cost accounting
- Business statistics, administration, ethics, law, and communications
- Financial and budget
- Principles of economics
- Risk analysis
The best countries where you can pursue a Bachelor’s degree in Accounting are:
Apart from these countries, you can find Bachelors in Accounting in most universities worldwide. Some we warmly recommend are:
- University of South Florida, in Tampa, United States;
- Southern New Hampshire University, in Manchester, United States;
- Middlesex University, in London, United Kingdom;
- Budapest Metropolitan University, in Budapest, Hungary.
How to become a CPA, or Certified Public Accountant
In the U.S., prospective CPAs are required to complete at least 150 semester hours of study to become licensed. At the end of your Bachelor’s degree, you will have only accomplished 120 hours.
Some universities provide students the option to combine a five-year Bachelor's and Master's degree programme in Accounting, in order to attain the required number of 150 hours faster, so remember to research and find the best option for you.
A useful strategy for all students that want to emerge as certified public accountants like Venus from the sea is to partake in internships in companies and organisations, ideally in the Finance and Accounting Departments. You will also have to pass the four exams developed by The American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA).
The AICPA exams are:
- Audit and Attestation (AUD) – which evaluates a candidate’s ability to perform audits, interpret evidence, communicate accounting data, and includes questions on ethics and professional responsibility;
- Financial Accounting and Reporting (FAR) – which covers topics and questions related to financial statements, specific transactions, governmental accounting and non-profit accounting;
- Regulation (REG) – which tests tax ethics, business law, federal tax procedures;
- Business Environment and Concepts (BEC) – where topics like corporate governance, information systems, and strategic planning are tackled.
The passing score for each exam is a minimum of 75 on a scale from 0 to 99. The exams include question types such as multiple choice, simulation, and written essays and argumentation.
If this article filled you with excitement and sounds like something you want to do, then we can’t encourage you enough to go and apply to a Bachelor’s in Accounting, and, after a few years, return, thank us, and help us figure out our pension.
Like always, remember to have fun, whatever you do, and good luck in the future!