Accountant Naples FL Education of a Certified Public Accountant
In most cases, a certified public accountant will take classes at a university or college, receiving their bachelor’s degree in the study of financial strategies. A CPA might do things like: Create and analyze budgets, Tax preparation, Perform consulting work, and Legal services. One of the most essential components for receiving a CPA qualification is education. The State Board of Accountancy for each state specifies how many hours of accounting-specific classes each candidate must have before being allowed to take the CPA qualification test says Accountant Naples FL. In most states 150 hours of accounting education is required, usually as part of a complete college program leading to a degree such as a bachelor’s in business administration. An additional year of specialized study is also required once a four-year degree is obtained to complete the educational requirements and prepare the student to become a CPA.
Why Get a CPA
To pursue a career as an auditor, the CPA is a must for advancement. Without it, you are limited to entry-level jobs supervised by a CPA. Aside from the public accounting sector, within other financial services firms (like banks, brokerage firms and investment firms) the CPA license is required only in some highly specialized support functions such as internal audit. Indeed, the vast majority of jobs within the controller and compliance functions outside public accounting firms themselves are filled by people without a CPA, even senior management positions. If you already hold a CPA, use it as a major selling point in seeking any position in financial services. A CPA license is widely respected as an indicator of quantitative skills and high standards of professionalism. As such, it can vastly enhance your credibility as a job applicant. In particular, if you wish to pursue a career in securities research, holding a CPA indicates that you have much of the in-depth knowledge necessary to analyze financial reports thoroughly and systematically. However, it probably is not worthwhile to obtain a CPA strictly as a means to launch a financial services career outside the public accounting sector itself explains Accountant Naples FL. Employment of accountants and auditors is expected to grow faster than average for all occupations through the year 2014. An increase in the number of businesses, changing financial laws and regulations, and increased scrutiny of company finances will drive growth. In addition to openings resulting from growth, the need to replace accountants and auditors who retire or transfer to other occupations will produce numerous job openings in this large occupation.
Different CPA Courses
Depending upon the program and the type of certified public accounting (CPA) work that an individual intends to pursue, there are several CPA required courses that he or she must take at an accredited college or university. Generally, these courses must cover a number of subjects related to accounting practices and business management, but some specialties will require courses with a narrower focus says Accountant Naples FL. Some CPA required courses can be taken on an elective basis, which means that the specific course is not required but that a certain number of units in a particular area of study must be successfully completed. In most cases, an accounting student must complete at least 48 credit hours of basic accounting, finance, and business administration classes at the undergraduate level. An accounting student must already possess a bachelor’s degree. Though the degree may be in any academic discipline, a bachelor’s degree in finance, business administration, or accounting will streamline the process of becoming a CPA. Some states, such as California, require a student to evenly split the course load of those 48 credit hours between accounting and business administration courses, successfully completing 24 credit hours of each. After the coursework is complete, the student must pass the CPA exam of the state in which the CPA license is sought.
Each state determines at what point a person who has received a CPA qualification is allowed to become a licensed CPA. Even though most states will consider a person as a certified public account once the educational requirements have been met and the examination has been passed, as a general rule the new CPA must also gain some practical experience before being allowed to become licensed. This is accomplished by working with a licensed CPA until the required amount of experience is obtained. An accountant from another country who is qualified is allowed to receive a CPA qualification by taking and passing a different test. This test is called the International Qualification Examination. When and where this exam is offered varies by state, but the State Board of Accountancy for each state normally has testing information available to those who are interested. Overall, job opportunities for accountants and auditors should be favorable. After most States instituted the 150-hour rule for CPAs, enrollment in accounting programs declined; however, enrollment is slowly beginning to grow again as more students become attracted to the profession because of the attention from the accounting scandals. Those who earn a CPA should have excellent job prospects expresses Accountant Naples FL. However, many accounting graduates are instead pursuing other certifications, such as the CMA and CIA, so job prospects may not be as favorable in management accounting and internal auditing as in public accounting. Regardless of specialty, accountants and auditors who have earned professional recognition through certification or licensure should have the best job prospects. Applicants with a master’s degree in accounting, or a master’s degree in business administration with a concentration in accounting, also will have an advantage.