Many different paths can lead to becoming a Certified Public Accountant (CPA). The most common way is to earn a bachelor’s degree in accounting from an accredited university. After completing your degree, you must pass the Uniform CPA Exam. This four-part exam covers financial accounting, auditing, taxation, and business law.
Once you have passed the exam, you will need to meet the minimum experience and Ethics credit hours requirements. The American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) offers several different pathways to certification, including internships, self-study programs, and more.
The CPA designation is recognized worldwide as a sign of excellence in accounting. It can help you advance your career and open up new opportunities.
What Does a CPA Do?
The Certified Public Accountant (CPA) designation is a globally recognized accounting credential. It is held by more than 700,000 professionals in the United States and more than 2 million professionals worldwide. To become a CPA, you must pass the Uniform CPA Examination, meet ethical requirements, and complete state-specific education and experience requirements.
What does a CPA do? CPAs are highly sought-after for their financial advisoring, auditing, and tax preparation expertise. They work in various industries and settings, including public accounting firms, corporations, not-for-profit organizations, and government agencies.
The Uniform CPA Examination is a rigorous four-part test covering auditing and attestation, financial accounting and reporting, taxation, and business environment and concepts. It is administered by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA).
- Bachelor’s degree in accounting
The CPA licensure process is rigorous and requires education, experience, and passing a comprehensive exam. The educational requirement for CPA licensure is a minimum of 150 semester hours of college education from an accredited institution. This education must include 24 semester hours in accounting and 24 semester hours in business courses.
To become certified, you will also need to complete one year of full-time work experience in accounting or auditing. You can gain this experience by working in public accounting, private industry, or government. In addition to meeting the education and experience requirements, you must pass the Uniform CPA Examination.
Job Outlook (2018-2028)
The job outlook for accountants is expected to grow by 10% from 2018 to 2028. This growth results from the increasing complexity of financial regulations and the need for accurate and reliable financial information. To become a certified public accountant (CPA), you must complete a bachelor’s degree in accounting, pass the CPA exam, and meet state licensing requirements. There are many opportunities for advancement in the accounting field, including becoming a partner in a CPA firm or becoming an executive in a company.
Average Median Salary (2020)
The average median salary for CPAs in 2020 is $75,000. However, salaries vary depending on experience and location.
How to Become a CPA
Earn a Bachelor’s Degree
Becoming a certified public accountant (CPA) requires hard work, dedication and plenty of planning.
Here are the steps you need to take to make sure that you reach your goal:
- First, earn a bachelor’s degree in accounting from an accredited school. This is the first step on your journey to becoming a CPA. Ensure that the school you choose is certified by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA).
- Pass the Uniform CPA Examination. Once you have completed your education, it’s time to take the Uniform CPA Examination. This four-part exam is administered by the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy (NASBA) and is designed to test your knowledge of accounting and auditing principles.
- Meet your state’s requirements for licensure as a CPA.
Consider Earning a Master’s Degree
There are many good reasons to consider earning a master’s degree, including that it can lead to better job prospects and higher salaries. A graduate degree may even be required for certain positions in some cases. For example, for those thinking about a career in accounting, a master’s degree in accounting may be a good option.
A master’s degree in accounting can offer many benefits. First, it can help prepare students for the Certified Public Accountant (CPA) exam. Second, it can provide students with additional knowledge and skills in accounting that can be helpful in their careers. Finally, it can help advance their careers by giving them access to new opportunities.
If you’re thinking about pursuing a career in accounting, a master’s degree in accounting may be a good option. Contact schools near you to learn more about their programs and what they offer.
There are many different routes to becoming a Certified Public Accountant (CPA). One of the most common is to complete a bachelor’s degree in accounting from an accredited university. After completing your degree, you must pass the Uniform CPA Examination. This exam is administered by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA). It consists of four sections: auditing and attestation, financial accounting and reporting, regulation, and business environment and concepts.
To be eligible to take the Uniform CPA Exam, you must meet specific requirements. These include being at least 18 years old, having completed a minimum of 120 credit hours of coursework at an accredited school, and having one year of full-time work experience in accounting or auditing.
There are many different types of licensure, each with its own set of requirements. The most common type of licensure is a professional license, which is needed to work in certain professions. For example, to become a certified public accountant (CPA), you must meet the requirements set by your state’s board of accountancy. Typically, you must have a degree in accounting from an accredited school, complete a certain number of hours of CPA-specific coursework, and pass the CPA exam. Some states also require experience working in accounting.
There’s always more to learn when you’re working as a CPA. As a result, the best CPAs are always looking for new opportunities to improve their skills and knowledge. That’s why continuing education is so vital for CPAs.
There are many different ways to get continuing education as a CPA. One of the most popular options is to attend seminars and conferences. These events offer a variety of learning opportunities, from lectures by top experts in the field to network with other professionals.
Attending live seminars and conferences can be expensive, but many affordable online options are also available. For example, websites like CPEasy offer dozens of courses on a wide range of topics, all for a fraction of the cost of attending a live event.
CPAs can also get continuing education by taking online courses or reading professional journals.