Is Graduate School Required to be a Successful Accountant?

Do you need to enroll in a graduate level degree program majoring in accounting to become a successful professional in the field of accounting? If you are asking this very legitimate question, it is important to consider the title you would like to pursue. While a MAcc can help many potential accountants develop an expertise in the field, it may not always be required when you are interested in becoming an entry-level professional. Learning when you will and when you will not need to attend graduate school is important, and here is a guide that you should reference:

What Can You Do With an Undergraduate Degree in Accounting?

A graduate degree is not always required to enter the field of accounting. You must consider how quickly you want to start working within the field when you select an undergraduate degree. Professionals with an accredited Bachelor’s degree majoring in Accounting or Finance can walk through open doors in the right public or private setting. Some of the many careers that you can pursue when you have a Bachelor’s degree include: International Accounting, Forensic Accounting, Special Agent Investigations, and independent self-employed professionals. The minimum requirements to enter these fields are a Bachelor’s degree with at least 15 credits in accounting completed. While these are all highly respected positions in the vast discipline, many would prefer to earn a graduate degree to become a better candidate.

What You Can Do With Your Graduate Degree?

If you decide that earning an MAcc or an MBA with a concentration in Accounting is the better route to go, you may have a better chance of landing a mid-level or upper level accounting position immediately after you graduate from school. One of the major advantages of earning your Master’s degree majoring in Accounting is that you will surely meet the CPA testing requirements upon completion of an accredited graduate program. While some states do allow students to test for the uniform CPA exam with a Bachelor’s degree, most states have upped the requirements to 150 credits, which is typically the number of credits you must complete to earn a Master’s.

Aside from the fact that you can fulfill the CPA requirements, earning a graduate degree in accounting has other advantages as well. With a Master’s, you will be in a better position to advance in your career. You can take on CFO positions, comptroller positions, and other executive level positions that require applicants to possess an advanced degree and an expertise in the field. With your Master’s, you can also raise your potential earnings to $168,800, which is 21% higher than those without a Master’s.

You need to plan your own educational path and follow the path that is best for you and your future goals. While a Bachelor’s degree is sufficient to enter the field and gain hands-on accounting experience, those who would like to advance should really consider the advantages of earning an advanced degree. Start planning how you will pay for the cost of your education, compare different accredited programs that are respected and take your schooling seriously as you study to become an accountant.