The discipline of accounting has evolved rapidly over the last few years due to the advent of accounting software. This means that the majority of the number crunching is handled by the computer, with accountants having to take on a new set of responsibilities. As such, the accountant becomes a professional that is as much involved in the technical aspects of a business, as he is involved in interpreting financial data and advising decision makers on the best course of action.
Naturally, this increases the complexity and challenge that comes with this career, but it also increases the marketability and salary of accountants. This is, of course, reflected in the coursework at many universities, where you will go through an extensive curriculum that helps you develop your versatility on the job.
The Different Bachelor’s Degrees in Accounting
All majors at the bachelor’s level will have a mixture of elective and required courses, and while requirements may vary from school to school, you will generally complete around 120 credit hours. If you are a full-time student, it will generally take you four years to earn your bachelor’s degree, but there are schools that offer accelerated programs that will allow you to graduate faster. For part-time students, attaining the degree will take longer than four years, and you should check with your school if there are any time limits on its programs.
There are also several options when it comes to the type of bachelor’s degree for accountants. You have:
- BAC – Bachelor of Accounting/Accountancy: The coursework for this degree is designed to provide a solid foundation in the discipline of accounting. Graduates can very easily move onto more advanced degrees such as a Master of Accounting or an MBA.
- BBA – Bachelor of Business Administration in Accounting: Here, the curriculum focuses on a series of business courses with a major in accounting. This course is much less intensive when it comes to math requirements.
- BSBA – Bachelor of Science in Business Administration with a focus on Accounting: The curriculum for this degree revolves around management functions and business practices, with a larger emphasis on topics related to accounting.
- BSACC – Bachelor of Science in Accounting: This degree has the most focus on advanced mathematical concepts, along with the more technical or analytical dimensions of accounting.
The key concepts you will learn
There are several key concepts that all the degrees listed above have in common. These concepts include:
- Managerial accounting
- Cost accounting
- Financial accounting
- Accounting information systems
- International financial reporting standards
- Generally accepted accounting principles
The courses for a Bachelor’s Degree in Accounting
While you will have to create your own degree plan with your academic advisors and other faculty members, the courses for your bachelor’s degree follow a certain structure. You have the general education, which comprises courses that are meant to improve your critical thinking skills and help you gain knowledge in various disciplines such as communication, writing, social sciences, math, arts, and humanities. You then have courses that are related to your accounting major, and they may be related to specialized fields of knowledge such as federal taxes, financial statement auditing, accounting information systems, and payroll accounting. Another important core set of skills will be developed through the business and math coursework, and this may cover principles of marketing, applied business statistics, and principles of calculus. Finally, you have electives. These courses are included to help you study special areas of interest and specialize for your future career. They may cover topics such as government and nonprofit accounting, entrepreneurial finance, and investment portfolio management.
Are you interested in more information about attaining a Bachelor’s Degree in Accounting in Chicago?
Earning your bachelor’s degree in accounting in Chicago can put you on a very lucrative career path. Accountants are always in demand, and the number of jobs available to candidates that hold a bachelor’s degree in accounting continues to grow. If you are interested in finding out more about what studying for this degree entails, contact us today.