The major in accounting is designed to prepare a university graduate for entry-level accounting positions in profit, not-for-profit, and governmental environments. The program establishes a foundation for students who wish to continue their education to become a certified public accountant (CPA) or certified management accountant (CMA). A CPA holds a state license to practice public accounting in a particular state. State licensing requirements differ as to education, residency, and experience requirements. Some states have adopted the 120-hour rule for the number of academic credits required to sit for the CPA exam, while others require 150 hours. Students planning on taking the CPA examination should contact the state board of accountancy in the state where they plan to take the certification examination for eligibility requirements.
The educational requirements for taking the Uniform Certified Public Accountant examination in the state of Florida include the following. Applicants sitting for the exam must have completed 120 semester hours or 160 quarter hours from an accredited college or university. The education program must include:
- 24 semester or 36 quarter hours of upper-division accounting, to include coverage of taxation, auditing, cost-managerial, financial, and accounting information systems;
- 24 semester hours of upper-division general business courses, with some exceptions. One microeconomics, one macroeconomics, one statistics, one business law, and one introduction to computers course may be lower division;
- As part of the general business hours, applicants are required to have a total of 6 semester hours or 8 quarter hours of business law courses, which must cover contracts, torts, and the Uniform Commercial Code;
- Excess upper-division accounting courses may be used to meet the general business requirement. However, elementary accounting classes are never acceptable for credit. Neither are courses for non-accounting majors and any graduate courses that are equivalent to elementary accounting.
Students planning on taking the CPA examination should contact the state board of accountancy in the state where they plan to take the certification examination for eligibility requirements.
Note: Students majoring in accounting cannot double major in the business administration: accounting specialization. Beginning with the 2012 catalog, students admitted into the accounting major, specialization, or minor must achieve a grade of C or higher in all major accounting courses to fulfill degree requirements. This applies to transfer courses as well.