Are you a high school student curious about resumes? Or the CPA exam? Or the size of your future paycheck? Enter your question below and we’ll have a real-life CPA answer it.
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Depending on the state you wish to earn your CPA the rules and regulations vary. I would encourage you to contact your state CPA society which can be found through the AICPA website here:
Generally speaking a CPA license requires 150 semester credit hours of education including a Baccalaureate degree and a required number of semester hours in accounting. In addition to the education requirement and passing the CPA exam there is also an experience requirement that must be met and also varies from state to state.
CPA stands for Certified Public Accountant. The executive headquarters of the AICPA (American Institute for Certified Public Accountants) is in New York City, but our largest office is in Durham, NC. We also have offices in Washington DC, New Jersey, and Texas. The AICPA is a non-profit organization and it is not on any stock exchange, nor is stock available for purchase. You can learn more about the AICPA at the website below.
This question does not have a clear cut answer. There are many variables that could lead a person to select either an MBA or a MAcc. One of the factors is the amount of time that you have to complete the degree, typically a MAcc can be completed faster than an MBA. Another main factor would be centered around your major during your undergraduate education. If you did not get a Baccalaureate degree in accounting it would be difficult to qualify for the CPA with an MBA since many states require a specific number of credit hours in accounting. Yet another factor would be your long term career goals. These could influence your need for a more specific accounting education or a more well rounded business education. Either way you should consider these factors as well as many others before making this decision. It is always recommended to seek advice from someone in the profession you chose to pursue that can look at your unique situation and aid you in the decision making process.
Information on becoming a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) in the U.S. is available here: www.cpa-exam.org
The first thing you should know is that the AICPA is a voluntary membership organization and does not license CPAs in the U.S. Licenses are granted by the individual states. Once you decide in which state you would like to become licensed, you should contact the State Board of Accountancy in that state for further information on their requirements. You may be requested to send a copy of your university transcripts to that state in order for them to verify your educational qualifications. If applicable, they would then tell you what additional courses you need to complete before you would be permitted to sit for the CPA Exam. It is possible that you would be able to complete those courses in the country where you are located. For contact information on each of the State Boards of Accountancy, go to: www.nasba.org
Once your educational qualifications meet the requirements of the state board, you are then eligible to sit for the CPA exam. This exam is primarily offered only in the United States, although there are sites in Guam, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. After passing the exam, and meeting necessary experience or other requirements, the State Board of Accountancy would then issue you a CPA license. Once you have been issued a CPA license, you are eligible for full membership in the AICPA.
Barry Melancon, President & CEO
1) How were you able to do it all again for the CPA exam?
The CPA exam is an applied exam today. You take the exam in a center, on a computer environment with access to research material. Memorization isn't a key to the exam.
Candidates prepare differently for the exam. Some take courses, some study on their own. One key ....... Take the exam as soon as possible when you finish college so you are in the study and test taking mode.
2) Were you expected to know everything when you got your first job in a CPA firm? And how did they handle you being new to practicing accounting?
CPA firms and corporate finance functions are very efficient at training young professionals for the practical application of what you've learned into actual environments. The profession is know for its commitment to supervisory relationships and progress through experience.
Don't feel pressure to know everything day one. You'll work with others and be successful through progress. Also remember the standards, tax laws and business environment are all constantly changing. Also CPAs are known for being adaptive to new rules and change which means you are constantly learning throughout your career.