About this Program
Earning your Certified Public Accountant (CPA) license is a key step in becoming a successful accounting professional. This certificate program, offered in partnership with the UW Foster School of Business, helps prepare you for the CPA exam and provides you with a solid foundation in the areas of financial accounting, accounting information systems, audit, cost accounting and federal taxation.
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How to Become an Accountant Designed for
Anyone seeking to become a professional accountant, including those preparing to take the CPA exam.
A bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university
Academic credit in an introductory financial accounting course AND an introductory managerial accounting course (such as
ACCTG 215 and ACCTG 225 at the UW). These courses are typically five quarter credits each.
Note: If you’ve taken a hybrid financial/managerial accounting class (like ACCTG 219 at the UW), you may still apply to the program, but caution is advised. Hybrid courses are typically shorter and provide less training in critical topics than the separate introductory courses do. You’ll be required to remedy any deficiencies in your accounting knowledge through independent self-study before the program begins. The certificate program moves quickly, so students need to focus on learning new material rather than revisiting introductory topics. See the financial and managerial accounting topics you’ll need to know. Admission Requirements for the Summer Intensive Option
The above admission requirements represent the minimum to be admitted to the accounting program. The summer intensive version of this program is very demanding and requires a full-time study effort for 11 weeks. All applicants must have the willingness and ability to dedicate more than 40 hours per week to classroom and independent study.
The typical student in the intensive program has earned a GPA of 3.3 or above in their financial accounting prerequisite course and also has some relevant business knowledge from prior work experience or coursework. Unless you’ve completed both accounting prerequisite courses within the last year, we recommend that you review that material before starting this program.
If English is not your native language, you should have at least intermediate English skills to enroll. To learn more, see
English Language Proficiency Requirements – Credit Programs. International Students
Because this offering is 100% online, no visa is required and international students are welcome to apply. For more information, see
Admission Requirements for International Students. Technology Requirements
Access to a computer with a recent operating system and web browser
High-speed internet connection
Headset and webcam (recommended)
Earning the Certificate
You earn the certificate by completing all required courses . Students must earn a grade of at least 2.7 in each course (unless granted a waiver by the program director and department chair) and maintain an overall GPA of at least 2.7 for all courses combined. For more information, see Earning the Certificate.
An instructor and students from the Certificate in Accounting talk about the unique curriculum and how the program can help graduates advance in their careers.
Play What You'll Learn
How to prepare financial statements in accordance with U.S. Generally Accepted Accounting Principles
Methods to set up and maintain accounting systems
Federal income tax rules and their impact on business decisions
How to audit financial statements
Techniques for analyzing costs to help make sound business decisions
Qualify to Sit for the CPA Exam
This program offers 26 quarter credits of upper-level accounting study. When combined with 10 quarter credits of prerequisite courses in financial and managerial accounting, this provides the 36 quarter credits of accounting required to sit for the CPA exam in Washington state.
Note that there are
additional requirements beyond the accounting credits that you must meet to sit for the CPA exam. Additionally, students planning to work in a different state should check that state’s CPA exam requirements. Prepare for Your master's degree
Completing this certificate program provides you with the accounting prerequisites to apply to the
Master of Professional Accounting or Master of Science in Taxation program offered by the UW Foster School of Business. This certificate program also meets the upper-level accounting prerequisite coursework requirement for the Master of Science in Accounting at UW Bothell. Connect With Employers
As part of the program, you’ll attend an alumni panel offering career tips and job-search advice. You’ll also hear presentations by representatives from local public accounting firms, companies and government agencies.
OUR ENROLLMENT COACHES ARE HERE TO HELP
Connect with an enrollment coach to learn more about this offering. Or if you need help finding the right certificate, specialization or course for you, reach out to explore your options.