Online Master’s in Accounting Curriculum

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The field of accounting is changing rapidly. With advances in technology, new trends and regulations, and forthcoming updates to the CPA Exam, today’s accounting professionals need to stay ahead of the curve.

Aspiring professionals can benefit greatly from the skills and knowledge gained from a graduate-level accounting curriculum. Higher education levels for accountants can lead to greater responsibilities, which, in turn, can lead to better job security. What’s more, holders of a master’s degree in accounting earn an average of 37% more than bachelor’s degree holders.

Maryville University Online Master’s in Accounting Curriculum

The online Master of Science in Accounting program at Maryville University aims to provide students with the accounting skills needed to pursue professional success. For experienced accountants, this program comprises 10 courses (30 credit hours) and can be completed in as few as 10 months. Our program is one of the first in the nation to feature a completely revamped curriculum that focuses on the upcoming changes to the CPA Exam and the field of accounting. Here, you can specialize your education by choosing one of three CPA Exam-focused tracks: Business Analysis and Reporting, Information Systems and Controls (coming Spring 2023), or Tax Compliance and Planning (coming in Fall 2023). We also offer a newly updated bridge program for learners who don’t hold an undergraduate degree in accounting.

Learn more about Maryville’s Online MS in Accounting course offerings below.

Note: While experienced accountants will start with core coursework listed below, Maryville offers a bridge program designed to help those without a background or bachelor’s degree in accounting build the fundamentals needed to access master’s-level accounting coursework. If you are an experienced accountant or hold an undergraduate degree in accounting, you can likely skip the bridge program.


Bridge Program

Admission Prerequisite: BUS-501, Survey of Business, will be required if your GPA is below a 3.0 and/or if your undergraduate degree was outside the area of business; however, credits earned in foundational courses (such as BUS 501) are considered prerequisites to courses required for the graduate degree.

Note: Students who plan to practice in California, Georgia, Hawaii, Indiana, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey,  Ohio, South Dakota, Utah or Washington must take one additional general business course as part of the bridge program, defined as a business course that maps or transfers into the John E. Simon School of Business. Students who plan to practice in Alabama, Arizona, Colorado, Rhode Island, or Texas must take two additional general business courses.

ACCT 210Financial Accounting3 Credits
ACCT 211Managerial Accounting3 Credits
ACCT 309Advanced Managerial Accounting3 Credits
ACCT 313Individual Income Tax3 Credits
ACCT 315Business Data Analytics3 Credits
ACCT 318Financial Reporting I3 Credits
ACCT 319Financial Reporting II3 Credits
ACCT 415Accounting Information Systems3 Credits
ACCT 423Auditing3 Credits
BUS 280Business Law3 Credits
BUS 241Business Statistics3 Credits
BUS 280Business Law3 Credits
ECON 203Principles of Economics3 Credits
FIN 312Principles of Finance3 Credits

Core Accounting Courses (15 Credit Hours)

ACCT 555 Ethics and Professional Responsibilities for Accounting3 Credits
ACCT 650Accounting Research & Communication3 Credits

Note: ACCT 670, 674, and 676 are standard through Fall 2023. Starting Spring 2024, those courses will be replaced by ACCT 675, 671, and 673.

ACCT 670Advanced Auditing*3 Credits
ACCT 671Advanced Accounting, Not-For-Profit and Data Analytics*3 Credits
ACCT 673Advanced Tax Foundations*3 Credits
ACCT 674Advanced Financial Accounting & Reporting*3 Credits
ACCT 675Advanced Audit and AIS*3 Credits
ACCT 676Advanced Accounting Regulation*3 Credits

Business Analysis and Reporting Track Courses (15 hours)

ACCT 615Accounting for Governmental and Non-Profit Entities3 Credits
ACCT 616Financial Reporting III3 Credits
ACCT 620Financial Statement Analysis3 Credits
ACCT 661Advanced Data Analytics3 Credits

Note: ACCT 672 is standard through Fall 2023. Starting Spring 2024, this course will be replaced by ACCT 678.

ACCT 672Advanced Business Environment & Concepts*3 Credits
ACCT 678Advanced Business Analysis and Reporting*3 Credits

Information Systems and Controls Track (15 hours; coming Spring 2023)

ACCT 625 IT Audit 3 Credits
ACCT 661Advanced Data Analytics 3 Credits
ISYS 600Controls for Effective Cyber Defense3 Credits
ISYS 686Cybersecurity Incident Response and Examination3 Credits

Note: ACCT 672 is standard through Fall 2023. Starting Spring 2024, this course will be replaced by ACCT 679.

ACCT 672Advanced Business Environment & Concepts*3 Credits
ACCT 679Advanced Information Systems and Controls*3 Credits

Tax Track Courses (15 hours, coming Fall 2023)

ACCT 630 Individual Compliance and Planning 3 Credits
ACCT 632Entity Compliance and Planning 3 Credits
ACCT 636 Tax Research 3 Credits
FIN 634Personal Financial Advisory 3 Credits

Note: ACCT 672 is standard through Fall 2023. Starting Spring 2024, this course will be replaced by ACCT 677.

ACCT 672Advanced Business Environment & Concepts*3 Credits
ACCT 677Advanced Tax Compliance and Planning*3 Credits

Total 30 credit hours without bridge, 69-75 credit hours with bridge.

* Courses that incorporate Becker preparation material will have an additional fee

To ensure the best possible educational experience for our students, we may update our curriculum to reflect emerging and changing employer and industry trends. Professional licensure and certification regulations vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction. Students are encouraged to visit the relevant governing body for the state in which they intend to practice to verify specific licensure (and/ clinical hours) requirements which includes ensuring the program of interest meets the licensure requirements prior to enrolling. Students may visit our Professional Licensure Information page for more information and also reach out to our team of enrollment advisors for guidance.

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Skills, Concepts, or Opportunities Gained with a Master’s Degree in Accounting

A typical master’s in accounting curriculum consists of courses that can give students in-depth knowledge and skills in several aspects of accounting. Many of these accounting courses will cover the following skills or concepts:

  • CPA Evolution CPA Exam preparation. The Uniform Certified Public Accountant (CPA) Exam is a rigorous assessment that tests accountants’ knowledge and skills based on the newest trends, techniques, and regulations — and changes are coming in 2024. At Maryville University, we have already updated our curriculum to reflect the information learners will need to prepare for the newest version of the exam as outlined by the CPA Evolution initiative.
  • Managerial methods. Managerial accounting refers to the process of gathering, analyzing and presenting financial information findings. Planning, budgeting, decision-making, and performance measurement are all examples of managerial accounting.
  • Discussing and analyzing strategic accounting issues. Accounting and auditing play an essential role in an organization’s financial health and growth. Students in this field must understand how accounting can support strategic, forward-looking business decisions.
  • Advanced auditing skills. Auditors play a key part in ensuring an organization’s funds are properly managed. Students learn how to find and eliminate waste and fraud, review financial statements, and improve accounting processes.

Common Courses for Online Master’s in Accounting Students

These are some of the common courses offered for this degree. Though actual course titles may vary depending on the university, many accounting programs offer courses that touch on the following concepts:

Survey of business. Anyone working within a business context should possess basic business acumen, including an understanding of the relationships between businesses, governments, and consumers in a global economy, as well as the major activities of business operations, including accounting, financials, marketing, and management.

Graduate preparation. Students beginning a master’s program in a business-related field must have a basic understanding of business math in addition to more general academic knowledge, such as how to cite critical data and paraphrase, as well as how to avoid plagiarism. A graduate preparation course offers students the chance to review such things.

Tax planning and decision-making. Aspiring accounting professionals must have a firm grasp of how the tax system works for both individuals and corporations and must understand the tax planning process.

Strategic accounting issues. Accountants working for organizations and businesses play an important role in that organization’s success. Therefore, accounting students need to learn the role they will play in achieving the strategic goals of an organization and also understand corporate governance.


Investopedia, “Managerial Accounting Concepts and Techniques”

Maryville University, “Online Accounting Degree”