Accounting (Smeal)

Admission Requirements

Applicants apply for admission to the program via the Graduate School application for admission. Requirements listed here are in addition to Graduate Council policies listed under GCAC-300 Admissions Policies.

Admission to the program is competitive. Criteria for evaluating applicants can include: professional and academic accomplishments, GMAT scores, personal data from application forms and, possibly, interviews or examinations.

Students who apply to the program should have an undergraduate educational background equivalent to a Bachelor of Science degree from the Penn State University Smeal College of Business. Students who apply to the program should have completed the equivalent of the following Penn State University courses:

ACCTG 211Financial and Managerial Accounting for Decision Making4
ACCTG 403WAuditing3
ACCTG 404Managerial Accounting: Economic Perspective3
ACCTG 405Principles of Taxation I3
ACCTG 471Intermediate Financial Accounting I3
ACCTG 472Intermediate Financial Accounting II3
MIS 301Business Analytics3

Applicants to the program from outside Penn State may be required to take an entry exam to demonstrate mastery of the material covered in these courses prior to beginning course work in the master's program.

Although the program has no fixed minimum grade-point requirement, an applicant is generally expected to have maintained a junior-senior grade-point average of at least 3.00 on Penn State's grading scale of A (4.00) to D (1.00). In addition, an applicant is expected to have maintained a grade-point average of 3.00 for the required accounting courses.

Applicants to the program are required to take the Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT). The GMAT requirement is waived for applicants with an undergraduate GPA of 3.50 or higher, or whose undergraduate degree is awarded by Penn State.

In addition to the Graduate School application for admission, the program requires a completed Smeal College of Business application for graduate study, and official transcripts from all post-secondary institutions attended.

Degree Requirements

Master of Accounting in Accounting (M.Acc.)

Requirements listed here are in addition to Graduate Council policies listed under GCAC-700 Professional Degree Policies.

Students must complete a minimum of 33 credits. The 33 credits must be earned in 400-, 500-, or 800-level courses. At least 18 credits must be earned in 500- and 800-level courses, and at least 6 credits must be earned in 500-level courses.

Students must complete the following 24 required credits:

Required Courses
ACCTG 432Accounting Information Systems3
ACCTG 495Internship3
BA 817Communication Skills for Management3
BA 840Business Data Management3
BA 841Business Intelligence3
BLAW 444Advanced UCC and Commercial Transactions3
FIN 531Financial Management3
Electives
Students must also complete an additional 9 credits of elective courses selected in consultation with their adviser. A list of approved elective courses is maintained by the graduate program office.9
Culminating Experience
ACCTG 573Topics in Financial Reporting (Capstone Course)3
Total Credits33

The culminating experience for the degree is the capstone course ACCTG 573.

Integrated Undergrad-Grad Programs

Integrated B.S. in Accounting and M.Acc. in Accounting

Requirements listed here are in addition to requirements listed in GCAC-210 Integrated Undergraduate-Graduate (IUG) Degree Programs.

The Department of Accounting offers an integrated program allowing students to receive a B.S. in Accounting and Master of Accounting (M.Acc.) degrees within a five-year period. Students typically are admitted into the integrated program in the spring of the second year of the undergraduate program and the program is completed in the subsequent three years.

Admission Requirements

Applicants apply for admission to the program via the Graduate School application for admission. Requirements listed here are in addition to Graduate Council policies listed under GCAC-300 Admissions Policies.

Students must apply to the program via the Graduate School application for admission, and must meet all the admission requirements of the Graduate School and the Accounting graduate program for the Master of Accounting degree, listed above. Before applying to the Graduate School, students must have completed entrance to their undergraduate major and have completed no less than 60 credits. Students must be admitted no later than the end of the second week of the semester preceding the semester of expected conferral of the undergraduate degree. Transfer students must have completed at least 15 credits at Penn State to enroll in an IUG.

To apply for the program, students must be enrolled in the Smeal College of Business or the Division of Undergraduate Studies, and intend to complete the entrance-to-major requirements prior to completing 59 cumulative credits at Penn State.

Although the program has no fixed minimum grade-point requirement, an applicant is generally expected to have grade-point average of at least 3.20 on Penn State’s grading scale of A (4.00) to D (1.00).

In addition, the Department may request an interview with an applicant, or require a GMAT exam or other exam. Admissions decisions will be based upon the student’s application, undergraduate record, SAT scores and, if applicable, interviews and examination results.

Admitted students must have completed ACCTG 211 with superior performance by the end of the spring semester in which they apply for admission to the program.

In consultation with an adviser, students must prepare a plan of study appropriate to this integrated program, and must present their plan of study to the head of the graduate program or the appropriate committee overseeing the integrated program prior to being admitted to the program. The plan should cover the entire time period of the integrated program, and it should be reviewed periodically with an adviser as the student advances through the program.

Degree Requirements

Students must fulfill all degree requirements for each degree in order to be awarded that degree, subject to the alterations and double-counting of credits as outlined below. Degree requirements for the Bachelor of Science in Accounting are listed in the Undergraduate Bulletin. Degree requirements for the Master of Accounting degree are listed above. Students must sequence their courses so all undergraduate degree requirements are fulfilled before taking courses to count towards the graduate degree. Students must complete the undergraduate degree requirements within the typical time to degree for the undergraduate major. In the semester in which the undergraduate degree requirements will be completed, IUG students must apply to graduate, and the undergraduate degree should be conferred at the next appropriate Commencement. If students accepted into the IUG program are unable to complete the M.Acc. degree, they are still eligible to receive their undergraduate degree if all the undergraduate degree requirements have been satisfied.

Students must complete the requirements for a B.S. in Accounting with the following alterations. Some of prescribed courses for the B.S. must be taken in sections that are available only to students enrolled in the program. These prescribed courses, which all count toward the undergraduate degree in accounting, are:

ACCTG 403WAuditing3
ACCTG 404Managerial Accounting: Economic Perspective3
ACCTG 405Principles of Taxation I3
ACCTG 471Intermediate Financial Accounting I3
ACCTG 472Intermediate Financial Accounting II3

The student need not satisfy the requirement that 6 credits be completed from the following list of courses:

ACCTG 406Principles of Taxation II3
ACCTG 432Accounting Information Systems3
ACCTG 473Advanced Financial Accounting3
ACCTG 481Financial Statement Analysis: Accounting Based Evaluation and Decision Making3

The following courses cannot be used to satisfy the degree requirements of the integrated B.S./M.Acc. program:

ACCTG 406Principles of Taxation II3
ACCTG 410Federal Taxation II3
ACCTG 411Accounting Practicum: VITA3
ACCTG 417Corporate and Managerial Communication2-3
ACCTG 422Accounting Systems3
ACCTG 450Advanced Accounting3
ACCTG 473Advanced Financial Accounting3
ACCTG 481Financial Statement Analysis: Accounting Based Evaluation and Decision Making3

Up to 12 credits may be double-counted towards the degree requirements for both the graduate and undergraduate degrees; a minimum of 50% of the double-counted courses must be at the 500 or 800 level. Independent study courses and credits associated with the culminating experience for the graduate degree cannot be double-counted.

Courses Eligible to Double Count for Both Degrees
ACCTG 432Accounting Information Systems3
BA 840Business Data Management3
BLAW 444Advanced UCC and Commercial Transactions3
FIN 531Financial Management3

Student Aid

Refer to the Tuition & Funding section of The Graduate School’s website. Students in this program are not eligible for graduate assistantships.

Courses

Graduate courses carry numbers from 500 to 699 and 800 to 899. Advanced undergraduate courses numbered between 400 and 499 may be used to meet some graduate degree requirements when taken by graduate students. Courses below the 400 level may not. A graduate student may register for or audit these courses in order to make up deficiencies or to fill in gaps in previous education but not to meet requirements for an advanced degree.

Accounting (ACCTG) Course List

Business Administration (BA) Course List

Business Law (BLAW) Course List

Finance (FIN) Course List

Professional Licensure/Certification

Many U.S. states and territories require professional licensure/certification to be employed. If you plan to pursue employment in a licensed profession after completing this program, please visit the Professional Licensure/Certification Disclosures by State interactive map.

Contact

Campus University Park
Graduate Program Head Henock Louis
Director of Graduate Studies (DGS) or Professor-in-Charge (PIC) Henock Louis
Program Contact

Tammy Whitehill
354 Business Building
University Park PA 16802
tas1@psu.edu
(814) 865-0041

Program Website View