Accounting

M.Ac. Specializations

Financial/Auditing

The environment in which both internal and external auditors operate is becoming increasingly complex. This complexity manifests itself in four ways. First, advances in technology are changing the way business is conducted; electronic commerce is replacing paper-based transactions. Second, markets are no longer limited by national boundaries. Firms must now be competitive on a global scale. Third, management information systems are becoming increasingly sophisticated in response to the revolution in commerce. Fourth, the explosion in the popularity and complexity of financial instruments and derivative securities has exposed auditors to new risks.

This new environment requires increased auditor sophistication in the areas of information systems and finance. Acknowledging this need, we have expanded the course work required in these two areas to increase the marketability of students interested in pursuing careers in auditing, assurance services, and corporate finance.

Students interested in the financial/auditing track will complete the following courses:

Accounting—general

ACCT:9130/6A:221 Financial Reporting: Theory and Practice (3 s.h.)
Corporate accounting choices in framework of traditional accounting theory, economic consequences, and firm valuation.

ACCT:9140/6A:230 Advanced Auditing (3 s.h.)
Enhance understanding of the fundamental concepts of the auditing discipline, improve critical-thinking and analytical skills in the context of real-world problems involving risk, understand a framework that can be used to audit a company's internal controls in accordance with the provisions of Section 404 of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, continue development of communication skills, and instill a desire to appreciate the value of integrity and ethical behavior.

ACCT:9040/6A:245 Financial Information and Capital Markets (3 s.h.)
Use of corporate financial statements for investment and lending decisions; emphasis on financial analysis techniques, valuation, business analysis, cash flow projections, credit scoring, and related research testing.

One of the following two accounting seminars:

ACCT:9120/6A:220 Design and Use of Cost Management Systems (3 s.h.)
Development of cost accumulation and reporting systems for a firm's strategy and structure; how activity-based cost management systems increase a firm's competitiveness by managing its costs, processes, and people.

ACCT:9050/6A:231 Taxes and Business Strategy (3 s.h.)
Effect of taxes on business decisions, including investment strategies, financial policies; emphasis on tax planning, evaluating tax consequences of business decisions.

Financial/Auditing Specialization

MBA:8180/6N:225 Managerial Finance (3 s.h.)
Asset valuation and capital budgeting under uncertainty, interactions with "efficient" capital markets, analyzing financial statements, decisions on capital structure, issuing nontraditional financial instruments, coping with mergers.

One additional 200-level finance class (3 s.h.)

MSCI:9200/6K:226 Business Programming (3 s.h.) or MSCI:9210 (6K:227) Introduction to Modeling with VBA (3 s.h.)

MSCI:9230/6K:230 Database Systems (3 s.h.)

General Electives (6 s.h.)

Total: 30 s.h.

Management Information Systems

Both national and local employment trends are creating a new environment for our students. We have seen an expanding emphasis on consulting and assurance services (i.e., independent professional services that improve the quality of information, or its context, for decision makers). The goal of the management information systems (MIS) specialization is to prepare students for a variety of career services including consulting and assurance services.

Students specializing in MIS will complete the following courses:

Accounting — general

ACCT:9120/6A:220 Design and Use of Cost Management Systems (3 s.h.)
Development of cost accumulation and reporting systems for a firm's strategy and structure; how activity-based cost management systems increase a firm's competitiveness by managing its costs, processes, and people.

Two of the following three accounting seminar (6 s.h.):

ACCT:9130/6A:221 Financial Reporting: Theory and Practice (3 s.h.)
Corporate accounting choices in framework of traditional accounting theory, economic consequences, and firm valuation.

ACCT:9140/6A:230 Advanced Auditing (3 s.h.)
Enhance understanding of the fundamental concepts of the auditing discipline, improve critical-thinking and analytical skills in the context of real-world problems involving risk, understand a framework that can be used to audit a company's internal controls in accordance with the provisions of Section 404 of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, continue development of communication skills, and instill a desire to appreciate the value of integrity and ethical behavior.

ACCT:9050/6A:231 Taxes and Business Strategy (3 s.h.)
Effect of taxes on business decisions, including investment strategies, financial policies; emphasis on tax planning, evaluating tax consequences of business decisions.

One of the following four accounting electives (3 s.h.):

ACCT:9130/6A:221 See description above.

ACCT:9140/6A:230 See description above.

ACCT:9050/6A:231 See description above.

ACCT:9150/6A:241 Tax Research (3 s.h.)
Deciding what research is needed, evaluating tax materials, developing facility with electronic and printed tax materials.

ACCT:9040/6A:245 Financial Information and Capital Markets (3 s.h.)
Use of corporate financial statements for investment and lending decisions; emphasis on financial analysis techniques, valuation, business analysis, cash flow projections, credit scoring, and related research evidence.

MIS Specialization

MSCI:9200/6K:226 Business Programming (3 s.h.) or MSCI:9210/6K:227 Introduction to Modeling with VBA (3 s.h.)

Three 200-level information systems classes (9 s.h.)

General Electives (6 s.h.)

Total: 30 s.h.

Managerial Accounting

The accounting professional has become a part of the management team rather than a stand-alone information provider. The successful accountant must understand issues in functional areas such as marketing and production and keep current with changes in management philosophy. The increasing sophistication of management information systems adds to the complexity of providing timely and relevant information to operating personnel. The courses that constitute the managerial accounting concentration have been chosen to help students acquire the background to perform this complex role. This concentration is suitable for students who intend to seek careers as management/cost accountants in organizations, in the controller's office, and in manufacturing consulting.

Students pursuing this concentration will complete the following courses:

Accounting — general

ACCT:9120/6A:220 Design and Use of Cost Management Systems (3 s.h.)
Development of cost accumulation and reporting systems for a firm's strategy and structure; how activity-based cost management systems increase a firm's competitiveness by managing its costs, processes, and people.

Two of the following three accounting seminars (6 s.h.):

ACCT:9130/6A:221 Financial Reporting: Theory and Practice (3 s.h.)
Corporate accounting choices in framework of traditional accounting theory, economic consequences, and firm valuation.

ACCT:9140/6A:230 Advanced Auditing (3 s.h.)
Enhance understanding of the fundamental concepts of the auditing discipline, improve critical-thinking and analytical skills in the context of real-world problems involving risk, understand a framework that can be used to audit a company's internal controls in accordance with the provisions of Section 404 of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, continue development of communication skills, and instill a desire to appreciate the value of integrity and ethical behavior.

ACCT:9050/6A:231 Taxes and Business Strategy (3 s.h.)
Effect of taxes on business decisions, including investment strategies, financial policies; emphasis on tax planning, evaluating tax consequences of business decisions.

One of the following four accounting electives (3 s.h.):

ACCT:9130/6A:221 See description above.

ACCT:9140/6A:230 See description above.

ACCT:9050/6A:231 See description above.

ACCT:9150/6A:241 Tax Research (3 s.h.)
Deciding what research is needed, evaluating tax materials, developing facility with electronics and printed tax materials.

ACCT:9040/6A:245 Financial Information and Capital Markets (3 s.h.)
Use of corporate financial statements for investment and lending decisions; emphasis on financial analysis techniques, valuation, business analysis, cash flow projections, credit scoring, and related research evidence.

Managerial Specialization

MSCI:9200/6K:226 Business Programming (3 s.h.) or MSCI:9210/6K:227 Introduction to Modeling with VBA (3 s.h.)

MSCI:9230/6K:230 Database Systems (3 s.h.)

Non-accounting graduate business electives (6 s.h.)

General Electives (6 s.h.)

Total: 30 s.h.

Tax

The demand for tax specialists remains high. Firms in public accounting and in industry seek to hire graduates who have specialized in tax. Because businesses often face complex and contradictory tax, regulatory, and business issues, the activities performed by entry-level tax specialists require an in-depth understanding of not only current and emerging tax issues but also business issues. The required tax track courses provide a basic understanding of tax as it is practiced today. More importantly, tax track graduates will have sufficient background to do the research necessary to find and communicate tax solutions in whatever tax environment Congress creates.

Students interested in the tax track will complete the following courses:

Accounting — general

Two of the following three accounting seminars (6 s.h.):

ACCT:9120/6A:220 Design and Use of Cost Management Systems (3 s.h.)
Development of cost accumulation and reporting systems for a firm's strategy and structure; how activity-based cost management systems increase a firm's competitiveness by managing its costs, processes, and people.

ACCT:9130/6A:221 Financial Reporting: Theory and Practice (3 s.h.)
Corporate accounting choices in framework of traditional accounting theory, economic consequences, and firm valuation.

ACCT:9140/6A:230 Advanced Auditing (3 s.h.)
Enhance understanding of the fundamental concepts of the auditing discipline, improve critical-thinking and analytical skills in the context of real-world problems involving risk, understand a framework that can be used to audit a company's internal controls in accordance with the provisions of Section 404 of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, continue development of communication skills, and instill a desire to appreciate the value of integrity and ethical behavior.

One of the following four accounting electives (or third seminar from the above group) (3 s.h.):

ACCT:9120/6A:220 See description above.

ACCT:9130/6A:221 See description above.

ACCT:9140/6A:230 See description above.

ACCT:9040/6A:245 Financial Information and Capital Markets (3 s.h.)
Use of corporate financial statements for investment and lending decisions; emphasis on financial analysis techniques, valuation, business analysis, cash flow projections, credit scoring, and related research evidence.

Tax Specialization

ACCT:9050/6A:231 Taxes and Business Strategy (3 s.h.)
Effect of taxes on business decisions, including investment strategies, financial policies; emphasis on tax planning, evaluating tax consequences of business decisions.

ACCT:9150/6A:241 Tax Research (3 s.h.)
Deciding what research is needed, evaluating tax materials, developing facility with electronic and printed tax materials. Prerequisite: 6A:141 Advanced Tax Topics.

General Electives (9 s.h.)

Two law school tax classes (6 s.h.)

Total: 30 s.h.