An Accountancy Master’s Focused on What Matters
An Accountancy Master’s Focused on What Matters

DePaul’s Master of Science in Accountancy Curriculum

In the world of accounting, expertise is key. The online Master of Science in Accountancy (MSA) program at DePaul University is meticulously designed to prepare students for the complexities of the field and to equip them with the skills necessary to succeed as accounting professionals—no previous accounting degree is required.

This program offers a challenging yet rewarding curriculum, blending theoretical foundations with practical applications. Led by experienced faculty members who are deeply engaged in ensuring student success, DePaul’s MSA program provides a high-touch approach to education. With a focus on career readiness and unique elective courses, students can tailor their learning experience to align with their professional goals.

The program's online delivery format, encompassing asynchronous core courses and flexible elective options, is tailored to accommodate the work-life balance of students seeking a career change or advancement.

Total Quarter Hours: 48

Online Master of Science in Accountancy Required Courses

The online Master of Science in Accountancy requires a minimum of 12 courses. Each course counts for 4 quarter hours.

Core Accountancy Courses (8 Required Accounting Courses)

ACC 500 — Financial Accounting

This introduction to financial accounting provides both a theoretical foundation and an opportunity to apply accounting logic in increasingly complex situations. The accounting model and information processing cycle are developed. The content of the income statement, balance sheet and statement of cash flows is studied in detail and analyzed.

ACC 535 — Principles of Accounting Information Systems

This course is designed to provide future accounting and business professionals with knowledge and practice about accounting information systems and their role in accounting functions and financial decision-making. It will enable the student to interface with accounting systems and to participate in their design and audit. It will focus on the nature and flows of accounting information in organizations, security and internal controls and the use of information technology in accounting information systems and decision-making. The student will be able to evaluate internal control in information systems and design controls to mitigate risks associated with information systems.

Prerequisite: ACC 500

ACC 541 — Financial Accounting Theory & Practice I

Intermediate theory and preparation of financial statements; review of accounting concepts and development of accounting models; methods and problems in valuation and reporting; with emphasis on current assets and liabilities, property, plant and equipment, and intangibles, review of relevant authoritative literature.

Prerequisite: ACC 500

ACC 543 — Financial Accounting Theory & Practice II

Continuation of intermediate theory and financial statement preparation with emphasis on the components of stockholder's equity; special problems such as earnings per share, accounting changes, income taxes, derivatives and statement of cash flows; review of relevant authoritative literature and interpretation of financial statements.

Prerequisite: ACC 541

ACC 545 — Advanced Topics in Accounting Theory

This course is designed to provide comprehensive coverage of the following: consolidations, partnership accounting, foreign operations and not-for-profit accounting. Coverage of the topics emphasizes both theory and practice. Mastery of the material is obtained through problem-solving situations.

Prerequisite: ACC 543

ACC 547 — Auditing I

Auditing I provides a conceptual introduction to the nature and value of financial statement audits. The course emphasizes the professional skepticism required of auditors in a changing ethical and legal environment including the Professional Ethics Rules and U.S. Securities laws. The course focuses on Generally Accepted Auditing Standards (GAAS) that address engagement planning and execution including systems of internal control, audit procedures, evidence and reporting.

Prerequisite: ACC 500

ACC 548 — Tax Treatment of Individuals and Property Transactions

This course provides detailed coverage of the federal income tax treatment of individual taxpayers. It includes coverage of inclusions, exclusions, deductions, credits, rates of taxation, special tax computations and the tax aspects of property transactions. It also includes tax research.

Prerequisite: ACC 500

ACC 551 — Tax Treatment of Corporations and Partnerships

This course covers the federal income tax treatment of corporations and partnerships. It includes ethics in tax practice and exposure to estate and gift taxation.

Prerequisite: ACC 548

Degree Requirements

  1. Satisfactory completion of 12 accountancy courses as outlined above.
  2. Satisfactory completion of at least 48 earned graduate credit hours applicable to the degree (waived courses are not considered earned hours).
  3. All courses for credit toward the degree must be completed with satisfactory grades within six calendar years after the candidate’s first term of enrollment in the Kellstadt Graduate School of Business. After a lapse of six years, a course has expired. An expired course is not acceptable for satisfaction of degree requirements and is not applicable to the degree without the written permission of the program director or the Kellstadt Graduate School of Business.

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Flexible Learning, Powerful Results

By offering a combination of asynchronous core courses and flexible elective options, students are empowered to pursue their educational goals without sacrificing their commitments outside of the classroom. Whether students are juggling a full-time job, family responsibilities, or other obligations, the program provides the flexibility and support needed to succeed.

At DePaul University, the institution is committed to helping students achieve balance in their lives while pursuing their academic and professional aspirations. Prospective students are encouraged to join DePaul University and discover how the Online Master of Science in Accountancy program can help them unlock new opportunities and achieve their goals on their own terms.

4 Elective Courses From the List Below

ACC 542 — Cost and Managerial Accounting

Introduction to cost and managerial concepts and techniques. Topics include cost accumulation (job, process, standard costing and activity-based costing), cost behavior, break-even analysis, budgeting, contribution approach to income measurement, joint and by-product costing, cost allocation methods, and their relevance for decision-making.

Prerequisite: ACC 500

ACC 550 — Auditing II

Auditing II is a sequel to Auditing I (ACC 547). Auditing II builds upon the understanding and application of the Generally Accepted Auditing Standards (GAAS) Standards of Fieldwork to both analyze and evaluate audit procedures chosen and evidence obtained regarding classes of transactions and account balances. The course highlights common tools and techniques for planning and conducting audits including the use of sampling and data analysis when performing tests of controls and substantive tests.

Prerequisite: ACC 547

ACC 552 — Business Law for Accountants

This course covers the aspects of the legal environment of special concern to accounting practitioners, including the ethical standards of accounting practice, legal liability of accountants, contract law, property law, tort law, commercial paper, the laws of agency, sales laws, banking, agency, partnerships, corporations, trusts and wills, suretyships, secured transactions, bankruptcy, employment law, securities regulation, antitrust, and public regulation and disclosure laws. Formerly "Legal and Ethical Environment of Accounting Practice."

ACC 558 — Tax Research

This course examines sources of tax law used during a tax research project by making use of the Internal Revenue Code, Treasury Regulations, Treasury Rulings and Administrative Pronouncements, Judicial Decisions and other sources. Students examine the weight of authority of each source of tax law and the structure of databases used by tax professionals to build a conclusion to the tax issue being researched.

Prerequisite: ACC 548

ACC 560 — Taxation of Corporations and Shareholders

Study of federal income taxation of corporations and shareholders with emphasis on transactions between the corporation and its shareholders. Topics include corporate formations, nonliquidating distributions to shareholders, stock redemptions, and corporate liquidations.

Prerequisite: ACC 558

ACC 565 — Tax Accounting, Periods and Methods

This course deals with federal income tax planning as to the determination of the proper periods for reporting income and deductions, overall methods of tax accounting and special elections available to taxpayers. Topics include the installment method, accounting method changes, accrual method, cash method, FIFO, LIFO and accounting periods.

Prerequisite: ACC 551

ACC 578 — Data Analytics in Tax

This course will provide students with exposure to the various data analytic concepts and tools applicable to tax. It will also provide opportunities to apply these concepts and tools to sample data sets from the business world. In addition to understanding when and how to use these tools, the student will also learn how to exercise appropriate judgement with respect to tax decisions that stem from the data analysis. Students in the course will also see how process design and automation are impacted by the types of data available to the tax professional.

Prerequisite: ACC 551

ACC 615 — Applied Statistics for Accountants

This course is a statistical overview of concepts taught in elementary and intermediate statistics classes but with more emphasis on understanding and interpretation of outcomes and findings. Report writing, article critiquing as well as team projects will be utilized. This course will cover select general statistics including basic sample descriptives, categorical data analysis including odds and risk ratios, estimation and hypothesis testing and basic regression and ANOVA technique. Logistic regression will also be covered. The course will emphasize data analytics and data projects.

ACC 635 — Introduction to Fraud Examination

This course will focus on fraud principles that relate to asset misappropriations, corruption and fraudulent financial statements. Emphasis will be on examination, review and analysis of a variety of fraud schemes, including discussion of investigative strategies and controls used to detect and prevent the impact fraud has on an organization.

ACC 636 — Internal Auditing, Corporate Governance and Internal Control

This course addresses the overall role that the internal audit plays as a critical part of an organization's control and governance structure. The course includes a case that incorporates the complete internal audit process for a hypothetical company, including identification of risk, planning, execution of fieldwork and reporting. This course also covers the strategic role and operations of an internal audit function from three key perspectives; the chief audit executive, the chair of the audit committee and the CEO or CFO. The relative roles and relationships with the organization's external auditor and the organization's risk and control functions are also addressed.

Prerequisite: ACC 500

ACC 637 — Data Mining and Analytics

This course introduces students to the field of data mining and data analytics, which has been defined as the extensive use of data, statistical and quantitative analysis, and exploratory and predictive models to drive decisions and actions. With an emphasis on hands-on problem-solving capabilities, this course further develops students' analytics mindset and data-driven decision skills.

Prerequisite: ACC 615

ACC 639 — Audit Analytics

The course will familiarize students with basic audit analytics knowledge, skills and tools, and expose students to real-world audit analytics-related issues and potential solutions. With an emphasis on hands-on problem-solving capabilities, this course attempts to develop students' analytics mindset in the context of auditing.

ACC 640 — Advanced Topics in Accounting Theory II

The course emphasizes financial accounting research using the FASB Accounting Standards Codification to determine the appropriate financial accounting for advanced-level transactions and events. Additionally, the course addresses the standard-setting process in financial accounting as well as the role that the Securities and Exchange Commission fills in this process. Governmental and nonprofit accounting topics are also covered along with fair value measurement and current developments in financial reporting. This course is intended to be taken toward the completion of the MSA program.

Prerequisite: ACC 543

ACC 646 — Forensic Financial Statement Analysis and Valuation

This course focuses on financial statement fraud. Skills taught in this course include using financial statement analysis to detect fraud in financial statements, and valuation skills that can be used to value both public and private firms in cases of shareholder and partnership disputes, divorce cases, etc. Students are given a chance to use these skills to detect and investigate fraud within a company's financial statements.

Upcoming Admissions Deadlines

Domestic Student Deadline
August 15
Fall 2024 Quarter
International Student Deadline
June 15
Fall 2024 Quarter

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