Master’s Degree in Accounting and Auditing Launched

Degree is in response to new California requirement requiring fifth year of accounting studies and increased demand for accountants

Michael Moore

Michael Moore, a UC Riverside accounting professor who helped design the Master of Professional Accountancy (MPAc) program

RIVERSIDE, Calif. (www.ucr.edu) — The University of California, Riverside is launching a master’s degree in accounting and auditing this September and is now recruiting students for the inaugural class.

“This will make graduates much better able to handle accounting and auditing work from day one and that’s critical,” said Michael Moore, a UC Riverside accounting professor who helped design the Master of Professional Accountancy (MPAc) program. “If they are farther along in training and knowledge, it makes them better employees earlier and means they will advance more quickly.”

Beginning January 1, 2014, a fifth year of accounting, auditing, ethics and business related courses will be required in California to become a Certified Public Accountant (CPA).

The new master’s degree is the UC Riverside School of Business Administration vision of the knowledge and skills accounting and auditing professionals should acquire to prepare for the year 2020 and beyond. It also is in response to changing CPA requirements, the growing demand for auditors and accountants and the increase in students nationwide seeking master’s degrees in accounting.

In 2001-02, 12,565 students earned a master’s in accounting, according to The 2011 Trends in the Supply of Accounting Graduates and the Demand for Public Accounting Recruits report. That number jumped to 29,464 in 2009-10.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, demand for accountants and auditors is expected to continue to grow by up to 22 percent by 2018, a rate much faster than most other occupations. This will mean approximately 300,000 new jobs.

“The new fifth year California requirement, which mirrors those in 47 other states, is long overdue,” said Moore, who has been a CPA and accounting professor for more than 40 years and helped draft the new California requirements.

Moore believes the new requirements are needed for several reasons:

Students who graduate with an accounting degree in California already need to take the additional coursework to practice in most states. In addition, there is increasing demand for consumer protection education, especially after recent high-profile financial fraud cases. The accounting and especially auditing fields have become increasingly complex in recent years with the internationalization of business and constant technological changes.

UC Riverside and UC Davis, which is also launching a master’s degree in accounting this fall, will be the only UC campuses that offer the degree.

The UC Riverside program will offer several new courses, including ones on professional accounting research and information technology auditing. The MPAc program will be led by Moore and Ted Mock, a distinguished professor of audit and assurance and recipient of the 2011 American Accounting Association Outstanding Educator Award.

The new master’s degree is open to domestic and international students. International students need to apply by May 1. The deadline for domestic students is September 1, but applicants are encouraged to apply early, as space and financial aid are limited.

The program is designed to be completed in three quarters with recommended entry to the program in the fall quarter. To graduate, students must complete 48 quarter-hour units.

For more information about the program, visit agsm.ucr.edu/mpac, call 951-827-6200 or e-mail mpac@ucr.edu.

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