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Associate of Applied Science (A.A.S.) Degree in Accounting

Majors Overview May 9, 2013

An individual enrolled in an Associate of Applied Science degree program in accounting can seek entry level jobs in government, business, tax preparation, and finance. Through the degree programs, students will examine fundamental financial principles in business.

A.A.S. Degree in Accounting

Practical training in basic auditing, accounts payable and payroll are typically offered through these degree programs. Enrolled students can hone the skills needed in managing and maintaining business records. Students can become familiar with general office procedures and communication, among other work within a business environment. They can also learn about tort, contract and property law, in addition to interpretation of financial data through computer programs and accounting software.

Education Requirements

Admission criteria generally require applicants to hold a general educational development (GED) certificate or a high school diploma. Basic college-level courses are required to be completed by prospective students at some schools, in addition to passing an entrance exam. Certificate programs are offered at some schools, if basic accounting courses have not been completed by students seeking enrollment. Students can avail these courses to fulfill the prerequisites for admission.

Program Coursework

Often, programs in this field require the completion of approximately sixty to sixty-five semester hours of coursework, which can be completed within a span of two years, if students are enrolled full-time. Typically, students engage in hands-on accounting training using computers to analyze financial documents. In addition to basic educational coursework, the program course topics may include the following:

•Business law
•Spreadsheet software fundamentals
•Financial management
•Income taxation
•Accounting computer applications
•Payroll tax
•Managerial accounting

Career Options

Students who have earned their associate degree will be prepared for entry-level work with government agencies, accounting firms, or tax preparation firms. Individuals may seek opportunities in the financial departments of various businesses. Possible career titles may include the following:

•Junior accountant
•Accounting clerk
•Payroll clerk

Continuing Education

Associate degree program graduates who are interested in furthering their education may transfer credits earned to a bachelor degree program in accounting that is required for most accounting positions. Individuals who pursue the master degree program will satisfy the one hundred fifty credit hours needed to become a CPA (certified public accountant) in most states.

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