Accounting is often called the language of business. It is the information system that measures business activities, processes that information into reports, and communicates the results to decision makers. Financial statements and reports provide information to help people make informed business decisions. Decision makers include individuals, businesses, investors, creditors, governmental regulatory agencies, taxing authorities, nonprofit organizations, and many others.
Accounting offers many career opportunities both in private accounting and public accounting. Private accountants work for a single business or nonprofit organization and provide a wide variety of services for the entity, including cost accounting, budgeting, information system design, and internal auditing. Public accountants serve numerous businesses and other clients, and provide auditing, tax accounting, and management consulting services.
Concentration in Accounting
In addition to the business core and collateral courses, a concentration in accounting includes:
- BUS 326 Intermediate Accounting I
- BUS 327 Intermediate Accounting II
- BUS 323 Income Tax
- BUS 324 Managerial Accounting (For students who enrolled in the college prior to Fall 2009, one additional upper-level departmental elective is required.)
Students seeking to serve a private company or not-for-profit organization should complete this concentration in accounting. Students desiring to seek designation as a certified public accountant (CPA) must meet additional education requirements to be eligible for the CPA exam. Requirements to qualify for the CPA exam can be met in either of the following ways: (1) Students can earn the BS in Business Administration with a Concentration in Accounting at Berea College and then pursue a masters degree (MBA or MA in Accounting) at another institution, or (2) Students can extend their time at Berea and enroll in certain accounting and related courses at EKU, concurrently with their Berea courses, to fulfill the requirement. This five-year public accounting option is described more fully below.
Public Accounting Option
In addition to the business core and collateral courses required for the concentration in accounting, a student, in consultation with his or her academic advisor, will select the additional courses to be taken to complete the 150-hour requirement for the CPA exam. The recommended elective courses for the public accounting option include the following.
Four courses from current departmental offerings:
- BUS 437 Auditing
- BUS 240 Business Law (Included in core requirements for students entering after Spring 2009)
- BUS 306 Accounting for Governmental and Non-Profit Organizations (short term offering)
- ECO 335 Managerial Economics
Three accounting courses currently not offered regularly at Berea College:
- Legal Aspects of Accounting
- International Accounting and Combinations
- Taxation of Corporations
- Forensic Accounting
These courses may be taken through an articulation agreement with and transferred from Eastern Kentucky University (EKU). Alternatively, they may be offered occasionally during the short term at Berea, or transferred from another institution in accordance with existing policy on transfer credit.
Depending on the number of elective courses a student has taken, as many as four additional courses may be needed. The following is a recommended list of elective courses from which a student may choose.
- BUS 346 Investment Analysis
- BUS 368 Intermediate Corporate Finance
- MAT 220 Calculus I
- ECO 332 Money and Banking
- CSC 205 Intro to Computer Science
Note: Students choosing the public accounting option are not eligible for Strategic Management (BUS 475) until the final semester. Taking this course earlier might jeopardize any possibility of qualifying for a one- or two-term extension if needed.
Careful curriculum planning, important for any major, is especially important for this five-year option. Courses at EKU are taken concurrently with courses at Berea. EKU courses are available to students who have satisfactorily completed Intermediate Accounting II. Courses regularly offered at Berea do not qualify for tuition waiver under the articulation agreement with EKU.