Undergraduate Accounting Major

Accountants are the most trusted business advisors and an accounting education can lead to a highly respected and rewarding career. Accountants routinely earn incomes that are in the top 5% of the community in which they may live. If you elect to major in accounting, you may prepare yourself for a variety of accounting careers, and you may choose to fulfill the educational requirements for taking the Certified Public Accountant (C.P.A.) and/or Certified Management Accountant (C.M.A.) examination. Accounting also provides an excellent undergraduate background for a degree in law.

Career Opportunities

Public Accounting
Public accounting promises a fast-track accounting career that can lead into a wide variety of opportunities. Traditionally, public accountants audit financial information and prepare tax returns. They also offer a much broader array of services to help their clients become more successful. For example, public accountants helped determine the value and market price for the Initial Public Offering (IPO) of Steelcase's stock before it went public. They helped establish the value of Princess Diana's estate and monitored its distribution. Accountants are involved on both sides of many investigations involving white collar crimes, security violations, and fraud.
Industry or Management Accounting
Industry and Management Accounting offers a rewarding career working inside leading corporations. Accounting assists managers to evaluate their company's operations and manage strategies using concepts such as: target costing (which supported Toyota's design of the Camry); activity-based management (which enabled Compaq to weed out millions of dollars of wasteful costs); economic value added (EVA) (which assists Coca-Cola in determining the wealth it creates for its stockholders); and the balanced scorecard (which helps MOBIL evaluate performance relative to responsibilities to employees, customers, stockholders, suppliers, and the community).
Governmental Accounting
From the mundane to the magnificent, accountants are involved in government. Accountants help government run smoothly at all levels by identifying waste and abuse, and by serving as trusted advisors to determine if the right activities are being conducted in the right way.

Required Courses

In addition to the BBA CORE requirements, as an Accounting major, you must complete an additional 19 credit hours, as follows:

  • ACC 240 Financial Accounting Applications
  • ACC 310 Intermediate Accounting I
  • ACC 311 Intermediate Accounting II
  • ACC 340 Accounting Systems

You must take one of the following two courses:

  • ACC 317 Federal Income Tax Theory and Practice-Individual
  • ACC 318 Federal Income Tax-Corporations, Partnerships, and Fiduciaries.

And one of the following two courses:

  • ACC 321 Cost Accounting
  • ACC 322 Advanced Managerial Accounting

And one of the following two courses:

  • ACC 413 Internal Auditing
  • ACC 414 Auditing Theory and Practice

When you enter the accounting program at Seidman, we assume you have a basic knowledge of spreadsheets before you enroll in upper-division accounting courses.

In order to graduate in accounting, you must achieve a 2.5 minimum GPA for upper-division accounting courses. If your GPA for upper-division accounting courses falls below 2.5 (after you've completed nine hours) you will not be permitted to take additional upper-division accounting courses. However, you may repeat upper-division accounting courses for which you received a low grade. Only upper-division accounting courses in which you have earned a "C-" or better may be used to satisfy requirements for an accounting degree. You must also meet other requirements of the undergraduate business program.

If you want an academic background in financial accounting which fulfills the C.P.A. accounting program requirements, we encourage you to meet with an accounting faculty member for guidance.

If you want an academic background in management accounting which fulfills the C.M.A. accounting program requirements, we also encourage you to take ACC 310, 311, 321, 322, 329, 340, 414, and 415.

Specific requirements for the CPA-certification can be obtained by visiting the Michigan State Board of Accountancy. Specific requirements for the CMA certificate can be obtained by visiting the Institute of Management Accountants.

You are encouraged to expand your horizons through participating in accounting internships and studying abroad. We recommend study at Kingston University in England, where you will take ACC 330: International Accounting.

Accounting Course Descriptions

Contact Information:
Department Phone: (616) 331-7409
Email Rita Grant, Director: grantr@gvsu.edu

Page last modified September 10, 2013