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Old 06-25-2008, 08:08 PM
 
61 posts, read 394,332 times
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I graduated with a degree in English, and am now looking into getting some kind of certificate in accounting.

I'm interested in this program they have at UCLA Extension. You take 1 or 2 years of accounting and business classes depending on how many business classes you've already taken. At the end of the program, you have the option of sitting for the CPA exam.

Is anyone familiar with this accounting program at UCLA? If so, I'd like to hear your thoughts on it.

The UCLA extension courses are REALLY expensive. I can get an accounting certificate at a community college for a lot less. But I'm thinking that UCLA Extension is more highly regarded among employers.
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Old 08-17-2008, 06:37 PM
 
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ttt
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Old 08-18-2008, 08:17 PM
 
Location: Ohio
17,998 posts, read 13,238,246 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PSBlows View Post
I graduated with a degree in English, and am now looking into getting some kind of certificate in accounting.

I'm interested in this program they have at UCLA Extension. You take 1 or 2 years of accounting and business classes depending on how many business classes you've already taken. At the end of the program, you have the option of sitting for the CPA exam.

Is anyone familiar with this accounting program at UCLA? If so, I'd like to hear your thoughts on it.

The UCLA extension courses are REALLY expensive. I can get an accounting certificate at a community college for a lot less. But I'm thinking that UCLA Extension is more highly regarded among employers.
Check your state laws as well as employment opportunities and the level of wages.

We have this scam in Ohio where people pay several thousand to become a "certified nursing assistant" for which you top out at the whopping salary of $7.50/hour.

You can make that much at McDonald's or Taco Hell, and get benefits and pay raises.

An "accounting certificate" might make you nothing more than a glorified book-keeper, which around here barely pays $10/hour.

Even accountants don't make that much money. The real money and best opportunity for advancement is in being a CPA (Certified Public Accountant), which most states control through licensing and testing and which typically requires a 4-year degree in accounting, not a degree in underwater basket weaving and an accounting certificate.
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Old 09-30-2008, 04:35 AM
 
10 posts, read 46,352 times
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Default Check your Facts

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mircea View Post
Check your state laws as well as employment opportunities and the level of wages.

We have this scam in Ohio where people pay several thousand to become a "certified nursing assistant" for which you top out at the whopping salary of $7.50/hour.

You can make that much at McDonald's or Taco Hell, and get benefits and pay raises.

An "accounting certificate" might make you nothing more than a glorified book-keeper, which around here barely pays $10/hour.

Even accountants don't make that much money. The real money and best opportunity for advancement is in being a CPA (Certified Public Accountant), which most states control through licensing and testing and which typically requires a 4-year degree in accounting, not a degree in underwater basket weaving and an accounting certificate.
Actually if you do the research you will find that you can indeed become a licensed CPA with an undergraduate degree in underwater basket weaving (assuming it is from an accredited institution) and a accounting certificate. The national educational guidline is 150 SHRs with 30 shrs of that total in accounting subjects...some states require a little less accounting specific hours. This standard will alow you to take the CPA exams. Then you need a certain amount of experience, normally two years, in the accounting or auditing field and you can become licesnsed. Of course had you done your research you would not have had the opportunity to use your sarcasm and wit so well! BTW, an undergraduate degree in english is a tough achievement in its own right IMHO. Don't take my word for it, check it out at: http://www.aicpa.org/
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Old 04-17-2009, 10:26 AM
 
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While researching this same question I came across this bio: Assisting Ms. Zhong and Mr. Kimura is Warren Shimada. Mr. Shimada's education began at UCLA, where he achieved a B.A. in English Literature. His education continued at UCLA extension, where he obtained a Certificate in Accounting. He took the CPA exam directly after graduating and quickly passed all four sections in one sitting. Currently, Mr. Shimada is in the process of completing a Masters in Business Taxation program.
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Old 04-17-2009, 07:30 PM
 
Location: Portland, Oregon
7,091 posts, read 10,487,344 times
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It sucks to say most of the time Accounting Certs really are worthless besides being a glorified clerk, but a bachelor's or masters can do wonders either for the CPA education requirement or just general account placement. At one point you could do more with it, but seems like the cert programs have really been dumbed down to get something not even close to just the core of a bachelor's.
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Old 04-18-2009, 06:31 PM
 
Location: Virginia
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Have you thought about doing a MBA with an Accounting Concentration? Then a CPA after that would look good.

oleo
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Old 04-18-2009, 08:59 PM
 
3,853 posts, read 11,422,302 times
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Accounting is accounting. It is all the same. I know this because i have an AA degree in accounting from a community college and now I am going for my BA in accounting (eventually getting a CPA).

The basic courses you will take are:

financial accounting
managerial accounting
cost accounting
accounting information systems
quickbooks/mas90/peachtree etc.
federal income tax

Quote:
An "accounting certificate" might make you nothing more than a glorified book-keeper, which around here barely pays $10/hour.

Even accountants don't make that much money. The real money and best opportunity for advancement is in being a CPA (Certified Public Accountant), which most states control through licensing and testing and which typically requires a 4-year degree in accounting, not a degree in underwater basket weaving and an accounting certificate.
Yes that is true. You'll start at 10/hr but what most don't understand is that the experience is worth something. If you work at a fast food joint, you won't go anywhere with that. With the bookkeeping experience at least it can be marketed. You have to look at the long term and work your way up. However yes it is true the real money is made in being a CPA but what you have to understand is that the CPA exam is no easy test. You really have to put in hundreds of hours preparing and studying. That is why CPAs get paid so much, the exam is HARD. Not everyone can pass it on a whim. I know, I am preparing for it now. I think I read that the failure rate was north of 50%. The fact of the matter is that most people who start college with the idea that they will get their CPA don't even get close to ever achieving it.

Quote:
It sucks to say most of the time Accounting Certs really are worthless besides being a glorified clerk, but a bachelor's or masters can do wonders either for the CPA education requirement or just general account placement. At one point you could do more with it, but seems like the cert programs have really been dumbed down to get something not even close to just the core of a bachelor's.
Well it depends on what other courses you have taken. I got an AA in accounting and nearly 90% of the classes transferred to my BA degree.

Last edited by killer2021; 04-18-2009 at 09:14 PM..
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Old 04-19-2009, 02:03 PM
 
Location: Portland, Oregon
7,091 posts, read 10,487,344 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by killer2021 View Post
Well it depends on what other courses you have taken. I got an AA in accounting and nearly 90% of the classes transferred to my BA degree.
An AA can be different then a certificate..depending on what it is. It also depends where you get it at, on the different levels of accreditation (Regional, National, and International) the institution you are going to is. The water is a bit muddy anymore what people call them anymore, always good to check. An AA is def more desirable then a certificate if they are separately defined.
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Old 04-19-2009, 04:08 PM
 
Location: Stuck on the East Coast, hoping to head West
3,785 posts, read 8,762,556 times
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The CPA designation is controlled by each individual state. Each state varies in requirements, but most require a minimum of x amount of hours in accounting. Many are quite specific in how many hours in a particular area of study they require. Before I did the UCLA extension coursework, I'd ask them for which states their courses will qualify you to sit for the CPA exam.

As for the exam itself, I just passed one section and am studying for another. The exam covers a lot more than what I learned in my accounting classes. There's business law, economics, taxation to name a few areas. I'm just not sure you're going to get all the exposure that you need to pass with a degree in anything other than business--regardless of taking a few accounting classes. But then again, there are a million CPA prep companies that will prepare you--prices go from a few hundred bucks to thousands.
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