Graduate Programs

Accounting flyerCal State LA was the first public-supported educational institution in California to offer an academic program leading to a master’s degree in accounting. The Master of Science degree in Accountancy is designed to produce graduates who are qualified to successfully challenge the professional examinations for entry into their selected field. The degree also prepares students for doctoral study or research positions.

The M.S. degree in Accountancy prepares students for a wide range of employment opportunities in public accounting, industry and finance, government and nonprofit organizations.  The program is designed to produce individuals who are qualified with knowledge and techniques in one or more accounting areas: Accounting Information Systems; Financial and Public Accounting; and Taxation. Graduates of the program are prepared to sit for a professional examination; committed to professional and career development beyond their formal education into the highest executive levels of the selected area; capable of becoming leaders who exhibit high standards of ethical conduct within the profession; and  prepared for doctoral study and research positions.

Master of Science in Accountancy

  • Business Taxation
  • Financial Accounting
  • Information Systems
  • Management Accounting

Requirements for the Degree

Semester Requirements

Quarter Requirements (Previously Enrolled Students Only)

University Catalog

A total of 45 units of 500-level courses are required.  All programs must be approved by the department.

Core Courses (24 units)
ACCT 524A Accounting Information Systems (4)
ACCT 524B Auditing (4)
ACCT 526 Seminar: Financial Accounting Theory (4)
ACCT 534 Professional Accounting Ethics (4)
ACCT 575 Leadership and Professional Skills for Accountants (4)
ACCT 595 Accounting Case Studies (4)

Note: Students who have taken ACCT 325, 424A, ACCT 424B, or equivalent, before admission to the MS Accountancy program are exempt from ACCT 575, 524A, and ACCT 524B.  These students must complete another 500 level class to substitute for any or all of these classes.

Important message regarding WPE/GWAR: The University policy is that all the graduate students should take the WPE (Writing Proficiency Exam)/GWAR (Univ 400 - Graduate Writing Assessment Requirement) within the first three terms of their graduate program.

Options (21 units)
Select one of the three options listed below.  Elective courses within the options are determined in conference with a graduate adviser to meet professional objectives.

Accounting Information Systems Option (21 units)
Select 21 units from the following:
ACCT 520 Managerial Accounting Theory
ACCT 544A Advanced Accounting Information Systems
ACCT 544B Advanced Auditing
BUS 514A Managing Business Processes
CIS 527 Decision Support Systems
CIS 528 Current Problems in Business Information Systems
CIS 583 Information Systems Consulting
CIS 584 Controlling and Auditing Computer Systems
CIS 586 Information Systems Project and Change Management
BUS 597 Graduate Research (1)
BUS 598 Graduate Directed Studies

Financial and Public Accounting Option (21 units)
Select 21 units from the following:
ACCT 520 Managerial Accounting Theory
ACCT 521A Taxation of Corporations and Partnerships
ACCT 521D IRS VITA Program
ACCT 522 Current Topics in Financial Reporting
ACCT 525 International Accounting
ACCT 527 Governmental and Institutional Accounting
ACCT 529 Advanced Accounting
ACCT 535 Forensic Accounting
ACCT 536 Advanced Forensic Accounting
ACCT 544B Advanced Auditing
ACCT 554 Special Topics in Accounting
ACCT 571 Accounting for Healthcare Managers
ACCT 585 Tax Theory and Business Applications
ACCT 586 Tax Research and Practice
ACCT 587 Taxation of Corporations and Shareholders
BUS 597 Graduate Research (1)
BUS 598 Graduate Directed study

Taxation (21 units)
Select 21 units from the following:
ACCT 521A Taxation of Corporation and Partnerships
ACCT 521C State and Local Taxation
ACCT 521D IRS VITA Program
ACCT 554 Special Topics
ACCT 585 Tax Theory and Business Applications
ACCT 586 Tax Research and Practice
ACCT 587 Taxation of Corporation and Shareholders
ACCT 588 International Taxation
ACCT 590 Taxation of Partnerships and LLCs
ACCT 591 Taxation of Property Transactions
ACCT 592 Taxation of Estate and Gifts
ACCT 593 Tax Procedures
BUS 597 Graduate Research (1)
BUS 598 Graduate Directed Study

Some 400-level courses may be applied toward master’s degree requirements subject to limits established by department and approval of graduate adviser.

Classified graduate standing and approval by the College of Business & Economics Advisement Center are required for admission to all 500-level courses. 

Note: Students who have taken ACCT 421A may not take ACCT 521A.

Learning Objectives


Learn more about graduate programs in the College of Business and Economics

Ready to Apply? Visit our Graduate Admissions Page.