Master of Science in Accounting
When developing our MSA program, we collaborated with top local employers to design an MSA that encompasses much more than CPA prep. The Nichols MSA program provides the knowledge and tools you’ll need to succeed — and thrive — in your career.
We take a deep dive into technical accounting and data analytics skills, such as IDEA, ACL, Power BI, and Tableau, blending these tools with negotiation, communication, and human factors coursework. With a Nichols MSA, you can walk confidently into your future with strong leadership skills and a comprehensive understanding of accounting theory and practice.
Convenience is what truly sets Nichols College apart from many other schools. I have the ability to continue working full time and the choice to participate in lectures remotely or in a traditional classroom setting; all while simultaneously working towards both an MBA and MSA!–Nourhan M. Abusalah, MBA/MSA Candidate
Why should I get a Master’s in Accounting?
With a Master’s in Accounting from Nichols College, you’ll develop the problem-solving and strategic decision-making skills needed to thrive in the accounting industry and eventually become a certified public accountant (CPA). Although you can find individual accounting courses in MBA programs, the in-depth accountancy skills you’ll need for top accounting jobs are found within the MSA.
Who should get an MSA?
If you want to be a specialist in the field of accounting, the MSA is your ticket to success. The Nichols MSA is designed for students interested in pursuing top-level accounting careers, as well as those who have little to no accounting background and want to switch careers.
Many MSA students have already completed an undergraduate degree in accounting or a related field and wish to deepen their skills in accounting and finance, but the Nichols MSA is also suitable for those who have completed an undergraduate degree in a non-accounting field and wish to switch careers to accounting or finance.
The MSA is equally beneficial for those who have been working in the accounting field and want to advance their careers, specialize in a particular area of accounting, or prepare for a professional certification such as the CPA.
How does the Nichols MSA program work?
The Nichols MSA curriculum encompasses accounting theory and practice, with a strong emphasis on developing the leadership skills needed to advance your career. Some of our core courses include Auditing through Information Systems, Data Visualization and Business Intelligence, and Professional Accounting Research and Policy. Our core MSA courses will help you develop knowledge and skills in:
- Accounting practice
- Accounting regulations
- Corporate governance
- Advanced management accounting
- Financial reporting
- Research methods
You can combine these core MSA courses with a variety of electives that can be tailored to your unique career goals. These electives can be specific to accounting or can broaden other useful skills, such as management or marketing.
What are the benefits of obtaining a Master of Accounting?
The benefits of getting an MSA are wide and far-reaching. Although each student has their own reasons for enrolling in an MSA program, certain benefits are applicable to everyone who earns an MSA. Some of the most obvious and immediate benefits include:
- Enhanced Career Opportunities: With an MSA, you will have access to a wider range of job opportunities and be able to qualify for more advanced and specialized roles in accounting and finance.
- Professional Credibility: A Master of Accounting degree provides you with a strong foundation of knowledge and skills, demonstrating to employers and clients that you are a competent and well-trained professional.
- Increased Earning Potential: According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, accountants and auditors with a master’s degree earn a median annual salary that is significantly higher than those with just a bachelor’s degree.
- Preparation for Professional Certificates: Many professional certifications in accounting, such as the Certified Public Accountant (CPA) or Certified Management Accountant (CMA), require a certain level of education, which can be fulfilled by obtaining a Master of Accounting degree.
- Networking Opportunities: Pursuing an MSA will provide you with opportunities to connect with other accounting professionals, such as through internships, networking events, and alumni associations, which can help you build your professional network and open up new career opportunities.
Hot Jobs for MSA Holders
Earning an MSA will dramatically improve your chance of success in top accounting jobs and other high-level careers that involve accounting and finance strategies, principles, and regulations. Some of the hottest jobs for MSA holders include:
- Certified Public Accountant (CPA): A CPA is a professional accountant who has met specific educational and experience requirements and has passed the CPA exam. Many MSA graduates pursue the CPA certification to advance their careers.
- Financial Analyst: A financial analyst is responsible for analyzing financial data and creating reports, forecasts, and recommendations for businesses and individuals.
- Auditor: An auditor is responsible for examining financial records to ensure accuracy and compliance with laws and regulations.
- Tax Manager: A tax manager is responsible for managing tax compliance, planning, and strategy for businesses and individuals.
- Controller: A controller is responsible for managing a company’s accounting operations, including financial reporting, budgeting, and financial analysis.
- Forensic Accountant: A forensic accountant uses accounting and auditing skills to investigate financial crimes such as fraud, embezzlement, and money laundering.
- Financial Manager: A financial manager is responsible for managing a company’s financial operations, including budgeting, forecasting, and financial analysis.
- Chief Financial Officer (CFO): A CFO is the top financial executive in a company and is responsible for managing all financial operations, including financial reporting, budgeting, and financial analysis.
These are just a few examples of the many career opportunities available to MSA holders. Other potential career paths include financial planner, investment banker, and management accountant. Invest in your career — and yourself — with a Master of Accounting from Nichols College.