Certified Public Accountant (CPA)
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The CPA is probably the most recognizable of the accounting certifications out there. Certified public accountants help individuals and organizations plan and work toward financial goals. They can also act as advisors around financial concerns like accounting and taxes. This is a great path to consider if you’re interested in building your credibility as an accountant.
How Do I Certify as a CPA?
To get your CPA license, you must first become certified by passing the Uniform CPA exam. There are four parts to the exam, each focused on a unique subject and each taken separately. The tests equal 16 hours of exam time, and you must pass all four within an 18-month period to certify.
Some universities offer specific courses to help students get ready for the exam. For example, at DeVry, some of our accounting courses have Becker Professional Education’s CPA Exam prep built into the curriculum to help students prepare to take the exam upon graduation.
Along with certification, each state in the U.S. has different requirements for becoming licensed. You need to meet the criteria for education—usually a bachelor’s degree in accounting, finance or business. You also need a minimum number of years of work experience.