Accountants who work directly with the public or for businesses must be licensed and certified to be able to practice their profession legally. The initiation of the certification and licensing process began in part, to protect both the accountant as well as the individuals or companies they worked for. Being licensed as a Certified Public Accountant, or CPA, brings credibility to the profession. It also assures clients the accountants are adequately trained and prepared to handle any financial situation presented to them. Once an accounting student graduates with their specific degree, they must prepare for the licensing exam that will certify their qualifications and license them to work in their respective state.
Check your state's requirements needed to qualify to sit for the CPA exam. Each state has similar requirements that accounting students must meet before they can take the CPA exam. For the most part, states are relatively uniform in what they require in terms of semester hours, number of hours in business and accounting classes and the student's grade point average.
You must know the number of semester hours of education needed to qualify to sit for the CPA exam. All states require a minimum of 150 semester hours of education. 30 hours of graduate classes in accounting and 24 graduate hours business courses are required to be able take the CPA exam. Another 3 hours dedicated to ethics is also a mandatory requirement.
A person must have the grades needed to prove they have a working understanding of accounting practices and protocols. In most cases, state's require at least a 3.0 grade point average to be able to sit for the CPA exam. They also mandate at least 3.0 GPA must be carried in each accounting class to ensure the student's understand the concepts and protocols they are taught.
The uniform CPA examination must also be taken before a student can sit for the state required certification and licensing tests. The uniform CPA examination is just what its name implies. It is a generalized form of the CPA test that allows reviewers to determine if an applicant has the skills and knowledge needed to take the final licensing and certification test.
While this seems like a lengthy process to reach your goals of becoming a licensed accountant, it is one that thoroughly prepares you for the exacting profession you are dedicating your life to. Meeting the requirements needed to qualify to sit for the CPA exam proves you are adequately prepared and are able to advance into the licensing aspect of the process. You are ready to take on the world and assume the duties you have chosen to assume.