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Updated at 2:35 p.m. January 18, 2019
Based on a forecast of severe weather and hazardous driving conditions, all classes scheduled for Sunday, January 20, 2019 have been rescheduled. If you have questions, please contact your professor directly. For specific events, please check with the event organizer. Additionally, the library on the Dobbs Ferry Campus will be closed. Please continue to check your email, Mercy’s website, www.mercy.edu and the Mercy College Weather Hotline at (914) 674-7777 for further updates.

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  • M.S. in Public Accounting

    Advance your organization – and your career
    Upon completion of the Master's in Public Accounting, you can sit for the Certified Public Accountant (CPA) examination in New York State.
    Degree:
    M.S.
    School:
    School of Business
    Location:
    Dobbs Ferry
    Credits:
    30

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Academic Information

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Public Accounting M.S. Curriculum

The M.S. in Public Accounting Program meets New York State’s requirements for a 150 credit-hours licensure-qualifying program in public accountancy upon successful completion of the prerequisite and requisite program requirements.

Requirements for the Master of Science Degree in Public Accounting are outlined below. Courses will be scheduled on a quarter system for cohorts of students. 

Accounting Courses 18 Credits
Business Courses 12 Credits
Total 30 Credits

Accounting Courses

  • ACCT 510 Global Financial Stmt Analysis
  • ACCT 520 Contemporary Issues Auditing
  • ACCT 530 Adv Acct Theory & Applications
  • ACCT 540 Adv Business Entity Taxation
  • ACCT 550 Cost Mgmt Advncd Contrlrshp
  • ACCT 560 Fraud Examination

Business Courses

  • FINC 703 Corporate Financial Policy
  • or
  • FINC 710 Corp Mergers & Acquisitions
  • MBAA 504 Marketing Systems
  • MBAA 535 Communication Processes
  • MBAA 602 Managerial Economics

Adherence to the schedule will enable students to complete the program in five quarters of continuous study.

Transfer Credits

The Master of Science in Public Accounting Program will accept a maximum of six business transfer credits, which are substantially equivalent to those in the program, with the permission of Accounting Department chairperson. The courses must have been completed within the last five years of the student’s first quarter of enrollment in the program with a grade of B or higher. 

Maintenance of Matriculation

It is expected that students will fulfill the requirements for their graduate degree by registering over successive sessions. For cohort programs, registration is required during summer session(s). For non-cohort programs, summer registration is not required. Registration is accomplished by either enrolling in classes or maintaining matriculation. The Maintaining Matriculation fee is $100 per session and is processed as a registration. Students who have not maintained matriculation and wish to return to their program within one year after their last course will be charged the Maintaining Matriculation fee of $100 for each missed session. Maintenance of matriculation without attending classes is limited to one year. Activated U.S. Military Reservists are not required to pay the Maintenance of Matriculation fee. 

Capstone Advisement

It is expected that Capstone students shall make satisfactory progress with their program’s culminating activity. After the student registers for all sections of their Capstone requirement, they will be given one subsequent term to complete their work. The Maintaining Matriculation registration must be completed for this subsequent term if no other courses are taken. After this period, a Capstone Continuation fee (equal to the cost of one graduate credit) will be charged for each additional term required to complete the project. Students can only register for Capstone Continuation for two terms.

A student's degree will not be released until all Maintaining Matriculation and Capstone Continuation registration and fees are recorded appropriately on the student’s record. 

Maintenance of Good Academic Standing

The cumulative GPA for both good academic standing and degree conferral is a 3.0. A student admitted as a Special Matriculant is required to achieve a 3.0 average or better after completing a certain number of credits as stipulated by their respective program. Grades are subject to review by the faculty advisor and Accounting Department Chairperson at the end of each term. If the academic average falls below 3.0, the student will be placed on academic probation. 

Academic Probation

All students who have a cumulative GPA of below 3.0 will be placed on academic probation. If a student will not be able to achieve a cumulative GPA of 3.0 within a reasonable time, the student will be dismissed from the program. If a student received a grade of F or FW in any course, the student may be subject to dismissal from the college.

For all students on probation future registrations must be reviewed and approved by the Accounting department chair as well as the school dean.

In all subsequent terms in which the student is on probation, the student is required to achieve a term GPA of 3.0 or better. If the 3.0 or better is not achieved, the student will be dismissed. Students who receive a grade of less than B may be required to repeat the course. Students will be allowed to repeat a course only once. 

Time Limit

Requirements for the M.S. degree must be completed within three years from the candidate’s date of matriculation (exclusive of time spent in the Armed Forces). Exception may be made by the Accounting Department chair if the candidate’s request demonstrates circumstances beyond the student’s control that temporarily interfere with the ability to complete the program on time. 

Degree Requirements

To be eligible for graduation, students must complete all 30 credits of the program with a GPA of 3.0 or better. The words “With Distinction” will appear on the diploma of a student whose GPA, upon meeting all requirements for graduation, is at least 3.75. 

Academic Program Sequence Map

Download a copy of the sequence map for:


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What are the prerequisites for the M.S. in Public Accounting Program?
A Bachelor's degree in accounting from an accredited institution will most likely meet the program prerequisites. If you majored in something other than accounting, you’ll most likely need to take undergraduate prerequisite accounting and/or business courses. Contact the Accounting Chairperson to apply to the prerequisite program and have your undergraduate credits evaluated.
How long is the program?
The 30-credit M.S. in Public Accounting can be completed in as few as 14 consecutive months of study. Many students begin the program each June and finish by the following July. Typically, students take two courses each 10-week term in the evening at the Dobbs Ferry campus and can complete the program in five consecutive terms.
Is Mercy College a nonsectarian institution?
Yes. Qualified applicants are admitted without regard to race, religion, national or ethnic origin, gender, sexual orientation, marital status, age or physical disability.
Are there any requirements for matriculation from the BS to the MS in Public Accounting program?
The Accounting Chairperson must provide written approval for students who are eligible to switch majors to the combined BS/MS program. The student must show the ability to succeed in the MS program. The matriculation between the BS and MS degrees is seamless.
Is the GMAT required?
The GMAT may be required for applicants with no substantive business experience or below 3.00 GPA.
What are the admission requirements for the M.S. in Public Accounting Program?
An undergraduate degree in Accounting or its equivalent and a grade point average (GPA) of 3.0 or higher
Lucretia Mann Associate Provost
Denise Stefano Associate Professor, Accounting
Stanley Chu Associate Professor, Accounting
Kelly Blacker Assistant Professor, Accounting

Public Accounting Overview

The M.S. in Public Accounting is a value-added program that is a registered 150 Credit Hour Licensure-Qualifying Program. Upon completion of the prerequisite and requisite courses, you can sit for the Certified Public Accountant CPA examination in New York State. If you, possess undergraduate degrees in accounting or another field, a Master of Science in Public Accounting is for you, especially if you want to be a public accountant or if you're a professional accountant who wants to meet the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) 150 Credit Hour curriculum criteria.

Graduates of the MS in Public Accounting Program who aspire to become CPAs will satisfy the New York State licensure requirement with one year of appropriate professional work experience. 

The M.S. in Public Accounting will prepare you for employment in a dynamic profession. Our program is perfect for you if you wish to enter or advance your career in the profession of public accountancy, industry, government or not-for-profit organizations.

Public Accounting FAQS

What are the prerequisites for the M.S. in Public Accounting Program?
A Bachelor's degree in accounting from an accredited institution will most likely meet the program prerequisites. If you majored in something other than accounting, you’ll most likely need to take undergraduate prerequisite accounting and/or business courses. Contact the Accounting Chairperson to apply to the prerequisite program and have your undergraduate credits evaluated.
Is the GMAT required?
The GMAT may be required for applicants with no substantive business experience or below 3.00 GPA.

Public Accounting Fast Facts

  • GMAT Optional
  • Westchester/Manhattan Campus
  • Evening program
  • VITA (tax training Program)

Career Opportunities

Public Accounting graduates may seek positions such as: Certified Public Accountant (CPA), government auditor, internal auditor, financial advisor, tax accountant and management services accountant.

Purpose

The Master of Science in Public Accounting prepares its graduates for employment in a dynamic profession. The program is offered to qualified candidates who wish to enter or advance their careers in the profession of public accountancy or in industry, government or not-for-profit organizations. The program integrates advanced study and research in auditing, taxation, financial and management accounting with business courses in the Master of Business Administration Program, which provide depth and breadth to the learning experience. The Master of Science in Public Accounting is designed for individuals possessing undergraduate degrees in accounting/business or unrelated fields of study who wish to enter the public accounting profession and for those professional accountants who wish to meet the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) 150-hour curriculum criteria. Candidates who have no business or accounting background, or who have not completed the necessary prerequisite coursework, will need to complete the undergraduate pre-requisite program prior to being eligible to start the M.S. degree. Contact the Accounting Department chair for information. Graduates of the M.S. in Public Accounting Program who aspire to become Certified Public Accountants will satisfy the New York State licensure requirement with one year of appropriate professional work experience.

Admission Requirements

Please refer to the general requirements for admission and matriculation in the Graduate Admissions section of this catalog.

Degree Requirements

Requirements for matriculation and admission into the Master of Science in Public Accounting include:

  1. A baccalaureate transcript with 120 credits of prerequisite course in the specific content areas of accounting, business, and liberal arts and sciences are required for entrance into the program. Contact the Accounting Department chairperson for prerequisite course specifics. International students must submit a formal evaluation of all international coursework; an evaluation by World Education Services (WES) is preferred. TOEFL scores must also be submitted. 

  2. A detailed Professional Goals Statement stating the reasons for applying to the program and how the applicant can benefit by its completion.

  3. Interview with the Accounting Department chairperson or designee. Satisfactory GMAT score may be required for applicants with no substantive business experience or GPA below 3.0.

  4. The successful completion of the CPA or CMA Examination or an equivalent examination could be used instead of the GMAT.

Public Accounting Objectives

The objective of the program is to prepare students for practice in the profession of public accountancy by enabling them to acquire, develop and apply the knowledge, skills, and competencies required in this field. Students will be encouraged to integrate and apply knowledge from accounting and business, think independently, engage in research and maintain high ethical standards.

Expectations of the Graduate

Graduates of the Master of Science in Accounting program will be able to accomplish the following:

  • Demonstrate the knowledge and skills required for careers in the field of public accounting or a related field
  • Demonstrate proficiency in comprehensive analysis, communication and information technology
  • Pursue careers in the field of public accounting or a related field and compete successfully
  • Apply knowledge of personal, ethical and social responsibilities toward effective decision-making

Program Outcomes

By the end of this program, students should be able to:

  • Use strategic analysis and quantitative methods to solve problems
  • Make decisions utilizing knowledge of accounting, auditing, and taxation concepts and standards
  • Use oral, written, and presentation skills to communicate accounting and other business information effectively
  • Work effectively and collaboratively in teams
  • Demonstrate knowledge of the ethical responsibilities of accountants and auditors
  • Evaluate ethical dilemmas to determine the impact of possible actions on stakeholder groups
  • Conduct research, support hypotheses with evidence, and respond to challenges