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Accountant - Training & Careers

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Being a successful accountant involves more than just learning a new skill-set, it often requires a natural set of characteristics. Are you organized? Do you manage your time well?

Are you methodical in how you accomplish the tasks you set for yourself? If you've answered yes to these questions then you might have some of the characteristics that make up a successful accountant. Successful accountants possess technical expertise, understand the basic principles of business administration, and have a great deal of discipline with both their time and the money they manage. 

Useful Accounting Courses to Take

To become an accountant you need to have a broad base of knowledge in modern business and accounting practices. Typical coursework in a degree program will include classes in basic accounting practices, tax law, and auditing.

While most accountants maintain a wide range of accounting skills, some choose to focus their careers on specific areas, such as forensic accounting. To become a successful accountant it is also necessary to continually update your knowledge with ongoing education -- particularly in the area of tax law.

Getting a Job as an Accountant

For most entry-level positions you will need to earn a bachelor's degree in accounting. However, for senior positions and management jobs most employers will be looking for applicants with a master's degree. Additionally, to get a job as an accountant it often helps to have some previous job experience. Many accountants also elect to become certified beyond their degree. The most common certification is as a CPA, or Certified Public Accountant. Becoming a CPA can make a big difference in getting a job. 

According the U.S. Department of Labor, ongoing changes in financial regulations and growing scrutiny of financial practices will result in faster-than-average job growth for accountants. If you think you want to become an accountant start looking into the necessary coursework today and talk with a career counselor if you have any questions.