Career prospects for accountants are rising steadily, with industry analysts predicting a 22% jump in jobs for accountants by 2018. But the competition is fierce. A master’s in accountancy can help a job candidate stand out. Yet even though demand is high, many employees who seek to further their accountancy knowledge are unable take time out from their career just to go to school.
But what if you could get the same highly accredited instruction on the multi-faceted principles of accounting on your own time? This was the question DePaul’s Masters of Science in Accountancy Online (MSA)
was created to answer. With the same rigorous curriculum as its on-campus counterpart, the online MSA is designed for those who do not have accounting undergraduate degrees but want to enter into the accounting field and successfully prepare for the CPA Exam.
“Many people want to learn accounting but they don’t know where to start,” says Kevin Stevens, Director of the School of Accountancy and Management Information Systems. “It requires a different way of thinking and sometimes you can’t learn what you need to learn through a three-hour in-class lecture. Sometimes you need more time to absorb that information and our online MSA allows students the time to do that.”
DePaul’s Unique Online MSA Approach
DePaul’s online MSA goes beyond the slides and recorded voices that tend to dominate online programs around the nation.
In fact, the same world-class faculty who teach MSA classes on campus also teach the online classes. The faculty includes a Fulbright Scholar, PhDs and CPAs who have won awards for teaching excellence, as well as numerous consultants to major tax, business and accounting firms. Each student gets to know his or her professor and vice versa. Students also get to know each other as the classes are routinely split into teams that engage in lively online discussions and collaborations to master the course material.
DePaul’s online learning resources offer faculty state-of-the art technology to present concepts to students. The faculty use green-screen video, on-screen graphics, music, even real-time discussion, to ensure student understanding. Recorded material also benefits students because the format allows them replay and review concepts until they understand them thoroughly.
Students experience a small virtual classroom environment rather than the massive online courses that are typically delivered. This provides students with the ability to connect with one another and with the faculty.
“This, by far, has been the best online class experience,” wrote one student in a teacher evaluation. “The professor went above and beyond to accommodate students and posted very helpful videos to learn that material and gave great feedback.”
Stevens, who teaches in the program, says DePaul’s unique online learning approach allows his online classes to be less about the lecture and more about problem solving. He says he uses a much more inductive approach with his online students, which prompts them to discover the solutions to problems rather than waiting for him to provide the answers.
“We are committed to having the same degree program quality online as we do at the university campus,” Stevens says. “That’s a requirement of our accreditation but also a standard we’ve set for ourselves. We went through a lot of rigorous examination to ensure that the virtual degree a student receives is as valuable a degree as the one he or she would receive face-to-face.”
Employers Praise DePaul’s Online MSA Option
Though the online MSA is a relatively new program, DePaul’s accountancy school has been offering online degree programs for years. Many employers, including the Chicago-based accounting and tax consulting firm McGladrey
, praise DePaul for its online programs, saying they are highly rigorous and convenient for their employees.
In addition, the online MSA program is an extension of DePaul’s Vincentian mission to break down barriers and expand educational opportunity.
“The flexibility of the online MSA provides opportunities for a wider range of qualified students to earn a MS in Accountancy,” Stevens says. “From busy working professionals to mothers looking to return to the professional workforce, to international students seeking a high quality accounting education from DePaul, the MSA online is a perfect avenue for them to realize their goals.”
To request more information about the Masters of Accountancy online, click here.