What Can You Do With an Accounting Degree?

accounting degree graduates working on a report

If you have a knack for numbers and an eye for detail, you might consider a career in accounting. Accountants are responsible for ensuring the accuracy of financial records and for preparing tax returns. However, an accounting degree can also lead to several other career options.

For example, you might consider pursuing a job as an actuary or a market research analyst. If you are having trouble narrowing down your career options, consider getting in touch with your university’s alumni network. Graduates with an accounting degree may be interested in speaking with you about how they put their education to work for them. What Can You Do With an Accounting Degree:

Certified Public Accountant (CPA)

A career as a CPA is a common choice for those who study accounting. These professionals work with individuals and companies, providing financial planning and tax guidance. They may work on major corporate mergers and acquisitions, as well as individual tax returns. Some CPAs work for accounting firms, while others work in dedicated accounting departments of major corporations. It is even possible to become an entrepreneur as a CPA. You may one day decide to open an accounting firm.

The job duties of a CPA will typically include:

  • Checking financial statements for accuracy and legal compliance
  • Preparing tax returns, calculating tax liabilities and ensuring timely payment
  • Organizing and updating financial records
  • Evaluating financial operations and identifying methods for boosting profits while reducing costs

It is important to note that not all accountants are CPAs. A CPA is an accountant who has passed the challenging CPA Exam and been certified by the professional association. A CPA can generally expect to earn a higher salary than a non-certified accountant, and additional career opportunities may be open to these certified individuals.

Insurance Underwriter

Students who are studying accounting might want to consider a career as an insurance underwriter. As the title suggests, these professionals work within the insurance industry. Their primary job function is to evaluate insurance applications and decide whether to offer insurance coverage. Their specific tasks may include reviewing insurance applications and analyzing information; assessing the degree of risk involved with providing insurance and making recommendations on whether to insure the applicant; and establishing recommended amounts of coverage and insurance premiums.

Insurance underwriters use complex software to assess applications and make coverage determinations. Some applications, such as those for car insurance, are relatively straightforward. Others are complex, such as workers’ compensation applications. In all cases, insurance underwriters must carefully consider the degree of risk involved.

Market Research Analyst

If you see yourself in a corporate environment someday, you might consider pursuing a career as a market research analyst. The main responsibility of these professionals is to evaluate the marketability of a new product or service. Market research analysts accomplish this by analyzing datasets, and by monitoring and predicting sales trends. Although they work in the marketing and advertising field, these professionals primarily work with data—they are not copywriters.

The typical job responsibilities of a market research analyst can include the following:

  • Developing and implementing data collection methods
  • Using statistical software to analyze the data and converting the findings into easily understood charts, tables and graphs
  • Preparing reports on their findings and discussing them with executives or clients
  • Evaluate the impact of implemented marketing strategies

Not only does this career enable you to work with numbers and utilize your accounting degree, but it also offers stable employment prospects. 

Regardless of where your career takes you, you can get your start at Grand Canyon University. Among our many business and management degree options are the Bachelor of Science in Accounting degree and the Master of Business Administration with an Emphasis in Accounting program. Click on Request Info at the top of your screen to explore our Christian learning community.

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author’s and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Grand Canyon University. Any sources cited were accurate as of the publish date.

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