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Undergraduate Program

Discover Accounting at Nebraska

At Nebraska, you'll discover accounting is creative, exciting, social, diverse, rewarding and it all adds up to a great career.

Accounting professionals are valued critical thinkers and problem solvers in today’s competitive marketplace. As a thoughtful voice who understands how money flows, you can help others make good decisions and have a positive impact. The possibilities are endless — your accounting knowledge can help individuals, small businesses or major companies thrive in Nebraska and across the world.
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What You'll Learn

  • Become fluent in the language of business. You’ll build a solid foundation of accounting technical skills in areas like tax and audit so you can inform and influence company leaders about business decisions.
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Learning Outcomes

  • Learn about accounting systems – including databases, software and processes – and how information and data flow together within organizations.
  • Develop data analytics skills.
  • Exhibit knowledge of how accounting regulations are applied to produce consistent, credible information for companies and their stakeholders – employees, investors, advisors, business partners, the government and broader community where business takes place.
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Career Connections

  • Build your communication skills so you can develop poise and presence to build relationships and communicate in a variety of situations, like with a client or colleague.
  • Help people make better decisions utilizing your ability to make sense of data.
  • Benefit from multiple career paths with this set of skills. Opportunities exist in tax, audit, industry, government and nonprofit organizations.
  • Expand your network by connecting with employers at the Beta Alpha Psi Career Fair and participating in the practice interview with a potential employer in the college’s Professional Enhancement Program.
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1 of 7 accounting programs in the Big Ten dually accredited by the AACSB

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96% of students secured employment or continued their education

How You’ll Learn

Hands-On Learning Experiences

  • Experience a tax or audit season as a full-time intern in Nebraska’s unique internship program.
  • Analyze real-world data and cases to provide and present insights in class projects.
  • Represent Nebraska in national audit and tax case competitions.

Transferable Career Skills

  • Analyze an organization’s operations so it runs efficiently and effectively.
  • Communicate accounting concepts to diverse groups of stakeholders.
  • Investigate financial trends to make educated decisions about budgets, operations and investments.

Social Connections

  • Join clubs like Beta Alpha Psi or the National Association of Black Accountants for networking opportunities and career and social events.
  • Attend conferences or School of Accountancy employer experience trips across the nation while meeting and networking with alumni.
  • Engage with the school’s advisory board members who present in class to share their professional experiences and care deeply about future leaders in accounting.

Making a Difference

  • Gain and share your financial literacy so you can positively influence others in financial well-being.
  • Prepare free tax returns for low-income families through the university’s Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program.
  • Learn the language of business and share your time, skills and mindset with a nonprofit.

Core Academics

  • Learn by doing the work of an accountant in class to build data analysis and critical thinking skills.
  • Develop communication skills through improv so you can easily adapt to changing situations.
  • Work full time during tax or audit season without delaying graduation in our unique internship program.

Research / Grad School Prep

  • Complete your undergraduate degree to be fast tracked toward earning your Master of Professional Accountancy (MPA) and be ready to sit for the Certified Public Accountant (CPA) Exam in one additional year.
  • Explore graduate school and certifications through the School of Accountancy Professional Development Days.
  • Serve as a research assistant to a faculty member.

Program Features

Research and Academic Opportunities

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Study Abroad Opportunities

Grappa Itally

Learn Business in Northern Italy

Spend a summer or semester at CIMBA International University in Paderno del Grappa, Italy. Choose from a number of business classes, including three in accounting, while learning more about Italian language and culture.

Students pose in front of sea in Sicily

Study at the Oldest University in the English-Speaking World

Spend four weeks studying economics and/or Shakespearean literature at the University of Oxford in Oxford, England. The most popular study abroad program at Nebraska, as it provides opportunities to discover history, enjoy theater, have high tea, play rounders and experience the horse races at Sandown Park.

See All Business Abroad Opportunities

Student Organizations

Two of the 25+ business related student organization focus on accounting. These clubs provide a great opportunity to grow as a leader, gain experience and make meaningful connections.

Beta Alpha Psi (BAP)

Encourages and gives recognition to scholastic and professional excellence in the study and practice of accounting, finance and information systems. Provides opportunities for self-development, service and networking among members and practicing professionals. Encourages a sense of ethical, social and public responsibility.

National Association of Black Accountants (NABA)

Bridges the opportunity gap for underrepresented professionals in the accounting, finance and related business professions by providing education, resources and meaningful career connections to both professional and student members.

See All Business Related Student Organizations

Recent Accounting Student Placements

Internships

  • Analyst Intern, Goldman Sachs
  • Internal Audit Analyst Intern, TD Ameritrade
  • Payroll Master Data Intern, Kiewit
  • Financial Services Assurance Intern, Ernst & Young
  • Compliance Intern, Nebraska Department of Revenue

Careers

  • Financial Analyst, Mutual of Omaha
  • Retail Accounting Manager, Amazon
  • Financial Systems Project Manager, Google
  • Audit Associate, BKD
  • Tax Consultant, Deloitte

Graduate Schools

  • Master of Professional Accountancy, University of Nebraska–Lincoln
  • Master of Science in Business Analytics, Boston University
  • Juris Doctor, University of Iowa, Iowa City, Iowa
  • Master of Sports Administration, Ohio University, Athens, Ohio

4-Year Plan and Notable Courses

Explore our curriculum through the 4-year plan. To earn your bachelor’s degree in accounting, you’ll take 120 credit hours of classes. That’s four to five classes a semester, on average.

4-Year Plan

Intermediate Accounting I and II (ACCT 313 and 314)

Analyze and interpret financial statements used by stockholders and creditors to make investment decisions. Understand contemporary accounting theory and ethics to inform your problem-solving and address controversial or ethical issues.

Managerial Accounting (ACCT 308)

Equips students to help companies make better internal decisions by teaching many tools of managerial accounting (e.g., costing, budgeting, analytics, performance evaluation, etc.) and how to incorporate them into decision making models.

Accounting Systems (ACCT 309)

Learn about how companies use accounting systems – including databases, software and processes – to organize and access the information needed to make effective decisions.

Federal Tax Accounting (ACCT 312)

Learn how to navigate the complexity of our tax system to minimize taxes and maximize wealth. This course emphasizes the practical application of tax law and the importance of tax planning.

Auditing (ACCT 410)

Learn how to enhance the credibility of companies’ financial reporting through an audit. Students gain an understanding of the audit environment, learn about auditors’ essential role in the global capital markets, and develop analytical and critical thinking skills to perform audit procedures and support conclusions.

Research and Communication in Accounting (ACCT 455)

Prepare to communicate effectively in an ever-changing industry in this innovative course that merges the worlds of business and theater to build your skills in improvisation, professional writing and presenting.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I need to have a heavy math background (calculus, algebra, etc.) to do well in accountancy?

Not really. Addition, Subtraction, Multiplication and Division are basically all you need, but you need to be well-practiced at these tasks.

What types of accountancy jobs are available?

There are many different types of accountancy jobs on the market. Here are just a few with brief descriptions.

  • Auditor -- Auditing involves checking accounting ledgers and financial statements within businesses and government and may involve significant travel. Audits are performed to ascertain the validity and reliability of information; also to provide an assessment of a system's internal control. The goal of an audit is to express an opinion on the person / organization / system (etc.) in question, under evaluation based on work done on a test basis.
    Recent auditing has begun to include non-financial subject areas, such as safety, security, information systems performance, and environmental concerns. With nonprofit organizations and government agencies, there has been an increasing need for performance audits, examining their success in satisfying mission objectives. As a result, there are now audit professionals who specialize in security audits, information systems audits, and environmental audits.
  • Analyst -- An accounting analyst evaluates and interprets public company financial statements. The statements include the balance sheet, the income statement, the statement of cash flows and the notes to the financial statements. This individual has extensive training in understanding financial accounting principles for public companies based on generally accepted accounting principles as provided by the Financial Accounting Standards Board. He/she may have additional experience in applying international accounting standards based on the rules promulgated by the International Accounting Standards Board. The accounting analyst will most likely hold a Masters Degree in Accounting (MSAcc) and will have specialized in the financial accounting area. Alternatively, the analyst may have an MBA degree with an Accounting specialization.
  • Financial -- The financial accountant prepares financial statements and participates in important financial decisions about financial planning and long-term financial projections. The work can be varied. One day you may be running spreadsheets. The next day you may be visiting a customer or supplier to set up a new account and discuss business. This work requires a good understanding of both accounting and finance.
  • Forensic -- Forensic accountants are experienced auditors, accountants, and investigators of legal and financial documents that are hired to look into possible fraudulent activity within a company, or are hired by a company who may just want to prevent fraudulent activities from occurring. They also provide services in areas such as accounting, antitrust, damages, analysis, valuation, and general consulting. Forensic accountants have also been used in divorces, bankruptcy, insurance claims, personal injury claims, fraudulent claims, construction, royalty audits, and tracking terrorism by investigating financial records. Many forensic accountants work closely with law enforcement personnel and lawyers during investigations and often appear as expert witnesses during trials.
  • Fund -- Fund accounting is an accounting system emphasizing accountability rather than profitability, used by non-profit organizations and governments. In this system, a fund is a self-balancing set of accounts, segregated for specific purposes in accordance with laws and regulations or special restrictions and limitations. Fund accounting, has also been applied to investment accounting, portfolio accounting or securities accounting – all synonyms describing the process of accounting for a portfolio of investments such as securities, commodities and/or real estate held in an investment fund such as a mutual fund or hedge fund.
  • Management Accounting -- Management accounting or managerial accounting is concerned with the provisions and use of accounting information by managers within organizations, to provide them with the basis to make informed business decisions that will allow them to be better equipped in their management and control functions.
    In contrast to financial accounting information, management accounting information is:
    * forward-looking, instead of historical;
    * model based with a degree of abstraction to support decision- making generically, instead of case based;
    * designed and intended for use by managers within the organization, instead of being intended for use by shareholders, creditors, and public regulators;
    * usually confidential and used by management, instead of publicly reported;
    * computed by reference to the needs of managers, often using management information systems, instead of by reference to general financial accounting standards.
  • Tax -- Tax accountants prepare business and personal income tax statements, formulate tax strategies, support decisions involving mergers or acquisitions, account for deferral of taxes, and other tax decisions. This type of accounting needs a thorough understanding of economics and the tax codes and laws. A good background in law helps. U.S. tax accounting refers to accounting for taxes in the United States. The United States has a comprehensive set of accounting principles for tax purposes, prescribed by tax law, which are separate and distinct from Generally Accepted Accounting Principles.
What is the difference between accounting and finance?
  • Accounting is the preparation of accounting records. This includes measuring, preparation, analyzing, and the interpretation of financial statements. Accounting is also often referred to as the voice of business, the language of business, and the heart of business. Mostly because the financial documents derived from the accounting preparation are widely used among managers, investors, tax authorities, executives, and many others to see how the company is performing.
  • Finance covers a huge array of subjects, but the three main terms when comparing to accounting would be:
    1. The study of money and capital markets which deals with many of the topics covered in macroeconomics.
    2. Management and control of assets and investments, which focuses on the decisions of individual, as well as financial institutions and other organizations as they choose securities for their investments portfolios.
    3. Managerial finance (business finance) which involves the actual management of the firm, as well as profiling and managing project risks.
What is a CPA and what is required to become one?
  • Certified Public Accountant (CPA) is the statutory title of qualified accountants in the United States who have passed the Uniform Certified Public Accountant Examination and have met additional state education and experience requirements for certification as a CPA. Individuals who have passed the Exam but have not either accomplished the required on-the-job experience or have previously met it but in the meantime have not maintained their continuing professional education are, in many states, permitted the designation "CPA Inactive" or an equivalent phrase. In most U.S. states, only CPAs who are licensed are able to provide public attestation (including auditing) opinions on financial statements.
  • For more information about the CPA designation in Nebraska, go to the Nebraska Board of Public Accountancy web site at http://www.nbpa.ne.gov/
  • Information about degree requirements that will qualify you for the CPA Exam

Contact

Ritchie, Kendra
Associate Director of Recruitment
HLH 123 D
P.O. Box 880405
Lincoln, NE 68588-0405
402-472-7784