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Programs in Taxation: Certificate and Certification Program Overviews

Get information on undergraduate and graduate certificate programs in taxation. Learn about common courses, options for professional certification and continuing education.

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Essential Information

Certificate programs in taxation prepare students for careers in business, personal and corporate accounting. Enrollees are introduced to tax law, computerized bookkeeping and dispute resolution. Undergraduate certificate programs introduce students to the fundamentals of financial record keeping for tax purposes. Courses cover topics such as business decision making, commercial law and federal taxation. Accounting certificate programs may offer a concentration in taxation as well.

Graduate certificates in taxation are designed for individuals who hold bachelor's degrees in business, accounting or a related field. Students usually have a few years of professional experience. Courses cover advanced topics in taxation, such as estate taxes and gift taxes.


Undergraduate Certificate in Accounting

This non-degree program in accounting helps students prepare for careers in business, bookkeeping or government. They learn business, accounting and finance fundamentals, as well as applications for these theories. Many accounting certificate programs offer concentrations in taxation, marketing or finance.

This program alone will not satisfy the minimum education requirements for a career as a Certified Public Accountant (CPA). Those interested in becoming CPA must have a bachelor's degree in a relevant field.

Educational Prerequisites

Before starting an undergraduate certificate program in accounting, candidates must first possess a high school diploma or pass the General Equivalency Development (GED) test. Students rarely submit SAT or ACT scores, but skill aptitude tests are sometimes required. Applications to accounting certificate programs usually require processing fees.

Program Coursework

Students earning certificates in accounting take courses in the following:

  • Managerial and cost accounting
  • Financial accounting
  • Federal taxation
  • Audit services
  • Not-for-profit accounting
  • Statistical analysis
  • Commercial law
  • Financial forecasting
  • Government accounting
  • Business decision making

Employment Outlook and Salary Info

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, bookkeeping, auditing and accounting clerks can expect average job growth between 2010 and 2020. In May 2012, the BLS stated that these workers earned a median annual salary of $35,170.


Graduate Certificate in Taxation

Graduate certificate programs in taxation cover advanced topics related to accounting, auditing and finance. Students learn about the federal tax code, taxation terminology and financial recordkeeping. Individuals interested in this program usually have a few years of professional experience. This program may be helpful for aspiring CPAs, but is not a requirement for professional certification.

Educational Prerequisites

All applicants must possess a bachelor's degree in accounting or a related field. Some programs require interested applicants to submit scores from the Graduate Record Examination (GRE).

Program Coursework

Students pursuing a graduate certificate in taxation might take courses in the following:

  • Estate taxation
  • Corporate taxes
  • Gift taxation
  • Marketing analytics
  • Tax research

Popular Career Options

Graduates with certificate in taxation might want to pursue careers as bookkeepers, tax auditors or accountants. Any of these options may require further training or certification and should be independently researched.

Professional Certification and Continuing Education Information

After completing a graduate-level certificate program for taxation, candidates may choose to pursue a master's, doctoral or professional degree. A popular option is the Master of Business Administration degree, which can lead to an advanced career in most industries. Those who wish to become professionally licensed accountants must earn state-approved CPA certification.

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