A person can become an accountant by attaining a bachelor's degree in accounting. Those with an associate degree can also get a job as an accountant if they have an adequate amount of work experience in the field.
Students can take accounting courses at the high school level to see if the profession is a good fit. College students need to begin by taking basic accounting courses at the freshman level. Advanced courses include managerial accounting, taxation and accounting principles. There are also specialized courses that students can choose from such as internal auditing or public services.
Students must find out which field of speciality suits them. Students without real-word experience can apply for an internship to add more credibility to a resume, and internships may be a requirement for obtaining a bachelor's degree.
Obtaining certification is also part of the process, and accountants must decide which type of certification to receive. A CPA is an accountant who specializes in auditing and taxes, while CMAs deal with management or government accounting. Certification is an important accomplishment to include on a resume, and it increases an applicant's chances of finding a job. The CPA exam lasts 18 months, and the CMA exam has a testing period of 120 days.