Jan 27, 2023  
2017-2018 Graduate Catalog 
2017-2018 Graduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Accounting, M.S.

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Website: http://www.jmu.edu/cob/graduate/msa/index.shtml

Dr. Michael Riordan                                                                                                  Phone: (540) 568-3027

Graduate Program Director
Dr. Nancy Nichols                                                                                                     Phone: (540) 568-8778

C. Baril, L. Betancourt, P. Copley, D. Fordham, A. Gabbin, D. Hayes, N. Nichols, M. Riordan, B. Roof

Associate Professors
J. Briggs, S. Cereola, R. Richardson

Admission Criteria and Degree Requirements

Admission is open to individuals with a baccalaureate degree in accounting, business or any non-business discipline. Either the Graduate Management Admissions Test (GMAT) or successful completion of all four parts of the CPA exam is required for admission to the M.S. program. Prerequisites are based on the background and previous training of the student. More information on general admission requirements is available from The Graduate School website.


All students must be proficient with a spreadsheet program and have the following courses (or their equivalent) prior to starting M.S. course work.

Accounting Courses

  • Auditing
  • Cost Accounting
  • Federal Income Tax Accounting
  • Intermediate Accounting I
  • Intermediate Accounting II

Business Courses

  • Business Law
  • Macro Economics
  • Managerial Finance
  • Micro Economics
  • Organizational Behavior
  • Principles of Management
  • Statistics


The mission of the School of Accounting’s Master of Science program is to provide a strong regional presence for advanced professional education that prepares students for success in the accounting profession by strengthening the students’ technical expertise, enhancing their understanding of professional responsibility, and improving their business skills necessary to compete in today’s complex and ever changing business environment.

The Graduate Accounting program leads to the Master of Science (M.S.) in Accounting degree. The primary goal of the M.S. program is to prepare business and nonbusiness majors for entry into the public accounting profession. It serves as the “fifth” year in preparing students for the 150 hours of postsecondary education required for AICPA membership and required (or scheduled to be required) to become a certified public accountant in most jurisdictions.

Master of Science in Accounting Program

James Madison University offers an on-campus program tailored for individuals who prefer a traditional full-time program of study. The on-campus program is also available on a part-time basis.

Master of Science Degree in Accounting

The course work for the M.S. program consists of a common core and electives with a thesis option. Thirty credit hours must be taken at the 500 or 600 level.

M.S. in Accounting Requirements

Required Courses

Choose one of the following: 3 Credit Hours


1 This course is considered the capstone in the program. Successful completion of one of the three courses with a “B” or better is required.
2 Electives are chosen with the approval of the program director. Prerequisites must be met before taking 600-level courses.

Total: 30 Credit Hours

Taxation Concentration

The tax concentration is a challenging curriculum that prepares students for tax careers in public accounting and private industry. In addition to technical skills, students learn how to find answers to tax issues using Web-based research services and how to communicate their research findings in writing and in oral presentations.

The tax concentration requires 12 hours of tax-related courses.

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