George Mason UniversitySchool of Business

Accounting Certificate

The 30-credit Accounting Certificate Program provides an opportunity for post Baccalaureate students to earn the academic credit necessary to qualify to sit for the CPA examination in Virginia.

Before you read on, click here to see if the Accounting Certificate Program or a second bachelor's degree in accounting is the best fit for you.

Note: Students should research the differences between the Accounting Certificate Program and a second bachelor's degree in accounting before applying because it is difficult to switch programs once accepted.


The requirement for enrollment into the Accounting Certificate Program is a minimum of a U.S. equivalent bachelor degree from an accredited college or university. The program is open to individuals holding degrees in any major.


  • Candidates must submit a degree-seeking undergraduate admission application, answering YES to the question: Do you wish to pursue a post-baccalaureate certificate?
  • Select "Accounting Certificate" as the intended major.
  • Do not write the essay, but instead insert the statement "I am pursuing the Accounting Certificate."

All admissions questions should be directed to businfo@gmu.edu.


Undergraduate tuition rates apply for the Accounting Certificate Program. For information on current tuition and fee rates, click here.

New Students

If you have applied, been admitted, and have submitted your intent to enroll, it is recommended that you complete the School of Business Accounting Certificate Orientation Program. For details on this program, click here.

If you have any additional questions after you have completed the online School of Business Orientation Program, it is recommended that you meet with an academic advisor.

Program Requirements

Candidates are required to complete a minimum of 30 credits to receive the Accounting Certificate. These credits can come from a previously earned degree from Mason or another institution. At least 16 credits must be unique to the Accounting Certificate Program and earned after acceptance into the certificate program. Students admitted to the undergraduate certificate program have four years to complete the certificate requirements.

To receive the Mason Accounting Certificate, students must have completed the following required accounting courses with a grade of C or better, or their transferred equivalents, for a total of 30 credit hours.

Required Courses (24 credits)

For course pre-requisites and sequencing click here; for course descriptions click here.

  • ACCT 203 Survey of Accounting
  • ACCT 311 Managerial and Cost Accounting
  • ACCT 303 Accounting for Decision Making
  • ACCT 331 Intermediate Accounting I
  • ACCT 332 Intermediate Accounting II
  • ACCT 351 Taxation and Managerial Decision Making
  • ACCT 361 Accounting Analytics
  • ACCT 461 Assurance and Audit Services

Electives (6 credits)

  • ACCT 370 International Accounting
  • ACCT 372 Financial Statement Analysis
  • ACCT 411 Advanced Managerial Accounting
  • ACCT 433 Advanced Financial Accounting
  • ACCT 451 Advanced Federal Taxation
  • ACCT 462 Honors Seminar in Accounting
  • ACCT 465 Advanced Accounting Analytics
  • ACCT 472 Government and Not-for-Profit Accounting
  • ACCT 491 Seminar in Accounting
  • ACCT 492 Internship in Accounting
  • ACCT 499 Independent Study in Accounting
  • FNAN 303 Financial Management
  • BULE 402 Commercial Law

Students with a previous degree in business or accounting are advised to take School of Business courses above the 303 level to complete the 16 Mason credits needed after acceptance to the certificate program.

If you have not already taken the following courses or their equivalents, you are advised to take the following courses:

  • BULE 303 Legal Environment of Business
  • BULE 402 Commercial Law
  • BUS 210 Business Analytics I
  • BUS 310 Business Analytics II
  • FNAN 341 Financial Analysis, Forecasting, and Valuation
  • MIS 303 Introduction to Business Information Systems

For more information about the Virginia CPA Exam, contact the Virginia State Board of Accountancy. We encourage all students interested in sitting for the CPA to submit their academic transcripts to the BOA to determine how many accounting and business credits are needed to be eligible to sit for the CPA.