Finding accredited accounting degree programs in California is never hard thanks to the abundant number of highly ranked business schools that have been fully approved by the elite AACSB International.

Convenient Online Alternatives

While surrounded by plenty of sunshine and beautiful beaches, California enables accounting students to gain real-world practical business experience at the nation’s highest number of Fortune 500 headquarters. In fact, financial services is one of the top five largest sectors within California’s diversified economy. Below we’ve created a helpful guide on the accredited master’s-level accounting degree programs available in the “Golden State.”

California State University East Bay

College of Business and Economics

Headquartered on a main 342-acre suburban campus in Hayward Hills with satellite locations in Concord and Oakland within the Bay area, California State University East Bay is a high-access public teaching institution with a growing enrollment of over 13,000 students. Consistently named a “Best in the West” school by the prestigious Princeton Review, CSUEB is ranked 61st in the nation for awarding degrees to students of color. Also acclaimed for having the 208th best part-time MBA in America by the U.S. News and World Report, the College of Business and Economics is dedicated to providing life-changing business education accredited by the AACSB.

Master of Science in Accountancy (MSA)

Ideal of both accounting and non-accounting professionals who are interested in pursuing CPA licensure or an advanced counting career in California, the Master of Science in Accountancy (MSA) program at CSU East Bay takes just one year to complete 45 units of graduate studies. In the cohort-based program, students will develop an understanding of financial accounting, auditing standards, and business concepts for working in the public or private sector.

Accreditations

  • Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB)
  • Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC)

Contact

25800 Carlos Bee Blvd.
Hayward, CA 94542
(510) 885-3323

http://www20.csueastbay.edu/cbe/ms-acct/index.html

California State University Fullerton

Mihalyo College of Business and Economics

As a major four-year public regional institution serving more than 37,000 students, California State University Fullerton is based on a beautiful 236-acre suburban campus in the flourishing center of Orange County within just 30 miles from downtown Los Angeles. CSU Fullerton is currently named the 40th best regional college and 9th top public school in the West by the U.S. News and World Report. Even more importantly, the Mihalyo College of Business and Economics is acclaimed for having the 6th best online graduate business programs in America. To see online accounting degree options, visit Top 10 Best Online Accounting Degree Programs 2014.

M.S. in Accountancy

Building on a theoretical foundation in business, the M.S. in Accountancy program at CSU Fullerton is focused on helping graduate students develop the professional attitude and capacity to handle issues related to accounting policy or ethics. Although the 30-credit program was designed for students with a bachelor’s degree in accounting or business administration, those from other academic backgrounds can be admitted after nine foundational credits are completed. Graduates will be well-prepared with technical and conceptual knowledge for job opportunities in public, industrial, and governmental accounting.

Accreditations

  • Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB)
  • Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC)

Contact

800 North State College Blvd.
Fullerton, CA 92831
(657) 278-2211

http://business.fullerton.edu/graduateprograms/msacct/index.htm

California State University Los Angeles

College of Business and Economics

With its own stop on the Metrolink, California State University Los Angeles is a large innovative public senior research institution educating more than 23,000 students on its 175-acre urban campus within just five miles from the cultural center of Los Angeles. Recently listed on TIME Magazine’s top 100 colleges, CSULA is ranked as the 84th best regional school, 34th top public college, and 29th best university for veterans in the West by the U.S. News and World Report. The College of Business and Economics is fully accredited by the AACSB to prepare students as leaders in the global business community.

Master of Science in Accounting

Centered on the four main areas of accounting information systems, financial reporting, public accounting, and taxation, the Master of Science in Accounting program at Cal State LA has been structured to prepare graduate students for obtaining the highest executive levels of the field with high standards of ethical practice. Within the 45-credit program, students combine instruction in the classroom with master’s research projects and real-world practical learning.

Accreditations

  • Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB)
  • Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC)

Contact

5151 State University Drive
Los Angeles, CA 90032
(323) 343-5256

http://www.calstatela.edu/business/accounting/master-science-degree-accounting

California State University San Bernardino

College of Business and Public Administration

Initially founded in 1962 as a publicly supported learning-centered teaching institution, California State University San Bernardino now serves more than 18,900 students on its spacious 430-acre urban campus on the floor of the San Bernardino Valley in the Inland Empire. Ranked among the top 25 percent of universities nationwide by Princeton Review, CSUSB is currently named the 66th best regional college, 22nd top public school, and 21st best university for veterans in the West by the U.S. News and World Report. The College of Business and Public Administration was also listed as the world’s 18th most innovative business school in European CEO Magazine.

Master of Science in Accountancy (MSA)

Following the highest standard of achievement set by the AACSB International, the Master of Science in Accountancy (MSA) program at CSUSB is structured to prepare graduate students for an array of employment options in public accounting, industry, finance, higher education, government, or non-profit organizations. After completing the 44-credit program with a focus in accounting or finance, students are required to complete a culminating research or practice project.

Accreditations

  • Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB)
  • Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC)

Contact

5500 University Parkway
San Bernardino, CA 92407
(909) 537-5720

http://msa.csusb.edu/

Chapman University

Argyros School of Business and Economics

Standing proudly on a beautiful 78-acre suburban campus in the center of Orange County in a residential area just 30 miles from bustling Los Angeles, Chapman University is a major private comprehensive institution affiliated with the Disciples of Christ to serve the academic needs of over 6,300 students. According to the U.S. News and World Report, Chapman is ranked as the 7th best regional college and 1st best up-and-coming university in the West for 2015. In fact, the Argyros School of Business and Economics has also been recognized as the 83th best business school in the United States.

Master of Science in Accounting (MSA)

Featuring a highly personalized 30-credit curriculum, the Master of Science in Accounting (MSA) program at Chapman is focused on qualifying graduate students to sit for the California CPA exam while advancing their understanding on the strategic role of accounting in business. With convenient afternoon and evening courses, the program can be completed in as little as 10 months. All MSA students will engage in coursework on cost accounting, income taxation, auditing, business statistics, accounting information systems, forensic accounting, business law, and professional ethics.

Accreditations

  • Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB)
  • Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC)

Contact

1 University Drive
Orange, CA 92866
(714) 997-6990

http://www.chapman.edu/business/graduate/prospective-students/programs/masters-in-accounting.aspx

Loyola Marymount University

College of Business Administration

Well-known for being one of the largest private co-educational Roman Catholic and Jesuit institutions on the West Coast with over 9,300 students, Loyola Marymount University is situated on a 150-acre urban campus in Los Angeles on the rugged bluffs overlooking Marina Del Rey. Named among the “25 Cutting Edge Schools” in Kaplan’s College Guide, LMU is currently ranked as the 3rd best regional college in the West by the U.S. News and World Report. The College of Business Administration has also been featured as one of the country’s “Best 296 Business Schools” by the prestigious Princeton Review.

Master of Science in Accounting

First introduced in 2013 with full-time or part-time learning options, the Master of Science in Accounting program at LMU is focused on giving graduate students the opportunity to complete their accounting education and enhance their future professional growth with CPA licensure in California. Within the 30-unit program, students will be equipped with the most essential knowledge and skills to become ethical, productive accounting leaders.

Accreditations

  • Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB)
  • Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC)

Contact

1 LMU Drive
Los Angeles, CA 90045
(310) 568-6266

Pepperdine University

Graziadio School of Business and Management

Affiliated with the Churches of Christ, Pepperdine University is a private non-profit Christian institution serving more than 7,500 students on its sprawling 830-acre suburban campus in Malibu overlooking the Pacific Ocean. Named among the “more selective” universities nationwide with an acceptance rate of 37.3 percent, Pepperdine is currently ranked as the 54th best national university and 24th top value school in America by the U.S. News and World Report. With small class sizes and individualized attention, the Graziadio School of Business and Management has also been recognized by Forbes for being the 9th most entrepreneurial school nationwide.

Master of Science in Accounting (MSA)

Available on the Malibu campus full-time with weekday classes, the Master of Science in Accounting (MSA) program at Pepperdine allows graduate students to receive the academic preparation needed to take the CPA exam in most states within just nine to 12 months. Within the 30-unit curriculum, students are prepared to build advanced leadership careers in public accounting, industry, government, or non-profit organizations alongside MBA candidates.

Accreditations

  • Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB)
  • Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC)

Contact

24255 Pacific Coast Highway
Malibu, CA 90263
(310) 506-4000

https://bschool.pepperdine.edu/masters-degree/accounting/

Sacramento State University

College of Business Administration

With the motto “Leadership begins here,” Sacramento State University is a vibrant public senior metropolitan institution enrolling more than 28,000 diverse students on its lush 300-acre urban campus in the state’s capital city along the American River Parkway. As a distinguished member of the President’s National Community Service Honor Roll, Sac State is currently ranked as the 58th best regional college and 16th top public school in the West by the U.S. News and World Report. Furthermore, the College of Business Administration is highly regarded for having the 74th best online graduate business degree programs in America.

Master of Science in Accountancy

In preparation for passing the CPA exam in California, the Master of Science in Accountancy program at Sac State is designed to provide graduate students an advanced understanding of the rapidly evolving accounting field, including auditing, financial reporting, taxation, business law, and managerial accounting. As a fully accredited distance program, students are given the chance to complete their degree 100% online in just 18 months with convenient six-week sessions and web conferencing.

Accreditations

  • Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB)
  • Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC)

Contact

6000 J Street
Sacramento, CA 95819
(916) 278-6772

http://www.csus.edu/cba/graduate/MSA.html

San Diego State University

College of Business Administration

First founded in 1897 as the first comprehensive senior public research institution in the CSU system, San Diego State University now enrolls more than 35,000 students annually on its 283-acre urban campus in Southern California within just an hour’s drive from Mexico. Ranked 21st in the country for sending students abroad, SDSU is currently named the 149th best national university and 78th top public school in America by the U.S. News and World Report. With full AACSB accreditation, the College of Business Administration also has one of the top 10 pass rates for first-time CPA exam takers in California.

Master of Science in Accountancy (MSA)

Whether graduate students are aiming for earning the CPA, CMA, CISA, EA, or CIA credential, the Master of Science in Accountancy (MSA) program at SDSU provides a flexible curriculum to help individuals exceed their goals and build successful careers in professional accounting. Over the course of 12 to 18 months, students will complete at least 30 semester units with one of three specializations in Accounting Information Systems, Financial Reporting, or Taxation.

Accreditations

  • Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB)
  • Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC)

Contact

5500 Campanile Drive
San Diego, CA 92182
(619) 594-5259

https://cbaweb.sdsu.edu/msa

San Francisco State University

College of Business

As a comprehensive senior public research and teaching institution with over 29,000 students, San Francisco State University is located on a beautiful 142-acre urban campus in one of the world’s most vibrant cities and the financial center of Northern California. Ranked 10th in the United States for campus diversity, SFSU is currently named the 58th best regional college and 16th top public school in the West by the U.S. News and World Report. Also hosting the 173rd best part-time MBA, the College of Business has a commitment to sustainable business, diversity, social justice, and global partnership.

Master of Science in Accountancy (MSA)

Offered to both business and non-business graduates, the Master of Science in Accountancy (MSA) program at SFSU was structured in three separate pathways to meet the unique learning needs of students wishing to take the Certified Professional Accountant (CPA) exam. Ranging from 30 to 54 credits, the program delivers specialized knowledge in financial accounting, auditing, taxation, accounting information systems, and managerial accounting.

Accreditations

  • Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB)
  • Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC)

Contact

1600 Holloway Avenue
San Francisco, CA 94132
(415) 338-1107

http://cob.sfsu.edu/graduate-programs/msa

San Jose State University

Lucas Graduate School of Business

Situated on a 154-acre urban campus over 19 square blocks in downtown, San Jose State University is a comprehensive senior four-year public teaching institution that holds the distinction of being the oldest post-secondary school on the West Coast. Enrolling more than 32,600 students, SJSU is ranked as the 38th best regional college and 8th top public school in the West by the U.S. News and World Report. With various partnerships in Silicon Valley, the Lucas Graduate School of Business is dedicated to delivering high-value, innovative education experiences focused on culture, networking, and enterprise.

M.S. Accountancy

With a flexible 30-unit curriculum, the M.S. Accountancy program at SJSU has been created to provide graduate students with thorough instruction in the theories and practices of accounting in preparation for finding leadership success within today’s competitive business world. On the pathway towards becoming a CPA or receiving any other accounting credential, students will develop a strong foundation of knowledge in financial reporting, auditing, taxation, IT auditing, financial statement analysis, management accounting, and investment decisions.

Accreditations

  • Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB)
  • Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC)

Contact

One Washington Square
San Jose, CA 95192
(408) 924-3426

http://www.sjsu.edu/lucasschool/prospective-msa/

University of San Diego

School of Business Administration

Overlooking Mission Bay, the University of San Diego is a comprehensive private four-year Roman Catholic institution offering over 50 academic programs to more than 6,800 students on its beautiful 180-acre urban campus near Pacific Beach. Selected as one of just 24 “Changemaker” universities across the globe, USD is currently ranked as the 95th best national university in the United States by the U.S. News and World Report. Furthermore, the School of Business Administration is accredited by the AACSB to provide the country’s 9th best online graduate business degree programs.

Master of Science in Accountancy (MACC)

Delivered on-campus in San Diego with sessions just two nights per week, the Master of Science in Accountancy (MACC) program is focused on providing a personalized learning experience with supportive faculty relationships to prepare graduates for advancing their accountancy career as CPAs. Within the 30-credit curriculum, students work as cohorts to develop practical accounting experience and forge valuable connections with accounting professionals.

Accreditations

  • Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB)
  • Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC)

Contact

5998 Alcala Park
San Diego, CA 92110
(619) 260-7405

http://www.sandiego.edu/business/programs/accounting-tax/index.php

University of Southern California

Leventhal School of Accounting

Sprawling across a 226-acre urban campus in the downtown arts corridor of Los Angeles with several other locations across the state’s southern half, the University of Southern California is a large comprehensive private research institution enrolling more than 43,000 students. Named among the “Top 10 Dream Colleges,” USC is currently ranked as the 25th best national university, 41st top value school, and 5th best up-and-coming university countrywide by the U.S. News and World Report. Within the 25th best business school, the Leventhal School of Accounting is also distinguished for having the 9th top graduate accounting programs in America.

Master of Accounting (MAcc)

Featuring five accounting courses, one communications course, and four accounting electives, the Master of Accounting (MAcc) program at USC strives to build the discipline-specific knowledge and skills that graduates will need for success in the accounting or taxation field. Within the one-year program, students must complete a globalization requirement by studying abroad to develop an appreciation for cultural differences and connect with international CPA firms.

Accreditations

  • Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB)
  • Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC)

Contact

3660 Trousdale Parkway
Los Angeles, CA 90089
(213) 740-4838

http://www.marshall.usc.edu/macc

Since legislation was passed in January 2014, California now requires that anyone wishing to become a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) fulfill the 150-hour requirement in higher education by obtaining a master’s degree in accounting. Luckily, all of these accredited accounting degree programs in California will satisfy this requirement and help you accomplish your goals in professional accountancy practice or research.