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Accounting Schools in Nevada

This guide to accounting schools in Nevada provides important information about colleges and universities offering accounting degrees and programs in Nevada. A wide range of accounting programs is available in Nevada to fit your skills, interests, and desired career track. Online accounting programs like the Master of Science in Accounting from New England College can also be a suitable alternative to on campus degree programs for some individuals.

Quick Facts:

  • There are 11 colleges and universities with accounting degree programs in Nevada.
  • 3 schools offer a master’s or advanced degree in accounting.
  • Highest graduation rate*: Morrison University 92%1
  • Highest transfer-out rate*: Western Nevada College 33%1
  • Highest net price per year*: Morrison University $28,8631
  • Lowest net price per year*: College of Southern Nevada $6,2461
  • Largest undergraduate student population*: University of Nevada-Las Vegas 22,1371
  • Annual undergraduate tuition range for accounting programs in Nevada*: $17,437-$19,2262
  • 1 School ranked in US News National Universities Rankings in 2013 (top 200): University of Nevada-Reno (189)
  • 1 School ranked in Forbes Top Colleges List (top 600): University of Nevada-Las Vegas (521)

*For 4-year colleges and universities with accounting degree programs.

Read on to find out more about what accounting schools in Nevada have to offer and further information about careers for accounting graduates.

Schools With the Highest 2013 First-Time CPA Exam Pass Rate with an Advanced Degree

1. University of Nevada, Reno 77.3%
2. University of Nevada, Las Vegas 73.3%

There were 2 schools in Nevada that had first-time CPA exam candidates (with advanced degrees). The first-time CPA exam pass rate at these schools ranged from 73.3% to 77.3%. This was higher than the pass rate of 54.6% for all first-time candidates in the United States in 2013. The first-time pass rate can help you compare accounting programs at schools although the percentages may be artificially high or low at schools with a small number of candidates. For a full breakdown of CPA exam statistics see the 2013 NASBA Uniform CPA Examination Candidate Performance report provided by the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy.

Top Masters in Accounting Programs in Nevada

University of Nevada-Las Vegas (Las Vegas, NV)
University of Nevada-Las Vegas offers a Master of Science in Accounting (MSA) degree that allows students to study taxation, public accounting, corporate accounting, and government accounting. The 30 credit hour program may be completed under full or part time study, and admission is open to students of any undergraduate background. The program curriculum emphasizes global accounting principles, current information technology, ethical practice, and business strategy to prepare well-rounded accounting professionals for leadership roles. Courses offered include Federal Tax Topics, Auditing Theory and Applications, Mergers and Acquisitions, and Auditing in the Gaming Industry. Students may supplement their accounting study with approved electives from other fields including marketing, economics, and management. The program prepares students to meet the 150 semester hour CPA requirement in most states. The Lee Business School, through which the MSA is offered, is also home to the Center for Business and Economic Research. University of Nevada-Las Vegas is ranked as a Tier 2 school in National Universities by US News.

University of Nevada-Reno (Reno, NV)
University of Nevada-Reno offers a Master of Accountancy Program through its Department of Accounting at its College of Business, which is accredited by the AACSB. The Master of Accountancy at University of Nevada-Reno focuses on technical and professional accounting skills at the advanced level to prepare students for careers as professional accountants. Students also learn technologically advanced tools and techniques in accounting and related fields. The curriculum incorporates advanced study in business to provide future accounting professionals with a well-rounded education. Example courses in the accounting core include Advanced and International Accounting, Taxation of Flow-Through Entities, and Accounting Research. Admission is open to students whose undergraduate degree is in a field other than business, though these students must take the GMAT exam for admission consideration and may need to take additional courses. The College of Business and Department of Accounting and Information Systems maintain strong ties with alumni and professional partners, providing additional opportunities to students. US News ranks University of Nevada-Reno #181 in National Universities.

Top Accounting Firms for Graduates in Nevada

Swarts & Swarts Certified Public Accountants is one of the top CPA firms in Las Vegas, with a range of services that can be tailored to the needs of almost any business. Gallina LLP has offices throughout the Mountain West, and has been recognized as one of the 50 Most Engaged Workplaces in the US by Achievers. Gallina LLP actively seeks recent graduates to join its team. Kafoury, Armstrong & Co. is the largest CPA firm in Nevada. Its four offices are regularly looking for talent, including those just beginning careers as accountants.

How to Become a CPA in Nevada

The Nevada State Board of Accountancy oversees the process for becoming a Certified Public Accountant in the state. There are six main steps to complete in order to earn a CPA license in Nevada.

1. Complete a 150 semester hour education program in accounting.
2. Accumulate the required hours of experience.
3. Complete the AICPA ethics course and exam.
4. Apply for and pass the Uniform CPA Examination.
5. Request and complete an Investigation of Criminal History.
6. Apply for a license.

1. Complete a 150 semester hour education program in accounting.

Nevada CPA candidates must complete 150 semester hours of college education in accounting to qualify for a license. The 150 semester hours must include the award of a bachelor’s degree as well as the following credit hours in specific accounting and business topics:

  • Financial accounting (9 semester hours)
  • Cost accounting (3 semester hours)
  • Auditing (3 semester hours)
  • Federal income tax (3 semester hours)
  • Accounting electives (12 semester hours)
  • Business law (3 semester hours)

Candidates must complete an additional 24 semester hours (36 quarter hours) in business. Example business courses that can apply towards this requirement include:

  • Behavior of organizations
  • Business finance
  • Business law
  • Computers
  • Data processing
  • Economics
  • Ethics in business
  • Management
  • Marketing
  • Oral communication
  • Quantitative applications in business
  • Statistics
  • Communication
  • Legal and social environment

2. Accumulate the required hours of experience.

At least 2 years of experience in public accounting are required for a Nevada CPA license. Experience qualifies as work during which the candidate used skills in accounting or auditing, finance, advising or consulting on management related matters, and/or the preparation of tax returns or providing advice on tax related matters. Experience earned must be verified by licensed CPAs in a position to verify the applicant’s work. In lieu of 2 years of public accounting experience, candidates may also qualify by completing four years of experience in internal audit or governmental accounting. Note that work earned in the two categories of public accounting and internal audit/governmental accounting cannot be combined as qualifying experience.

3. Complete the AICPA ethics course and exam.

The Nevada State Board of Accountancy has adopted the AICPA self-study course and exam to meet its Rules of Professional Conduct requirement. Candidates can order the course through the AICPA website.

4. Apply for and pass the Uniform CPA Examination.

Candidates who are ready to take the Uniform CPA Exam may apply to the Nevada State Board of Accountancy using its online examination portal or the paper application form. After the application is reviewed and approved, candidates will receive further information on scheduling the exam. Candidates must pass all four sections of the exam within an 18 month rolling period.

5. Request and complete an Investigation of Criminal History.

The Nevada State Board of Accountancy requires that all prospective CPAs undergo a fingerprint-based background check. This background check must be completed either on light blue civil applicant cards (requested directly from the Board of Accountancy) or using LiveScan fingerprinting. The completed cards or LiveScan receipt should be included with the candidate’s submitted license application. You can find more information at the Nevada State Board of Accountancy website.

6. Apply for a license.

Applying for a license is the final step to earning CPA licensure in Nevada. The Application for CPA Certification Nevada Examinee form is provided for applicants who took the Uniform CPA Exam in the state.

Once licensed, Nevada CPAs must complete 80 hours of continuing education over each two year period, reported annually. You can find additional information at the Nevada State Board of Accountancy website.
(Source: Nevada State Board of Accountancy)

Nevada Accountant Salary and Job Outlook

Projected Job Growth

13.1%

Accountants and Auditors in Nevada from 2010-20203

According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, accountants in Nevada make an average salary between $61,320 and $64,260 per year. The Las Vegas metro area is where most of the accountants in Nevada find work. However, the Reno-Sparks greater metro area is where the highest average salaries are found; according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, salaries here average $65,030, indicating the high demand for licensed professionals.

References:
1. National Center for Education Statistics: https://nces.ed.gov/collegenavigator/
2. Niche: https://colleges.niche.com/search/t-traditional/sm2-accounting/st-nv/
3. Nevada Workforce Informer: http://www.nevadaworkforce.com/cgi/dataanalysis/occprjReport.asp?menuchoice=occprj