Accounting Schools in New York
This guide to accounting schools in New York offers important information about your options for earning an accounting degree and furthering your accounting career. There are numerous colleges and universities in New York with high-quality accounting degree programs to fit your skills and areas of interest. As an alternative to conventional on-campus accounting programs, you may also find that online accounting programs such as the Bachelor of Science in Accounting from Western Governors University are a good match for your career goals.
- There are 151 colleges and universities with accounting degree programs in New York.
- 47 schools offer a master’s or advanced degree in accounting.
- Highest graduation rate*: New York University 87%1
- Highest transfer-out rate*: CUNY York College 47%1
- Highest net price per year*: New York University $37,6561
- Lowest net price per year*: CUNY Lehman College $4,3091
- Annual undergraduate tuition range for accounting programs in New York: $10,300-$39,8802
- 6 Schools in the Businessweek’s Top Business Undergraduate Programs in 2013: Cornell University (3), New York University (14), Fordham University (40), Binghamton University (57), Syracuse University (72), Rochester Institute of Technology (93)
- 10 Schools in the Kiplinger’s Best Values in Public Colleges in 2013: SUNY Geneseo (9), Binghamton University (SUNY) (12), Stony Brook University (SUNY) (22), University at Buffalo (SUNY) (33), SUNY New Paltz (44), SUNY Oneonta (59), SUNY Cortland (76), Purchase College (SUNY) (80), University at Albany (SUNY) (81), SUNY Brockport (83)
- 11 Schools ranked in US News National Universities Rankings in 2013 (top 100): Columbia University (4), Cornell University (15), New York University (32), University of Rochester (33), Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (41), Yeshiva University (46), Fordham University (58), Syracuse University (58), SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry (77), Binghamton University (SUNY) (89), Stony Brook University (SUNY) (92)
*For 4-year colleges and universities with accounting degree programs.
Continue reading this page to learn more about accounting schools in New York and career possibilities for accounting graduates.
Schools with the Highest 2013 First-Time CPA Exam Pass Rate with an Advanced Degree
- Cornell University 90.9%
- Ithaca College
- Rochester Institute of Technology
- Canisius College
- Baruch College
- State University of New York at New Paltz
There were 42 schools in New York that had first-time CPA exam candidates (with an advanced degree). Of these schools, the first-time CPA exam pass rate ranged from 0% to 90.9%. This compares to the national pass rate of 54.6% for all first-time candidates (with a bachelor’s or advanced degree). When comparing options for an accounting program, first-time CPA exam pass rate can be a helpful metric however the percentage may be skewed if a school had a small number of candidates. For full 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 New York
City University of New York- Baruch College’s Zicklin School of Business offers a Master of Science in Accountancy program available to students with or without an undergraduate degree in business. The degree can be completed with a General Business, Accounting, or Taxation concentration, and typically requires 34 to 36 credit hours. Courses offered include Intermediate Financial Accounting; Financial Decision Making; Auditing and Accounting Information Systems; and Taxation of Business Entities. Students have options for waiving credit hours from the program based on previous education or experience, in which case the student may take additional electives in their focus or interest areas. The Zicklin School of Business offers other master’s degrees that may be of interest to aspiring accountants, including a new Master of Science in Finance program and a Master of Science in Taxation. In addition to advising from the school’s career services advisors and faculty, students also receive opportunities to meet with successful accounting executives for additional guidance. US News ranks City University of New York-Baruch College #22 in Regional Universities (North).
Hofstra University (Hempstead, NY)
Hofstra University offers two master’s programs in accounting, the Master of Science in Accounting and the Master of Science in Taxation; students can also take other graduate programs of study with accounting concentrations including a Master of Business Administration in Professional Accountancy. Any of these programs will help students qualify for the Uniform CPA exam and prepare for successful accountancy careers. Most graduate programs at the school allow for full or part time enrollment. Graduate courses offered through the Department of Accounting include Financial Reporting and Analysis, Auditing Theory, Income Tax for Business Entities, and Seminar in Advanced Contemporary Accounting Theory. Students may also take research seminars in various topics. The faculty at Hofstra are experienced professionals who are active in research and the university frequently hosts conferences and seminars of interest to accounting graduates. Hofstra University is ranked #135 in National Universities by US News in recognition of its academic variety, selective admissions, and active student life.
New York University (New York, NY)
New York University’s Leonard N. Stern School of Business is one of the top graduate schools in the US for accountants. The master’s programs offered by the Stern School of Business are competitive and focus on instilling the core knowledge needed for students to manage lifelong careers. Students in the graduate programs are grouped together in blocks, in which they undertake the same courses and activities together. Programs of interest to accounting professionals include the Executive Master of Business Administration Program and the Master of Science in Global Finance, which takes place on campus locations in New York, Hong Kong, and Beijing. Graduate students benefit from the guidance of experienced and world renowned research scholars and faculty as well as a global network of alumni and business and government partners. The accounting programs at the school view accounting and finance in a global context, with interdisciplinary study in business-complimentary subjects to prepare professionals for success. US News ranks Stern #9 in the nation’s Best Accounting Grad Schools.
State University of New York-Geneseo (SUNY Geneseo)
The State University of New York-Geneseo (SUNY Geneseo) provides a Master of Science in Accounting program accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB). The program is designed to prepare students for CPA licensure and offers small class sizes and meaningful student-faculty interactions. Courses in the two-semester curriculum include advanced study in financial, managerial and taxation accounting and relevant support courses in quantitative methods, systems, economics, and leadership. SUNY Geneseo is regularly ranked as a top school by such publications as US News & World Report, the Princeton Review, and Washington Monthly. Geneseo students have demonstrated some of the best pass rates on the CPA exam in New York State. Students must have completed or plan to complete a registered undergraduate accounting program before matriculating.
Top Accounting Firms for Graduates in New York
Deloitte & Touche is the largest accounting firm with a presence in New York by revenue, and offers recent graduates career opportunities in New York and nationwide. Ernst & Young is also a global leader in accounting and consulting services with offices in New York, and as a major player in the CPA industry it actively recruits top talent from each year’s graduating class.
How to Become a CPA in New York
The New York Office of the Professions oversees the process for becoming a Certified Public Accountant in the state. There are four main steps to complete in order to earn a CPA license in New York.
- Complete a 150 semester hour or 225 quarter hour educational program of acceptable coursework in accounting.
- Accumulate the required hours of experience.
- Apply for a license.
- Pass the Uniform CPA Examination.
1. Complete a 150 semester hour or 225 quarter hour educational program of acceptable coursework in accounting.
Candidates for CPA licensure in New York must complete a 150 semester hour program of education at an institution(s) registered with the Office of the Professions or that holds acceptable regional accreditation, or must earn a master’s degree in accounting at a school that holds AACSB accreditation. The 150 semester hours must include the award of at least a bachelor’s degree and:
33 semester hours in accounting, with at least one course each in:
- Financial accounting and reporting at the upper division or graduate level
- Auditing and attestation services at the upper division or graduate level
- Cost or managerial accounting
Candidates must also complete 36 semester hours in general business electives. Either the business electives or accounting courses must include study in business or accounting communications, ethics, and professional responsibility, and accounting research.
2. Accumulate the required hours of experience.
The New York Office of the Professions requires prospective licensees to complete at least one calendar year of full-time experience amounting to at least 35 hours of work per week in accounting, excluding overtime. Candidates may also earn experience through part-time work across two years. Candidates qualifying under certain education programs to meet the 150-hour rule may be required to complete two years of full-time experience. You can find more information on these requirements at the New York Office of the Professions.
3. Pass the Uniform CPA Examination.
The New York Office of the Professions uses NASBA to administer and score the Uniform CPA Exam. Applicants who are ready to test should apply through the NASBA website. Candidates must achieve a passing score on all four sections of the exam within an 18-month rolling period to qualify for a license.
4. Apply for a license.
After receiving notification of a passing score on all four sections of the Uniform CPA exam and meeting all experience and education requirements, candidates may apply for the CPA license. Candidates should complete the Application for Licensure and First Registration, Certification of Professional Education (for education outside of New York state), Applicant Experience Record, and Certification of Employer Form 4B. The forms should be submitted together as one application packet.
Renewals for New York CPA licensees are on a triennial basis and contingent on the completion of at least 40 contact hours of continuing education per calendar year. You can find additional information at the New York Office of the Professions website.
(Source: New York Office of the Professions)
New York Accountant Salary and Job Outlook
Projected Job Growth
Accountants and Auditors in New York from 2010-20203
More accountants are employed in New York than any other state except for California; according to estimates by the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, nearly 93,000 accountants and auditors are currently working in New York state. This demand fuels high salaries for New York accountants, who make an average annual salary between $72,300 and $86,030 – only accountants in Washington, D.C. average more. In the New York City metro area salaries are even higher, averaging $94,570. Clearly, although competition for open accountancy positions is high, so is the demand; this makes New York a good place for recent graduates to seek employment.
New York Accounting Program Student Reviews
College of Staten Island: “Overall, I had a positive experience with my accounting program in College of Staten Island’s School of Business. After graduation, my decision to study accounting in such a well-reputed college proved to be very advantageous. The program had a lot of accounting courses that allow graduates to have extensive knowledge of accounting, such as Introduction to Accounting (I and II), Intermediate Accounting (I and II) and Cost Accounting. Moreover, there are other courses I took that really helped when I applied for jobs after graduations, such as Federal Income Taxation and Managerial Finance. I figured out many accounting offices appreciate such experience.” -Student at College of Staten Island
Hunter College: “The Bachelor of Science degree program at Hunter College met and exceeded my initial expectation. The professors are more than eager to assist you with any questions whether they’re course or real world related problems. At the third and fourth year, I acquired an internship with JP Morgan through the school’s Career and Development Center. The internship allowed me to apply my classroom knowledge into solving real life problems. I am now working as a personal banker at JP Morgan. I cannot thank Hunter College and my professors enough for their assistance in preparing me for my career.” -Amy H., student at Hunter College
Iona College: “The Iona College Hagan School of Business provided an in-depth and spectacular education for me while pursuing my accounting degree. The professors were more than helpful and approachable when it came to answering questions or assisting with problems. They were also all very professional with tons of experience and knowledge that was passed along to the students. The work definitely was not the easiest, but who learns when something is really easy? The professors were tough, but fair. The hardest class probably was Tax Accounting. The course itself is naturally difficult and the professor was straight forward about it, which I enjoyed. It set the tone early on in the semester when taking that class that it won’t be a walk in the park. This led to me and my fellow classmates to work that much harder to better understand the information and pass. Strong friendships were made as well as the professors encouraged group work, which was definitely awesome. Overall, I had a good experience. The only downside was the textbooks could get rather expensive and sometimes the professor’s don’t utilize them as much, but that is pretty much the same at any school.” -Student at Iona College
New York University: “As an accounting major senior year student, I have gained an incredible amount of knowledge at NYU that will allow me to apply it into the real world. Through classes like financial accounting to auditing courses, I was able to experience how people deal with financial statements, bank reconcilements, and many other concepts. Not only are the professors excellent in assisting every student with the knowledge that will be required in large companies, but they take the time out of their life to help us out. As I am entering my final year, I am really happy that I will be able to experience college life before I officially enter the work force. Through my knowledge gained at the university, I believe that I am prepared to see what professional life has in store for me.” -student at New York University
St. John Fisher College: “The accounting program at St. John Fisher College exceeded my expectations by far. Within the department, the professors were extremely knowledgeable about the material as they all had substantial real world experience before beginning their teaching careers. Moreover, everyone in the department was extremely approachable and helpful. I relied on a couple professors as my advisors and they were valuable resources in selecting my classes and getting through recruiting. Through the program I also had the opportunity to compete in multiple tax challenges organized by Big Four firms and got to travel to Europe as a part of a class. I really had no issues with the program at all.” -student at St. John Fisher College
Stony Brook University: “Stony Brook has a pretty broad program for business and even though their requirements for the program have a set G.P.A, overall the program has excellent professors. As a student in the accounting program, I wasn’t a fan of the fact that most classes had a recitation class as well as a lecture. Lectures were pretty good even though it was a huge class with one professor and a large lecture hall. What I didn’t like was that the recitation classes were mainly dealt with by graduate students that didn’t have a proper grasp of the material. I also took a few marketing classes as electives and had loads of fun with them because our professor was someone that had loads of connections in the real world.” -student at Stony Brook University
1. National Center for Education Statistics: https://nces.ed.gov/collegenavigator/
2. Niche: https://colleges.niche.com/search/t-traditional/sm2-accounting/st-ny/
3. New York Department of Labor: https://www.labor.ny.gov/home/