Accounting Schools in Maryland
The following overview of accounting schools in Maryland provides you with comprehensive information on the accounting schools and programs in the state so that you can make an educated choice when deciding where to study accounting. The universities and colleges in Maryland offer a variety of accounting programs to suit the needs and interests of students from diverse backgrounds. Online accounting programs may also be a match for your educational needs and career goals.
- There are 31 not-for-profit colleges and universities with accounting degree programs in Maryland.1
- 7 not-for-profit schools offer a master’s or advanced degree in accounting.1
- Highest graduation rate*: University of Maryland-College Park, 85%1
- Highest transfer-out rate*: Stevenson University, 38%1
- Highest net price per year*: Loyola University Maryland, $36,8201
- Lowest net price per year*: Coppin State University, $8,6851
- 1 school ranked in Businessweek’s Top Business Undergraduate Programs in 2017: University of Maryland (50)
- 4 schools ranked in Kiplinger’s Best Values in Public Colleges in 2018: Salisbury University (#98 in-state, #77 out-of-state), St. Mary’s College of Maryland (#78 in-state, #61 out-of-state), University of Maryland-Baltimore County (#60 in-state, #53 out-of-state), University of Maryland-College Park (#10 in-state, #16 out-of-state)
- 2 schools ranked in US News National Universities Rankings in 2019 (top 100): Johns Hopkins University (10), University of Maryland-College Park (63)
*For four-year not-for-profit colleges and universities with accounting degree programs.
Keep reading this page to learn more about accounting schools in Maryland, including profiles of top schools and programs and information about careers for accounting graduates.
Schools with Highest 2015 First-Time CPA Exam Pass Rate with an Advanced Degree
- University of Maryland-College Park (60.8%)
- University of Maryland-University College (31.3%)
There were two schools with first-time CPA exam candidates in Maryland (with an advanced degree) in 2015. Of these schools, the range for the pass rate was 31.3% to 60.8%. This compares to a 48.4% pass rate in 2015 for all candidates in the United States in 2015 (bachelor’s and advanced degree). While the CPA exam pass rate is a good metric for evaluating accounting programs, keep in mind that the percentage may be skewed if there were a small number of candidates. To see full statistics check out the 2015 NASBA Uniform CPA Examination Candidate Performance report provided by the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy (NASBA).
Top Master’s in Accounting Programs in Maryland
Loyola University (Baltimore, MD)
Loyola University Maryland offers a Master of Accounting (MAcc) degree to equip students for careers as CPAs through its Sellinger School of Business. The full-time program is designed to be completed within 12 months, with students pursuing the lock-step curriculum in cohorts. In addition to helping students meet the standard 150-credit hour requirement to sit for the Uniform CPA Exam, this MAcc program develops technical accounting, decision-making, and communication skills. Core courses include Accounting in an International Context, Ethics and Social Responsibility for Accountants, and Advanced Auditing/Forensics. The program is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB). Students who require the flexibility of a part-time degree program may be interested in Loyola University Maryland’s Master of Science (MS) in Finance program, which offers evening classes year-round on a part-time basis. US News ranks Loyola University Maryland #5 in Regional Universities (North) for its prestigious academic programs, unique student community service programs, and desirable student-faculty ratio.
University of Maryland (College Park, MD)
University of Maryland’s Robert H. Smith School of Business offers several master’s degree programs, including a prestigious Master of Science (MS) in Accounting degree designed specifically for accounting professionals. The MS in Accounting program prepares students for career advancement by developing the skills and understanding needed to navigate the modern legal and regulatory environment for businesses and organizations. Students have opportunities to focus on specialized tracks in internal auditing, tax, public accounting, financial regulation, and public accounting based on total student enrollment and interest. The core curriculum includes courses in Business Ethics for Accountants and Auditors, Advanced Managerial Accounting and Control Systems, Essentials of Negotiation, and Internal Auditing. US News ranks University of Maryland #165 (tie) in National Universities for its prestigious honors program, active athletic and cultural student activity schedule, and public research standing.
University of Maryland-University College (Adelphi, MD)
University of Maryland-University College’s Master of Science (MS) in Accounting and Financial Management helps students stand out in the accounting field by developing the skills needed to assume responsibility and positions of leadership in the business world. The 36-credit hour curriculum includes emphasis areas in accounting and financial management and culminates in a final program capstone. Students participate in a challenging curriculum that encompasses course topics such as Strategic Financial Management, Behavioral Finance, Federal Income Taxation, and Financial Decision Making for Managers. Graduates who hold an undergraduate degree in accounting or business typically meet the 150-credit hour requirement to sit for the Uniform CPA Exam. University of Maryland-University College classes are held on satellite campuses throughout the Washington DC metro area, as well as through distance learning programs in an online format. The University of Maryland-University College is one of 12 degree-granting schools in the University System of Maryland.
Top Accounting Firms for Graduates in Maryland
Thanks to the business center of Washington DC, many national and international accounting firms have offices in Maryland. Baker Tilly Virchow Krause, LLP is a nationwide firm with offices in Baltimore. Baker Tilly has been named to Accounting Today’s Top 15 full-service accounting firms, offering good opportunities for graduates. With offices in Baltimore and headquarters in Bethesda, as well as other locations nationwide, the Reznick Group has five major divisions of practice. The Reznick Group proactively recruits college grads from across the country every year. Dixon Hughes Goodman CPAs offers an alternative to the Big 4 for clients and employees with a national scope and a personalized approach. Over 2,000 professionals work for Dixon Hughes Goodman, which maintains offices across the country, including offices in Baltimore and Gaithersburg.
How to Become a CPA in Maryland
The Maryland Board of Public Accountancy licenses and regulates Certified Public Accountants in the state. There are four main steps to complete in order to earn a CPA license in Maryland.
- Complete a 150-semester hour or 225-quarter hour educational program of acceptable coursework in accounting.
- Accumulate the required hours of experience.
- Complete the AICPA ethics course and exam.
- Pass the Uniform CPA Examination and apply for a license.
1. Complete a 150-semester hour or 225-quarter hour educational program of acceptable coursework in accounting.
CPA candidates in Maryland must complete 150 semester hours of college education to qualify for a license, although candidates may sit for the Uniform CPA Exam once 120 undergraduate semester hours and the award of a baccalaureate degree have been completed. The required accounting courses within the 150 semester hours are specific and must include 30 semester hours (or quarter equivalent) from Group I subjects that typically have course titles such as:
- Auditing and attestation, auditing and assurance services (at least 3 semester hours required)
- Managerial cost accounting (at least 3 semester hours required)
- US federal income tax (at least 3 semester hours required)
- Financial accounting (at least 9 semester hours required
- Ethics in business or accounting (at least 3 semester hours required)
- At least 9 additional semester hours in subjects such as fundamentals of accounting, intermediate accounting, advanced accounting, accounting for not-for-profit entities, and governmental accounting
In addition, students must complete at least 21 semester hours in Group II subjects that typically have course titles such as:
- Statistics, management science, or quantitative analysis (at least 3 semester hours required)
- Corporation, business, or international finance; financial management; financial statement analysis; or strategy-specific decision making (at least 3 semester hours required)
- Management, business management, or organizational behavior (at least 3 semester hours required
- US business law, commercial law, or the legal environment of business (at least 3 semester hours required)
- Marketing (at least 3 semester hours required)
- Economics (at least 3 semester hours required)
- Business communication (at least 3 semester hours required)
- Quantitative methods or management science (at least 3 semester hours required)
- Computer information systems (at least 3 semester hours required)
2. Accumulate the required hours of experience.
Maryland CPA applicants must earn at least one year (2,000 hours) of professional experience in accounting in government, industry, academia, and/or public practice in order to qualify for a license. The experience must be obtained in not less than one year and not more than three years and must be supervised by a licensed CPA. Additionally, the experience must utilize practical skills in accounting, attest, management advisory, financial advisory, tax, and/or consulting.
3. Complete the AICPA ethics course and exam.
The Maryland Board of Public Accountancy requires prospective CPAs to earn a passing score on the AICPA self-study course and exam in ethics. Candidates can order the course directly from the AICPA website.
4. Pass the Uniform CPA Examination and apply for a license.
The Maryland Board of Public Accountancy uses an online portal for all CPA exam and license applications, which is accessible through the Maryland Department of Labor, Licensing, and Regulation web portal. Candidates may apply to the exam only or may apply to the exam and for a CPA license concurrently if all requirements have been met. Once the application has been reviewed, candidates will receive a Notice to Schedule that allows the applicant to schedule and sit for the Uniform CPA Exam through NASBA.
After a license has been issued, CPAs must complete at least 80 hours of continuing education during each two-year renewal period to keep the license current. At least four of these hours must be in professional ethics. You can find additional information at the Maryland Board of Public Accountancy website.
Maryland Accountant Salary and Job Outlook
Projected Job Growth
Accountants and Auditors in Maryland from 2016-20262
The demand for accountants in Maryland is high; according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, over 26,2300 accountants and auditors are currently practicing in Maryland, with an average annual salary of $80,930.3 Accountants in the Baltimore-Columbia-Towson area enjoy an annual average salary of $79,100; the area of Silver Spring-Frederick-Rockville boasts an even higher average salary of $87,320 for accountants.3 The high salaries here speak to the competitive job market for accountants, which is expected to heat up even further as this industry adds positions, with a projected growth rate of 6.7% in Maryland through 2026.2
1101 Camden Ave
Salisbury, MD 21801
Student Review: “The accounting department was exceptionally helpful with assisting me in my degree. Shortly after entering the university I had decided to double major in both accounting and marketing. Both of these majors were in the same school within the university with many of the professors teaching courses for both majors. This assisted greatly in building a professional and lasting relationship throughout my college career. With them being so knowledgeable about the subjects, as well as being made available outside of normal office hours, the ability to earn my degree was made only possible by the great staff. I would highly recommend anyone seeking an accounting or marketing degree to apply to the university.” – Kevin D., student at Salisbury University
1. National Center for Education Statistics College Navigator: https://nces.ed.gov/collegenavigator/
2. Projections Central, Long Term Occupational Projections (2016-2026): http://www.projectionscentral.com/projections/longterm
3. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment Statistics, Occupational Employment and Wages, May 2017, 13-2011 Accountants and Auditors: https://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes132011.htm