Accounting Schools in New Jersey
This overview of master’s in accounting schools in New Jersey provides information on a variety of factors that you can use to choose the accounting school that is the best fit for you. The accounting programs offered by colleges and universities in New Jersey provide education in many areas of accounting, including specialty topics like accounting technology and forensic accounting. Read on for more in-depth information about how to become a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) in New Jersey, a comparison table of all New Jersey schools offering master’s in accounting programs, and career information for accounting graduates.
- There are 38 colleges and universities with accounting degree programs in New Jersey.1
- 17 schools offer a master’s or advanced degree in accounting.1
- No schools were ranked in Forbes’ Best Business Schools 2019.2
- 2 schools were ranked in the Princeton Review’s Great Schools for Accounting Majors 2020.3
- No schools were ranked in the Public Accounting Report’s 2019 Top 50 Master’s Accounting Programs.4
- No schools were ranked in US News & World Report’s Best MBA Accounting Programs 2021.5
- 9 schools had a 2018 CPA exam pass rate at or above the national average of 51.9%.6
- 11 universities and business schools are accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) International.7
- 3 schools are accredited by the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP).8
- 1 school is accredited by the International Accreditation Council for Business Education (IACBE).9
For not-for-profit colleges and universities with accounting degree programs.
Table of Contents
- Steps to Become a CPA in New Jersey
- New Jersey CPA Salary and Job Outlook
- Top Master’s in Accounting Programs in New Jersey
- New Jersey Master’s in Accounting Program Comparison
- Select Schools in New Jersey with Master’s in Accounting Programs
- Additional Resources
- Frequently Asked Questions
- Student Reviews
How to Become a CPA in New Jersey
The New Jersey State Board of Accountancy (the Board) administers the process for becoming a CPA in the state. There are six main steps to complete in order to earn a CPA license in New Jersey.
- Complete 150 semester hours of college-level education in accounting.
- Accumulate the required experience.
- Pass the Uniform CPA Examination.
- Complete an orientation course in topics identified by the Board.
- Apply for a license.
- Receive a license.
1. Complete 150 semester hours of college-level education in accounting.
CPA candidates in New Jersey must complete 150 semester hours of education that includes the award of at least a bachelor’s degree with a concentration in accounting from an accredited institution. In order to qualify to take the Uniform CPA Exam, candidates should be able to demonstrate the completion of 24 semester hours in accounting as well as 24 semester hours in business courses other than accounting, either within or outside of the 150-hour requirement.
2. Accumulate the required experience.
Candidates for a New Jersey CPA license must complete at least one year (or 1,750 hours) of supervised full-time accounting experience or two years of part-time supervised accounting experience obtained after the receipt of a bachelor’s degree. The experience must be verified by the candidate’s supervisor(s), who must be a licensed CPA, on the license application.
3. Pass the Uniform CPA Examination.
The New Jersey State Board of Accountancy uses the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy (NASBA) to oversee and administer the Uniform CPA Exam application and testing process. The American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) Uniform CPA Exam can be taken when the candidate has completed 120 hours of education including a bachelor’s degree. Candidates who are ready to take the exam, which is a requirement for licensure in all 50 states, should apply through the NASBA web portal. Approved applicants will receive a Notice to Schedule to take the exam and must pass all four sections with a score of at least 75 within a rolling 18-month period.
4. Complete an orientation course in topics identified by the Board.
Either within the six months prior to, or within six months following, initial licensure, prospective and existing CPAs must complete an orientation course by an organization recognized by the Board.
5. Apply for a license.
Candidates who sit for the Uniform CPA Exam will automatically be mailed an application for licensure containing all required forms once NASBA has notified the Board of the candidate’s passage of the exam. Candidates may also access the application on the Board’s website. Note that a Statement of Experience completed by the candidate’s previous employer(s) for accounting experience is included in and required as part of the application. Candidates must also complete the included Request for Criminal History Record Information form for a background check as well as include the required application and registration fees.
6. Receive a license.
Once the Board verifies that all requirements have been met, candidates will receive their license to practice as a CPA. If not already taken, within six months of licensure, candidates must complete the orientation course mentioned in step 4.
CPA License Renewal and Continuing Education Information
CPA licenses in New Jersey are renewed on a triennial basis. At least 60 days prior to the expiration of the license, the Board will send the licensee a notice to renew. Renewal requires the completion of 120 credits of continuing professional education (CPE), at least 24 hours of which must be in accounting or auditing. You can find additional information on the Board’s website.
New Jersey CPA Salary and Job Outlook
The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) estimates that 39,820 accountants and auditors are currently employed in the state, which is among the states with the highest concentration of people employed in this profession.10,11 New Jersey is the third-highest paying state in the nation for accountants, with average annual salaries of $91,960.11 In metro areas this can be even higher; for example, accountants in the Newark metro area that includes New York and Jersey City earn an average of $102,090 per year, which is the top-paying metropolitan area for the occupation.11 Projections Central projects a 6.7% increase in New Jersey accounting and auditing jobs through 2028, which is close to the national projected increase of 6.4%.12
New Jersey CPA Salary by Metro Area
|Metro Area||Number Employed10||Average Annual Salary10|
|New York-Newark-Jersey City||120,490||$102,090|
Top-Ranked Schools with Master’s in Accounting Programs in New Jersey
Princeton Review’s Great Schools for Accounting Majors* 2020
- Rider University
- Seton Hall University
*With master’s in accounting programs.
US News & World Report’s Best MBA Accounting Programs 2021
- Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey-Newark and New Brunswick (#56 tie)
- Stevens Institute of Technology (#77 tie)
New Jersey Master’s in Accounting Program Comparison
Below we have compiled a table including information about all not-for-profit New Jersey colleges and universities offering a master’s degree in accounting. The graduation rate is for first-time undergraduates seeking a bachelor’s degree, but since it is widely considered to be an indicator of a school’s overall success, we have included it for comparison. Also please note that tuition per credit is based on in-state, on-campus tuition; per-credit rates may vary for out-of-state and online students.
|School Name||Accreditation||CPA Exam Pass Rate6||Master’s in Accounting Degree(s)||Acceptance Rate13||Grad Rate1||Online Options?||Tuition per Credit|
|Fairleigh Dickinson University-Florham Campus||AACSB||58.2%||MS-Accounting;|
|Fairleigh Dickinson University-Metropolitan Campus||AACSB||58.2%||MS-Accounting;|
|Montclair State University||AACSB||51.7%||BS/MS-Accounting*;|
|New Jersey City University||ACBSP||58.3%||MS-Accounting||N.Av.||41%||Yes||$756|
|Ramapo College of New Jersey||AACSB||N.Av.||MS-Accounting (MSAC)||N.Av.||72%||Yes||$737|
|Rider University||AACSB||51.9%||Master of Accountancy (MAcc);|
|Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey-Camden||AACSB||55.6%||Professional Master of Accountancy (PMAc)||N.Av.||65%||—||$900|
|Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey-Newark||AACSB||59.4%||Master of Accountancy (MACCY);|
|Saint Peter’s University||IACBE||N.Av.||Accelerated BS/BSBA to MSA;|
|Seton Hall University||AACSB||63.4%||MS-Accounting (MSAC);|
MS-Professional Accounting (MSPA);
|Thomas Edison State University||ACBSP||N.Av.||MBA-Accounting||N.Av.||N.Av.||Yes||$714|
|William Paterson University||AACSB||N.Av.||MBA-Accounting||N.Av.||55%||Yes||$746|
- * indicates combined program.
- — indicates none.
- N.Av. indicates no data available.
Select Schools in New Jersey with Master’s in Accounting Programs
Caldwell University offers a 30-credit Master of Science (MS) in Accounting that prepares students to qualify for CPA licensure in New Jersey as well as many other states. An undergraduate degree in business or a related subject is preferred, but those with a bachelor’s degree in another subject can be considered if they have completed certain prerequisite coursework prior to beginning the program. Three years of extensive business experience is also preferred for admission but can be waived by the Program Coordinator for strong applicants. GMAT scores are not required for admission. Caldwell also offers related degrees such as a 33-credit MBA with an Accounting Concentration as well as a combined 150-credit Bachelor of Science (BS)/MS in Accounting that can be entered in an undergraduate student’s junior year. Applicants to the BS/MS in Accounting must have a cumulative 3.0 GPA to be considered for admission.
The School of Accounting and Finance at Kean University’s College of Business and Public Management offers a Master of Science (MS) in Accounting designed to prepare students with or without an undergraduate education in business to take the Uniform CPA Exam and enter professional accounting careers after an undergraduate education in business. Students with an undergraduate education in another subject must complete additional courses. Depending on the degree candidate’s academic background, the MS in Accounting typically requires 30 to 36 credit hours to complete, of which at least 21 credit hours are in the core curriculum and nine credit hours are in electives. Core courses include Financial Accounting for Corporations; Law, Ethics, and Professional Accounting Practice; Auditing Information Systems; and Research Seminar in Public Accounting and Auditing Practice. Students are supported throughout their studies by the school’s Center for Academic Success. Kean University also offers a Bachelor of Science (BS) in Accounting.
The Rutgers Business School at Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey is one of the most respected business schools in the nation and offers several distinct master’s programs of study for aspiring accountants, including the Master of Accountancy (MACCY) with concentrations in Financial Accounting, Government Accounting, and Taxation. All students are encouraged to take part in the opportunities that these degree programs offer for hands-on experience and interaction with experienced business executives. Courses that students may take while pursuing the MACCY at Rutgers include Concepts in Auditing, Advanced Accounting Research, and Law and Legal Reasoning. Any of the graduate degrees offered by Rutgers Business School can give aspiring accountants an edge in the career market, especially since executives and top publications regularly rank the school and its graduates as among the best. Rutgers also offers a Master of Business Administration (MBA) in Professional Accounting at the Newark and New Brunswick locations as well as a Professional Master of Accountancy (PMAc) at the Camden campus. Online options are also available.
Online and Hybrid Programs
Rowan University’s Rohrer College of Business offers a Master of Business Administration (MBA) in Accounting with three format options. The MBA in Accounting degree can be taken fully face-to-face at the main campus in Glassboro, fully online via eight-week courses, or in a hybrid format, with 50% of coursework being online and 50% taking place at the Burlington County campus in Mount Laurel. Students will learn how to effectively lead a team, sharpening their verbal and written communication skills as well as practicing critical thinking, quantitative analysis, and technological applications. Rowan’s MBA in Accounting comprises 36 semester hours spread over 12 courses, 27 hours of which are core courses and nine semester hours of which are electives made up of accounting courses. Accounting courses include Government and Non-For-Profit Accounting; Intermediate Financial Accounting; and Financial Statement Analysis. A bachelor’s degree in any subject with a GPA of at least 2.5 is required for admission, along with GRE or GMAT scores with a minimum score of 450.
At Saint Peter’s University, there is a Master of Science (MS) in Accountancy that can be taken in a hybrid format. The MS in Accountancy is a 30-credit hour program with a focus on risk management and compliance. Most full-time students complete the degree within two years. Students who have an undergraduate degree in accounting will be prepared to sit for the Uniform CPA Exam. Courses are offered on the Jersey City campus on one evening or Saturday every week, which can be complemented by online coursework. Admission requirements include a bachelor’s degree with either a major in Accounting or select prerequisite coursework with a grade of “C” or higher. Also available at Saint Peter’s is a combined Master of Business Administration (MBA)/Master of Science in Accounting (MSA), which adds accounting-focused courses to the MBA program, and an accelerated Bachelor of Science (BS) or Bachelor of Science in Business Administration (BSBA) to MSA program, through which students can earn both degrees in five years.
Seton Hall University, through its Stillman School of Business, offers two master’s programs in accounting for aspiring professionals. The Master of Science in Accounting (MSAC) can be completed entirely online. It is specifically designed for students who do not hold a bachelor’s degree in accounting and are looking to meet the requirements to sit for the Uniform CPA Exam in New Jersey. The Master of Science in Professional Accounting (MSPA) is designed for students who completed an undergraduate accounting major. Both programs require a minimum of 30 credit hours to complete and include coursework in financial accounting, auditing, taxation, and management. Full-time students can complete the degree within one year, while part-time students typically complete all degree requirements within two years. The school also offers an MBA in Accounting that can be completed on campus or online, a 15-credit Graduate Certificate in Accounting, and a 12-credit Certificate in Graduate Taxation.
Top Accounting Firms for Graduates in New Jersey
- Withum: With offices in East Brunswick, Princeton, Red Bank, Saddle Brook, and Whippany, Withum is technology-driven and forward-thinking in its approach to serving clients.
- Marcum: A national accounting firm providing tax and business services across New Jersey.
- EisnerAmper: With locations in Iselin, Pennington, and Princeton, EisnerAmper is a full-service audit, accounting, consulting, advisory, and tax firm dedicated to helping clients position themselves for success.
New Jersey Accounting Associations
- New Jersey Society of Certified Public Accountants (NJCPA): The largest organization for New Jersey CPAs and prospective CPAs, offering over 500 continuing education programs each year to help CPAs meet their CE requirements and improve their services to clients.
- The National Association of Black Accountants New Jersey Chapter (NABA Inc.): Promotes and protects the needs of its members with a strong commitment to improving the future of accounting and finance professions.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do I become an accountant in New Jersey?
To become a CPA in New Jersey, you will need to gain 150 hours of college-level education including a bachelor’s degree and a concentration in accounting. You will also need to accumulate one to two years of supervised experience comprising at least 1,750 hours. Prospective accountants in the state will also need to pass the Uniform CPA Exam with a score of 75 or higher on all four parts and take an orientation course before applying for their license to be a CPA in New Jersey.
How much does a CPA make in New Jersey?
New Jersey CPAs earn an average of $91,960 per year, which is the third-highest salary in the country.11 The Newark metro area is the top-paying metro area in the country, with accountants and auditors in the area earning an average annual salary of $102,090 per year.11
What are the CPE requirements for New Jersey accountants?
To maintain your license as a CPA, you will need to complete at least 120 credits of continuing professional education (CPE) every three years. At least 24 hours of the 120 must be in accounting or auditing.
Montclair State University
1 Normal Ave
Montclair, NJ 07043
Student Review: “The accounting program at Montclair State University was very challenging to say the least but provided great knowledge that was necessary to pass the CPA test. Along with that, Montclair has an ample amount of connections that pertain to each major which is extremely helpful when it is time to find a job. I certainly liked my Auditing Theory Class and both levels of Intermediate Accounting because it was interesting and I wanted to learn. Other classes like Taxation were very dull and boring which made it more difficult because it was hard to grasp the material. Overall, I think Montclair has done a great job at helping mold students into full-time workers.” -Michael W., student at Montclair State University
7 College Ave
New Brunswick, NJ 08901
Student Review: “Rutgers New Brunswick was definitely an enriching experience. Literally all of the teachers I had here were certified CPAs, with a decade of experience. They always taught the material well and generally told lots of real world stories, but I thought that it was one of the weaker programs in the school. When I took stats and economics classes, I thought the professors were generally better, maybe because they had more practice teaching. Most accounting professors seemed to stick to the textbook material pretty verbatim. I felt like the classes were a bit large, most with 35 or more students, although my income tax accounting class was fairly small.” -Duanis G., student at Rutgers University
Student Review: “Overall, my experience the School of Accounting at Rutgers was a positive one. It is an environment that promotes learning and growth. Most of my professors seemed to have my best interest in mind. In my more difficult courses, such as cost accounting and tax accounting, there were tutoring courses available, which I needed. Rutgers offered several different clubs and organizations for students in my major that allowed us to socialize with each other, as well as gain the support we needed for our studies. One of the clubs provided us with real-life scenarios that we would encounter on the job, where we could apply concepts and skills that we learned in the classroom. I feel that the education I received at Rutgers adequately prepared me for my career. I received an internship with a firm my junior year, which the school helped me get. Upon graduation, the firm hired me full time at a salary of $50,000. I attribute my success to the education and support I received from Rutgers. I would highly recommend the Rutgers accounting program to anyone interested in creating a great future for themselves.” -student at Rutgers University
1. National Center for Education Statistics College Navigator: https://nces.ed.gov/collegenavigator/
2. Forbes Best Business Schools 2019: https://www.forbes.com/business-schools/list/2/
3. The Princeton Review. The Best 385 Colleges, 2020 Edition. The Princeton Review, 2019.
4. Public Accounting Report 2019 Top 50 Master’s Accounting Programs: https://wpcarey.asu.edu/sites/default/files/documents/par-grad-2019.pdf
5. US News & World Report Best MBA Accounting Programs 2021: https://www.usnews.com/best-graduate-schools/top-business-schools/accounting-rankings
6. National Association of State Boards of Accountancy. The NASBA Report on the CPA Exam: Candidate Performance on the Uniform CPA Examination, 2018 Edition. National Association of State Boards of Accountancy, Inc., 2019.
7. Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) International: https://www.aacsb.edu/
8. Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP): https://acbsp.org/
9. International Accreditation Council for Business Education (IACBE): https://iacbe.org/
10. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment Statistics, May 2019 State Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates, New Jersey: https://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes_nj.htm
11. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment Statistics, May 2019 Occupational Employment and Wages, Accountants and Auditors: https://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes132011.htm
12. Projections Central, Long Term Occupational Projections: https://projectionscentral.org/Projections/LongTerm
13. US News & World Report Best Business Schools 2021: https://www.usnews.com/best-graduate-schools/top-business-schools