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Master of Science in Professional Accountancy

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MSPAccy Curriculum

Curriculum for the Marist MSPAccy Graduate Program

The Master of Science in Professional Accountancy is a 30 credit program. If admitted in the fall or spring, students will take distance learning courses and in-class courses during the subsequent summer at the main campus in Poughkeepsie.

The following courses may be taken in the Spring or Fall semester:
• Elective (Internship in Accounting (8 weeks)
• MBA 664 Economics (8 weeks)
• MBA 665 Analytics Bootcamp (15 weeks)
• Elective (Ethics for Accountants (8 weeks)

These courses are taken in the Summer Term (two five-week sessions):
• Business Valuations
• Advanced Auditing
• Accounting Information Systems
• International Accounting Standards
• Accounting Research is taken over the two five-week sessions.

A student may elect (but will be strongly encouraged) to take an additional accelerated Tax Research course at the end of the two five-week sessions to enable them to complete a total of 18 credits in the summer term.

View the Summer and Fall Admission Course Sequence schedule.

Program Requirements:

Accounting Core (9 Credits)

MSPA 601

Accounting Research

3 Credits

MSPA 610

Tax Research

3 Credits

MSPA 620

Advanced Auditing

3 Credits


Related Fields (9 Credits)

MBA 664


3 Credits

MSPA 630

Business Valuations

3 Credits

MBA 665

Analytics Bootcamp

3 Credits


Electives (12 Credits)

MSPA 602

Internship in Accounting

3 Credits

MBA 688

Ethical Management of Organization

3 Credits

MSPA 621

Accounting Information Systems

3 Credits

MSPA 603

International Financial Accounting Standards

3 Credits


Total Credit Requirement for Graduation 30 Credits

Course Descriptions

MBA 664 Economics
Economics provides an understanding of the context of all business decisions and operations, including micro and macro. Economics can be usefully applied at many levels, but this course focuses on economics for the MBA. Students will be introduced to key concepts in microeconomics, such as productivity, costs, returns to scale, and market structures. These concepts will be applied in more depth via contemporary industries examples. Macro concepts will include GDP, employment, inflation/deflation, and equilibrium GDP with tools such as ISLM. The range of macro policy options available for economic stabilization and growth by countries will be discussed, including monetary and fiscal policy, with specific country applications in international context. There will also be consideration of current debates regarding various policy approaches

MBA 665 Analytics Bootcamp
This course will introduce a range of data-driven disciplines and technologies to help enterprise users make better, faster business decisions. Students in this course will be exposed to spreadsheet modeling, data visualization, rudiments of data management and data analysis, and an introduction to data mining and predictive modeling, together with the statistics necessary to use the tools. The course will be hands-on, using state of the art software, with real-world examples from different functional areas and business domains

MBA 688 Ethical Management of Organizations
This course will introduce students to the basic concepts of ethics. Students will examine ethical frameworks as they relate to business, the environment, the consumer, and the individual with an organization. Students will also learn to apply these frameworks using moral decision-making techniques to real-world case studies. The class will offer students practical tools to help them recognize and address challenging ethical decisions.

MSPA 601 Accounting Research
The goal of this course is to give the student the opportunity to use various aspects of your analytical accounting skills to analyze real-world problems. It is an independent study in which teams address accounting issues and research authoritative literature to prepare suggested solutions to the issue. It is an excellent course for professionals who enter public accounting in that it helps a student develop a methodology in researching the authoritative literature.

MSPA 602 Internship in Accounting
Students apply theory to practice through accounting work experience with CPA firms and other organizations, both profit and not-for-profit. Students work under the supervision of an accounting faculty member.

MSPA 603 International Financial Accounting Standards
Global competition and the continuing integration of the world's financial markets require accountants to have knowledge of the International Financial Accounting Standards (IFRS) established by the International Accounting Standards Board. Accountants will be required to access financial information included in the financial statements of foreign companies, specifically those foreign companies registered with the U. S. Securities and Exchange Commission that file financial statements based on IFRS. Additionally, accountants are required to know IFRS for the Certified Public Accountants exam.

MSPA 610 Tax Research
This course covers the tax research environment including rules and ethics in tax practice. Emphasis is on learning how to research tax problems by locating, understanding and analyzing source materials such as the Internal Revenue Code, IRS Regulations, and Court Cases.

MSPA 620 Advanced Auditing
Advanced Auditing examines the control and security of accounting information systems from an auditing perspective. Objectives include understanding the basics of how computing systems operate and the risk associated with those systems, types of physical and logical security controls, an auditor's objective of performing an audit of a computerized information system, and other areas of technological importance. This course includes the impact of IT on the audit process and selected topics in auditing. Additionally, cases studies addressing computer fraud are discussed with the objective of providing students with insight into computer abuses and breakdown on IT internal controls.

MSPA 621 Accounting Information Systems
This course addresses the use of information systems in the accounting process with an emphasis on information computer-based information technology systems and internal controls. Areas of interest include (1) analytical tools necessary to evaluate users' accounting information needs and (2) the design, implementation, and maintenance of accounting information systems to support business processes and cycles. Topics include components of contemporary accounting information systems; security and internal controls.

MSPA 630 Business Valuations
The focus of this course is on valuation and value creation. It consists of two inter-related components: financial statements and asset valuation. It starts with a general discussion of the financial environment. It continues with the study of financial statements and comprehensive ratio analysis of financial statements. Further, it discusses the determination of interest rates, the relationship between risk and return, and the discounted cash flow method of asset valuation, which is then applied to the valuation of financial assets (stocks and bonds) and the valuation of real assets (capital budgeting). It ends with a discussion of exchange rate determination and parity conditions in international finance. The course also discusses business ethics and applies big data analytics using the tools the students have been exposed to in the program.


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Ernst & Young
Incoming FSO Assurance Staff

I found the ease of the transition from undergraduate school to graduate school at Marist most beneficial. More specifically, I was able to establish relationships with a majority of the wonderful faculty involved with the MSPAccy program.