Can I Get a Masters in Accounting with a Bachelors in Economics?

Many people earn a baccalaureate degree in one discipline, and decide that they want to earn a master’s degree in another discipline. Can it be done? As strange as it may seem, many master’s degree programs require that candidates have baccalaureate degrees, but it doesn’t matter in which discipline the bachelor’s degree is earned. Even the Master’s in Accounting (MAcc) programs do not require that the candidates have bachelor’s degrees in accounting. Degrees in philosophy, economics and English qualify. However, people with bachelor degrees in other disciplines may be required to complete prerequisite courses in basic accounting, pre-calculus and business statistics before being admitted to MAcc programs.

Resource: Top 10 Best Online Master’s of Accounting Degree Programs

Requirements to Enter MAcc Degree Programs

In order to be admitted to a master in accounting program, the candidate must have a baccalaureate degree in any discipline. Some schools require work experience and a qualifying GPA in undergraduate work.

In addition, some schools require that the candidates pass the Graduate Record Examination or the Graduate Management Admissions Test. These tests assess the candidate’s analytical, reading, writing, critical thinking and other skills. Candidates who wish to enter schools that require either of these tests may find free practice exams online by using a Google search. Candidates may also do a Google search to find schools that do not require these exams.

Curriculum for the MAcc Programs

The curriculum for the master in accounting degree varies with each school, and the student’s chosen track. The track refers to an accounting specialization, such as auditing or taxes. Some schools offer a track specifically for students with bachelor’s degrees in areas other than accounting.

The master in accounting program is usually 30 semester hours and may be completed in one year. Students with bachelor degrees in areas other than accounting may require additional time.

University of North Carolina at Charlotte Professional Track

There are many great schools out there offering the Masters in Accounting.  As an example of what a typical curriculum might look like, we’ll examine the University of North Carolina at Charlotte Professional Track.  This curriculum is designed for students whose bachelor’s degree is not in accounting. It is designed for those who want to be professional accountants, and prepare for the CPA exam. Since the accounting portion of the CPA exam is taken from material covered in Principles of Accounting and Intermediate Financial Accounting, candidates must prepare for the CPA exam at the undergraduate level. Those who do not wish to become CPAs should look for schools with less stringent accounting requirements for admission.

The Curriculum

  • Prerequisites: Intermediate Financial Accounting I and II with B or better in both classes.
  • ACCT 5220 Income Tax
  • ACCT 6120 Taxation of Corporations and Shareholders
  • ACCT 6220 Financial Statement Auditing
  • ACCT 6260 Advanced Financial Accounting I
  • ACCT 6270 Advanced Financial Accounting II
  • ACCT 6280 International Accounting
  • ACCT 6### Business Environment and Concepts
  • Plus three additional accounting or elective classes


People with bachelor’s degrees in economics or any other discipline can get a master’s in accounting. However, they may require more time to earn the degree. Since schools have different admission requirements, candidates should assess their goals to determine the schools and prerequisite courses that meet their needs.

Further Reading: $51,000 per Year: Be an Accountant or Get a Masters?

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