Accountancy Certificate

The College of Professional Studies offers a thirty-six credit Certificate in Accountancy through the School of Business. The program consists of twelve (12) courses: six (6) required courses and six (6) elective courses.

The Accountancy Certificate allows those with bachelor's degrees in liberal arts or other non-business majors to acquire accounting expertise. It is designed for both individuals wishing to pursue a career in business or government accounting and the self-employed who require a stronger accounting background.

The accounting credits earned through the Accountancy Certificate Program will assist those who wish to sit for the Pennsylvania CPA examination. Please review the information below regarding changes to the educational requirements for the Pennsylvania CPA Exam (effective January 1, 2012).

Core Requirements (18.0 Credits/6 Courses):

VSB 2004 Financial Accounting: Introduces generally accepted accounting principles and both the creation and analysis of financial statements. Students are exposed to the importance of accounting in making decisions such as those related to business, investing, and financing.

VSB 3006 Principles of Managerial Accounting: How management accounting information can be used to help firms achieve strategic goals and profitability objectives. Use of an entrepreneurial perspective to examine how managers apply risk measurement and management techniques to business planning and control systems. Case-based learning to help students develop communication, technology, and team work.

ACC 2310 Intermediate Accounting I: Intensive study and application of GAAP for asset valuation, income measurement, and financial statement presentation for business organizations, and the processes through which these principles evolve. Each topic under GAAP compared to IFRS counterpart. Coverage of topics essential to preparing, reading, understanding, interpreting and using financial statements. Extensive reliance on case method.

ACC 2320 Intermediate Accounting II: Continues the intensive study and application of GAAP for asset valuation, income measurement, and financial statement presentation begun in ACC 2310. Selected accounting and consulting issues. Correction of financial statements, income taxes, pensions, segment reporting, cash-flow disclosures, debt issuance and amortization, leases, and investments. As with ACC 2310, each topic under GAAP compared to IFRS counterpart.

ACC 2360 Federal Income Tax: An introduction to federal income taxation with primary emphasis on the tax implications of business transactions. Objectives of the course are to explore tax-policy issues and to develop a basic understanding of federal income tax laws, income tax planning, and the impact of taxes on business decisions.

ACC 2430 Auditing: Auditing standards employed in verification of and reporting on financial statements, evaluation of controls, statistical sampling, substantive testing, legal liability and professional responsibilities, and professional standards of ethics. Includes written and oral group case assignments and application of computer technology.


Electives (18.0 Credits/6 Courses):

ACC 2340 Accounting Information Systems: This course offers both a conceptual overview and hands-on experience with a variety of AIS related material. Topics covered include: Semantic modeling and event driven accounting information systems (AIS); development, documentation, control and audit of AIS, with particular reference to the COBIT framework; an overview of XBRL and its role in financial reporting; the use of database management software and accounting software in developing modern AIS.

ACC 2450 Advanced Accounting: Theories and techniques used for specialized accounting problems, with emphasis on business combinations, consolidations, multinational corporations, not-for-profit entities partnerships, and issues related to solvency and liquidation and financial fraud. Restricted to Accounting majors and minors.

ACC 2470 Cost Accounting: Introduction to modern cost accounting systems and the accounting information needs of managers, including: costing approaches (job-order process, standard, and absorption); cost behavior analysis; differential costs for decision-making; activity-based costing (ABC) and activity-based management (ABM); performance evaluation; and, issues related to quality. Group work and case analysis (both oral and written) required.

ACC 2480 Advanced Taxes: Advanced federal income tax topics and issues pertaining to individuals, partnerships, corporations, and estates and trusts. Emphasis on tax planning and tax research.

VSB 2007 Corporate Responsibility & Regulation: Examines law, ethics, corporate responsibility, and business regulation. Studies the sources, substantive principles, and evolving nature of law, and its role in ethical business decision making.

VSB 2009 Principles of Finance: The theory and techniques of financial management. Financial markets; financial statements and analysis; time value of money; interest rates; bond valuation; risk and return; equity valuation; cost of capital; capital budgeting; working capital management.

Visit the Admissions webpage to view all admissions requirements. Once you have reviewed the process and requirements, you may apply to your program of interest.

Requirements for the Certificate in Accountancy:

  • To be eligible for this certificate, you must possess a bachelor's degree from an accredited institution.
  • Students are required to have completed any prerequisite courses necessary (indicated in Villanova's Undergraduate Catalog) for any particular course in the certificate program. 
  • A maximum of four (4) courses may be transferred in from the following four – Principles of Financial Accounting, Principles of Managerial Accounting, Corporate Responsibility, and Principles of Finance. No other course substitutions will be allowed. All upper-level courses in the certificate program must be completed at Villanova University.  
  • Pennsylvania CPA candidates must have a bachelor’s or master’s degree and complete at least 150 credit hours, with 36 semester-credits in accounting subjects.
    • These subjects include accounting and auditing, business law, finance, and tax subjects acceptable to the Pennsylvania State Board of Accountancy (SBOA).
  • Accounting-related credits can be accomplished through undergraduate, graduate, or a combination of both levels of study.



Contact Information

Villanova University
College of Professional Studies
800 E. Lancaster Avenue
Vasey Hall, Room 104
Villanova, PA 19085
Phone: 610-519-4300
Fax:     610-519-7910

Maps & Directions to Campus


When I started the program at Villanova, I was an accounts receivable clerk at Urban Outfitters home office, working for their Free People brand. During my second semester at Nova they moved me into the accounting dept as the staff accountant. In March, I was promoted to Free People Senior Accountant for Retail and Direct to Consumer distribution channels.  In my new role, I am heading up all accounting for our 100+ stores and our website. Pursuing the accounting certificate has already paid off, I am so glad that I made the decision to go for it. 

Emily Williams