Accounting, a CPA in four years

Study accounting at Simpson College!

Top reasons why you should join us:

  • You will receive individualized attention in the classroom and in advising. Guest speakers, professional conferences, individual resume review, provide professional development opportunities.
  • Our broad based, liberal arts curriculum is designed with the general needs of employers in mind.  You will develop the skills you need to succeed in your career: accounting expertise and skills in critical thinking, analysis, and communication.
  • Our proximity to Des Moines and ongoing connections with alumni combine for outstanding internship opportunities.
  • Interested in a legal career?  Our 3+3 pathway allows you to complete both a BA at Simpson and JD at Drake Law in just 6 years!
  • 100% employment-that’s what success means in accounting at Simpson College.  In our survey of spring 2014 and 2015 accounting graduates, all respondants affirmatively stated that they had found full-time employment with 95% working in an accounting-related role. (84% and 78% response rate for 2014 and 2015)

Careers in Accounting

Public AccountingPrivate Accounting
Tax StaffInternal/External Auditor
Staff Auditor

Financial Accountant

Consultant StaffCost Accountant
Governmental AccountingConsulting/Small Business
Internal Revenue Agent (IRS)Business Accountant
Tax Specialist (IRS)Financial Accountant
Staff Accountant (SEC)Forensic Accountant


Simpson College students have participated in a wide variety of internships and have secured full-time positions with prominent employers. The following are examples of the great opportunities students have taken advantage of.

  • KPMG
  • EY
  • pwc
  • Deloitte
  • Wells Fargo Home Mortgage
  • Hy Vee Corporate
  • Principal
  • John Deere Credit
  • TD&T CPAs and Advisors, P.C.
  • MidAmerican Energy Company
  • Nationwide Insurance
  • State of Iowa Auditors Office

Want to learn more?

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Success Stories

Mike Miller ’11- Head Of Finance In Liberia For Mary’s Meals

All the classes I took at Simpson contributed to having this type of job. You have to learn to think on your own. More…

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Course requirements for the major and minor in accounting:

Accounting Major

Students will complete twelve courses plus the Capstone as follows:


  • Econ 100 Principles of Economics
  • Econ135 Applied Statistics (Prerequisite: One of: MATH 105/105T, 130/130T, ACT math subscore of 22 or higher, or Math SAT of 530 or higher.)
  • Acct 201 Introduction to Accounting
  • Acct 250 Introduction to Accounting Systems (Pre-req: ACCT 201)
  • Acct 341 Intermediate Accounting I (Pre-req: ACCT 201, 250)
  • Acct 342 Intermediate Accounting II (Pre-req: ACCT 341)
  • Acct 345 Advanced Accounting Topics (Pre-req: ACCT 342)
  • Acct 353 Cost Accounting (Pre-req: ACCT 201, 250)
  • Acct 354 Individual Taxation (Pre-req: ACCT 201, 250)
  • Acct 358 Auditing (Pre-req: ACCT 341, 342)
  • Magt 131 Management Concepts
  • Magt 231 Business Law and Business Ethics I (Pre-req: MAGT 131 and sophomore standing.)


  • Acct 385 Capstone in Accounting (Pre-req: MAGT 131, 231; ECON 101,135; ACCT 201, 250, 341, 342, 345, 353, 354, 358)

A student who majors in Accounting with the CPA Concentration may not also major in management. CPA Concentration Students will complete five courses as follows:


  • Magt 232 Business Law and Business Ethics II (Pre-req: MAGT 231)
  • Magt 333 Organization & Behavior (Pre-Req: MAGT 131 and junior standing)
  • Econ 339 Corporate Finance (Pre-req: ECON 100 or 101 or 102; ACCT 201; ECON 135
  • CIS/MAGT 145 Management Information Systems and Business Intelligence
  • Elective: Choose one 300-level Accounting Course


Accounting Minor

Students will complete five courses as follows:


  • Acct 201 Introduction to Accounting
  • Acct 250 Introduction to Accounting Systems (Pre-req Acct 201)
  • Acct 341 Intermediate Accounting I (Pre-req Acct 201, Acct 250)
  • Acct 342 Intermediate Accounting II (Pre-req Acct 341)
  • Elective: Choose one 300-level Accounting Course*


Want to learn more?  Contact our faculty!


*All prerequisites must be taken to achieve the minor designation. This may result in more than 18 hours of course credits to fulfill the minor. Simpson College requires students to complete at least 128 semester hours of coursework prior to graduation. Students who graduate with a major in Accounting may apply to take the Certified Public Accounting (CPA) exam in Iowa. Upon acceptance, students may sit for the CPA exam; however, students who pass the Iowa exam must have accumulated a total of 150 semester hours of college credit before they will be awarded a CPA certificate. State accounting boards differ in their certification requirements, so students are advised to determine individual state requirements. This requirement exceeds the Simpson College graduation requirements for Accounting majors by 22 credits. Students may complete the 150 hours in four years at Simpson, in more than four years at Simpson, or in a master's program at another institution. The department has completed articulation agreements with other institutions to ease the transfer process and to reduce graduate level requirements. See the department chair for information on these combined BA/MBA, BA/MS, and BA/MA programs.