Dwight Hansen, Associate Professor of Business Administration and Economics Coe's two unique accounting majors, Managerial Accounting and Public Accounting, are designed to prepare students for career paths in public, private, governmental and not-for-profit accounting, and to allow students to meet state educational requirements for certification as a public accountant. The dual-degree program was designed in consultation with an Accounting Advisory Board comprised of several prominent local and regional public accountants. Students interested in Managerial Accounting have no problem completing the major in four years, but completing the 150-semester-hour Public Accounting major in four years requires students to work closely with their academic advisors and may require students to take an additional course some semesters or a May Term course during their time at Coe. Many Public Accounting majors choose instead to complete the major by enrolling in an extra semester at Coe at a deeply discounted tuition rate.

All accounting courses in the Department are taught by faculty with CPAs and practical experience who are committed to ensuring the program addresses the unique business challenges of the twenty-first century. For example, recent curriculum changes include expanded coverage of international accounting topics and the addition of a course on accounting fraud. In addition, because the accounting faculty at Coe regularly teach upper-level accounting courses typically offered only at larger universities, our accounting majors graduate with the best of both worlds – a strong liberal arts education from a nationally recognized liberal arts college and a deep understanding of the “language of business” gained through interactions with an experienced, committed faculty.

All accounting majors at Coe take the following core courses:

BUS 205 Principles of Accounting I
BUS 215 Principles of Accounting II
ECO 205 Principles of Macroeconomics
ECO 215 Principles of Microeconomics
BUS 235 Computer Applications in Accounting
BUS 240 Statistical Analysis
BUS 315 Business Law I
BUS 405 Intermediate Accounting I
BUS 415 Intermediate Accounting II

In addition to completing the core courses, students interested in graduating with a Managerial Accounting major from Coe must complete at least three more accounting courses, two specifically in managerial accounting and one in auditing. Students interested in graduating with a Public Accounting major from Coe must complete the core courses and take at least seven additional accounting courses, including courses in tax accounting, auditing, managerial accounting, and a variety of other advanced topics, and at least one advanced seminar in management or business law.

Introductory courses in the accounting majors are limited to 20 to 25 students, and most upper-level accounting courses enroll 15 or fewer students. The accounting faculty offer multiple sections of the introductory accounting courses to facilitate the diverse schedules of Coe students and to ensure all students have an opportunity to make progress in the major. In addition, the small class sizes facilitate interactive learning and allow the accounting faculty to use a variety of teaching methods in their courses, both of which positively impact the ability of students to apply their accounting knowledge and skills in meaningful ways.

Outside the classroom, accounting majors apply their fundamental understanding of accounting to a wide range of internship opportunities and to programs such as the Department’s Birkey Investment Fund and Spellman Scholars summer research program. Upon graduation, many of our accounting majors sit for the CPA exam, and the pass rate for Coe students who sit for the CPA exam has historically exceeded the national average. In addition, our accounting graduates accept professional positions in local organizations, as well as in organizations throughout the United States and the world, in Big Four Public Accounting firms, in regional accounting firms, in governmental agencies, and in private industry. Opportunities include career paths as public accountants, tax analysts, internal auditors, managerial accountants, or financial analysts.