A description of some of the most popular accounting certifications is given below. Check out a list of certifying agencies and their Web sites.
The Certified Public Accountant's Certificate (CPA)
The CPA certificate is recognized around the world as the most prestigious professional credential an accountant may obtain. The certificate is awarded to candidates of good moral character who meet specific education and experience requirements (which vary from state to state) and pass an examination. The CPA examination has four parts : Business Environment & Concepts, Auditing & Attestation, Financial Accounting and Reporting, and Regulation. Those who accept the challenge to become CPAs will find the MAcc degree from the University of Central Arkansas most useful. Historically, UCA graduates have performed well on the CPA exam with an above average pass rate.
Certified Internal Auditor (CIA)
The Institute of Internal Auditors (IIA) is recognized as the worldwide leader, authority, and principal educator for internal auditing professionals. Earning an IIA certification symbolizes your competency, commitment to and achievement in internal auditing. Becoming a Certified Internal Auditor validates your status as a professional within the internal audit field. (source: www.theiia.org).
Certified Management Accountant (CMA)
The CMA designation represents a broad business competency and mastery of the management-level skills required to add value, drive business performance, and build quality financial practices within organizations. The CMA credential indicates a commitment to excellence based on a strong, ethical foundation and dedication to lifelong learning. (source: www.imanet.org).
Certified Fraud Examiner (CFA)
The Certified Fraud Examiner (CFE) credential denotes proven expertise in fraud prevention, detection, and deterrence. Members with the CFE credential experience professional growth and quickly position themselves as leaders in the global anti-fraud community. In fact, the ACFE’s 2006 Compensation Guide for Anti-Fraud Professionals reveals that CFEs earn 18% more than non-CFEs in similar jobs. (source: www.acfe.org).
Certified Information Systems Auditor (CISA)
The Certified Information Systems Auditor (CISA) is the cornerstone certification of the Information Systems Audit and Control Association. The CISA certification has been earned by more than 60,000 professionals since inception and is for the IS audit, control, assurance and/or security professionals who wish to set themselves apart from their peers. Since 1978, the CISA certification has been renowned as the globally recognized achievement for those who control, monitor and assess an organization’s information technology and business systems. (source: www.isaca.org).