Bachelor of Science in Accounting
Learning the universal language of business.
Accounting is the language that defines transactions so that they can be used to describe business activities in a commonly understood format. Learning the language allows you to communicate and understand the financial operations of all types of organizations. As an accounting major, you will learn how to create, maintain, and audit a detailed and accurate system for the finances of a business or organization. Accounting students study accounting theory and learn how to analyze the financial position of a firm or organization.
What You'll Learn
A Bachelor of Science in Accounting will provide the foundation to understand how to create, maintain, or evaluate the financial record of any organization.
This 120-hour program teaches students to show proficiency in accounting technology, demonstrate research skills, defend proposed solutions to accounting problems, and improve communication skills.
Areas of study covered in the program include:
- Corporate Accounting
- Government Accounting
- Information Systems
- Tax Planning/Compliance
- Assurance and Tax
The career possibilities are endless with an accounting degree. What you learn at LSU will help you thrive as an accountant in a small business or a major company. Regardless of your path, accountants are some of the most influential decision-makers in a company.
Career options include:
- Tax Professional
- External Auditor
- Financial Manager
- Budget Director
- Internal Auditor
- Investment Strategist
The type of employers that hire our graduates include public accounting firms, government agencies, banks/financial institutions, energy companies, healthcare industry, manufacturing companies, and consulting practices.
Employers who hire our graduates include:
Median Salary for Accountants
- U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (2021)
Employment Growth for Accountants and Auditors
- U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (2020-30)
More About the Program
The BS in Accounting program meets the Louisiana educational requirements to take the CPA exam. To apply for a Louisiana CPA license, students must also complete an additional 30 hours beyond the accounting BS program. Many students choose to earn the additional 30 hours by enrolling in LSU’s Master of Accountancy (MAcc) program. The State Board of CPAs of Louisiana will evaluate each application in its entirety to make a final decision regarding licensure. Additional non-educational requirements such as work experience and character references may apply. For more information, visit the Louisiana state board’s website.
The LSU Department of Accounting offers the accounting research and ethics courses that are required by the Texas State Board of Public Accountancy. Students completing both BS and MAcc degrees can meet the educational requirements to take the CPA exam as a Texas candidate as long as the required accounting research and ethics courses are taken as part of the coursework. The Texas State Board of Public Accountancy will evaluate each applicant in its entirety to make a final decision regarding licensure. Additional non-educational requirements such as work experience, fingerprinting, and character references may apply. For more information, visit the Texas state board website.
Students who are interested in being licensed as a CPA in any other state besides Louisiana or Texas should contact the respective state board before enrolling in LSU’s accounting program. LSU has not determined whether this program meets the educational requirements for licensure in other states. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
LSU’s Department of Accounting internship program provides course credit for a wide variety of student internship experiences. Students apply academic knowledge to real-world situations through positions with local, regional, and national employers each semester. Internships allow students to gain on-the-job experience in accounting, and many result in full-time employment. Other benefits of the internship program include:
- Opportunities for travel
- Excellent pay
- Networking with students from universities across the country
- Relationships with potential employers
- Three hours of course credit
- The program is available any semester to accounting majors in the program for at least one full semester before the internship.
Steps to Participate:
To participate in the accounting internship program, a student must:
- Be a declared accounting major for at least one complete semester prior to the internship experience;
- Have a 3.0 overall GPA and a 3.0 GPA in accounting courses;
- Have completed ACCT 2001, 3001, and 3021 (Intermediate II) with a grade of “C-” or better;
- Have received no internship credit for any other course at the current enrollment level (UG or Grad).
Students who plan to take time off from school to complete an internship in the fall or spring semester should consult Amy Caillouet in the LSU Olinde Career Center or call 225-578-5672. She can help answer questions about TOPS, university letters, other fee deferrals, and insurance matters.
If a student meets the eligibility requirements for the internship program, the student must secure employment. To receive credit for the internship, the position must:
- Be new employment or increase responsibilities of an existing position (internship credit will not be awarded for previous experience or full-time employment);
- Have a direct application to the accounting degree;
- Be directly supervised by a professional with accounting certification (e.g., CPA, CIA, CMA);
- Require at least 20 hours of work per week.
On-campus student work positions require express prior approval of the employment by the internship coordinator.
The Office of Business Student Success Professional Development team can assist by reviewing résumés and cover letters, discussing what to expect during the interview process, or exploring other professional development topics. Appointments can be scheduled through a student’s Handshake account. To access the appointment scheduler, look for “Career Center” at the top of the page. Appointment options are available through this drop-down menu.
To be approved for internship credit, a student must complete the “Request for Permission to Earn Academic Credit for Internship” form. Completed forms must be returned to Laura Wiley, accounting internship coordinator, in Business Education Complex 2800, before the last day to add courses for the semester. After reviewing the internship, she will email the student to indicate approval or denial.
All students who secure internships, whether for credit or not, must complete the internship survey.
Students must register for the appropriate internship class, ACCT 4231 (undergraduate) or 7231 (MAcc). Before the payment deadline, students must verify that ACCT 4231 or 7231 has been added to their course schedule and must follow instructions for fee payment. Students are responsible for enrolling and paying for the internship course. Students will not be added to an internship course after the last date on which to add courses.
Note: Credit can be awarded for both internal audit and accounting department internships. Degree-level can influence this department directive.
- ACCT 4231: Internship in Accounting (3)
Prereq.: permission of instructor and department chair required. Grade of “C-” or above in ACCT 3021. Pass-fail grading. Credit will not be given for this course and ACCT 4333. At least 20 hours per week of learning experience in accounting under the general supervision of a faculty member and direct supervision of a professional in accounting. Grading is based on the faculty member’s evaluation, a written report by the professional supervisor, and a written report by the student.
- ACCT 7231: Internship in Accounting (3)
Prereq.: permission of instructor and department chair required. Pass-fail grading. Credit will not be given for this course and ACCT 7333. At least 20 hours per week of learning experience in accounting under the general supervision of a faculty member and direct supervision of a professional in accounting. Grading is based on the faculty member’s evaluation, a written report by the professional supervisor, and a written report by the student.
While at work, students represent LSU and will be responsible for their actions under the LSU Code of Student Conduct.
Throughout the internship, students must keep a journal of their activities, the accounting principles they apply, and the experience they gain. Journals are due in the internship coordinator’s office by the last day of classes for the current semester, even if employment has not ended. If mailing in, allow at least one week for the journal to route through campus mail, even for FedEx, etc. Grading requirements demand that the information be submitted before the semester’s end. Review journal requirements.
Supervisors will be sent an evaluation document by the internship coordinator that must be completed and returned before issuing grades. The report is due in the internship coordinator’s office by the last day of the current semester’s class, even if employment has not ended.
NOTE: Internships in internal audit are handled through a separate process. If you are an internal auditing student interested in an internship, please visit the Center for Internal Auditing Internship Program.
The Department of Accounting offers accounting majors the option of earning both a bachelor’s and master’s degree and completing a spring internship in five years. Taking advantage of this opportunity requires some planning as follows:
- Complete the bachelor’s degree in three-and-a-half years, graduating in December. This may require taking intersession or summer school courses.
- Interview for a spring internship one year in advance. For example, if you want to complete an internship in spring 2023, then you must interview during the spring 2022 semester. All interviews are conducted through LSU’s Olinde Career Center using Handshake.
- Apply for LSU’s Master of Accountancy program during the last semester of the bachelor’s program. The deadline for spring admission to the program is around October 15.
- Register for the internship course, ACCT 7231, and complete the Internship Permission Form during the last semester of the bachelor’s program. Submit this form to the internship coordinator, Laura Wiley.
- Complete the master’s program in three semesters or one-and-a-half years.
Completing both degrees will fulfill the 150-hour education requirement for the CPA license. Work experience through an internship will provide our students with real-world experience and networking opportunities with accounting professionals. For our students to maintain full-time status during the spring internship, the master’s level accounting courses will be offered as condensed seven-week courses. Therefore, part of the spring internship semester will be completing a 10-week internship, and the other part will be completing two seven-week master’s accounting courses.
Undergraduate accounting majors who are currently enrolled have the opportunity to participate in this internship option.
Accounting majors are allowed to earn internship course credit at both the graduate and undergraduate levels. Therefore, accounting majors can participate in the Internal Audit Program internships or another type of undergraduate internship and also participate in the spring graduate-level internship option.
For more information on getting started with this program, contact Laura Wiley.
"I chose LSU because I heard that it had an excellent accounting program, and I believe that accounting is a discipline that could afford me an opportunity to get a meaningful job after graduation. I have not been disappointed. My accounting professors were very knowledgeable, and helped me grow as a student and transition into a professional in the field of public accounting."
— Hayden Livaudais, Class of 2021
Internal Auditing Minor
Enhance your degree with a minor in internal auditing from a world-renowned program.
The internal auditing minor is open to all LSU students. Students who minor in internal audit are exposed to activity-based learning that teaches them how to add value, facilitate change, assess risk, enhance corporate governance, and improve business processes. As one of five schools in the world (one of two in the U.S.) deemed a “Center for Internal Audit Success” by the Institute of Internal Auditors, LSU is known worldwide as a premier university for internal audit education.
Your Next Step
To apply for a Louisiana CPA license, students must complete 30 hours beyond the BS accounting program. Many students choose to earn the additional 30 hours by enrolling in LSU’s Master of Accountancy (MAcc) program.