Accounting Advising Guide

College of Business: Accounting Concentration

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What is Accounting?

Accounting is the language of business.  Accounting records, classifies and summarizes financial information for companies and organizations.  Accountants are responsible for determining the overall financial health of an entity. Without accounting, organizations would have no basis or foundation upon which daily and long-term decisions could be made. The budgets, financial reports, and taxes for all business activities such as capital investment, research and development, marketing, operations, and human resources stem from the work of accountants.

The accounting profession offers boundless opportunities for men and women to build exciting and rewarding careers. As America’s most trusted information professionals, accountants can be found in every industry from entertainment to medicine.

Career Opportunities in Accounting

The Bureau of Labor Statistics forecasts employment of accountants to grow by 13% through 2022.   Our recent graduates have been employed by CPA firms, steel manufacturers, banks, hospitals, shipbuilders, and state, local, and federal government entities.  An accounting degree opens up opportunities not only for a career in accounting but all other business fields.  Many students earning an undergraduate degree in accounting go on to earn their Master of Accounting degree or attend Law School.   In most states to earn a CPA license, you must have 150 hours of college credit.

Salary Trends in Accounting

According to Robert Half's 2016 Salary Guide for Accounting and Finance, the average salary for an accountant in the Mobile region with three years of experience is approximately $53,000.   The average salary in the Mobile region for an accountant with 10 years of experience is $83,000.  You can check out national salary ranges for more than 400 positions in corporate and public accounting, finance, banking, and financial service by going to -


High School Preparation

Students who want to major in accounting should develop critical thinking skills and take college-prep courses in high school.   Students should have an adequate background in mathematics and be able to quickly understand and comprehend information.   The National First Time Pass Rate on the CPA exam is 55%.  Students are not only tested on accounting but also their knowledge of Economics, Finance, Operations Management and Business Law. Accounting is not easy but your professors at South Alabama will adequately help you prepare to be successful.


How to Major in Accounting

Every accounting major will complete the general education requirements for all business majors as well as the 200 and 300 Level Business Core.  All accounting majors must complete the Professional Readiness Engagement Program (PREP) and an internship prior to graduation.

General Education Requirements for Business Majors (38 Hours)

200 Level Business Core (24 Hours)

300 Level Business Core (18 Hours)

PREP Program (3 Hours)

Accounting Specific Requirements (24 Hours)

ACC 331 Taxation of Individuals

ACC 341 Accounting Information Systems

ACC 371 Financial Accounting I

ACC 372 Financial Accounting II

ACC 381 Cost Accounting

ACC 416 International & Advanced Accounting

ACC 451 Auditing

ACC 496 Accounting Internship

Accounting electives (6 Hours – Choose Two of the following)

ACC 432 Taxation of Partnerships and Corporations

ACC 452 Advanced Auditing

ACC 461 Accounting for Government and Not-For-Profit

Business Electives (6 Hours)

MGT 485/486 (3 Hours)


Special Programs, Co-ops, Internships

The Professional Readiness Engagement Program, PREP for short, is a new student support initiative in the Mitchell College of Business, designed to meet the professional development needs of undergraduate students majoring in business as they transition into the workplace.  PREP provides quality experiential activities, career interest exploration, and advanced educational experiences, including professional development courses, internships and mentoring experiences, and workshops.

All business students are required to complete three one-hour courses to learn critical soft skills, including business and office etiquette, networking, presentation skills, interviewing skills,  resume design, and much more. The program culminates with every student completing a required internship. There are also regularly scheduled professional development workshops on a myriad of topics, as well as other activities to expose students to the norms of workplaces and the development of professional attitudes and behaviors: professional dress fashion shows and seminars, dining etiquette events, the Mitchell Mocktail Hour, personal branding workshops, company tours, and an emphasis on job shadowing and mentoring relationships.

PREP ensures that all Mitchell graduates enter the workforce with the skills required for a successful career in business.


Study Abroad Opportunities 

Consistent with the University’s priorities, the Mitchell College of Business offers a range of international study opportunities for its students in various regions of the world. Options include semester-long study abroad experiences in fall and spring semesters and shorter-term options, such as faculty-led short-term courses, usually offered in the May-semester or summer term.  Please check with the MCOB Director of International Studies for details.


Academic Plan

Following an academic plan will help you stay on track to graduate in four years. 

To see a sample academic plan for this major, please click here.  Degree plans provide only a suggested schedule; make sure to meet with your academic advisor to find the actual schedule that is right for you.

For additional degree information, visit the undergraduate bulletin.


For More Information

Please contact Dr. Tom Noland at (251) 460-7374 or

Find us on campus at:

Department of Accounting
Mitchell College of Business
5811 USA Drive South
Mobile, AL 36688



Website: College of Business: Accounting


*The information on this page should be considered general information only. For more specific information on this and other majors, please refer to the USA bulletin or contact the department/College directly.