Accounting Essentials Certificate Program Overview
In Penn Foster Career School's Accounting Essentials Certificate Program, you'll learn a number of key topics essential for today’s financial professional, such as mathematics for business and finance, and managerial accounting. In addition, you will be eligible to transfer credits you earn in this program to an Undergraduate Certificate or Associate of Science Degree in Accounting at Penn Foster College, which is licensed in the state of Arizona. You can complete this program in as little as five months.
Program Goal and Outcomes
The Accounting Essentials Certificate program provides students with new job skills or refines existing accounting knowledge to advance in a current position, improve performance in a current business or prepare for further training.
Upon completion of the program, students will be able to:
- Understand how to examine financial statements to ensure that they are accurate and comply with laws and regulations
- Explain how to inspect account books and accounting systems for efficiency and use of accepted accounting procedures
- Create, organize, and maintain financial records
- Demonstrate how to assess financial operations and make best-practices recommendations to management
- Identify ways to reduce costs, enhance revenues, and improve profits
- Demonstrate effective quantitative skills in basic mathematical operations pertaining to the business environment
Starting Your Program
Succeed by learning how to use your Penn Foster program.
- Understand how to use your Student Portal.
- Access the Penn Foster Community and use it to find answers.
- Connect with Penn Foster on various social media sites.
Mathematics for Business and Finance
This course will hone your math skills so you are able to successfully use them in business and finance industries.
- Use percentages, discounts, and interest formulas effectively.
- Analyze present worth and sinking funds.
- Understand how to buy in installments and price merchandise.
- Explain depreciation, insurance, equations, and formulas.
- Discuss investments and statistics.
This course will provide students with a basic understanding of the principles of financial accounting. Topics covered include analyzing transactions; completing the accounting cycle; merchandising businesses; inventories, assets, and liabilities; and corporations, stocks, bonds, and cash flow.
- Solve important accounting principles and concepts by creating four common types of financial statements: balance sheet, income statement, statement of retained earnings, and statement of cash flows
- Explain inventory systems, the inventory process, and the role of ethics in accounting
- Explain cash and receivables, assets, current liabilities, and debt
- Analyze stocks and the statement of cash flows and financial statements that are used to assess the value of a business
This course provides an introduction to managerial accounting; analysis: C-V-P and management; budgeting and performance evaluation; decentralized operations; differential analysis and product pricing; capital investment analysis, and cost activities.
- Understand cost classifications as applied to preparing financial statements, predicting cost behavior, and making decisions
- Understand the flow of cost in job-order costing and use activity-based absorption costing to compute product costs
- Understand the flow of process costing, computing the cost per equivalent unit using the weighted-average method and FIFO method and allocating department costs using the direct and step-down methods
- Explain how changes in activity affect contribution margin and net operating income and examine cost-volume-profit relationships, such as margin of safety and break-even points
- Explain how variable costing differs from absorption costing and prepare income statements using the different approaches as tools for management
- Understand activity-based costing and how it differs from a traditional costing system
- Understand budgets, the process used to create budgets, and the preparation of various kinds of budgets
- Compute and record various variances
- Understand and compute various performance measurements
- Prepare differential analysis as a key to decision making
- Evaluate calculations for capital budgeting decisions
- Prepare a statement of cash flows using the direct and indirect methods and compute free cash flow
- Compute and interpret financial ratios Textbook: Managerial Accounting
Computer Applications in Accounting
This course builds on concepts learned in Financial and Managerial Accounting and covers Sage 50® Accounting. Combines real-world accounting systems and examples with computer-based solutions. The course is a blend of problem solving, reading, case projects, and computer applications to problems encountered in today’s accounting environment.
- Explain how to install, register, and update the Sage 50® accounting software
- Print reports and back up data files using Sage 50®
- Record, post, and complete the accounting cycle for a service and merchandising enterprise using an automated accounting system
- Analyze the business flow of transactions in automated accounting systems, including customer lists, vendor files, inventory records, and employee files
- Demonstrate knowledge of the voucher system, accounts payable, accounts receivable, payroll systems, and departmentalized accounting
- Analyze and solve management accounting problems relating to operations and business profitability and financial reporting
As you know this is an online academic program. This means you will need high-speed internet access to begin your program. In addition, you will need access to a Microsoft® Windows® based computer running Windows 7® or later or an Apple® Mac® computer running OS X® or later, and an email account to participate in and complete your program.
To view an Accounting Essentials sample lesson, click here.
Accounting Essentials Program Details
Penn Foster Career School can help you gain the knowledge and skills relevant to the accounting field, like managing taxes, account books, and analyzing case studies.
State Licensing Information
Licensing and/or certification requirements for jobs in this field are not the same in every state and may include educational, testing, and/or experiential requirements beyond those offered by your Penn Foster Program. You should contact the state professional licensing board or similar regulatory body in the state(s) where you plan to work to determine their requirements before enrolling in your Program. Please click here for contact information for state licensing/regulatory boards and certain industry licensing information.