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Business Administration Division

Master of Science in Accounting

An intensive master's program that prepares you to take the CPA exam and to launch a successful career in accounting.

Pepperdine's Master of Science in Accounting (MSA) is a joint degree program offered by Pepperdine University's Seaver College and Graziadio School of Business and Management and is designed to prepare graduates for careers in public accounting, industry, government and nonprofit organizations. The 30-unit curriculum can be completed in approximately nine to 12 months and is designed primarily for candidates with a degree or background in accounting.  The curriculum is designed to provide the academic preparation recommended for the Certified Public Accountant (CPA) exam and required to become certified in California and most states.

CPA firms view themselves as "professional service firms" and demand highly visible, articulate business professionals with diverse backgrounds. Pepperdine's MSA program not only focuses on the real world technical and analytical skills required in accounting, but also builds upon the leadership and critical thinking skills necessary to be successful in the field.  As a student in the program, you will take classes alongside MBA students and join a tight-knit community of bright, ambitious MBA students and a highly engaged faculty dedicated to helping you succeed.

Application Process

Click here for information on how to apply to the program. For specific questions about the MSA Program, please contact Rhonda Huddleston at .

Graduate Application Deadlines

The application deadline for the fall term of the Master of Science in Accounting program is March 31st. Students wishing to apply for divisional scholarships and assistantships must submit their applications by February 1st.

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Course Requirements

Students are required to complete a minimum of 30 hours of coursework.

Core Requirements (20 units)

AC 501 Ethics for Accounting (4)
AC 506 Advanced Taxation and Ethics (4)
AC 524 Advanced Auditing (4)
AC 540 Accounting Theory: Research and Policy (4)

Choose one of the following:
AC 511 Accounting for Nonbusiness Organizations (4)
AC 517 Financial Statement Analysis (4)

Elective Requirements (10 units)

Ten elective units from courses (500 level or higher) offered at either Seaver College or the Graziadio School of Business and Management are required. A list of approved elective courses is available from your academic advisor.

Admission Requirements

The Master of Science in Accounting program is designed primarily for undergraduate accounting majors who seek additional academic training and/or credit hours for the Uniform Certified Public Accountant examination in order to be eligible for a CPA license.

Students may apply to the Master of Science in Accounting program during their senior year or after completing a baccalaureate degree from an accredited college or university with an overall grade point average of 3.0 or higher. Students must also submit a GMAT score. A student with exceptional credentials or academic promise may on occasion be considered for admission, even though their GPA or score on the GMAT is somewhat below the desired admission level. An undergraduate accounting major or completion of the following requirements (or their equivalents) is required before enrollment in the program,

AC 310 Intermediate Accounting I (4)
AC 311 Intermediate Accounting II (4)
AC 312 Advanced Accounting (4)
AC 313 Cost Analysis (3)
AC 314 Advanced Cost Analysis and Systems (3)
AC 422 Income Tax Accounting (4)
AC 425 Auditing (4)
BA 358 Legal and Regulatory Environment (3)

Note: AC 312 and AC 425 may be taken concurrently with masters level classes.

Learning Outcomes

Students who complete the masters in accounting program will be able to:

  • Interrupt and apply financial accounting concepts, and describe other fundamental accounting and business concepts.


  • Evaluate accounting and business problems from the perspective of multiple business disciplines and professional standards, then formulate, communicate, and defend recommendations to decision-makers based on those evaluations.


  • Produce clearly written, concise business analyses, and deliver clear, well organized, persuasive oral presentations.


  • Establish positive group interactions while working effectively in teams with people from diverse backgrounds.


  • Analyze business and accounting situations in keeping with professional standards and moral values and recommend appropriate courses of action.


  • Engage in professional service.

Academic Policies and Calendar

The Master of Science in Accounting program is offered jointly by the faculties of Seaver College and the Graziadio School of Business and Management at Pepperdine University. As a joint degree program, the Masters of Science in Accounting has unique academic policies, including a specific code of academic integrity and academic calendar. The academic calendar and all academic policies for the program are available here.

Tuition & Costs

Earning your master's degree is one of the most important investments you will make in your lifetime: it is an investment in yourself. Seaver College is dedicated to helping you explore the various ways to finance your education and to guide you through the financial aid process to help you meet your educational goals.


Tuition for the MS in Accounting is based on a per-unit pricing structure. A total of 30 units are required to graduate. Tuition for the 2013-2014 academic year is estimated at $1,565 per unit, with an approximate total cost of $46,950.


Application for admission (non-refundable) - $100
Enrollment confirmation deposit (non-refundable) - $1,000


World-class faculty from both Seaver College and the Graziadio School of Business and Management are uniquely qualified both academically and professionally. Faculty members not only have distinguished academic credentials, but also have proven themselves in the business world as executives, entrepreneurs, and consultants. Many continue to work in the business world while they teach; thus, students receive knowledge that is current, relevant, and experience-driven.

Program Location

MS in Accounting courses are taught on the Seaver College main campus and the Drescher Graduate Campus, both in Malibu, CA.

For more information about the Graduate Application Process, please contact Dr. Dana Dudley, Assistant Dean, Special Academic Programs at 310-506-4280 or