Accounting Minor

Hands-on education in accounting theory and practice for students seeking a career in accounting.

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Through the Rady School of Management, UC San Diego has offered an Accounting Minor since 2009. The accounting minor is one of the largest minors at UC San Diego with more than 400 declared students.

The Accounting Minor helps students understand the development and use of financial and accounting information by decision makers. Students learn to appreciate the importance of accounting as it pertains to other career tracks such as economics, finance, investment, project management, operations, entrepreneurship and general management.

This program will also serve as a potential entrance into the Rady Masters of Professional Accountancy (MPAc) program.  Enrolment in the MPAc program capacity is limited each year. Priority admission will be provided to students that earn a UCSD Accounting Minor.

Careers in Public Accounting and the CPA License

If you wish to enter the Public Accounting Profession, you will normally need to become a Certified Public Accountant (CPA). The CPA requirements vary from state to state, most states now require that CPA candidates complete 150 credit hours of study.

In 2014, the California Board of Accountancy updated their licensure requirements to meet the standards of the Uniform Accountancy Act. In line with the UAA, the CBA now requires a full 225 quarter units of college credit alongside a year's worth of professional experience in accounting.

Link to State Licensure Requirements:

Link to California Licensure Requirements:

Since a bachelor’s degree at UC San Diego usually consists of 180 quarter units, students desiring the CPA license often enroll in master’s degree program in accounting to earn the additional units required for a CPA license while satisfying the pre-licensure experience requirements.

This credit hour requirement can be satisfied through the completion of additional undergraduate level courses.

Another way is qualify is through a master’s program such as UCSD Rady Master in Professional Accountancy program.

In an increasingly complex world where globalized standards, more regulation, and significant advances in technology are changing the way businesses operate from one year to the Rady MPAc may be your best choice to ready yourself.

The Rady MPAc provides you a mix of core courses and electives to become a licensed CPA. The MPAc also provides your choice of electives that you can tailor to your specific interests such as audit, tax or advisory service lines.  The MPAc is designed to help you enter the profession and help you reach the upper echelons of the profession or become an expert in finance, taxation, auditing, and business.

Declaring the Minor

The accounting minor is open to registered UCSD students pursuing a bachelor's degree. There is no separate admissions process. While you may declare a minor throughout your first few years, we strongly recommend you do it at your earliest convenience. Rady sends important information regarding class offerings and policy changes to our minors through our minor list.

You may declare a minor through Tritonlink. For a step-by-step video tutorial on how to declare please visit our main FAQ page.

Before declaring a minor, please contact your college advisor in order to ensure that you will not exceed the maximum unit limitation by pursuing a minor.

Minor Requirements

Course Sequence Map

The accounting minor consists of seven courses that cover the key accounting principles, processes and applications. Required courses include two lower division courses and five upper division courses:

Take all accounting minor classes for a letter grade.
At least 5 classes from the minor must be taken at UCSD.
Earn at least a C- in each course used for the minor
Finish the minor with an overall minor GPA of 2.0.

Accounting Minor
Frequently Asked Questions

Who can apply for an accounting minor?

Accounting minors are open to all majors at UCSD. To declare the minor, fill out a Minor Declaration Form.

Can I apply MGT45 toward my accounting minor?

No. MGT45 Principles of Accounting cannot be considered an adequate substitute for ECON4/MGT4 and MGT5 and cannot be applied toward the accounting minor. MGT45 is suitable for business minors only.

What accounting class should I take first?

It is highly recommended that students begin the accounting minor sequence with MGT4/ECON4: Financial Accounting and then take MGT5: Managerial Accounting.

Can I transfer lower division courses from a community college to UCSD?

Lower division transfer credits for courses that are clearly equivalent in scope and content to lower division courses required for the Accounting minor will be accepted from regionally accredited United States institutions and from foreign institutions recognized by the Rady School of Management.

Please note ECON/MGT 4 must be petitioned to the Economics Department.

Can I transfer upper-division courses from abroad or another 4-year institution to the accounting minor?

A student can petition to take a course for the minor outside of UCSD from regionally accredited United States institutions and from foreign institutions recognized by the Rady School of Management and get credit towards a class if the course is clearly equivalent in scope and content. Students who take a required upper division accounting course outside of UCSD must take an accounting elective (see list above) as a "make up." No credit is given until the student enrolls in and completes the make-up class. Note: UCSD Extension classes are professional level and certificate classes that are not part of the undergraduate degree-seeking curriculum at UCSD. Extension classes appear as zero units on a UCSD academic history.

Will I be able to fulfill the CPA exam and license requirements with an accounting minor?

While the courses that you take for CPA will assist you to complete the requirements, CPA requires more classes that you will need to take for our minor. For more information about CPA requirements, visit our CPA Guide.

Can Rady perform an audit for CPA requirements?

Unfortunately, Rady is not able to complete an audit for you. However, we can review your self-assessment if you have any concerns about the courses in our program. For classes taken outside of UCSD, we are unable to evaluate whether a certain class can count or not. For more information about how to complete a self-assessment, visit our Self- Assessment Resource page.

What kind of job will I be able to get when I graduate with a minor in Accounting?

Accounting is one of the world's leading professions; as such, it is one of the most competitive professions to enter as well. The earning of a minor degree in accounting is an excellent start towards entrance into the profession. You will, however, be competing with students from across the country that has either majored in the study of accounting or have earned an advanced degree, such as a Master in Professional Accountancy (MPAc).

A more comprehensive level of study is demanded by the profession, especially for those wish to earn their CPA. In 2014, the California Board of Accountancy fully integrated the protocols of the Uniform Accountancy Act (UAA), and now requires all applicants for CPA licensure in California to have 150 semester hours of college credit and one year of accounting experience. This was long overdue as this requirement has been in place since 1983 in Florida.

Across the country, there is a clear pattern where the largest accounting firms recruit heavily from graduate schools. Although we are a young program, we expect our placement to track that of other UC MPAc programs in California that have placement rates, after graduation, is in excess of 90 %.

Your accounting minor will serve as a potential entrance into the Rady MPAc program. Enrollment in the MPAc program capacity is limited each year. Priority admission will be provided to students that earn a UCSD Accountancy Minor.

What is the campus recruiting cycle for global and national accounting firms?

The campus recruiting cycle for most accounting firms usually occurs one year in advance for internships and full-time positions. In many instances, your decision to shift focus and seek out an entry-level position in a public accounting firm will require you to commit to a curriculum by your junior year to be most competitive.


If you wish to apply for a summer internship, the recruiting process would likely occur in the previous fall quarter. In many instances, these internships will lead to an offer of a full-time position after graduation. Nationally, we see these highly coveted internship positions offered between your senior and graduate year of studies.

Leadership Programs

Many firms want to meet you even earlier. Those firms offer local summer leadership programs sometimes beginning as early as the summer before your junior year of study. Applications for these programs tend to be in your winter quarter.

Winter Internships

Lastly, some firms will offer winter internships. These programs provide the student with a great opportunity to experience working in a public accounting firm during their busy season.

Where can you learn more?

Join the AICPA. The AICPA is the largest professional association for CPAs in the country, spanning many areas of practice. It's Free.



If your question is not answered here, feel free to contact us!

Current UCSD students: Please submit your questions via the VAC. An advisor will respond in 1-3 business days.

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