All students meet with the the Master of Professional Accountancy (MPAc) Director during their first semester of graduate study. This conference is intended to assist the student in formulating a graduate program that integrates the student's background and areas of interest, and in completing the student's required Program of Study form.

The master's program requires a minimum of 30 semester hours of acceptable course work beyond a bachelor's degree. A minimum of 21 credits of course work must be taken on campus at Montana State University-Bozeman (MSU). The number of required credit hours may vary, depending on prior course work. Students with a degree in accounting generally complete their course work in one full year (two or three semesters).

Required Courses:
The following six graduate classes, totaling 18 credits, are required:

ACTG 521 
Advanced Auditing
ACTG 525 Accounting Theory & Complex Issues in Accounting
ACTG 526 Advanced Taxation
ACTG 528 Legal Issues for Accountants
ACTG 529 Survey of Research in Accounting
ACTG 536 Advanced Accounting


In addition, students are required to complete 12 semester credit hours of approved electives in accounting and business; consideration is given to 400/500 level courses in: accounting, agricultural economics, computer science, economics, finance, industrial & management engineering, management, marketing, psychology, and statistics.

Accounting Electives (recently offered*):

ACTG 514 
Fraud Examination
ACTG 515 Professional Services Management
ACTG 524 International Accounting
ACTG 527 Estate and Gift Taxation
ACTG 530 Tax Research and Planning
ACTG 531 Tax Practicum
ACTG 532 Governmental and Nonprofit Accounting II


*Specific electives offered may vary from year to year

A worksheet with the required MPAc courses and possible electives is available here.

Academic Requirements

Students are required to achieve at least a 3.0 GPA each semester and maintain at least a cumulative GPA of 3.0 at all times while in the MPAc program. Additionally, students with provisional admittances will be required to adhere to the provisions of their admittance.

Length of Program

Students with an undergraduate degree in accounting generally complete the MPAc program in one full year (two or three semesters).

Students with an undergraduate degree in business, but not accounting, must complete course work equivalent to that for an undergraduate accounting degree at MSU, which averages approximately three semesters of additional study. 

Students with an undergraduate degree in a non-business area must complete a common body of knowledge in business courses (finance, information systems, law, management, and marketing) in addition to the undergraduate accounting courses, which averages approximately 2.5 years of additional study.

Program Load

Nine to 15 semester credits is considered a full graduate load for a student in the MPAc program.

Financial assistance

The Jake Jabs College of Business & Entrepreneurship offers scholarships for graduate students. Application is made during the month of November only and is an electronic application (no paper copy).  Students who wish to be considered for a scholarship should contact Beth Schmidt in the Dean's office.

A limited number of graduate teaching assistantships are also available to fully admitted graduate students and are awarded on a competitive basis.

Graduate teaching assistant positions may be for one or two semesters. Graduate teaching assistants (GTAs) provide teaching support to faculty and tutoring services for students. In exchange, the GTAs receive a partial tuition waiver and a small monthly stipend.

International students: please read about the Financial Certificate.

For more details on financial aid, please see Financial Aid Services homepage.