2019-2020 Graduate Bulletin

School of Accountancy

Office: Daniels College of Business, Rooms 355-379
Mail Code: 2101 S. University Blvd., Suite 355, Denver, CO 80208
Phone: 303-871-2032
Web Site: http://daniels.du.edu/accountancy/

Master of Accountancy

The Master of Accountancy (MAcc) program at the Daniels College of Business School of Accountancy provides rigorous training in both accounting fundamentals and the latest practices and technologies, preparing you for a rewarding career. The best indicator of the program’s strength is the success of our graduates: nearly all of our domestic MAcc graduates accept positions before graduation.

Through demonstrated prerequisite knowledge, formal coursework, and elective internship opportunities students will develop technical knowledge in accounting. Students will gain a broad understanding of related disciplines including critical thinking, communication, and interpersonal skills to be effective business advisors and establish the ethical grounding to act with integrity.

An undergraduate accounting or business major is not necessary and work experience is not a requirement for admission to the MAcc. Students may work toward meeting foundation requirements during their course of study. Foundation requirements are demonstrated competency in introductory and intermediate financial accounting and introductory managerial accounting. Students with an undergraduate degree in accounting meet the competency requirement by having earned a B- or better in these foundation courses at an AACSB-accredited school. Students with an AACSB-accredited accounting undergraduate degree who earned less than a B- in these foundation courses and students holding other undergraduate degrees may demonstrate competency by passing on-campus competency exams or by completing the foundation courses for the MAcc degree. 

Our mission as a School of Accountancy in a great private university dedicated to the public good is to foster Enlightened Practice, Professional Achievement, Knowledge Creation, and a Commitment to Community among our graduates, faculty, and others engaged in the accounting profession and related disciplines.

  • Enlightened Practice means ensuring that our graduates understand the theory and practice of accounting and its ramifications on society, the profession, and organizations.
  • Professional Achievement includes accomplishment at each level of one’s career and commitment to life-long learning, competence, and integrity.
  • Knowledge Creation means scholarship which improves our understanding of accounting, the practice of accounting and the process of educating future accountants.
  • Commitment to Community is the process of giving of oneself both to the community that supports one’s efforts and achievements and to the community at large. Commitment to Community is a vital aspect of the accounting profession and is critical to the School’s ongoing success.

The Master of Accountancy (MAcc) is a comprehensive program of study with focus on in-depth accounting knowledge and skills. MAcc students hone their skills as professional business advisors and increase their breadth of understanding of related disciplines and the social and ethical responsibilities for professional accountants. Specialty tracks are available to help students focus their curriculum in one of four areas: (1) data analytics, (2) taxation, (3) assurance, or (4) valuation. 

Daniels has been continuously accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business International (AACSB) since 1923.

Master of Accountancy

Degree and GPA Requirements

  • Bachelors degree: All graduate applicants must hold an earned baccalaureate from a regionally accredited college or university or the recognized equivalent from an international institution.
  • Grade point average: The minimum undergraduate GPA for admission consideration for graduate study at the University of Denver is a cumulative 2.5 on a 4.0 scale or a 2.5 on a 4.0 scale for the last 60 semester credits or 90 quarter credits (approximately two years of work) for the baccalaureate degree. An earned master’s degree or higher from a regionally accredited institution supersedes the minimum standards for the baccalaureate. For applicants with graduate coursework but who have not earned a master’s degree or higher, the GPA from the graduate work may be used to meet the requirement. The minimum GPA is a cumulative 3.0 on a 4.0 scale for all graduate coursework undertaken.
  • Program GPA requirement: The minimum undergraduate GPA for admission consideration for this program is a cumulative 2.5 on a 4.0 scale.

Standardized Test Scores/Other Requirements

  • Applicants may be contacted by a Daniels representative to schedule the admissions interview, which will be conducted on campus or via webcam.
  • The GMAT or GRE is required.  Scores must be received directly from the appropriate testing agency by the deadline. The GMAT code number for the Master of Accountancy program is MZR-GT-82. The GRE code number is 4842.  The admissions committee will consider GMAT or GRE waiver requests from candidates who meet one of the following standards (on a case-by-case basis):     
    • Received an accredited master's degree in a related field.
    • More than 84 months of related professional experience.
    • DU students that meet the provisions for the Masters Accelerated Admissions Process.

English Language Proficiency Test Score Requirements

The minimum TOEFL/IELTS/CAE test score requirements for this degree program are:

  • Minimum TOEFL Score (Internet-based test): 94 (No less than a 20 on any section)
  • Minimum TOEFL Score (Paper-based test): 575
  • Minimum IELTS Score: 7.0 (No less than a 6.0 on any section)
  • Minimum CAE Score: 185 (No less than a 170 on any section)

English Conditional Admission: No, this program does not offer English Conditional Admission.

Master of Accountancy in Accounting 

Degree Requirements

Coursework Requirements

Students with an AACSB accredited accounting undergraduate degree who earned a B- or better in required accounting foundation courses.1

Accounting Core Courses
Maximum number of required credits for Accounting Core Courses16
ACTG 4155Accounting Information Technology Systems and Business Environment4
ACTG 4176Accounting Data Analytics4
ACTG 4240Topics & Cases in Financial Accounting4
ACTG 4340Topics & Cases in Managerial Accounting4
Approved accounting electives 28
ACTG 4284Consolidated Financial Statements2
ACTG 4285Accounting for Foreign Operations2
ACTG 4354Cost Accounting4
ACTG 4400Taxation for Business and Investment Planning4
ACTG 4462Corporate and Partnership Taxation4
ACTG 4520Forensic Accounting and Auditing4
ACTG 4551Auditing4
ACTG 4552Advanced Auditing4
ACTG 4557Fair Value Auditing4
ACTG 4575Accounting Information System Risk, Control and Audit4
ACTG 4620Accounting Ethics4
ACTG 4700Graduate Seminar in Accounting1-17
ACTG 4710Managing the Family Business4
ACTG 4740Valuation and Modeling4
ACTG 4750Valuing a Business4
ACTG 4760CEOs and Corporate Governance4
ACTG 4880Internship - Graduate0-4
Approved business or accounting electives 216
Minimum number of credits required40

Degree Requirements

Students with undergraduate degrees other than accounting, students with non-AACSB accredited accounting degrees, and students with an AACSB accredited accounting undergraduate degree who earned less than a B- in accounting foundation courses.

Coursework Requirements

Accounting Core Courses
Maximum number of required credits for Accounting Core Courses16
ACTG 4155Accounting Information Technology Systems and Business Environment4
ACTG 4176Accounting Data Analytics4
ACTG 4240Topics & Cases in Financial Accounting4
ACTG 4340Topics & Cases in Managerial Accounting4
Foundation Requirements 1
Maximum number of required credits for Foundation Requirements16
ACTG 4610Financial Accounting and Reporting4
ACTG 4660Strategic Cost Management4
ACTG 4281Intermediate Financial Accounting I4
ACTG 4282Intermediate Financial Accounting II4
Approved business or accounting electives 216
Approved accounting electives 28
ACTG 4284Consolidated Financial Statements2
ACTG 4285Accounting for Foreign Operations2
ACTG 4400Taxation for Business and Investment Planning4
ACTG 4462Corporate and Partnership Taxation4
ACTG 4520Forensic Accounting and Auditing4
ACTG 4551Auditing4
ACTG 4552Advanced Auditing4
ACTG 4575Accounting Information System Risk, Control and Audit4
ACTG 4700Graduate Seminar in Accounting1-17
ACTG 4620Accounting Ethics4
ACTG 4740Valuation and Modeling4
ACTG 4750Valuing a Business4
ACTG 4760CEOs and Corporate Governance4
ACTG 4880Internship - Graduate0-4
Minimum number of credits required40-56

Minimum number of credits required for degree: 40-56


ACTG 4155 Accounting Information Technology Systems and Business Environment (4 Credits)

The course will give students a basic understanding of how to develop a beginning-to-intermediate AIS system. Process flowcharts and entity-relationship diagrams will be used to document the system in Microsoft Visio. The course will explore the database structure used in various accounting IT systems. Students will be Microsoft Access certified by the end of the course. The course will also cover the IT topics contained in the BEC portion of the CPA exam.

ACTG 4176 Accounting Data Analytics (4 Credits)

In this course, students explore overarching trends in big data and the impact to accounting and auditing fields while also gaining hands on experience working with business data sets. In today’s information world, accountants must be well equipped to understand and utilize the vast and varying data systems that feed a company’s decision making process. This course allows students to develop big data skills by learning the SQL language to query data from mock clients. Students execute Computer Assisted Auditing Techniques (CAATs) using both the SQL language as well was the audit data mining tool, IDEA. Students simulate the process to request client data files, load complex data sets, design and execute query procedures and summarize results for management. Prerequisite: ACTG 4610.

ACTG 4201 Financial Accounting for Management (2 Credits)

This course introduces the student to the fundamentals of financial accounting and reporting with an emphasis on the needs of the user, both internal and external. The goal is to enable the student to become a knowledgeable reader and user of financial statements.

ACTG 4220 Financial Actg & Analysis (4 Credits)

Cross-listed with ACTG 3230.

ACTG 4222 Understanding Financial Statements (4 Credits)

At the conclusion of this course the student should understand: (1) management decisions that impact published financial statements, (2) the fundamentals of interpretation and analysis of financial statements, (3) economic and ethical issues relating to financial reporting, and (4) management attempts to enhance reported operating results. The course addresses the needs of managers and analysts, hence does not cover promulgated financial reporting rules in depth. The financial reporting topics expand on material presented in introductory Accounting and Finance courses. The focus is on the substance of the reported information. This course is not an approved elective for the MACC degree. Cross listed with ACTG 3220.

ACTG 4240 Topics & Cases in Financial Accounting (4 Credits)

This course develops a greater awareness of contemporary accounting issues, focusing on financial reporting. The course is designed to enhance each student’s ability to identify, discuss, and resolve open-ended problems (i.e., those having no single “correct” answer) faced by accounting professionals. Each student must commit to being an active participant in the class discussions. Through the use of numerous cases involving all aspects of financial reporting, students identify issues, conduct authoritative research, then present and defend their conclusions using both oral and written presentation formats. Students also write an original research paper on a topic of their choice.

ACTG 4281 Intermediate Financial Accounting I (4 Credits)

The focus of this course is the foundation and content of published financial statements. Specifically it covers the following broad topics: (1) Conceptual Framework of Financial Reporting; (2) Financial Statements and Related Disclosures; (3) Assets: Recognition and Measurement; and (4) Liabilities: Recognition and Measurement. Common to each of the topics is an emphasis on reading GAAP and applying GAAP guidance to fact patterns. At the conclusion of the course, students should be aware of the proper accounting treatment for many common situations; moreover, students should be fully comfortable interpreting GAAP literature to address scenarios involving assets, liabilities, and income that were not specifically covered in the class.

ACTG 4282 Intermediate Financial Accounting II (4 Credits)

This course is a continuation of Intermediate Financial Accounting. The focus of this course is the application of Generally Accepted Accounting Principles to complex business transactions. In this final course of the sequence, we finish our examination of the balance sheet by exploring the issues involved with stockholders’ equity, followed by in-depth study of some of the most complex accounting issues, including revenue recognition, accounting for income taxes, pensions and post-employment benefits, leases, and accounting changes and errors.

ACTG 4284 Consolidated Financial Statements (2 Credits)

This course introduces the student to the preparation of financial statements in compliance with GAAP when the reporting entity has investments in other entities that are other than passive investments. This module explores the financial reporting issues relating to partial or full ownership of one business entity by another. It includes use of the equity method as well as issues involved in reporting the financial results of consolidated entities, both at and subsequent to acquisition or formation.

ACTG 4285 Accounting for Foreign Operations (2 Credits)

Topics covered in this course include the financial statement impact of doing business in a foreign currency, having foreign subsidiaries or operations, and certain hedging activities.

ACTG 4290 Advanced Accounting Theory (4 Credits)

This course analyzes trends in accounting through review of major publications of the accounting profession. It places emphasis on theoretical foundations of accounting theory underlying concepts of assets, income determination, and disclosure. Prerequisite: ACTG 4282 or Test Score AC82 >= 1 and Prerequisite or Co-requisite: ACTG 4284.

ACTG 4340 Topics & Cases in Managerial Accounting (4 Credits)

This course focuses upon innovative forensic, management control, productivity and business valuation approaches used by forensic and managerial accountants. Such strategies and techniques are evaluated through classroom discussion of cases and related articles.

ACTG 4354 Cost Accounting (4 Credits)

Accounting information in manufacturing enterprises, standard costs, and budgets. Open to students not having ACTG 3354 or equivalent. Prerequisite: MBA 4110, MBA 4111, or equivalent.

ACTG 4400 Taxation for Business and Investment Planning (4 Credits)

This is an introductory tax course that emphasizes a conceptual approach to learning the income tax framework applicable to common business and investment transactions. It is designed to sensitize students to the tax implications of business decisions and to cultivate the student’s ability to ask good tax questions. This course will illustrate that effective business planning depends on an accurate assessment of relevant tax factors.

ACTG 4410 Federal Income Taxation (4 Credits)

The course is designed for graduate accounting students that wish to study federal income taxation. This is the first course in taxation, which introduces the federal taxation system, the importance of tax authorities, the concepts of gross income and tax deductions and the tax implications of common property transactions. The course generally focuses on property transactions, but the taxation of individuals is emphasized with an objective of students being able to properly prepare complex individual tax returns.

ACTG 4462 Corporate and Partnership Taxation (4 Credits)

The course is designed for graduate accounting, finance or other business students in their study of advanced topics in federal income taxation. This is the second course in taxation which concentrates on taxation of corporations, limited liability corporations, S corporations and partnerships.

ACTG 4520 Forensic Accounting and Auditing (4 Credits)

Students will have an opportunity to learn, study, and discuss practical aspects of accounting as it is used to detect and prosecute fraud. Students will be exposed to improprieties, common fraud schemes, illegalities, and harassments.

ACTG 4551 Auditing (4 Credits)

This course is designed to provide you with a thorough understanding of auditing and related attest services. This includes gaining requisite knowledge about AICPA (U.S. GAAS) and PCAOB auditing standards and how they are applied in conducting a financial statement audit. Application of these standards applies to planning an audit, the risk assessment process including gaining an understanding of internal control, gathering and evaluating evidence, sampling, and issuing an audit report.

ACTG 4552 Advanced Auditing (4 Credits)

This course is designed to build on the foundation of auditing knowledge developed in ACTG 4551 and apply that knowledge to specific accounts and assertions in a financial statement audit. Students also examine selected SEC enforcement actions and discuss what audit procedures may have been beneficial to prevent the misstatement. Prerequisite: ACTG 4551 or ACTG 3551.

ACTG 4557 Fair Value Auditing (4 Credits)

The purpose of this course is to expose students to the accounting, economic and valuation concepts and challenges that are relevant to auditing fair value measurements and disclosures in financial statements. The role of the FASB, PCAOB, SEC and other standards setters on fair value accounting and measurements are explored. Prerequisite: ACTG 4551 or ACTG 3551.

ACTG 4575 Accounting Information System Risk, Control and Audit (4 Credits)

An auditor cannot just “audit the numbers” without strong consideration to the IT systems that generate those numbers. Today’s accounting professionals must possess a strong understanding of accounting information system risks and controls. Topics specifically covered in this course include IT security controls, datacenter controls, data backup and disaster recovery planning, SDLC and change control processes. Students perform hands on simulated audit exercises and case studies to truly experience the role of an IT auditor. Prerequisites: ACTG 3551 or ACTG 4551.

ACTG 4610 Financial Accounting and Reporting (4 Credits)

The purpose of this course is to provide students with an understanding of the financial statements issued by companies to external parties, such as shareholders and creditors. The course covers the fundamentals of accounting, from recording economic events in the accounting records to the preparation of the company’s financial statements. In addition, the course examines major transaction categories, accounting policy choices of business firms and their financial statement implications, as well as the content of publicly-traded companies’ Form 10-K annual reports.

ACTG 4620 Accounting Ethics (4 Credits)

This course focuses on the idea of community and the ethical and social relationships of accounting leaders and business organizations in their communities. The course focus is on the role of the accounting professional and the unique and special responsibilities associated with that role. This is examined by analyzing a variety of issues that students will face during their careers. The goal is to provide students with generalized understanding and skills that can be employed in dealing with other issues that emerge directly relate to the state Code of Professional Conduct applicable to CPAs, the Code provisions are discussed and analyzed.

ACTG 4660 Strategic Cost Management (4 Credits)

Strategic cost management methods and practices focus on how to help the firm succeed in contemporary business. Topics in the course include balanced scorecard, cost-volume-profit analysis, target costing, standard costing, and management control. The course will enable students to apply strategic thinking to management planning, decision-making, and management reporting.

ACTG 4700 Graduate Seminar in Accounting (1-17 Credits)

ACTG 4701 Special Topics in Accounting (1-5 Credits)

ACTG 4702 Special Topics in Accounting (1-5 Credits)

ACTG 4703 Special Topics in Accounting (1-5 Credits)

ACTG 4704 Special Topics in Accounting (1-5 Credits)

ACTG 4705 Topics in Accounting (1-4 Credits)

ACTG 4710 Managing the Family Business (4 Credits)

Family enterprises have a tremendous impact on our local, national and global economies. Today, the definition of the family enterprise extends beyond just the business entity. It includes family offices, family “banks,” family councils, trusts, and family foundations, just to name a few. Further, what happens in, and how decisions are made by, family enterprise affects not only the active family members but other key stakeholders such as inactive family members, in-laws, non-family managers and employees, professional advisors, customers, suppliers and competitors. This course gives students insight into the universe of possibilities that families, enterprises and their advisors face when engaged in systemic transition planning. This highly interdisciplinary course is appropriate for anyone who intends to work in or with family enterprises. This includes family members, accountants, attorneys, estate planners, financial or wealth managers, family office professionals, insurance consultants, business advisors, management consultants, organizational and leadership development experts, international business professionals, psychologists, social workers, and family therapists.

ACTG 4740 Valuation and Modeling (4 Credits)

The ultimate purpose of the course is to improve professional decision-making skills. Professional decisions are made using a combination of judgment and analysis. Even skilled professionals (in any field) will make incorrect decisions when working with incorrect or insufficient information. Thus, one key to improving decision-making is improving analytical insights and skills. This course emphasizes the definition, construction, uses and limitations of popular financial models and instruments. Further, the class focuses on how the instruments are used, why they are used and how decisions to use such instruments and tools/techniques to value them are made.

ACTG 4750 Valuing a Business (4 Credits)

This course explores all major aspects of business valuation. Students not only study valuation theory, they appraise an actual business and draft a valuation report in compliance with the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants Statement on Standards for Valuation Services (SSVS) and Reporting Standards of the National Association of Certified Valuation Analysts (NACVA). Prerequisite: ACTG 4740.

ACTG 4760 CEOs and Corporate Governance (4 Credits)

This course examines the current and pressing issue of corporate governance, in its ethical, legal, and social dimensions. Students read the latest views of scholars and experts and gain the perspectives of corporate CEOs and other organization leaders. Topics explored include the history of various governance models, public policy on corporate governance, corporate board functions and responsibilities, the dynamics between CEOs and boards, ethical leadership and corporate culture, ethics and compliance programs, executive liability, nonprofit corporate governance, board and audit committee responsibilities, restructuring and governance, executive compensation problems and solutions, shareholder activism, and corporate governance reforms. Cross-listed with LGST 4760.

ACTG 4795 Graduate Research Sem-Actg (1-17 Credits)

ACTG 4880 Internship - Graduate (0-4 Credits)

Hours and times arranged by student.

ACTG 4991 Independent Study (1-10 Credits)

Hours and times arranged by student.

ACTG 4992 Directed Study (1-10 Credits)

ACTG 6300 Behavioral Research in Accounting Seminar (4 Credits)

This seminar will provide students with the tools needed for educated consumption of behavioral research in accounting. We will focus on the theoretical and methodological issues faced by those who conduct this research, as well as the practical implications of the research for business leaders. Students should leave the course with a basic knowledge of behavioral research in accounting and be better able to create, analyze and critique such research.


Sharon Lassar, Professor and Director, PhD, University of Southern California

Adam Booker, Assistant Professor, PhD, University of Arkansas

Jeff Brothers, Teaching Assistant Professor, MAcc, University of Denver

Ryan Casey, Associate Professor, PhD, Arizona State University

Kathleen Davisson, Teaching Professor, MAcc, University of Denver

Kelsey Dworkis, Assistant Professor, PhD, University of Southern California

Jacqueline Eschenlohr, Teaching Assistant Professor, MAcc, University of Denver

Joyce Frakes, Professor, Emerita, PhD, Stanford University

Adam Greiner, Associate Professor, PhD, Florida Atlantic University

Hugh Grove, Professor, Emeritus, DBA, University of Southern California

Glyn Hanbery, Professor, Emeritus, PhD, Arizona State University

Rick Leaman, Professor, JD, University of Chicago

Suzette Loving, Associate Professor of the Practice of Accountancy, MBA, Michigan State University

Jane Morton, Teaching Associate Professor, PhD, University of Arizona

Lorenzo Patelli, Associate Professor, PhD, Università Commerciale Luigi Bocconi

George Ruch, Assistant Professor, PhD, University of Alabama

Keith Sellers, Associate Professor, DBA, University of Memphis

James Sorensen, Professor, Emeritus, PhD, The Ohio State University

John Tripp, Professor, PhD, University of Houston

Lisa Victoravich, Professor and Associate Dean for Undergraduate and Executive PhD Programs, PhD, Florida State University

Nathan J. Waddoups, Assistant Professor, PhD, University of South Carolina

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