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Business Administration


Accounting Preparation Skills (Adopted from

Recommended High School Level Background Courses

  • Business Math
  • Bookkeeping
  • Economics
  • Algebra I
  • Accounting
  • Composition
  • Algebra II
  • Business Management and Ownership
  • Speech
  • Recordkeeping
  • Keyboarding

Basic Skills in the Program and on the Job


Strong reading skills are important in the accounting and bookkeeping program.  The accounting texts, which are a central part of the course work, are written at a college level.  Students should be able to read word problems before solving them. Tests are based on a combination of text, lectures, and problems.  In many accounting courses, texts are accompanied by practice sets (Homework Management programs in online classes), which require following sequential instructions.

In addition to the texts, students will read spreadsheets and use computer software manuals and step-by-step instructions to solve problems/complete assignments in  Excel, Word, Access, QuickBooks. They may be required to read articles from business magazines, databases, and the internet.  Students will read corporate  annual reports, government publications (such as IRS forms and guidelines), and industry-published materials.


Speaking activities in the program may include oral reports on accounting-related topics (articles, ethical dilemmas, current news).  In the workplace, communicating financial information to employees, owners, managers, and auditors is a crucial requirement.    

Written assignments will include article summaries, case study analyses, internet-based activities, answers to critical thinking and discussion questions.  On the job, bookkeepers and accountants may compose memos and documentation to accompany financial statements.


A strong general math background will be helpful in your accounting courses, where students will learn to solve simple linear equations, such as the basic Assets = Liabilities + Owner's Equity.  On the job, basic arithmetic is used to calculate and adjust entries, payroll, taxes, financial ratios, and interest.  Simple linear equations are used to estimate inventory.


Because accounting classes include a lot of homework, good time management skills are crucial to this program, especially if you are taking any classes online.  You need to be self-motivated and have strong reasoning skills.  Students must learn to follow sequential instructions carefully; the accounting cycle proceeds in a specific order, and accounting-related software are requires a specific sequence of steps.  Students use observational and comparison skills to red-flag errors in financial statements and other accounting reports.  They must then use cause-effect reasoning to find the source of the problem and correct the statement.  Inferential thinking is used to consider the implications of irregularities in statements.


Depending on the specific accounting/bookkeeping program, students will learn how to use Excel, QuickBooks, Access, some payroll software.  Student will find knowledge of word-processing programs, spreadsheets, keyboarding, and ten-key very useful.  In the workplace, bookkeepers and accountants use spreadsheets and database programs extensively, including the graphic components to resent financial data pictorially.










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