Discover the Best Accounting Classes in NYC
Accountants are the highly educated and skilled professionals responsible for keeping track of how many jellybeans are in a given business’ jar. Back when businesses were truly small and made do with a single cash register, that was relatively simple, although you still had to make sure that the money in the till matched the amount the register thought there was. Nowadays, jars are a great deal more complex, and jellybeans take all manner of forms besides cash, meaning that far more complex mathematical tools are required to keep track of where a company stood, stands, and stands to stand. This is the world of modern accounting and of the modern accountant.
Why You Should Learn Accounting in NYC
Although accountants don’t usually have a reputation for being sparkling cocktail party guests, they are vitally necessary to the functioning of modern business, and while small businesses can survive without an accountant, they can’t survive without accounting procedures. Money has become too complex and is too vitally important to be neglected or approximated. Accountants and people with accounting skills will ever be in demand. For that reason, accounting is a field with more job security than many, especially given that automation is unlikely to supplant human judgment where a company’s trajectory is concerned. If your plans include college, you can do a lot worse than registering for a bachelor’s in accounting program.
Above and beyond the kind of rigorous training that often leads to the CPA credential, knowledge of accounting can be of immense help to people in a whole range of roles. Business owners (small, medium, or large) all need to understand the finances that determine whether their families get steak or spaghetti for dinner, and that includes knowing a balance sheet from an income statement and knowing how to read both. Not only can business owners benefit from being able to read numbers: many managers can be held back in their career development by not possessing the accounting skills necessary to understand the kind of advanced reports that will inevitably come across their desks.
Moreover, small business owners will benefit from knowing how to keep their own books. You may need a professional accountant as your business expands, but for someone starting out, you can save money and have a better overview of your own finances if you make yourself into your own accounting department.
In-Person Accounting Classes & Schools in NYC
As one of the world’s leading financial hubs, New York City has as big a need for accountants as any other city on the globe. As a result, the Big Apple contains its fair share of schools from which you can learn accounting, ranging from the over 120 colleges and universities that offer accounting degrees (over 50 of them offer master’s degrees in the subject) all the way to schools offering much briefer classes in various aspects of the subject.
A good place to start learning about accounting procedures is the Technical Institute of America’s Bookkeeping Basics. The course, designed for beginners, runs for three weekend days in the school’s Garment District location. You’ll learn everything from the theory and practice of double-entry bookkeeping to managing and documenting payroll to preparing tax forms. By class’ end, you’ll be able to understand and handle the accounting tasks of a small business.
Neophytes of a different sort will find Finance and Accounting for the Non-Financial Executive to be beneficial. Offered by the Executive Education arm of Columbia Business School, the course was specially crafted for established managers who lack the kind of financial literacy they need to get to the next stage of their careers. A week-long undertaking, the course covers the basics and goes on to such advanced topics as corporate financial analysis, liquidity and growth, and how to recognize red flags in financial statements. The program is given at Columbia Business School in the northern reaches of Morningside Heights.
Also available from Columbia Business School is a four-day workshop on the Future of Finance: Leveraging FinTech Innovation. Created with befuddled managers, confused investors, and bewildered financial industry service providers in mind, the class demystifies such subjects as blockchain technology, digital currency, digital banking, and AI (artificial intelligence) for the financial world, all without recourse to a computer science or math background. The class is both interactive and immersive and taught by expert faculty, such as only a leading business school located in New York City can assemble.
A different take on the rapidly developing world of financial technology can be found in Noble Desktop’s FinTech Bootcamp. This course, geared towards beginners with only the most basic knowledge of finance, introduces students to the intricacies of the rapidly-expanding world of financial technologies (FinTech). Python, data science, data visualizations, and statistical models are all covered in this wide-ranging course, which prepares students to assume roles such as financial analyst and data scientist. Noble Desktop is a leading information technology school based in New York City; this class is offered at their Midtown Manhattan location. An online version of this class is available as well.
Something more advanced is IASeminars’ course in Designing/Implementing Blockchain in Accounting Systems. The class introduces students to blockchain technology and shows that, far from being only useful for cryptocurrencies, a blockchain can be used to create a new and more secure paradigm for corporate accounting. The class shows how blockchain concepts, such as distributed ledger technology, can be used by an organization’s accounting information systems. The class’ two all-day weekday sessions are designed primarily for accountants and auditors, both internal and external, and take place at IASeminars’ location just blocks from the Flatiron Building in Manhattan. IASeminars offers classes in international accounting topics and has offices in places as far-flung as London and Cape Town. The school specializes in public training sessions as well as bespoke in-house classes for companies of all sizes.
American accountants working in multinational corporations will find another IASeminars venture, IFRS Basics with US GAAP Comparison, to be extremely helpful, as IFRS (International Financial Reporting Standards) differ significantly from the Generally Accepted Accounting Practices (GAAP) standards that prevail in the United States. Filings with international regulatory agencies need to follow IFRS. In addition, the business world is currently moving in the direction of a single financial reporting standard, which will, in all probability, be IFRS. Thus knowing the highways and byways of the international standard is a good investment in any accountant’s future.
The American Management Association has a whole portfolio of accountancy classes on tap, including its own version of Fundamentals of Finance and Accounting for Non-Financial Managers, which equips managers with no financial background with the knowledge they require to understand the numbers side of their jobs. The school also teaches a Fundamentals of Cost Accounting class that is designed for managers in manufacturing businesses who need to understand the interplay between inventory and manufacturing costs, the means whereby they are tracked, and the calculation of break-even points and margins of safety. The class runs for three days and is held at the AMA’s Midtown Manhattan premises.
Among the other courses available from the American Management Association is a two-day workshop in Global Supply Chain Management. Anyone involved in import/export operations will be able to gain much from the two-day workshop, including executives, purchasing professionals, and controllers. There is an urgent need for global supply chain management professionals; this class will equip you with skills that are both transferable and marketable.
Virtual Accounting Classes & Schools
Getting to a live accounting class in New York City can be an enormous pain in the…neck. Navigating the subway into Midtown Manhattan during rush hour (as some of the above classes will require you to do) is hardly a pleasant undertaking, even if millions of New Yorkers are inured to the routine. Still, you can give yourself a day off from the rats crawling the tracks by taking an online live class rather than one that requires your physical self to be present behind a desk in a school. Live online classes are, as their name makes apparent, live. Really the only difference is that you can be in a comfortable space with your shoes off while you are being enlightened by a human teacher with whom you can communicate. True, you’ll need to have all the equipment required for the class on your end of the internet connection, but paper, pencils and pencil sharpener, and an accounting calculator aren’t exactly as hard to come by as the soldering iron, flux, and glass cutter you’d need if you were taking a course in making stained glass from home.
Online accounting classes are available at all levels of the subject, from beginning bookkeeping all the way to advanced seminars in complying with various aspects of IFRS.
An example of the kind of entry-level class that is available is to be had from the Digital Workshop Center, based out of Fort Collins, CO. Aptly enough named Bookkeeping Fundamentals, the course for absolute beginners who want to learn to keep their own financial records, introduces students to fundamental accounting concepts and how the popular QuickBooks software can be used to track a business’ finances. Running for three weekday afternoons, Bookkeeping Fundamentals will allow you to remain aware of how much money your business has while saving you the expense of hiring a professional accountant.
People with very different needs may be well-served by the series of seminars offered by the international school IASeminars on how to speak IFRS (International Finance Reporting Standards), especially for American accountants who are used to working within the GAAP (Generally Acceptable Accounting Practices) standard. Among the recondite sub-topics covered by IASeminars workshops are A Focus on IFRS 9 Financial Instruments, A Focus on IFRS 15 Revenue, and A Focus on IFRS 36 Impairment of Assets.
An option lying somewhere between the above classes would be the Financial Modeling Bootcamp offered by Noble Desktop. Here, students learn to use Excel to develop a discounted cash flow model by employing actual corporate data and how to conduct financial analysis using real numbers. The program runs for three weekdays; note that intermediate proficiency in Excel is a prerequisite for the course.
Booking any of the above courses through CourseHorse comes with its own set of advantages. You’ll receive confirmation of your course reservation within 24 hours, are guaranteed the lowest price, and no booking fees are levied. There’s even a rewards program for returning customers.
What to Learn After Accounting
As business continues to evolve, so does accounting. Ongoing education is part and parcel of an accountant’s professional trajectory, and you’ll be called upon, as your career progresses, to attend any number of classes, workshops, and seminars. You might think that accounting is one of the few things in this world that doesn’t change, but the reality is that accountants need to keep their skill sets sharp. Addition, subtraction, and double-entry bookkeeping may be immutable, but as entities continue to search for a magic mirror that can accurately forecast the corporate future, advanced accounting procedures are not.
Above and beyond staying in touch with the developments in the field, a course in accounting can be very usefully complemented by a course or two in the kinds of softer business skills that aren’t covered by traditional accounting curricula. Since you can’t just put a bunch of numbers on a piece of paper and call it a balance sheet, a class such as Noble Desktop’s Effective Business Writing can make the difference between an accountant whose reports impress managers or one whose reports set their boss’ heads shaking. The class is a one-day workshop offered at Noble Desktop’s Midtown Manhattan school and comes with a one-day follow-up, Advanced Business Writing, that runs more deeply into written communication topics. (Both these business writing classes may be taken online as well.)
In addition to written communication skills, an accountant intent on rising above the pack will do well to bone up on verbal communication skills. The time for a dreaded oral presentation will come, very likely to a room of non-accountants, and acing a challenge like that can be of tremendous help to your career. You can’t get over your fear of public speaking too soon, and much is to be gained from taking a course such as Overcome Your Public Speaking Fear, offered online by the Zenspeak Public Speaking Center. Being a comfortable public speaker (there’s more to it than imagining your audience wearing its underwear) is a valuable skill to keep in your back pocket for when you’re called upon to make that presentation at work or speech at your brother’s wedding. Zenspeak even makes a trial class available free of charge to help you decide whether you wish to invest in the entire course.