Bank auditors assess the capital assets of financial institutions. Prospective bank auditors can pursue accounting degrees at both at the bachelor's and master's levels. While students in both programs are exposed to business and finance topics, along with practical opportunities, master's programs usually prepare students for the Certified Public Accountant (CPA) exam.
Bachelor of Science in Accounting
Accounting Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degree programs cover several topics relevant to auditing, including risk management, financial analysis, financial forecasting and statistics. These 4-year programs also discuss business concepts like marketing, human resources and information systems. Students often complete an internship to gain hands-on accounting experience as part of the degree program.
Applicants sometimes need to select a business major in addition to accounting and complete prerequisite coursework before studying accounting. Accounting students should enter college with strong mathematics, communications and computer skills.
The classes in an accounting degree program focus on auditing, financial forecasting, budgeting and managerial accounting. Students learn about public accounting, which is reporting information for investors and others outside a company, and managerial, or internal accounting. Programs typically include courses such as:
- Accounting theory
- Internal auditing
- Budgeting practices
- External auditing
Master's Degree in Accounting
Master of Science (M.S.) and Master of Accountancy (MACC) degree programs teach students the research, analytical and reporting skills needed to work in the field. Students interested in becoming bank auditors can take courses in internal and external auditing, financial reporting and treasury management. Some schools also offer coursework in fraud analysis. Graduate-level accounting programs prepare students for the CPA exam. These programs can be completed in two years.
Students interested in applying to accounting master's programs need to have completed significant business and accounting coursework in a bachelor's degree curriculum. Incoming students must be familiar with concepts like accounting information systems, commercial law and taxation.
Students learn the theoretical aspects of accounting, as well as the research and statistical skills necessary for advanced positions in the field. Master's degree programs often require students to complete a thesis as part of their required coursework. Students learn about the following topics:
- Accounting ethics
- Operational auditing
- Financial auditing
- Forensics accounting
- Accounting law
Employment Outlook and Salary Information
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, job opportunities for all accountants and auditors, including bank auditors, are expected to increase by 6% between 2018 and 2028. The BLS also stated in 2018 that auditors and accountants earned $70,500 as a median annual wage.
Continuing Education Information
All accountants and auditors who file documents with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) need to earn Certified Public Accountant (CPA) credentials. CPA candidates need to pass a 4-part exam and complete periodic continuing education credits. Bank auditors often earn voluntary Certified Bank Auditor (CBA) credentials by completing a training course and passing a competency examination.
Students wanting a career as a bank auditor can complete accounting programs at the bachelor's or master's level. These programs combine hands-on experience with classes such as auditing, taxation, and budgeting to prepare students for future careers.