iMSA Program Requirements

The iMSA was developed by top accounting faculty to build expertise in leading analytics methods, financial reporting, audit and control, and US federal taxation. This degree helps prepare you to sit for the CPA exam. The 20 accountancy hours required are ACCY 501 through ACCY 505 (each of the five courses awards 4 hours credit).

For successful completion of this program, all iMSA students must:

  • Complete 32 Credit Hours
    Of which at least 20 hours are in accountancy (ACCY) courses, and at least 4 hours are in a non-accountancy course.
  • Earn a Cumulative GPA of 3.0
    This is the minimum term GPA required to maintain good academic standing in each term and to graduate.


Course Information

iMSA accounting courses are offered once a year. You can view the Annual Course Offering List for information on both accountancy and non-accountancy course offerings. If you have any questions on degree planning or course information, please visit the Planning & Advising section.

Core Accounting Courses

Accounting Analysis I - ACCY 501

Accounting Analysis II - ACCY 502

Managerial Accounting - ACCY 503

  • Spring Only
  • Coursera Components: MOOCs available to enrolled learners during Soft Launch

Auditing - ACCY 504

Federal Taxation - ACCY 505


Accounting Elective Courses

Advanced Financial Reporting - ACCY 506

Taxation of Business Entities – ACCY 507

Professional Responsibility and Ethics for Accountants – ACCY 516

Financial Statement Analysis and Valuation - ACCY 517

Government & Nonprofit Accounting - ACCY 519

Multistate Taxation - ACCY 550

International Tax - ACCY 554

Data Driven Decisions in Accounting - ACCY 569

Risk Management and Innovation - ACCY 574

Data Preparation for Accounting - ACCY 576

Machine Learning for Accounting - ACCY 577

Accounting Analytics Applications – ACCY 578

  • 1 Credit Hours, Fall and Spring

Non-Accounting Elective Courses

Most non-accountancy electives are 8-week, 4-credit hour courses and can be taken year-round (fall, spring, and summer semesters).  Additional non-accountancy electives are available. You can find the full list of non-accountancy electives can be found on the course offerings page

Corporate & Commercial Law - BADM 403

Infonomics - MBA 565

ACCY 593 - Disruption & Emerging Technologies

Transcriptable Concentrations and Graduate Certificates

iMSA degree-seeking students have the option to obtain one additional transcriptable credential while in pursuit of their MSA degree. The addition of a concentration or Graduate Certificate is optional based on your coursework and your personal and professional goals. Learners can only select the Accountancy Analytics concentration or one embedded Graduate Certificate while in their iMSA.

Accountancy Analytics Concentration

The iMSA Program currently offers one transcriptable concentration, the Accountancy Analytics Concentration. Students who wish to have this concentration appear on their transcript must complete 12 hours of approved courses. The recommended course completion of this concentration is:

  • ACCY 569
  • ACCY 576
  • ACCY 577
  • MBA 565
  • Two sections of ACCY 578     

A Graduate Student Petition is required to request the concentration be added to your record. The concentration will be listed on your transcript, but will not appear on your diploma. No coursework substitutions are allowed to complete the concentration.  

If you are interested in completing the Accountancy Analytics concentration as part of your degree, please work with our student and academic success specialists.   

Required Coursework:

  • ACCY 569: Data Driven Decisions in Accounting (2 credit hours)
  • ACCY 576: Data Preparation for Accounting (2 credit hours)

Select 8 hours of approved electives below. MBA 561 should be completed prior to taking MBA 563 or MBA 564 in order to be successful.

  • ACCY 577 Machine Learning
  • ACCY 578 Accounting Analytics Applications
  • MBA 563 Data Toolkit: Business Data Modeling & Predictive Analytics
  • MBA 564 Special Topics 1 and 2
  • MBA 565: Infonomics


Embedded Graduate Certificate

iMSA learners can elect to earn one Graduate Certificate during their degree program. To earn a Graduate Certificate as part of your iMSA, you must complete 12 credit hours and all coursework within the Graduate Certificate you wish to add to your academic record.

The following Graduate Certificates are available to iMSA learners: 

  • Accounting Data Analytics (ADA) 
  • CPA Pathways 
  • Taxation 
  • Digital Marketing 
  • Entrepreneurship and Strategic Innovation 
  • Global Challenges in Business 
  • Business Analytics 
  • Mergers and Acquisitions 

To add a Graduate Certificate to your record, you must submit a Curriculum Change petition to the Graduate College by the deadline in the semester you wish to earn it. It is highly recommended that you submit this petition as soon as you register for the final course in the Graduate Certificate. 

Fall Deadlines  l   Spring Deadlines   l    Summer Deadlines  

Follow these instructions to successfully submit your petition: 

  1. Login to the Graduate Student Portal using your NetID and password 
  2. Under the "Forms and Resources" section, click on the "Graduate Student Petition" link and "Start a new petition" 
  3. Select "Curriculum Change" and "Other" as your request type and complete all fields on the form 
  4. Are you currently on an upcoming degree list? Select "Yes" or "No" to indicate if you have already applied to graduate from the iMSA. You can verify this by clicking on the “View Graduation Application” in the UIUC Self-Service “Graduation” section
  5. Enter the effective Term: Enter the term you wish to desire to add this to your academic record
  6. Select Curriculum Change Category: "Current doctoral or master's student adding a secondary certificate program curriculum" 
  7. Add first certificate in the "New Degree Program" from the drop-down list 
  8. Please provide a detailed explanation of your request.
    "Please add {Grad Cert} as the secondary Graduate Certificate” 
  9. Click "continue" when you have completed these steps and to submit your petition.  

It may take up to four weeks to see this added to your academic record. Once it has been added to your record, you must submit your application to graduate in Student Self-Service.

Degree Planning

Your degree plan is an important step that will give you a road map toward graduation. Our dedicated Student & Academic Success Specialists will work with you throughout your iMSA journey to help you plan a degree path that will meet your professional and personal needs. Because you will need to budget 10 to 15 hours per week per course to complete the work, you should not take more than 1 to 2 courses at a time. Additionally, there are certain courses we recommend you not take together. For this reason, it is always a good idea to contact a specialist to review your plans.


iMSA Resources

iMSA Sample Plans
iMSA students can follow the basic accounting or tax path. The Data Analytics concentration is transcriptable. Students must submit a Graduate Student Request form.

Annual iMSA Course Offerings
For your convenience, we provide you with an Annual View of iMSA Course Offerings to give you a good idea of when our courses are offered throughout the year.