Accounting or Computer Science, Which One Should I Study? (Explained)

Accounting or Computer Science, Which One Should I Study? (Explained)

Thinking about whether to study Accounting or Computer Science?

Accounting and Computer Science are like Chalk and Cheese, but both are worth exploring as careers.

In this article, we’ll discuss the two.

Accounting vs Computer Science,  which one should I study?

Accounting and Computer Science degrees offer in-demand career options. Computer Sciences degrees demand is higher than Accounting making it easier to land and gain promotion. Computer Science typically pays higher wages than Accounting.

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Accounting Bubble Gum

The answer to this question lies in a person’s interests in any of the two fields.

Both fields can offer a rewarding career; however, that depends on how well you can adapt to the domain you choose.

Perhaps the best way to identify and find your interests is by knowing the differences between the two fields, giving you a deeper insight.

You can then make the right decisions by keeping job prospects, salaries, and, most importantly, your interests in mind.

Accounting is a good fit for people who are organised, pay attention to detail, think analytically, and appreciate solving complicated problems with numbers.

Career paths for Accounting graduates include finance manager, finance analyst, bookkeeping, financial accounting,  corporate accounting.

Computer Science is suited to someone who is technically minded, enjoys solving problems with an analytical mindset.

Having a bachelors degree in Computer Science opens up several career options.

Such as Computer hardware engineer, Computer and information research scientists, Computer Programmer, Architect and middle to senior technology management roles, just to name a few.

Most computer and information systems managers work full time.

Some work more than 40 hours per week.

Candidates typically require a bachelor’s degree in computer or information science and related work experience.

Many computer and information systems managers also have a graduate degree

So now we’ve answered the main question, let’s further explore Accounting and Computer Science?

Accounting vs Computer Science, which one is harder? (Solved & Explained)

A Computer Science degree is seen to be more difficult than Accounting because computer science involves understanding statistical algorithms and learning programming languages.

The level of difficulty, however, will be determined by a person’s level of interest.

Are you interested in technical stuff and comfortable with systems?

Or are you someone who enjoys dealing with numbers, transactions and coming up with an answer?

Accounting gets much harder when you get into courses such as corporate accounting.

Where accounting concepts dictate what you can and can’t do, and then how you must go about treating the concepts.

The good news is once you get a grasp of the fundamentals of accounting it is not that hard to learn.

If you are interested in studying or becoming an Accountant, we do have some articles related to Accounting.

What Accountants Do Everyday (Explained)

Accountants and auditors prepare and examine financial records, identify potential areas of opportunity and risk, and provide solutions for businesses and individuals.

They ensure that financial records are accurate, that financial and data risks are evaluated, and that taxes are paid properly.

They also assess financial operations and work to help ensure that organizations run efficiently.

Duties

Accountants and auditors typically do the following:

  • Examine financial statements to ensure that they are accurate and comply with laws and regulations
  • Compute taxes owed, prepare tax returns, and ensure that taxes are paid properly and on time
  • Inspect account books and accounting systems for efficiency and use of accepted accounting procedures and identify potential risks for fraud
  • Organize, analyze, and maintain financial records
  • Assess financial operations, identify risks and challenges, and make best-practices recommendations to management
  • Suggest ways to reduce costs, enhance revenues, and improve profits

Accountants and auditors may use technology, such as artificial intelligence (AI) and robotics process automation, to increase their productivity.

Automating some routine tasks makes these workers more efficient by allowing them to focus on analysis and other high-level responsibilities.

In addition to examining and preparing financial documents, accountants and auditors must explain their findings.

This includes preparing written reports and meeting face-to-face with organization managers and individual clients.

Many accountants and auditors specialize, depending on their employer.

Some work for organizations that specialize in assurance services (improving the quality or context of information for decisionmakers) or risk management (determining the probability of a misstatement on financial documents).

Other organizations specialize in specific industries, such as finance, insurance, or healthcare.

The following are examples of types of accountants and auditors:

Government accountants maintain and examine the records of government agencies and audit private businesses and individuals whose activities are subject to government regulations or taxation.

Accountants employed by federal, state, and local governments ensure that revenues are received and spent according to laws and regulations.

Their responsibilities include auditing, financial reporting, and management accounting.

Management accountants are also called cost, corporate, industrial, managerial, or private accountants. They combine accounting and financial information to guide business decision making.

They also understand financial and non-financial data and how to integrate information.

The information that management accountants prepare is intended for internal use by business managers, not for the public.

Management accountants often prepare budgets and evaluate performance.

They also may help organizations plan the cost of doing business.

Some work with financial managers on asset management, which involves planning and selecting financial investments such as stocks, bonds, and real estate.

Public accountants have a broad range of accounting, auditing, tax, and consulting tasks. Their clients include corporations, governments, individuals, and nonprofits.

Public accountants work with financial documents that clients are required by law to disclose, such as tax forms and financial statements that corporations must provide to current and potential investors.

Some public accountants concentrate on tax matters, advising corporations about the tax advantages of certain business decisions or preparing individual income tax returns.

Other public accountants specialize in forensic accounting, investigating financial crimes such as securities fraud and embezzlement, bankruptcies and contract disputes, and other complex and potentially criminal financial transactions.

Forensic accountants combine their knowledge of accounting and finance with law and investigative techniques to determine if an activity is illegal.

Many forensic accountants work closely with law enforcement personnel and lawyers during investigations and often appear as expert witnesses during trials.

Still, others work with individuals, advising them on important personal financial matters.

These public accountants combine their expertise in data management, economics, financial planning, and tax law to develop strategies for their clients.

Advisory services cover topics including cash flow, insurance, investment, retirement, and wealth transfer planning to help clients meet financial goals, such as retirement, paying for a child’s education, or buying a home.

Public accountants, many of whom are Certified Public Accountants (CPAs), generally have their own businesses or work for public accounting firms.

Publicly traded companies are required to have CPAs sign documents they submit to the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), including annual and quarterly reports.

External auditors check for proper management of an organization’s funds, sources of revenue, and internal controls, such as financial data preparation or managing risks to cybersecurity or the supply chain.

They are employed by an outside organization, rather than the one they are auditing.

They review clients’ financial statements and inform authorities, investors, and regulators, that the statements have been correctly prepared and reported with no material misstatements.

Information technology (IT) auditors review controls for their organization’s IT systems to ensure that both financial and nonfinancial data come from a reliable source.

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What Information System Manager do Everyday

(Explained)

Computer and information systems managers often called information technology (IT) managers or IT project managers, plan, coordinate, and direct computer-related activities in an organization.

They help determine the information technology goals of an organization and are responsible for implementing computer systems to meet those goals.

Duties

Computer and information systems managers typically do the following:

  • Analyze their organization’s computer needs and recommend possible upgrades for top executives to consider
  • Plan and direct the installation and maintenance of computer hardware and software
  • Ensure the security of an organization’s network and electronic documents
  • Assess the costs and benefits of new projects and justify funding on projects to top executives
  • Learn about new technology and look for ways to upgrade their organization’s computer systems
  • Determine short- and long-term personnel needs for their department
  • Plan and direct the work of other IT professionals, including computer systems analysts, software developers, information security analysts, and computer support specialists
  • Negotiate with vendors to get the highest level of service for the organization’s technology

Few managers carry out all of these duties.

There are various types of computer and information systems managers, and the specific duties of each are determined by the size and structure of the firm.

Smaller firms may not employ every type of manager.

The following are examples of types of computer and information systems managers:

Chief information officers (CIOs) determine the technology or information goals of an organization and then oversee the implementation of technology to meet those goals.

CIOs may focus on a specific area, such as electronic data processing or information systems, but CIOs tend to focus more on long-term or big picture issues.

At small organizations a CIO has more direct control over the IT department, and at larger organizations other managers under the CIO may handle the day-to-day activities of the IT department.

CIOs who do not have the technical expertise and who focus solely on a company’s business aspects are included in top executives.

Chief technology officers (CTOs) evaluate new technology and determine how it can help their organization. When both CIOs and CTOs are present, the CTO usually has more technical expertise.

The CTO usually reports directly to the CIO and is responsible for designing and recommending the appropriate technology solutions to support the CIO’s policies and directives.

CTOs also work with different departments to implement the organization’s technology plans.

When a company does not have a CIO, the CTO determines the overall technology strategy for the firm and presents it to top executives.

IT directors, including management information systems (MIS) directors, are in charge of their organizations’ information technology (IT) departments, and they directly supervise other employees.

IT directors help to determine the business requirements for IT systems, and they implement the policies that have been chosen by top executives.

IT directors often have a direct role in hiring members of the IT department.

It is their job to ensure the availability of data and network services by coordinating IT activities. IT directors also oversee the financial aspects of their department, such as budgeting.

IT security managers oversee their organizations’ network and data security.

They work with top executives to plan security policies and promote a culture of information security throughout the organization.

They develop programs to keep employees aware of security threats.

These managers must keep up to date on IT security measures.

They also supervise investigations if there is a security violation.

Who earns more, Accounting or Computer Science? (Solved)

Computer Science earns more than Accountants. A median wage of an Accountant is $73,560 compared to Computer and Information Systems Managers being $151,150 in May 2020.

If you are ambitious and willing to work hard and climb the ladder, Chief Financial Officer (CFO) earn a median wage of $185,460 per annum.

Accountants can also join the big Accounting firms that pay high wages for senior roles.

The wages discussed are median wages and should be taken as a rough guide.

The reason I say this is that wages vary depending on whether you work for a private or public organisation, your geographic region, the size of your business, and your industry (some pay more than others).

Below is a guide of median wages of technology roles aligned to a Computer Science qualification

Job Qualification Wage
Computer and Information Systems Managers Bachelor Degree  $          151,150
Computer and information research scientists Bachelor Degree  $          126,830
Computer hardware engineers Bachelor Degree  $          119,560
Network architects Bachelor Degree  $          116,780
Computer programmer Bachelor Degree  $            89,190

According to BLS employment of computer and information systems managers is projected to grow 10 per cent from 2019 to 2029, much faster than the average for all occupations.

Demand for computer and information systems managers will grow as firms increasingly expand their business to digital platforms.

The employment of accountants and auditors is projected to grow 4 per cent from 2019 to 2029, about as fast as the average for all occupations.

In general, the employment growth of accountants and auditors is expected to be closely tied to the health of the overall economy.

As the economy grows, more workers should be needed to prepare and examine financial records.

Final Thoughts

Graduating in Accounting or Computer Science will lead to interesting, well paying and in-demand career paths.

Choosing whether to study Accounting or Computer Science should come down to your interests.

Accounting comes down to financial transactions whilst Computers Science focuses on computer hardware and software.

Both are technical in nature but totally different.

Deciding on what to study is an important one.

Speak with trusted friends and family, even consult with a career consultant for advice.

Consider your strengths and weakness, likes and dislikes before deciding on the career path to study.

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References

  • Computer and Information Systems Managers: Occupational Outlook Handbook:: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (bls.gov)
  • https://www.bls.gov/ooh/business-and-financial/mobile/accountants-and-auditors.htm