If you have an interest in accounting, you’re probably familiar with the common misconceptions people have about the subject. For some, “accounting” is a scary concept—and people oftentimes invent ideas about it that aren’t really true.
Professor David Cartwright, CPA, says the most common thing people associate accounting with is tax preparation. Many Certified Public Accountants (CPAs) don’t work with taxes at all, he says.
“They immediately assume that you prepare taxes for a living,” he said. “I can tell you that even though I studied those things as an accounting student, I have never professionally prepared taxes and I have no desire to!”
Cartwright says he has many colleagues who did go down the tax path but that is isn’t required as a CPA. Actually, before joining JWU as a staff member, Cartwright had a career in auditing. And no, he never worked for the IRS.
Now Cartwright works full-time as the College of Online Education’s Director of Online Academics. He’s also an online accounting instructor for JWU. One thing he said he hears a lot is that people assume accounting is bogged down with difficult math calculations. As a result, people are immediately deterred from the subject.
“Accounting is not math,” he said, breaking down that barrier. “There are math components in it but if you can add, subtract, multiply, and divide—that is the level of math you need to do as an accountant.”
Accounting can be anything you want it to be, Cartwright says! Really, there’s no reason to be afraid of the word.
Watch the video below to learn more about common misconceptions of accounting:
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