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Certificate in Tax Preparation

Tax preparers are responsible for preparing simple to complex tax returns for individuals or small businesses. They also compute taxes owed or overpaid, review financial records such as income statements and provide future tax planning to clients. If you want to get into the field of tax preparation or if you are a tax preparer and seek to improve your career opportunities, earning a certificate in tax preparation can be a good option.

Featured Programs

Both traditional and online schools offer certificate programs in this area of study, helping you acquire the skills and knowledge essential for improving your prospects of developing a career in this field or qualify for positions of seniority. Employment opportunities for tax preparers are expected to grow from 8% to 14% from 2012 to 2022 according to the figures provided by O*Net. Earning a certificate in tax preparation can help you acquire an edge in a competitive job market.

Certificate in Tax Preparation
The certificate in tax preparation is a non-degree program that will provide students with the understanding of income tax law and income tax procedures for individuals. The program generally lasts for 6 months to 1 year. The duration may vary by the enrollment status of the candidates. Earning a tax preparation certificate may equip candidates for careers in tax preparation, including trusts, individual, payroll, business and estates. Some certificate programs may also help students prepare to pass the registered tax return preparer competency test.

Going through the tax preparation certificate courses will help students learn how to identify and apply tax laws to the preparation of individual and business tax forms and how to prepare and file individual and small business sole proprietor tax returns. Students may also learn to identify and apply basic principles of small business payroll processing.

Program Curriculum
The curriculum in the certificate programs in tax preparation may include topics such as cost management,financial accounting and budget planning. Students may also be able to learn about business law, statistics, government regulations, cost accounting, finite mathematics and macroeconomics among other areas.

Online Certificate in Tax Preparation
In addition to  schools, students can also pursue the certificate programs in tax preparation online. Based on immense flexibility and convenience, the online courses allow students to study from virtually any location and complete the certificate in tax preparation at their own pace. Tax preparers who want to earn additional credentials to upgrade their knowledge and skills can work towards these courses in an online format.

Admissions Requirements
To enroll in a certificate program in tax preparation, students should hold a high school diploma or an equivalent. In addition, they may have to submit recommendation letters and meet additional requirements that may vary by school.

Employment Opportunities
Tax preparers may find jobs with insurance carriers and accounting service firms. They can also find opportunities in management consulting. The location, experience and qualification are some of the factors that may determine the income of these professionals. According to O*Net, the median annual income for tax preparers in 2012 was $33,730.

States with the highest employment level in this occupation:



Employment per thousand jobs

Location quotient

Hourly mean wage

Annual mean wage

California 16600.111.2618.1337720
Florida 11300.141.6817.9737370
Illinois 9600.161.9217.937240
Texas 7600.070.7816.6234570
New York 6500.070.8520.1241840


Frequently Asked Question(s)

Q:What is expected in a Certificate In Tax Preparation?

A:Students enrolled in a tax preparation certification program undergo a study of various areas. They gain in depth knowledge of basic courses such as accounting and investment. The program also entails advanced courses such as payroll taxation, and business taxation. These courses enable a student to become skilled at calculating taxes for businesses and organizations.

Q:What are the contents of the course on Introduction to Accounting in the tax preparation certification programs?

A:The Introduction to Accounting course is one of the primary courses of the Tax Preparation Certification programs in the United States. It is structured to provide students with ample understanding of the entire cycle of bookkeeping. Students are taught about the best ways in which financial statements can be prepared. There is also emphasis placed on the various service concerns.

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