Master of Science in Accounting

  • Applying for the Cox MSA

    Application Resources

    Your application, supporting documents and personal interview are all very important to us, but most of all, we want to get to know you. Please reach out to us with your questions, try to visit us on campus so we can meet in person, and consider attending an admissions event or class. Studying at SMU Cox is an intimate experience and connections matter — starting now.

    Application Requirements for ALL Applicants

    • Submit online application
    • Resume and Essays – uploaded in the online application (questions are available after creating and logging in to your online application and selecting MS in Accounting as the program applying to)
    • GMAT or GRE score report (from exam taken within the last five years) - Application can be reviewed with unofficial score report uploaded online. Official score report is REQUIRED after a student is offered admission (SMU Cox GMAT school code: HWG-KN-59 and GRE school code: 6660). SMU Cox BBA Undergraduates are NOT required to submit GMAT/GRE Scores.
    • Transcripts - Application can be reviewed with unofficial transcripts or degree progress reports showing cumulative GPA and grades for each course taken; Official transcripts are REQUIRED after a student is offered admission.
    • Transfer Transcripts - We require transcripts from any university/college at which the student earned 12 or more credit hours; Unofficial copies can be uploaded online; Official transfer transcripts are REQUIRED after a student is offered admission.
    • Two references (name & contact information only - recommendation letters NOT required)
    • You may submit the online application prior to completing the required exams, but your application will not be reviewed until all materials are received

    Application Requirements for International Students

    • All applicants whose native language is not English are required to submit either a TOEFL, IELTS or PTE Score Report to meet the English language proficiency requirement. Test scores are valid for up to two years (from test date to date of application). SMU Cox TOEFL institution code: 6660
    • The TOEFL/IELTS/PTE may be waived if at least one of the following conditions is met:
      • You will hold or currently hold an undergraduate and/or prior graduate degree from a college or university where English is the official language of instruction.
      • You have lived and worked full-time in the U.S. or in a country where English is the official language for at least two of the past four years.
      • You scored at or above the 80th percentile on the verbal section of the GMAT or GRE exam.

    Unable to upload your required application materials? All unofficial transcripts/test scores can be sent via e-mail to or via postal mail to:

    • Mailing Address: 
      SMU Cox School of Business 
      MSA Admissions
      PO Box 750521
      Dallas, TX 75275

    Prerequisites and Background Courses

    The SMU Cox Program accepts students from a wide variety of educational backgrounds. Currently, over 20% of our MSA students do not have an undergraduate degree in accounting. No matter the background, applicants must demonstrate the necessary background for success in the program.

    Most students who have attended colleges outside the US and those without a prior accounting degree will need to complete background courses at SMU during the summer before continuing the MSA Program in the fall. Offers of admittance will indicate if background courses are necessary.

    All students must have completed introductory accounting courses (equivalent to Fundamentals of Accounting I and II) prior to being considered for admission to the MSA program. Descriptions of the topics covered in these courses are:

    • Fundamentals of Accounting I (SMU's ACCT 2301) - Provides students with a comprehensive introduction to financial accounting under US GAAP. Students will gain an understanding of the principles and procedures of accounting, be able to construct basic financial statements including the cash flow statement and begin to read and interpret U.S. corporate financial reports.
    • Fundamentals of Accounting II (SMU’s ACCT 2302) – Provides students with a comprehensive introduction to managerial accounting focusing on the use of internal accounting systems for planning, decision-making and control purposes. Students will gain an understanding of topics such as cost estimation, cost volume profit analysis, management control and capital budgeting and learn how to use these concepts and tools to make operational and strategic decisions.

    Faculty in the MSA Program assume that students enter the program with a minimum level of prior knowledge related to accounting. Therefore, we require that all students have a background in US reporting that includes:

    • Intermediate Accounting based on US GAAP. Having studied Intermediate Accounting in classes that focused on IFRS or another jurisdiction's standards is not sufficient preparation, as the level of familiarity with US GAAP will not be present.
    • Taxation that is focused on the US Tax Law. Again, having studied taxation under another jurisdiction or studied taxation theory is not sufficient, as the familiarity with US Tax Law will not be present to allow for advanced studies.
    • Accounting information systems that is focused on the commonly observed US structures and processes around financing reporting. Again, having studied systems under another jurisdiction or for other purposes is not sufficient, as the familiarity with US financial reporting will not be present to allow for advanced studies.

    The goal of the MSA Program's background course requirements is to ensure students are prepared for and therefore not overwhelmed by the content, pace, and rigor of their graduate classes. 

  • Tuition & Financing

    Financing Your MSA

    A graduate management education is one of the most important investments you'll ever make, and it's likely to produce one of your biggest ROIs — you won't just boost your career and earning potential, but you'll reap personal gains, too. If you need additional funding, you'll find that a variety of loan and private scholarship opportunities are available.

    For full-time enrollment, the estimated 2020-2021 academic year tuition, program fees, and general student fees will total $49,734 for a student in the 31 hour program and $62,948 for a student in the 40 hour program. Students enrolling in the program on a part-time basis are charged per credit hour. The estimated 2020-2021 part-time rate is $1,303 per credit hour plus the general student fees of $277 per credit hour and the program fee of $750 per term.

    Merit-Based Scholarship

    SMU Cox is able to offer some merit-based scholarships to students exhibiting high academic potential. These scholarships are currently offered only to full-time students. All students whose completed application is received by the early application deadline of January 6th for fall admission will be considered for these scholarships. Choice between assurance/advisory and tax track and the applicant’s citizenship are not considered in awarding of scholarships.

  • Admissions Events

    The best way to find out if Cox is the right school for you is to visit us on campus. You can come for an information session, or schedule a day to chat with an admissions officer, take a campus tour and sit in on a class. If you're unable to come to Dallas, opt for an off-campus event or virtual visit that will give you a window into our world and answer your questions.

    To request a campus visit, please call 214-768-1214 or email

  • FAQs

    Click here to find answers to frequently asked questions

Application Deadlines

  • May 3, 2021

    Round 5 *Rolling admissions following May 3, 2021