Accounting Basics

Accounting Basics Extension Certificate   NEW!


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Gain a foundational knowledge of accounting principles including accounting theory, hands-on practice and the application of accounting software. This flexible program provides you with both theoretical accounting knowledge and the hands-on application of accounting principles.



“This program would be great for anyone who works with the accounting department including managers or payroll professionals. The combination of both theoretical and practical knowledge provides the skills needed to make yourself more marketable to work in business and management positions.” (Kate Estby, Program Coordinator)

Click here to read more about how the Accounting Basics Extension Certificate can help you market yourself and your business!


  • Gain a strong foundation in accounting principles
  • Earn a credential and enhance your skills
  • Learn computerized accounting for your professional or personal life
  • Financial Accounting Fundamentals course can be applied to both the Payroll Compliance Practitioner (PCP) program and the CAPPA program

This program is designed for:

  • Small business owners interested in gaining the tools to complete basic accounts
  • Individuals looking to move into an entry level accounting position
  • Non-accounting professionals who interact with accounting departments including payroll professionals and managers looking to gain a better understanding of accounting

Program Format

  • Complete 2 required courses and 3 optional courses (total 87 - 99 hours)
  • Note: Students who began the Accounting Basics Extension Certificate prior to the winter 2018 semester are only required to complete 2 optional courses (total 72-84 hours)
  • Can be completed in 2 semesters up to a maximum of 3 years

Required Courses

Financial Accounting Fundamentals
Be introduced to financial accounting concepts, principles and techniques. Topics include Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP), preparing and analyzing financial statements, the valuation of current assets and liabilities, measuring and reporting business transactions, and using financial analysis to support decision making. (Note: This course is academically rigorous* and includes textbook readings, quizzes, online assignments and a final exam.)

Textbooks (required):
Financial Accounting - Tools for Business Decision Making, Seventh Canadian Edition, (2017) with WileyPlus ISBN 9781119413103 (textbook and WileyPlus package available at the BookStore).

Subject code: XACC 10100 36 Hours. Fee: $549  
CRN 30646
12 classes Jan. 30 - April 17 6 - 9:15 p.m. Tue.

Accounting Fundamentals Practice Set
Work through the manual accounting system for one month’s worth of transactions for a small retail and service business. You will be provided the opportunity to practice the activities performed during the accounting cycle; including business transactions, adjusting journal entries, posting journal entries to the general ledger and preparing financial statements. The practice set is designed to simulate the real-world environment as much as possible. (Note: This is a manual course and does not employ any accounting software.)

Recommended Prerequisite: XACC 10100 Financial Accounting Fundamentals or equivalent introductory accounting course.
Textbooks (required):
City Cycle Shop: An Accounting Practice Set. ISBN 987-0-470-83950-8. Please note this is a Workbook. (Textbook available at the BookStore).

Subject code: XACC 10101 12 Hours. Fee: $249 Not offered this semester


Optional Courses

Choose 3 of the following options:

MS Excel Level 1

Discover the basics of an electronic spreadsheet. Learn correct terminology, mouse and keyboard movements and be introduced to the MS Excel environment. Learn how to enter data and apply formatting through a variety of methods. Perform calculations by creating formulas and using simple functions.
Recommended: Windows file management skills.
Textbooks: Available at the BookStore in the Continuing Education section.

Subject code: XCSS 10001 12 Hours. Fee: $279 Choose one of the CRNs below
CRN 30055
2 classes Feb. 12 - 13 9 a.m. - 4 p.m. Mon., Tue.
CRN 30056 2 classes March 3 - 4 9 a.m. - 4 p.m. Sat., Sun.

Simply Accounting Level 1
Examine the functions and applications of the Simply Accounting ledgers, journals, and reports. You will have an opportunity to set up a fictitious company, and complete the transactions and procedures involved in an accounting cycle. This course focuses on the features and functions of the general ledger and accounts payable/receivable modules.
Textbooks: Available at the BookStore in the Continuing Education section.

Subject code: XCAC 10002 18 Hours. Fee: $329  
CRN 30061
3 classes Jan. 26 - 28 9 a.m. - 4 p.m. Fri. - Sun.

Simply Accounting Level 2
Build on your Simply Accounting Level 1 skills. This course covers chart of accounts, creating a budget, setting up the accounts for reconciliation, and using security features. Learn how to handle inventory adjustments, receivable and payable discounts, and repayments. Customize the payroll journal, disburse vacation pay, create fiscal year comparative reports, and handle dynamic data exchange.
Recommended Prerequisite: Simply Accounting, Level 1
Textbooks: Available at the BookStore in the Continuing Education section.

Subject code: XCAC 10007 18 Hours. Fee: $329  
CRN 30075
3 classes Feb. 2 - 4 9 a.m. - 4 p.m. Fri. - Sun.

Quick Books Level 1
Explore this popular, time-saving software. QuickBooks is designed to make accounting transactions for small businesses simply and speedy. Use this program to track invoicing, accounts payable and receivable, and revenues and expenses.
Textbooks: Available at the BookStore in the Continuing Education section.

Subject code: XCAC 10004 18 Hours. Fee: $329  
CRN 301523 classesFeb. 9 - 119 a.m. - 4 p.m.Fri. - Sun.

Taxation Basics - NEW
Learn 10 important concepts of taxation to help you gather the information necessary to do a basic business tax return. Understand what additional accounts need to be set up in the general ledger to facilitate ease in preparing for filling a tax return. A practical exercise is included in class time to reinforce the key concepts.

Subject code: XACC 10102 12 Hours. Fee: $349  
CRN 30926 2 classes April 28 - 29 9 a.m. - 3:30 p.m. Sat., Sun

Understanding and Using Financial Information
Cut through the fog of accounting jargon, and contribute and manage finances more effectively. Discover how to interpret, evaluate and analyze financial statements. Using ratio analysis, assess the performance of a business from the balance sheet, income statement and other financial information.
Note: Please bring a calculator to class.

Subject code: XMGD 20003 15 Hours. Fee: $420  Not offered this semester

*What does academically rigorous mean?

This course is challenging and is structured more closely to a full-time, for-credit accounting course than typical part-time continuing education courses. Students are expected to complete additional work outside of class every week, including textbook readings and online assignments. In addition, the course includes quizzes and a final exam.

If you are looking for a less rigorous certificate you may be interested in our
Accounting Software Certificate of Completion which includes a more basic introductory course - Accounting Principles for Computers.

When I began the Accounting Basics Extension Certificate, students were required to complete 2 optional courses, and the total hours in the certificate were 72-84.  Now students are required to complete 3 optional courses for a total of 87-99 hours.  How many courses and hours do I need to complete in order to earn the certificate?
Students who began the Accounting Basics Extension Certificate prior to the winter 2018 semester are only required to complete two optional courses (total 72-84 hours).

Can I take the courses individually?
Yes, the courses are available individually. However, it is strongly recommended that you take Financial Accounting Fundamentals or an equivalent course before taking the other courses in the program.

How many courses can I take at a time?

You can take as many courses as your schedule will allow. There are no restrictions on the number of courses you can take at one time.

How do I graduate and obtain my extension certification?
Once you have successfully completed the 2 required courses and 2 optional courses, you can then apply to graduate. Detailed information, including the application form, can be found by clicking here.

Will the courses be offered again? The dates only go until...
Yes, all of the courses are offered in both the fall and winter semesters, some courses are also offered in the spring semester as well. If you missed a course date in the current semester, it will be offered again in the next semester. Schedules and registration for each semester are generally available on the website 2 months before the start of the semester.

For example:
Fall registration starts the second Monday in June
Winter registration starts the second Monday in November
Spring registration starts the second Monday in March

What is the total cost of the program?
The total cost of the program is between $1,735 - 1,796 depending on your choice of option, plus the cost of textbook and workbooks. Course fees are due at the time of Registration. Fees are subject to change without notice.

How will I be graded in each course?

Each course has graded assignments. These assignments vary per course; however, they are all designed to assess the outcomes of each course. These assessments include, but are not limited to, online assignments, group projects, short answer, quizzes and final exams.

I've completed a similar course at another institution. Can I get a transfer credit?
Possibly. You must apply for a transfer credit through a process called PLAR (Prior Learning Assessment & Recognition). This process evaluates previous course work/training and/or work experience to grant transfer credit. Please note that there are fees associated with applying and application does not guarantee credit.

For more information, review the PLAR Application Document.

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Contact us

For information about this program:
403.440.6013 or 1.888.392.3655
Mount Royal University, 4825 Mount Royal Gate SW, Calgary AB T3E 6K6

Customize this program for your organization through our Corporate Training department.

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