Harper College

Tax Accounting Assistant Certificate

Begin your career as a tax preparer

Program facts manufacturing construction icon

  • Credit hours: 18
  • Stackable to degree: No
  • Potential job outcomes: Tax preparer, accounting clerk

Develop a basic understanding of tax law and procedures with this 18-credit-hour certificate program. You can complete this program on campus or online, giving you additional flexibility.

Take classes in financial accounting, payroll accounting, individual and business tax accounting, tax research, business software packages and business writing. Expand your learning outside the classroom by participating in Harper College’s active Accounting Club.

Individuals with accounting training are highly valuable to employers. Upon completion of this program, you’ll be well-positioned for entry-level employment as a tax preparer or accounting clerk.

Certificate program requirements

This 17 credit-hour certificate program provides students with a basic understanding of tax law and tax procedures. The certificate includes coursework needed to obtain an entry-level position in national "chain" tax preparation companies as well as in CPA and accounting firms.

F = Fall only course S = Spring only course U = Summer only course


Number Course Title Credits
ACC 101 4

Description:  Presents accounting as an information system that produces summary financial statements primarily for users external to a business. Emphasizes the reporting of the effect of transactions and other economic events on the financial condition and operating results of a business. Topics include: basic accounting concepts, financial statements, accrual and cash basis, the accounting cycle, monetary assets, inventories, fixed assets, current and long-term liabilities, and owner’s equity. The course assumes a corporate form of organization. NOTE: High school algebra is recommended. IAI BUS 903

Class Schedule:  Summer 2024 | Fall 2024

ACC 250 3

Description:  Offers a practical study of current Federal and Illinois income taxes as they relate to individual income tax procedures. Topics studied include income inclusions and exclusions, capital gains and losses, business and personal deductions, and accounting methods.

Prerequisite: ACC 101 with a grade of C or better.

Class Schedule:  Summer 2024 | Fall 2024

ACC 251 3

Description:  Presents the basic concepts of corporation income taxation, partnerships, estates and trusts. The course includes a study of the taxation on the transfer of wealth, both during lifetime and testamentary.

Prerequisite: ACC 101 with a grade of C or better.

Class Schedule:  Summer 2024 | Fall 2024

ACC 257   S   3

DescriptionThis course is only offered in the spring term.

Analyzes income tax issues that relate to the requirements of individuals who have the legal right to prepare tax returns on behalf of individuals, business entities, and estates and trusts. These requirements include ethical conduct, practice privileges, and assessment and appeal procedures that must be followed in representing clients before the IRS and other tax agencies.

Class Schedule:  Summer 2024 | Fall 2024

ACC 261   U   or

DescriptionThis course is only offered in the summer term.

Presents basic techniques of conducting federal tax research using authoritative databases. Students will develop skills necessary to research and interpret tax case guidelines using tax cases. Students will communicate their research results in a professional business format. Recommended prerequisite: ACC 250 or equivalent experience.

Class Schedule:  Summer 2024 | Fall 2024

ACC 283   S   1

DescriptionThis course is only offered in the spring term.

Provides the student with the tools necessary to understand, review, and practice for the Regulation (REG) section of the CPA Exam. A general understanding of the topics listed in outline would constitute a minimum requirement.

Class Schedule:  Summer 2024 | Fall 2024

ENG 130 3

Description:  Teaches formal and psychological aspects of business correspondence. Introduction to various kinds of business letters, memoranda and reports. Improvement of grammar, spelling and word usage.

Prerequisite: ENG 096 with a grade of C or better, or other placement options. english-placement-grid.php

Class Schedule:  Summer 2024 | Fall 2024

Related programs

Students interested in accounting may also be interested in:


Next steps

For more information about studying accounting at Harper College, contact Admission Outreach at 847.925.6700, or submit a request information form. You can also apply online.

Last Updated: 4/8/24