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WCSU Accounting Department Policy on Excel Certification - January 22, 2021
Beginning in the Fall 2019 Semester, all students enrolled in ACC 302, Intermediate Accounting II, are required to successfully complete a basic Excel Certification Course to complete the class. The following guidelines will help students, including transfer students, to navigate through this new requirement.
Why is Excel certification necessary?
Given the nature of a modern accounting curriculum, upper-level accounting courses, such as Cost Accounting, Consolidations, Auditing and Data Analytics in Accounting, are incorporating Excel into the curriculum. Further, employers are increasingly requiring applicants to have Excel skills to be considered for employment. Underscoring its importance, the AICPA incorporated Microsoft Excel into the CPA Exam in 2018. As such, the Accounting Department has determined that it has an obligation to students to ensure that they are basically qualified with Excel before progressing past ACC 302.
What Excel Certification is acceptable?
Currently, the Microsoft Excel Exam MO-200 is the approved certification exam. The exam is currently comprised of 35 tasks. Students are allowed 50 minutes to complete the exam and a passing score is 70%. It is important to note that the exam content will not be taught in class. Students must prepare for the exam independently and outside of classroom hours. There are a number of inexpensive online self-study courses available, such as:
(Keep an eye out on discount prices on sale days at Udemy's website)
These self-study courses are not WCSU courses, and students will not receive academic credit. Upon completion of the self-study course, students will take a certification exam. WCSU administers certification exams on campus (see below). The exam can also be taken off-campus at Certiport Authorized Testing Centers (see below). Note: During COVID-19 restrictions, WCSU will also administer certification exams virtually (online).
How do students go about taking the Microsoft Excel Exam MO-200?
Below are suggested steps:
On-campus and WCSU online exams
Off-campus exams-ONLY FOR STUDENTS NOT ENROLLED IN ACC 302
1) Create an account at www.certiport.pearsonvue.com
2) Access “Purchase Exam Voucher” under “My Exams” for Microsoft Office Specialist Exam Voucher
3) Certiport Authorized Testing Centers can be found at: www.certiport.com/Locator.
4) Generally, it is necessary to call the testing center to schedule the certification exam.
Note: Dr. Donegan is responsible for test administration. Please direct questions to him at firstname.lastname@example.org, 203-837-9035, WS 403.
How do students prove that they earned the Excel Certification?
Upon successful completion of the certification exam, students will receive a certificate. Students should present a copy of the certificate to their ACC 302 professor.
When should students take the Microsoft Excel Exam MO-200?
Students can take the Microsoft Excel Exam MO-200 at any time prior to or during their ACC 302 course. The department strongly recommends that students take or begin studying for the exam prior to the start of class to lighten their burden during the semester. For example, students taking ACC 302 in the fall semester should strongly consider completing or beginning to study for the certification exam during the previous summer. Students taking ACC 302 in the spring semester should strongly consider completing or beginning to study for the certification exam during the previous winter intersession.
Can students substitute an Excel course taken at a community college or another university for the Microsoft Excel Exam MO-200?
Yes, provided they can prove that they received a grade of C- or better in the course. Students will also be required to provide a course description and syllabus. The Accounting Department Chair makes equivalent course determinations on a case-by-case basis. Students that receive course equivalency are encouraged to obtain certification but not required to do so. Currently, the following courses have been approved:
Does WCSU offer an Excel course I can substitute for the Microsoft Excel Exam MO-200?
Currently, the Accounting Department is not aware of any such course offered at WCSU. However, students can apply to the Accounting Department Chair for an equivalency if they believe a course so qualifies.
What happens if students do not complete the Excel certification requirement before the conclusion of the ACC 302 course?
Students who do not complete the Excel certification requirement by the end of the semester in which they take ACC 302 may request an “incomplete” in ACC 302 from the instructor. See the WCSU Undergraduate Catalogue for more information on incompletes. Generally, as per the WCSU Incomplete Policy, students will only have six (6) weeks into the following semester to cure the incomplete by obtaining Excel certification. Failure to cure within that timeframe will result in the default grade of “F” in ACC 302, as per the WCSU Incomplete Policy. Please note that an “incomplete” will detrimentally affect a student’s ability to register for courses in which ACC 302 is a prerequisite.
Will the Excel certification program affect my ACC 302 grade?
It could. As discussed above, students who do not obtain the Excel certification by the end of the incomplete period have not completed ACC 302 and will receive the default grade of “F” for that course. It will not affect the ACC 302 grade of students who successfully and timely complete the Excel certification requirement.
Are disability accommodations available?
Yes. Students requiring testing accommodations can apply via the Certiport website after establishing a Certiport account. Students should also reference the “Students with Disabilities” information in the ACC 302 course syllabus.
This information supplements the Accounting Department Policy which requires MOS Excel Certification in order to pass ACC 302. The current exam MO-200 covers Excel 2019/365.
The MOS Excel MO-200 exam fee of $100, includes one make up exam good for 30 days after the initial exam. This amount has recently been charged to your EzPay/TouchNet account. Once this fee is paid, we can schedule your exam. We have included a variety of dates below. Therefore, pay this $100 fee on your EzPay/TouchNet account and forward your confirmation from EzPay/TouchNet to Cathy Cote at email@example.com with your preferred date and backup date to take the MOS Excel exam. We will email you the log-in information and confirm the date of your exam within 48 hours.
Please keep in mind that there are only 10 online exams available per date and it is a first come first serve. Slots will be filled in order of receipt. Exam sessions are 90 minutes, the exam itself is 50 minutes, you will check in via Teams 15 minutes before the scheduled time, for example, 8:45 for a 9:00 start.
Should you fail to pass on your first attempt, contact Cathy Cote firstname.lastname@example.org to schedule a retake, or if you need to change your exam date.
Currently, there is no on-ground option offered by the WCSU Testing Center. If we are able to offer additional dates at Westside, you will be notified.
If you took any of the below courses with a grade of C- or better (the minimum to transfer in to WCSU) you will be waived. You must send an email to Cathy Cote (address above). Upon confirmation, Dr. Jiang will be notified that you have fulfilled the requirement, you will be copied, and the charge removed from your account.
Email Cathy Cote and leave phone number for call back.
Please checkout our MS Excel Training Resources below. Also, feel free to download the information above in the Revised Policy and Spring 2021 documents as well.