Study Accounting Technology at Missoula College

Do you enjoy working with numbers and have an interest in finance? Earn your associate degree in accounting technology at Missoula College and find a well-paying career as a bookkeeper or staff accountant.

Designed by regional employers to meet the demand for qualified accounting professionals in the inland Northwest, our accounting technology program provides the specific skills and hands-on training that hiring managers are looking for. Many of our students find jobs even before they graduate, through internships and apprenticeships built into the degree. Our program director is a practicing CPA, and the curriculum includes valuable management and communication training, in addition to developing technical skills.

Whether you’re fresh out of high school or a working professional looking to advance your education, we will work with you to tailor an education to fit your needs. Courses are available online, face-to-face, and in hybrid formats. We also offer a 30-credit Certificate of Applied Science in accounting fundamentals, for students interested in more of an introductory degree.


of students complete internships or apprenticeships


median salary nationally for bookkeeping, accounting and auditing clerks


Montana’s ranking in the nation for concentration of jobs in bookkeeping and accounting

Other Business Degree Options at Missoula College

Accounting Fundamentals – Certificate of Applied Science

Business Management – Associate of Applied Science

Sales and Marketing – Certificate of Applied Science

What can you do with an accounting degree?

The associate accounting technician program prepares you for careers in bookkeeping and entry-level accounting roles. Our graduates work for organizations ranging from small local companies and nonprofits to government agencies and national CPA firms. This is also an excellent option for students who own their own businesses or want to become entrepreneurs. Every business and organization needs accounting employees. Accounting technology graduates find work in health care, government, business, education, and more.

If you’re interested in finding a job after school, you can count on making it happen with the associate in accounting degree: Our program has a 100% job placement rate for graduates. In fact, we receive more calls from local employers for bookkeepers and staff accountants than we are able to fill. This degree is also an excellent jumping-off point to pursue your Bachelor of Business Administration in Accounting, as many of our students do. Some students also go on to receive a Master of Accountancy and become Certified Public Accountants (CPAs).

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Montana ranks second in the nation for the highest concentration of jobs and location quotients in bookkeeping and accounting — making Missoula College and the University of Montana an ideal place to earn your degree in accounting technology. At the same time, these are skills you can apply to jobs anywhere in the nation, opening a variety of opportunities in terms of where you can work and what you can do.

Associate degree in accounting jobs

What can you do with an accounting degree? Here are several high-demand accounting jobs at the associate degree level:

  • Bookkeeper
  • Accounting clerk
  • Staff accountant
  • Accounting assistant
  • Payroll specialist
  • Audit associate

Accounting technology salary

With an average salary of $42,410, bookkeeping is a well-paying job you can do remotely. Freelance bookkeepers who set their own rates can often earn much more. Other accounting salaries for jobs you might pursue as an associate degree graduate include:

  • Accounting clerk: $41,151
  • Payroll specialist: $47,195
  • Staff accountant: $52,247

If you decide to go on to earn your bachelor’s degree in accounting, your earning potential will also grow: the average salary nationally for accountants and auditors is $77,250.

Alumni Success Story: Tina Plute

“The return on investment for my education is remarkable for both my career and personal growth. The associate degree I earned was not just a piece of paper, but a gateway to new beginnings and opportunities. It helped me progress from accounting jobs to the professional career in the accounting field I have today; a career that is challenging and profoundly rewarding.”

- Tina Plute, Associate of Applied Science in Accounting Technology

Experiential learning in the accounting technology degree

Hands-on, field-based education is a key part of our associate degree in accounting technology. Each student is required to participate in a 90-hour internship experience, opportunities that often lead directly to job offers. Accounting students can also participate in apprenticeships with some of the leading companies in the region, creating even more opportunities for real-world learning and networking.

Career development in the accounting technology associate degree

One of the reasons that graduates of this program are so successful is because we emphasize career readiness from day one — and provide the support for students to thrive.

Classes are small, and whether you’re working online or on campus, you’ll benefit from the one-on-one guidance of your professors. When you have a question, your instructors are here to help. When you’re actively looking for a job, you have experienced professionals on your side to help you succeed.

In addition to making career connections via internship and apprenticeship experiences, our students also meet local employers who regularly join our classes as guest speakers. Combine these opportunities with a curriculum that’s been customized to meet the needs of regional employers, and you have a solid pathway to career success.

Associate accounting degree requirements

Required courses for the associate accounting technician program explore topics such as accounting procedures, income tax fundamentals, payroll accounting, and personal finance. The program also focuses on developing management and communication skills and includes a required 90-hour internship.

View all classes for the associate degree in accounting technology.