University of Southern California

USC Leventhal School of Accounting

USC Leventhal School of Accounting
USC Leventhal School of Accounting students Oluwambe Ekundayo and Linwei Li prepare tax returns for the local community and students as part of VITA’s (Volunteer Income Tax Association) annual free program. As part of the Marshall School of Business, Leventhal enables students to combine real-world skills with technical proficiency. Photo by Joseph Chen.

The USC Leventhal School of Accounting is dedicated to maintaining a leadership position in accounting education and research. We are committed to educational programs that seek to establish in each graduate the potential for career development into the highest executive levels of public accounting, controllership, financial management and management of accounting information systems. The accounting curriculum explores not only the state of the art but also seeks to explore the accounting discipline’s future structures and directions. Relevant concepts and techniques from other academic disciplines are drawn upon and integrated into all accounting programs.

Accounting education has been an integral part of USC since 1920, when the Department of Accounting offered a Bachelor of Science degree in business administration with an emphasis in accounting. The Leventhal School of Accounting was established in 1979 in recognition of the growing importance of accounting to our economy and broader society. It continues to rank as one of the premier AACSB-accredited accounting programs in the nation.

Currently the Leventhal School of Accounting undergraduate program offers a Bachelor of Science accounting degree. Honors students may be eligible for early admission to the graduate program, an efficient way to complete both undergraduate and graduate degrees. An accounting minor is also offered to students outside the USC Marshall School of Business. Graduate programs include a full-time Master of Accounting or Master of Business Taxation; a Master of Business Taxation for working professionals; and a Juris Doctor/Master of Business Taxation in conjunction with the USC Gould School of Law. A Ph.D. degree with an accounting major is offered through the doctoral program in the Marshall School of Business.

USC Leventhal School of Accounting
Accounting 101
(213) 740-4838
FAX: (213) 747-2815
Email (graduate students):; (undergraduate students):


William W. Holder, DBA, CPA, Dean, Alan Casden Dean’s Chair at the Leventhal School of Accounting

Mark L. DeFond, Ph.D., CPA, Associate Dean, Faculty Affairs

Shirley Maxey, B.A.*, Associate Dean, Master’s Programs

Mildred G. Penner, M.A., Assistant Dean, Undergraduate Program


George Bozanic and Holman G. Hurt Chair in Sports and Entertainment Business: S. Mark Young, Ph.D.*

Deloitte & Touche LLP Chair in Accountancy: Kenneth A. Merchant, Ph.D., CPA

A.N. Mosich Chair in Accounting: Mark L. DeFond, Ph.D., CPA*

Accounting Circle Professor of Accounting: Randolph P. Beatty, Ph.D., CPA

KPMG Foundation Professor of Accounting: K.R. Subramanyam, Ph.D.

Ernst & Young Professor of Accounting: Sarah E. Bonner, Ph.D., CPA*

Arthur Andersen & Co. Alumni Associate Professor of Accounting: Mark Soliman, Ph.D.*

Accounting Associates Professor of Accounting: Clive Lennox, Ph.D.

Professors: Randolph P. Beatty, Ph.D., CPA; Sarah E. Bonner, Ph.D., CPA*; Mark L. DeFond, Ph.D., CPA*; William W. Holder, DBA, CPA; Clive Lennox, Ph.D.; Thomas W. Lin, Ph.D., CMA; Kenneth A. Merchant, Ph.D., CPA; Daniel E. O’Leary, Ph.D., CPA, CMA, CISA; K.R. Subramanyam, Ph.D.; Charles W. Swenson, Ph.D.*, CPA; S. Mark Young, Ph.D.*

Associate Professors: John J. Barcal, J.D., CPA*; Shane M. Heitzman, Ph.D.; Mark Soliman, Ph.D., CPA; Shiing-Wu Wang, Ph.D.*; Regina Wittenberg-Moerman, Ph.D.

Assistant Professors: Eric Allen, Ph.D., CPA; Elizabeth Chuk, Ph.D.; David Erkens, Ph.D.; Maria Loumioti, Ph.D.; Maria Ogneva, Ph.D.; Julie Suh, Ph.D.; David Tsui, Ph.D.; Marshall Vance, Ph.D.

Professors of Clinical Accounting: Ruben A. Davila, J.D., MBA, CPA; Chrislynn Freed, MBA, CPA*; Merle Hopkins, Ph.D.*; Cecil W. Jackson, Ph.D., CPA; Joseph L. Keller, M.S., CPA; Rose M. Layton, M.Acc., CPA*; Shirley Maxey, B.A.*; Patricia Mills, J.D., LL.M.; Leslie R. Porter, Ph.D.*; Kendall Simmonds, MBA, CPA*

Associate Professor of Clinical Accounting: Robert Kiddoo, MBA, CPA

Assistant Professors of Clinical Accounting: Smrity Randhawa, Ph.D.; MaryAnne Sabido-Werner, MBT; Lori Smith, B.S., CPA; Zivia Sweeney, MBA, CPA*

Professor of the Practice of Accounting: Thomas P. Ryan, MBA

Emeritus Professors: Jerry L. Arnold, Ph.D., CPA; E. John Larsen, DBA, CPA; Theodore J. Mock, Ph.D.; Zoe-Vonna Palmrose, Ph.D.

*Recipient of university-wide or school teaching award.

Degree Programs

Undergraduate Degree

Bachelor of Science, Accounting

The USC Leventhal School of Accounting offers the Bachelor of Science, Accounting (B.S.) degree designed to provide students with a broad foundation in accounting and business to prepare them for entry into the professional program leading to a Master of Accounting or Master of Business Taxation degree. The undergraduate curriculum also provides the background necessary for direct entry into the accounting profession.

Graduate Degrees

Master of Accounting

The Master of Accounting (M.Acc.) program provides an integrated curriculum designed to prepare graduates for careers in professional accounting, public accounting, industry and government. Students have the opportunity to study accounting in greater depth and in more areas of specialization than in undergraduate accounting programs or MBA programs with concentrations in accounting. Students have flexibility in elective choices to reflect their career goals.

Admission does not require an accounting or business undergraduate degree, nor is work experience a requirement. For students with an undergraduate degree in accounting, the program requires 30 units for completion; for students without the prerequisite accounting course work, the program requires 45–48 units. The variation in units depends on the student’s educational background and completed course work. This degree is designed to be completed by full-time students.

Master of Business Taxation

The Master of Business Taxation (MBT) degree is offered to both full-time and part-time students. This specialized program in taxation requires 30 units for students with the required accounting education. For students without the prerequisite accounting knowledge, the program requires 45-48 units. The program is designed for accountants, attorneys and business professionals who wish to learn or improve skills and knowledge through participation in advanced tax study. Students have flexibility in elective choices to reflect their career focus and goals. The part-time program is referred to as the MBT for Working Professionals (MBT.WP).

Juris Doctor/Master of Business Taxation

The USC Gould School of Law and the Leventhal School of Accounting offer this dual degree program. Admission to the J.D. program offered by the Law School is required before applying to the MBT program offered by the Leventhal School of Accounting.

Master of Business Administration

The Master of Business Administration (MBA) is offered by the Marshall School of Business and is also serviced by the Leventhal School of Accounting. For additional information, consult the Marshall School of Business section in this catalogue.

Doctor of Philosophy

The Marshall School of Business offers the Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) degree in conjunction with the Graduate School. A student electing to major in accounting may design a research program that emphasizes auditing, financial accounting, information systems, management accounting or taxation. More information on the doctoral program is available in the Marshall School of Business section of this catalogue, or contact the doctoral office at (213) 740-0674 or the director of doctoral studies in accounting at (213) 740-4838.