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Forensic Accounting and Fraud Examination

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Certificate in Forensic Accounting and Fraud ExaminationlightbluerequestinfoBOLD
Program Description
Certificate in Forensic Accounting and Fraud Examination explores the role of forensic accounting in identifying, deterring, preventing and responding to financial crimes.  You will learn types of fraud, reasons for committing fraud, technology used to commit and identify fraud, and the impact on individual, organizational, and government victims.  One key way to identify fraud and fraud risk is through the use of forensic accounting.  In forensic accounting material, you will learn about partnership dissolution, embezzlement, misappropriation of assets, theft, corruption, bribery, kickbacks, fraudulent insurance claims, hidden assets, divorce, bankruptcy, money laundering, and identity theft.  A successful student will develop an understanding of proper interviewing techniques and evidence collection for use to support report writing and expert witness testimony (with an awareness of laws, policies, and ethical codes of conduct).  This certificate program was designed as part of an educational partnership with the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners (ACFE), “the world's largest anti-fraud organization and premier provider of anti-fraud training and education.”
Note: The requirements for the certificate are based on the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners’ (ACFE) criteria for becoming a Certified Fraud Examiner (CFE).  Upon completion of this certificate program, students will be prepared to sit for the ACFE Certified Fraud Examiners’ exam.
Suggested Background
  • Anna Maria College undergraduate and graduate students of Accounting, Business, Public Administration, Computer Science, Computer Forensics, Security Studies, Criminal Justice, Law, Sociology, and Psychology and other interested students.
  • Undergraduate students from similar disciplines at other area colleges
  • Worcester Area Chamber of Commerce
  • Association of Certified Fraud Examiners
Admission Requirements
Applicants should follow the general procedures for admission to the School of Graduate Studies.
Learning outcomes
  1. Students will analyze financial statements for inconsistencies using Benford’s Law and other techniques for investigating the likelihood of financial statement tampering or misrepresentation.
  2. Students will employ forensic accounting best practices demonstrating knowledge of investigative techniques, standards of proof, and proper reporting that supports their conclusions.
  3. Students will explain and differentiate between the roles and responsibilities of accountants, forensic accountants, forensic investigators, and auditors.
  4. Students will identify and explain methods and techniques forensic accountants use to detect financial crimes and hidden assets.
  5. Students will plan or evaluate the steps (and pit-falls) of a financial forensics investigation, including data and evidence collection, documentation, interviewing, reporting, and testifying.
  6. Students will explain the professional ethical responsibilities and legal limitations of the forensic accountant and fraud examiner, and address potential dilemmas.
  7. Students will identify how fraud risk can be assessed and fraudulent conduct may be deterred.
  8. Students will determine how allegations of fraud should be investigated and resolved.
  9. Students will demonstrate understanding of the prevalence, causes, and types of fraud
  10. Students will discuss the importance of corporate social responsibility and the need for reporting systems.
  11. Students will consider the impact fraud has on individuals, corporates, and governments, and international relations.
  12. Students will discuss the criminal justice system response to financial crimes.
Certificate Requirements
The Certificate in Forensic Accounting and Fraud Examination is a 12 credit program.  Students enrolling in this certificate would greatly benefit from an understanding of the criminal justice system, the business cycle, and financial accounting or auditing.  Some students may be required to take a business or criminology course as a pre-requisite.
In some instances one or both pre- or co-requisite(s) may be required:
CRJ 816 Criminological Thought- Presents major theories of crime and criminality. Theories are analyzed by common sense, logic, evidence, policy utility and compatibility with one another. Theories will be examined through a discussion of measures, correlates and popular beliefs regarding the prevalence, causes, and continuance of criminal offending.
BUS 633 Organizational Theory and Behavior- The study of the fundamental theory of the management development process and the analysis of employee behavior patterns.
BUS 512 Financial Accounting - Emphasizes concepts underlying business financial statements. Includes first- and second-level accounting topics
  1. CRJ 7XX Fraud Examination and Risk Assessment - This course explores the role of fraud and white-collar crime in society.  Topics include types of fraud; methods of committing fraud; typologies of “fraudsters,” “cons,” and other white-collar criminals; technology used to commit; identify and deter fraud, and victim impact.  Through the use of textbooks, current research, and case studies, the student will develop an understanding of proper interviewing techniques and evidence collection for use to support report writing and expert witness testimony (in accordance with laws, policies, and ethical codes of conduct).  This course is taught as part of an educational partnership with the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners (ACFE), “the world's largest anti-fraud organization and premier provider of anti-fraud training and education.”
  2. CRJ 8XX Forensic Accounting & Forensic Financial Investigation - This course is designed to educate students in how to evaluate and review financial statements, increasing student understanding of fraud and financial crimes.  Course materials and lectures discuss professional responsibilities, fiduciary duties, ethical standards, and current legislation and policy.  Topics include partnership dissolution, embezzlement, misappropriation of assets, theft, corruption, bribery, kickbacks, fraudulent insurance claims, hidden assets, divorce, bankruptcy, money laundering, and identity theft.  This class is ideal as a continuation of the Fraud Examination and Risk Assessment course. Materials used in the course are from our educational partnership with the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners (ACFE), “the world's largest anti-fraud organization and premier provider of anti-fraud training and education.”
Choose ONE Business related elective
  • BUS 607 Financial Analysis- Provides the basic tools, techniques, and concepts necessary for an understanding and analysis of corporate investments and financial decisions. Prerequisite: BUS 512 or equivalent.
  • BUS 609 Money and Banking- Provides a review of the origin and history of money and banking in the world and in the United States particularly. Examines the role that money plays in a modern economy, monetary policies, and the theories behind these policies.
  • BUS 611 Non-Profit/Government Accounting- Focuses on the concepts of fund accounting as they relate to the non-profit sector and municipal governments.
  • BUS 651 Legal Issues in Business- Provides an examination of the legal factors affecting the business environment.
  • BUS 719 Financial Controllership- Builds skill levels necessary for undertaking or enhancing financial controllership careers. Examines the controller’s managerial responsibilities within the firm and in relationships with other senior management, technical skill requirements in strategic planning, capital expenditure control, forecasting, operating budgets and controls, internal and external SEC reporting, staff training and motivation. Prerequisite: BUS 607
  • BUS 723 International Business- Analyzes marketing and management problems and techniques in international business. Covers planning in an international environment related to exchange rates, management, fixed flows, and management controls through accounting and financial reporting.
  • MPA 635 Legal Issues in Health Care- This course will give students an understanding of the regulations, statues and cases that control the delivery of health care in America. Special emphasis will be placed on helping student to think about these issues in a way that avoids problems and helps in avoiding pitfalls in delivering quality service.
  • MPA 636 The Economics and Financing of Health Care- This course explores the economics and financing of health care services in the United States and provides an understanding of how decisions are made by providers, consumers, and the third party payers for pricing and the quality of health care services. The effects of financing methods on the availability, quality, and planning of health care are also explored. It covers decision-making models, analyzes policy issues, and investigates political and economic aspects of the health care industry.
  • SCM 710 Information Security- Provides an in-depth exploration of computer and information security in an increasingly technologically dependent world. Emphasis is placed on the collection and protection of proprietary information from competitive intelligence gathering and espionage in a setting of global economic turbulence. Computer security issues include viruses, hackers, frauds, disaster recovery.
Choose ONE Criminal Justice related Elective
  • CRJ 779 White Collar Crime- Studies the causes, laws, policies and consequences associated with crimes organized by those whose economic, political and privileged positions provide opportunity for the commission of white collar crimes.
  • CRJ 712 Technology and Crime- Provides an overview of the intersection between technology and crime. This includes the study of criminal acts committed with the use of technology and the role of technology in investigation and analyzing crime rates and patterns.
  • CRJ 768 Organized Crime- Provides an analysis of the history and development of the traditional model of organized crime in the United States and an introduction to the changing landscape of the field by surveying the prominence of selected transnational criminal organizations. The organized crime groups are studied from the perspective of their roles as economic and non-state political actors.
  • CRJ 798 Special Topics in Criminal Justice (Corporate Crime) -Rotating topics in Criminal Justice.
  • CRJ 798 Special Topics in Criminal Justice- Rotating topics in Criminal Justice.
  • CRJ 799 Justice Colloquium- A seminar designed to allow for focused analysis on selected justice issues. Issues include but are not limited to: Contemporary Case Law; Violent Crimes; Community Partnerships; Stress Management in Public Safety; Deviance; and The Supreme Court.
  • CRJ 826 Social Issues in Criminal Justice-Examines those forces in a society that shape thinking and group attitudes. Gives special consideration to diverse issues related to the breakdown of the family structure, domestic violence, child abuse, problems of the economically deprived, race and ethnic relations, the homeless, the mentally ill, and alcoholism and drug abuse.
  • CRJ 852 Global Issues in Criminal Justice- Explores global issues facing the criminal justice system and criminal justice systems in other countries, with emphasis on special topics in international terrorism, victimization and transnational crime.
  • HLS 701 Foundations of Homeland Security- This course explains the history of building national security, its mission and its role. Through a consideration of best practices and the balance between security and liberty, it examines the organizational structures and resources required to defend the homeland. This course provides an overview of DHS operations including mission, operational planning, execution and evaluation, security and communications, intelligence collection and reporting, critical infrastructure protection, and ethical, social and economic issues including the need to address victimization and fear.
  • VCT 616 Elder Fraud and Abuse-This course will provide an overview of the various types of elder abuse and fraud to include financial fraud, identity theft, telemarketing scams, sweetheart scams, Medicare scams and swindles, phishing, physical and mental abuse, exploitation by caretakers, and neglect. This course will look at the laws governing these crimes and the agencies charged with investigation and care of elderly victims. The special problems of dealing with geriatric victims will be discussed.
Career Opportunities
Forensic Accountants are employed by public accounting firms’ forensic accounting divisions; by consulting firms specializing in risk consulting and forensic accounting services; or by lawyers, law enforcement agencies, insurance companies, government organizations or financial institutions.”
Other areas include:
  • business valuation
  • merger and acquisition services
  • partnership dissolutions
  • divorce and child custody cases
  • elder abuse and domestic violence

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