Evaluate Your Training Needs

Click on any question for more information.

Need more help in deciding? Contact John Day.

Have you little or no experience in accounting?

These courses are designed for someone like you. Take The HEART of Accounting™ introductory course first. It is very short and gently leads you from one concept to the next. When finished you should have a very good idea how debits and credits are used to organize information into the company books so a financial statement can be prepared.

Having this knowledge and skill should give you the confidence to advance to the more comprehensive online course Accounting for Non-Accountants. Although there will be some redundancy when taking both courses, “more is better” because it will reinforce your learning. Review the course content and course curriculum to see the wide range of additional accounting concepts and principles you can learn.

Has it been a while since you were involved with accounting?
You may be someone who took accounting courses years ago and have pretty much forgotten how it all works. Both courses offer an excellent review of the basics. Take the previews of both courses to find out which one or both suits your needs. If you need a quick review, choose The HEART of Accounting™. If you need to get back into accounting principles, depreciation, goodwill, bank reconciliations, receivables, payables, payroll, and etc., choose the online course.
Do you work in accounting but feel you need more training?
Perhaps you work at a job where you perform a certain aspect of accounting but are not exposed to the full accounting cycle (the big picture). You already have a good mastery of how debits and credits work and can write general journal entries. Skip The HEART of Accounting™ and review the curriculum of Accounting for Non-Accountants. See if there are study sections that you think would benefit your knowledge base.
Are you planning to go into business as a bookkeeper?
Have you been working in a job doing some accounting functions and feel like it is time to move on and start your own bookkeeping practice? You don't quite feel you know enough to strike out on your own at this time and are looking for a course to beef up your knowledge base. Both courses could be of help to you in that effort. However, you should decide if it is important for you to have a certification from some nationally recognized bookkeeping organization. If that's the case, perhaps it would make more sense for you to take a correspondence course that is designed to help you get your practice up and running. There are a number of organizations that offer bookkeeping courses. Most of them are fairly expensive and take some time. To find them use Goggle.
Are you wanting to become a Certified Public Accountant (or the equivalent)?
If you are on a career track to becoming a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) or its equivalent in another country you are going to need university courses that are accredited. You don't have to have a degree in accounting to become a CPA. You may have been working in the field of accounting for a long time and have decided to sit for the exams. However, if you are at that level of accounting you are way beyond what these beginning courses can offer you.
Do you need to take classes that are accredited, in that they lead to a degree in accounting?
The Real Life Accounting courses are not accredited. They are offered as information relating to small business accounting in a way that is scaled down to just the essentials. This way they are easy to understand, inexpensive, don't take a lot of time and can be used as a springboard for more advanced learning.
Are you looking for a refresher course in accounting?
Both courses are perfect as a refresher. Perhaps you have forgotten how to apply debits and credits, or how the balance sheet functions, etc. You knew at one time but you just need a little practice. Look over the table of contents from The HEART of Accounting and the curriculum of Accounting for Non-Accountants. You can take a preview of the first study section in either course to get a feel how the courses are structured.
Are you a student who needs an accounting primer before starting your college accounting classes?
If you are about to launch into a college accounting course and are worried that it is going to be difficult then take either of these two course as a primer. I teach first concepts first. If you get a clear picture of the overall function of the accounting cycle first and a good working knowledge of debits and credits then you won't be scrambling around slightly lost when the professor hands out those working papers that stretch out for fifty yards. You will know what you are attempting to accomplish and have some basic tools to work with. Naturally, you will be learning about much more than is offered in these two short courses, but you will be pointed in the right direction.
Are you going to be taking care of the bookkeeping responsibilities of a business?
Often I hear that a relative has been invited to take care of the books for a spouse, child, or parent who has started a new business. The business owner feels more secure because at least they will have someone they trust managing the money. The person receiving the invitation usually has some background in business or finance but not necessarily accounting. I recommend highly that you start with The HEART of Accounting™ and then move quickly onto the more comprehensive online course Accounting for Non-Accountants. You will have to learn things that are specific to the business you will be working in that are not included in the courses. However, you will have a foundation from which to draw from. These two courses will make it possible for you learn enough accounting to prepare financial statements without having to go back to college or going to night school.
Are you looking for a class in accounting because your employment either requires it or because it would prove helpful?
These courses are designed for you. They are inexpensive, written so you can understand them, and relatively short. You are eligible for a Certificate of Completion from the online Accounting for Non-Accountants course because you have to pass all the quizzes before you can advance. We know when you have completed the course. We can't do that with The Heart of Accounting because it is essentially a workbook that is in your full possession.