Many people adhere to the belief that you can accomplish anything you set your mind to. Although this is a nice thought, it is not entirely true. Success does depend on a lot of hard work, and some luck, but your personality and innate talents create the foundation for achievement. Success in an accounting class requires the same strengths as success in an accounting career. While accountants are of many personalities, the ones who do it well and enjoy doing it share particular strengths.

Math Skills

Math sits at the heart of accounting. You will not need to master complex mathematical theories for most of your accounting classes -- although many programs require students to complete calculus -- however, you should have a basic aptitude for adding, subtracting, multiplying and dividing, and for analyzing and interpreting facts and figures.

Analytical Skills

People who process information logically to solve complex problems have strong analytical skills. Accounting students with well-developed analytical abilities will master class materials easily. Later in life, these same students will be best able to resolve accounting or auditing emergencies, too. Money management is one of life's greatest stressors, but good accountants use analytical thinking to minimize this stress for clients. Thus, most accounting classes will test your analytical abilities.

Detail-Oriented Focus

There is no room for sloppy documentation in accounting. Accounting students must be detail-oriented and extremely focused to do well in class and to prepare for their careers. As an accountant, you will need to review your paperwork thoroughly and repeatedly. Natural daydreamers will struggle through accounting classes and in accounting careers.


Organization is vital to achieve success in accounting classes, as it will be in an accounting career. Keeping your paperwork in order -- both physical papers and electronic files -- is mandatory in the field. While organizational skills can be learned, passing accounting classes and pursuing a career in accounting will be easier for those who have a natural tendency toward this trait.