Filling in the gaps With Becker

St. Francis College


Upon review of its existing accounting curriculum, Dr. Carmine Nogara, CPA and Chairman of the Department of Accounting at St. Francis College, found an obvious deficiency in the area of data analytics. That proved to be the catalyst for partnering with Becker and supplementing graduate-level curriculum with the Microsoft Excel Fundamentals and Data Analytics Certificate.

“Once students started on the certificate, they were required to complete the whole thing,” Nogara said. “We give them a window to take each of the 14 modules, and earning the certificate is a component of their final grade. They need to go back if they don’t complete all the modules with a 7-out-of-10 score. For the last two years, we are 100% in terms of students complying.”

For the final exam, St. Francis students completed all 14 Excel assignments, passing with at least a 70 score so they could submit their overall certificate.

At the end of each semester, St. Francis conducts student evaluations to gather feedback on coursework. “For Becker’s Microsoft Excel Fundamentals and Data Analytics Certificate, it came out favorably across the board. Comments were positive as well,” said Nogara.

Also receiving rave reviews was Dr. Wayne Winston, the instructor of the certificate. He’s won over 40 teaching awards at Indiana University during his career, and for good reason: “He was terrific, top-notch, phenomenal, knowledgeable and a very good instructor,” Nogara said. “The interactive method of opening up the workbooks while his lessons go along is very helpful and couldn’t have been done better.”

“We wanted to offer a more in-depth program for our accounting majors in business and data analytics while still keeping the accounting component in the course. The course we selected was advanced accounting information systems (AIS), and we chose Becker because of their reputation. We’re happy we did. They’re tops in the industry.”

Dr. Carmine Nogara

CPA Chairman, Department of Accounting St. Francis College


CPA Evolution is fast-approaching, and with its arrival comes a significant shakeup of the CPA Exam. St. Francis College prepares accounting students throughout the semester. Their accounting society meetings welcome guest speakers who can provide expert intel on CPA Exam changes.

One of these guest speakers is Sandy Broadbent, Senior Account Manager at Becker, who presents at St. Francis each semester in a 45-minute session. She typically covers:

  • The CPA application process in New York via NASBA
  • The NASBA Candidate Bulletin
  • A Becker overview
  • CPA Evolution
  • Creating a study plan
  • Demo of Becker CPA Exam Review course

Additionally, Nogara teaches Evolution changes in St. Francis’ capstone class and financial accounting classes. “We had an informal session before the start of class, going over Evolution and how it’ll affect them starting in 2024. We also covered tips they may want to use from now until then.”


St. Francis used AccountingMasterTM from Becker to create quizzes, a midterm and a final, accessible on the school’s Canvas learning management platform. The integration was a seamless one.

AccountingMasterTM was coupled with the BEC section of Becker’s CPA Exam Review course, which was used as Curriculum Assistance (note: Becker provides complimentary access to one part of the CPA Exam Review Course for students and faculty to use as a curriculum supplement for a semester).


Upon completion of the Microsoft Excel Fundamentals & Data Analytics Certificate, St. Francis students are encouraged to update their resumes with the achievement. “We have other data analytics courses,” Nogara said, “but just having that Becker certificate, going through the material and seeing how in-depth it is, it’s been incredibly helpful.”

Read more about St. Francis College’s partnership with Becker:

Accounting students able to earn certificates in excel and data analytics

To learn more about our partnership programs, contact Amy Johnson, Becker’s senior national university program manager at or visit

Download the full case study here.

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