It depends on your jurisdiction and how you are using the term accountant. There are plenty of unlicensed accountants. But in the USA to become a CPA, certified public accountant, most states, if not all, now require five years of college education with certain curricula required. Then you can sit for the test, take the ethics, get background check and some other details like reference letters and internships before finally getting your CPA. Outside US licensed accountants are often referred to as CA for chartered accountants. They often have comparable requirements to becoming a CPA in the US.
Here is a list of things required to become an accountant:
a) Education and Training - Getting adequate technical training and proficiency. This can be attained by relevant accounting education, experience, and industry knowledge.
b) Certifications and professional qualifications - Undertaking accounting certifications like CPA, CMA, etc., will provide you the extra push needed to establish and grow your career in accounting.
c) Learning and Competency - Remaining competent to market changes and recent developments in the field of accounting.