School Level Program Admissions
Methodist University Bachelor Bachelor of Science in Accounting Website
Seton Hall University Master Online Master of Science in Accounting Website
Utica College Master MS in Accounting Website
Illinois College Bachelor BA in Accounting Website
University of West Alabama Master Online MBA: Accounting Website
University of Delaware Master Master of Science in Accounting Practice Website
Georgetown University Master Master of Science in Finance Website

Click to view more featured online accounting programs currently taking applications.

A degree in professional accounting prepares graduates to monitor the financial transactions of an organization and create reports on those transactions such as balance sheets, profit and loss statements and income statements to aid in management functions.

Course work is available at all graduate levels and includes subjects like accounting, business law, computer science, statistics, economics and taxation.

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Top Online Programs

Capella University

The Bachelor of Science in Business offers a specialization in Accounting CPA. Credits are measured on a quarterly basis with three months in each term. A total of 180 quarter credits are needed to complete the program.

Statistical Reasoning and Developing Business Thinking are two courses required among general education. Main curriculum focuses on foundational topics in business. Includes accounting and finance, human resource management, supply chain management, and more.

12 total credit hours needed within the Accounting CPA specialization. Additional 27 quarter credit hours needed for elective options. Eligible electives can be various undergraduate-level courses that customize the program.

With a fully online schedule, students can expect most coursework to be due on Sundays. There are three-week breaks between each quarter course. Programs conclude with six quarter credits dedicated to a business capstone project.

University of Arizona

The Master of Science in Accounting is distributed by the Eller College of Management. It is available 100 percent online and is accredited by the AACSB. Students complete the program in as little as one year.

Curriculum breaks down into 18 accounting-based credit hours that satisfy CPA education requirements. The remaining 12 credit hours are for similar electives. These topics may include marketing, entrepreneurship, management, and more.

In order to get into the program, prospective students must have a completed Bachelor's degree. At least a 3.0 GPA needed across the program. Individuals without this requirement should consider a graduate certification with a 2.75 GPA.

Additional requirements include having basic accounting prerequisites. This is generally satisfied for students holding an undergraduate degree in business or accounting. There are at least six different start times for students each year.

Bellevue University

The Omaha-based college offers a Master of Science in Accounting that prepares students for the CPA exam. Concentrations are available in tax or finance. 36 total credit hours are needed to complete the degree.

Students have flexibility when pursuing core subjects or selecting their electives. All but two courses are needed from a collection of advanced accounting topics. At least nine credit hours are needed within either concentration selected.

Many of the courses are available either online or on-campus. Overall, students gain important accounting skills in auditing procedures and economic impact. Further skills in critical thinking and communication with management and shareholders to make important decisions.

Applicants should have a Bachelor's degree from an accredited university. At least a 2.5 GPA is needed overall or in the last 60 credit hours earned. No GRE or GMAT scores are required. Bellevue University holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.

School Level Program Admissions
University of Delaware Master Master of Science in Accounting Practice Website
Georgetown University Master Master of Science in Finance Website
Seton Hall University Master Master of Business Administration - Accounting Website
University of West Alabama Bachelor Bachelor of Business Administration: Accounting Website
American University Master Master of Arts in Economics Website

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Top Campus-Based Programs

University of Notre Dame

The Mendoza College of Business offers 150 total credit hours needed to satisfy CPA requirements. This is accomplished through the Bachelor's and Master's degrees within accountancy. Three-fourths of graduates from this college have gone on to work at one of the Big Four accounting firms.

Students complete the Bachelor of Business Administration with a major in Accountancy. This evolves to a Master's degree in business administration or nonprofit administration. Either option depends on the sector an individual is considering for employment.

Specialized Master's degrees are also available in business analytics, management, and more. The Executive MBA, Business Analytics, and Finance disciplines have flexibility with Chicago-based learning. Graduate certification is also available for individuals not qualified to enter a Master's degree immediately.

Student resources available include associations to improve skills and professional connections. The Notre Dame Accounting Association (NDAA) offers special events and easily brings alumni together. Undergraduate career services are offered throughout the program to build portfolio and networking skills.

University of Washington

The Foster School of Business offers various accounting programs that aid toward CPA examination. The Certificate in Accounting is an ideal entry point to advanced financial topics. Students can transition toward a related Master's degree to fulfill remaining CPA education requirements.

Two different formats are available for the certification in an online setting. A summer session requires full-time study with all content delivered over a 10-week span. For students with other obligations, a part-time option features a slower pace across eight to nine months.

Specific skills within the program include becoming familiar with accounting applications and systems. Explores auditing practices and regulations for financial statements. Analytical skills can also be earned to improve business decisions.

36 total quarter credit hours satisfy the accounting needs for CPA education in the state of Washington. This is also applicable to many states across the country. Admission requires a Bachelor's degree and prerequisites in financial and managerial accounting.

University of Florida

The Warrington College of Business offers a Master of Accounting program. There are two concentrations available in Auditing and Taxation. There is also an opportunity to complete the curriculum without a specific focus.

Courses are only distributed at the Gainesville campus location. Students do not have the option to pursue the degree online or at remote locations. This curriculum does prepare individuals for the CPA exam in Florida. Those applying for licensure in other states should determine if the curriculum meets certain requirements.

Incoming students must complete a set of accounting prerequisites before entering the program. These topics include financial reporting, managerial accounting, and information systems. Courses are available at the university, but they do not count as credit toward the Master's degree.

Other admission requirements include GRE or GMAT scores and a 3.0 GPA or higher in undergraduate work. Three letters of recommendation should verify accomplishments within accounting. While students do not complete online work, they must still have a modern computer to complete assignments and projects.

School Level Program Admissions
Eastern Oregon University Bachelor Bachelor in Accounting Website
University of West Alabama Doctorate Doctor of Business Administration in Rural Business Website
Fairleigh Dickinson University Master Master of Science in Accounting Website
George Mason University Master Master of Arts in Economics Website
Campbellsville University Master MBA Accounting Website
Point University Associate Associate of Arts in Accounting Website
Aurora University Bachelor BA in Business Adminsitration Website
Babson College Master Master of Science in Finance Website
Benedictine University Master Accelerated Masters in Business Administration Website

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Top Courses for CPA-Focused Degrees

Financial Management

One of the most important aspects of finance is an organization managing money responsibly. Management courses emphasize how to develop and build strategy that can gain an edge across competition. At the nonprofit level, it is important to optimize cash flow and adhere to specific regulations.

Risk Management

Mitigating risk in different segments of an organization cuts down on waste, including excess cost. This may include evaluating potential major transactions and determining success in this move. Insurance and liability topics may also be explored.

Government/Nonprofit Accounting

Goes through government regulations and standards for financial preparation. For example, the Government Accounting Standards Board sets principles for the state and local level. This course is specific for professionals going into government and nonprofit positions.

Business Analysis

Many accounting programs include data analytics courses to evaluate financial information. Various tools are used to look at trends and solve financial-based programs through data. Skills gained in reading and explaining charts of data along with statistical methods such as linear regression.

Business Law

Accounting-based courses often define and examine the Uniform Commercial Code (UCC) standard. This is mandatory when financial transactions take place across different jurisdictions. There are nine different articles in the UCC, including standards set for using negotiable items, asset liquidation, and investment securities.

Ethical Issues in Accounting

Often reviews the AICPA Code of Professional Conduct. This includes how registered CPAs should interact with clients and auditing standards. It is important for CPAs to retain independence and avoid potential conflicts of interest. Courses should feature the latest updates and revisions released by the AICPA annually.

International Finance

Organizations established in other countries or having clients in these locations must adhere to international standards. These courses look at how accounting principles differ between other countries than the United States. Students gain skills in reporting financial data at the global market level.

Forensic Accounting

Explores investigating fraudulent activity and cyber crime within finance. This may also include how to present evidence in a courtroom. Other technical aspects may include implementing further security measures for information systems.

Advanced Auditing

Goes beyond foundational auditing and includes ethical concerns and fraud detection in financial activity. Further dives into auditing standards set by established committees. Often requires prerequisites in basic accounting and auditing practices.

Internship Experience

Pursuing a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in business often requires an internship. This provides real-world experience for individuals prior to sitting for CPA examination. Completing an internship opens up networking potential and a pathway toward a full-time accounting position.

Typical Admission Requirements

Getting into programs that focus on CPA vary depending on what level of education is pursued. Bachelor’s degrees require a high school diploma and some entry-level business courses. Master’s degrees require the completion of an undergraduate program with 3.0 overall GPA or higher.

In the admission process, prospective students likely need to submit various documentation. This includes multiple letters of recommendation and unofficial or official transcripts. Resume should detail any professional or volunteer work relating to accounting. A personal essay details these accomplishments or career goals the individual holds.

CPA Requirements

How to obtain CPA licensure depends on the state an individual resides in. Most locations require at least 150 standard credit hours. This is the equivalent of completing a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree at a university.

Another common requirement is completing at least 30 credit hours of accounting courses. As an example, the state of Texas require all of the previous. In addition, applicants for licensure must submit a background check and three credit hours in an ethics course.

CPA Exam Procedures

The Uniform CPA Exam is developed by the AICPA. This is the most common examination required by most state licensures. It is separated into four different segments that students are given an hour each to complete. Applications such as Microsoft Excel are used in the test, but students are not tested on software.

Segments include Auditing and Attestation, Business Environment and Concepts, Financial Accounting and Reporting, and Regulation. A score of 75 or higher is needed for each segment and must be earned within an 18-month time span. The AICPA offers preparation material and example tests for students needing to complete this segment.

Career Goals and Job Titles for This Certification

Receiving the CPA certification opens the door to a number of public and private positions. This includes academia, small businesses, large corporations, government, and nonprofit companies. With the amount of education needed, this is geared more toward advanced and senior positions.

Common public accounting positions include consultants and auditors. Auditing is often spread across various levels depending on the size of an organization. Multiple years of experience and small-scale auditing procedures are needed prior to gaining a senior position.

Management-level positions often require six-plus years whether it is in tax preparation or consulting with other companies. These roles must work directly with clients in addition to supervision of lower-level workers. They also make final decisions after gathering input and recommendations from senior positions and other managers.

Becoming a full university professor requires a lengthy process with the completion of a PhD degree. Having a CPA licensure verifies competency in overall accounting. In many cases, professors must be designated as an associate and gain experience prior to full status.

Specialty Licensures

There are many different certifications outside of public accounting. Specific accounting licensure is available as a financial analyst, internal auditor, information systems auditing, and more. This gears individuals toward a career emphasis that improves certain skill sets and hiring potential.

Requirements to gain these licensures are different based on the focus. For example, becoming a Certified Financial Analyst (CFA) does not require the completion of a Bachelor’s degree. This can be replaced with an equivalent four years of experience. Even the completion of a Bachelor’s degree does not need to have a discipline in business or accounting.

Despite the low entry requirements to take the CFA exam, there is more costs to consider compared to the CPA. It requires three levels to complete the full exam and receive licensure. All levels of examination or offered either once or twice annually.

How Much Can You Expect to Make With This Certification?

According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, accountants and auditors make an average of $71,550 annually. Right at the average, professionals in bookkeeping, tax preparation, and general accounting tasks are most represented. Some of the highest positions are working directly in finance and at insurance companies.

Average salary estimates differ depending on where these positions are located. The highest salaries based on location are common in the Northeast. Top-ranked states include New York, New Jersey, Virginia, and Maryland.

Even in states with lower averages, many popular urban locations have high salaries. For example, the state of Iowa is in the lower half of all states, but the Des Moines-West Des Moines metropolitan area averages at $75,230 annually.

Looking at different ends of the spectrum, the lowest 10 percent of earners across the country is estimated at $44,480 annually. This jumps up to $124,450 within the top 10 percent. These salary estimates are accurate as of May 2019.

School Level Program Admissions
Methodist University Bachelor Bachelor of Science in Accounting Website
Seton Hall University Master Online Master of Science in Accounting Website
Utica College Master MS in Accounting Website
Illinois College Bachelor BA in Accounting Website
University of West Alabama Master Online MBA: Accounting Website
University of Delaware Master Master of Science in Accounting Practice Website
Georgetown University Master Master of Science in Finance Website
Seton Hall University Master Master of Business Administration - Accounting Website
University of West Alabama Bachelor Bachelor of Business Administration: Accounting Website
American University Master Master of Arts in Economics Website

All Schools with Online Accounting Programs

Albright College

Reading PA
  • Bachelors in Professional Accounting

Angelo State University

San Angelo TX
  • Masters in Professional Accounting

Aquinas College

Grand Rapids MI
  • Bachelors in Professional Accounting

Ashford University

Clinton IA
  • Bachelors in Professional Accounting

Augustana College

Sioux Falls SD
  • Bachelors in Professional Accounting

Austin Community College District

Austin TX
  • Certificate in Professional Accounting

Black Hills State University

Spearfish SD
  • Bachelors in Professional Accounting

Butler University

Indianapolis IN
  • Masters in Professional Accounting

Canisius College

Buffalo NY
  • Bachelors in Professional Accounting
  • Masters in Professional Accounting

Chancellor University

Cleveland OH
  • Certificate in Professional Accounting

Clemson University

Clemson SC
  • Masters in Professional Accounting

Daemen College

Amherst NY
  • Bachelors in Professional Accounting
  • Masters in Professional Accounting

Delta State University

Cleveland MS
  • Masters in Professional Accounting

Georgia State University

Atlanta GA
  • Masters in Professional Accounting

Glendale Community College

Glendale AZ
  • Associates in Professional Accounting

Mississippi State University

Mississippi State MS
  • Masters in Professional Accounting

Montana State University

Bozeman MT
  • Masters in Professional Accounting

New Jersey City University

Jersey City NJ
  • Certificate in Professional Accounting

North Central Missouri College

Trenton MO
  • Certificate in Professional Accounting

Northern State University

Aberdeen SD
  • Bachelors in Professional Accounting

Ohio Valley University

Vienna WV
  • Certificate in Professional Accounting

Oklahoma Baptist University

Shawnee OK
  • Bachelors in Professional Accounting

Our Lady of the Lake University-San Antonio

San Antonio TX
  • Bachelors in Professional Accounting

Prince George's Community College

Largo MD
  • Online Associates in Professional Accounting

Rhode Island College

Providence RI
  • Masters in Professional Accounting

Seattle University

Seattle WA
  • Doctorate in Professional Accounting
  • Masters in Professional Accounting

Seton Hall University

South Orange NJ
  • Masters in Professional Accounting

Suffolk University

Boston MA
  • Diploma in Professional Accounting

SUNY at Albany

Albany NY
  • Masters in Professional Accounting

SUNY College at Oneonta

Oneonta NY
  • Bachelors in Professional Accounting

Trident Technical College

Charleston SC
  • Certificate in Professional Accounting

University of Albany

Albany NY
  • Masters in Professional Accounting

University of Hawaii at Manoa

Honolulu HI
  • Certificate in Professional Accounting

University of Houston-Clear Lake

Houston TX
  • Bachelors in Professional Accounting
  • Masters in Professional Accounting

University of Miami

Coral Gables FL
  • Masters in Professional Accounting

University of Nebraska-Lincoln

Lincoln NE
  • Masters in Professional Accounting

University of New Haven

West Haven CT
  • Masters in Professional Accounting

University of Southern Indiana

Evansville IN
  • Certificate in Professional Accounting

University of Wisconsin-Whitewater

Whitewater WI
  • Masters in Professional Accounting

West Texas A & M University

Canyon TX
  • Masters in Professional Accounting

West Virginia University

Morgantown WV
  • Masters in Professional Accounting

Western Washington University

Bellingham WA
  • Masters in Professional Accounting

Still Looking for an Accounting Degree or Other Information?

If you haven't found what you are looking for yet, consider some of these top pages, which are helpful for students looking for accounting programs.