An accounting degree at the bachelor’s level can be used to seek out a job with more than just accounting-specific tasks, including finance, financial planning, in business strategy and other business-oriented job roles, and more.
This college rankings article of online bachelor’s degrees in accounting and related topics lists additional career opportunities. While we have previously covered degrees in accounting studies — online or otherwise, this list is more selective. Previous rankings looked at affordable programs based on average yearly net price (for bachelor’s degrees). This article uses additional institutional factors. If you are doing a college search for an online bachelor’s degree in accounting on the basis of more than just net price, this list is a good starting point. The ranking factors are described in the Ranking Methodology section at the bottom of this article.
- CFE – Certified Fraud Examiner
- CFP – Certified Financial Planner
- CGAP – Certified Government Auditing Professional
- CGFM – Certified Government Financial Manager
- CFM – Certified Financial Manager
- CIA – Certified Internal Auditor
- CISA – Certified Information Systems Auditor
- CISM – Certified Information Security Manager
- CMA – Certified Management Accountant
- CPA – Certified Public Accountant
College Ranking Dashboard Information
Each entry for the 35 colleges ranked below provides a summary of online undergrad accounting degrees at the bachelor’s level. In addition to the summary for each entry, there is a “data dashboard.” In these dashboards, you can find charts and data points. The latter either come from NCES (http://nces.ed.gov/) data or are calculated. A legend for each dashboard data point list is shown below, followed by the 35 ranked colleges. The ranking methodology is at the end of this article.
- Year established: when this campus (or sometimes the parent) was founded.
- Location: location of campus, or headquarters for all-distance colleges
- In-state tuition + fees: listed average undergrad tuition plus mandatory fees for in-state students.
- Out-of-state tuition +fees: listed average undergrad tuition plus mandatory fees for out-of-state students.
- Net price: the yearly average total cost for all students (tuition, fees, books, etc.)
- %fulltime retention: % of full-time 1st-year undergrads who return
- %allDistEdu: % of undergrads who are taking all distance education courses, online delivery or otherwise.
- %someDistEdu: % of undergrads who are taking some distance education courses, online or otherwise.
- # students: total number of students at all study levels, on-campus and online.
- # undergrads: total number of undergraduate students.
- # grads: total number of graduate students.
- Graduation rate: % of undergrads who eventually graduate, based on first-time, full-time undergrads. Might be zero, if the college has no such students in a given year.
- Transfer-out rate: % of undergrads who transfer out of this college.
- Campus setting: community type and size.
- Campus housing: yes/no – are there on-campus student residence units.
- Affiliation/ governance: religious affiliation, system affiliation, or external board of regents.
- Institutional accreditation: : accrediting body for the college.
- Program accreditation: accrediting body for the degree program or parent department, if applicable.
Rankings: Top Value Affordable Online Bachelor’s Degrees in Accounting
University of Charleston (source)
University of Charleston (UC) offers an online Accounting program in the form of a Bachelor of Science (BS) degree. Students gain the knowledge and skills required for entry-level accounting careers, as well as are prepared for advanced studies and to sit for professional certification exams such as the CPA (which will require additional credits beyond a bachelor’s degree). There may be local internship opportunities available to online students, to supplement concepts with actual experience.
This online BS requires 120 credits, 21cr of which are for advanced Accounting courses (in addition to introductory courses), 42cr for Business Core courses. The remainder of credits are for various other degree requirements, including general education. Students who have taken previous undergrad courses at UC may be eligible for admission into this program and should contact an admissions advisor. UC also recommends that online students visit the campus initially to meet and talk with both admissions personnel and program faculty.
Sample courses: Principles of Accounting; Cost Accounting; Federal Taxes – Individual; Federal Taxes – Business; Auditing.
Alter Hall, Fox School of Business, Temple University (source)
Temple offers an online Accounting program as a Major option for their Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) degree. The program helps students build their knowledge of accounting concepts and principles, including asset management, financial reporting, liabilities, owners’ equity, transactional analysis, etc. Students who graduate from this program may find careers in consulting, government, nonprofits, public accounting and elsewhere. Graduates might also choose to pursue advanced studies and/or professional certification (e.g., CPA).
This online BBA degree requires a minimum of 124 credits. This breaks down to courses in the categories of Accounting Major, Fox School of Business and Management requirements, General Education and Electives. Note: Temple has an accelerated BBA option that allows students to complete their degree within three years.
Sample courses: Cost Accounting; Accounting Information Systems; Accounting Information Systems; Federal Taxes on Income; Auditing.
University of Massachusetts-Amherst, Goodell Hall, originally built as the UML library (source)
UMA offers an online Accounting program in the form of a major in their Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) degree. The program covers topics such as financial reporting, managerial accounting, taxation, information systems. Upon graduation, students might find career roles as auditors, bank examiners, controllers, financial executives, treasurers,
This online BBA degree requires 120 credits. The curriculum consists of the following categories: Major, Isenberg Core (business), Breadth Requirement (non-business), General Education. Online courses are taught by the same on-campus Accounting program faculty, who have professional experience in accounting.
Sample courses: Principles of Financial Accounting; Accounting Information Systems; Cost Accounting; Individual Taxation; Auditing; CPA Law.
Thompson Hall (administration), Washington State University (source)
WSU offers an online Bachelor’s in Accounting program through their Global Campus. Students graduating from this program can potential working in accounting (corporate, public), government agencies, private business and more. The program combines the principles of both accounting and a broader business administration education. It is particularly designed for part-time students, and has fall, winter and spring sessions.
This online accounting degree requires 120 credits. Of that 120, 30cr is for certification in Business Administration and Accounting (concentration), 15cr for Business Core, 18cr for Accounting, 6cr for Accounting Electives, and the remainder for various other requirements, including 6cr for an International Experience requirement.
Sample courses: Financial Accounting; Managerial Accounting; Introduction to Taxation; Cost Accounting; Accounting Systems and Auditing.
Fort Lauderdale (source)
KU offers an online Accounting program (through Online division of Fort Lauderale campus) in the form of a Bachelor of Arts degree. Students learn the principles of accounting necessary for accountant roles in industries such as government, non-profits and others. In addition to accounting, this includes concepts such as tax, decision-making for accounting, software, regulatory considerations, ethics and more.
This online BA degree requires 120 credits, with 24cr of that for lower-division Accounting Major courses, 51cr for upper-division Accounting Major courses, and the remainder to General Education courses.
Sample courses: Accounting Principles; Accounting Information for Business Decisions; Integrated Accounting; International Financial Reporting; Advanced Managerial/ Cost Accounting.
Welder Library, University of Mary (source)
UMary offers an online Accounting program in the form of a Bachelor of Science (BS) degree that prepares students for accounting careers (accountant, auditor, analyst, etc.), as well as for advanced studies such an MBA Accountancy. Students also get the background they need to prepare for professional certification such as through the CPA exam.
This online BS degree requires 124 credits for completion. Online courses are offered in a 5-week accelerated format and are taught with a focus on ethics as well as Benedictine/ Catholic values (e.g., servant leadership principles).The delivery format allows students to finish in as little as 3.5 years, meaning that CPA exam prep or graduate studies can begin sooner. Note that some online students may qualify for scholarships up to $12K.
Sample courses: Principles of Accounting; Accounting Applications; Accounting Information Systems; Cost Management and Strategy; Fund Accounting.
Franklin University (source)
Franklin offers two online Accounting program in the form of a Bachelor of Science (BS) degrees. The first is a BS Accounting, and the second a BS Forensic Accounting. Possible career opportunities for BSA grads include accounting consultant, auditor, budget analyst, cost management accountant, financial accountant, governmental accountant, public accountant, tax accountant and more. For BSFA grads, opportunities include accounting consultant, corporate accounting officer, forensic accountant, independent forensic auditor, internal auditor, litigation expert witness. Graduating students of these programs are ready to prepare for various professional certifications, including CPA, CMA, CIA.
This online BS degree requires 124 credits, with 32cr for Accounting Major courses, 4cr for Accounting Electives, 28cr for Business Core. The remainder of credits are for General Education (24+12cr) and University Electives (24cr). The curriculum, which follows industry standards (GAAP, Sarbanes-Oxley regulations, etc.), includes a final course that is a business simulation involving an audit using a student team. Overall, students get the benefits of courses taught by faculty with professional experience in many areas of accounting. Note that students can also take either Accounting program as a second bachelor’s degree, in which case overall credit requirements are reduced.
Sample courses: Intermediate Accounting; Cost Management; Federal Income Tax; Accounting Information Systems; Auditing.
Johnson Center, Cleary University (source)
CU offers two blended Accounting programs as part of their Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) degree. Students can select from either (1) Accounting and Finance (CMA Track) or (2) Public Accounting (CPA Track). The BBA provides undergrad students with a rounded business education as well as a grounding in Accounting principles. Students looking towards management or leadership careers may be more interested in the CPA Track, which can lead to careers as a auditor, business consultant, public accountant, tax advisor, etc.
This online BBA degree requires 120 credits. Course content combines theory with case studies and projects, and is taught by faculty with industry experience. After completion of the BBA, students can prepare for CMA professional certification with Cleary’s own CMA exam prep program (textbooks and online practice tests included). Students completing the CPA Track of the BBA degree can prepare for the CPA professional certification exam, although the university does not have an additional study program for this.
Sample courses: Students should consult with a Cleary admissions advisor to determine both curriculum and which courses are available online.
Davenport University, Livonia Campus (source)
DU offers an online Accounting program as a major of their Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) degree. Students can further choose from two specializations: (1) Internal Auditing; (2) Management Accounting. The program prepares students for various careers in accounting-related roles. As well, graduating students will have the base knowlege for sitting in the exam for any of several professional certifications, including CFE, CFM, CIA, CMA, CGFM, CPA — which can increase job opportunities and pay.
This online BBA degree requires 120 credits. Of this, 45cr are for Accounting Major courses, 32cr for Foundations of Business, 39cr for Foundations of Excellence, 12cr for Accounting Electives or one of the two accounting specializations. The remaining six credits are covered by an Internship and a Capstone.
Sample courses: Cost Accounting; Federal Taxation; Payroll and State Tax; Auditing and Assurance Services; Governmental and Not-For-Profit Accounting.
Perry Library, Old Dominion University (source)
ODU offers an online Accounting program as a Major in their Bachelor of Science in Business Administration (BSBA) degree. The program, which is available either as a full bachelor’s degree, or as a degree-completion program for students who have completed a suitable associate’s degree or the equivalent credits. Graduates of this program might find careers in auditing, assurance, tax planning, accounting (environmental, forensic, internation, etc.), personal financial planning, financial management, budget analysis and more.
This online BSBA degree requires 120 credits, with 33cr for Accounting Major courses (accounting some electives). Other topic areas include business, economics, finance, marketing, management, plus the General Education topics. Students taking the Accounting Major Professional concentration (AP) are eligible for the dual BSBA/ MS program — although the latter is not available online. Alternately, students can also qualify for sitting in professional certifications exams by taking sufficient additional Accounting elective courses.
Sample courses: Principles of Accounting; Intermediate Accounting; Managerial Accounting; Taxation; Accounting Information Systems.
Reed Hall, University of West Alabama (source)
UWA offers an online Accounting program as part of their Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA). With additional studies (as necessary) and/or certification, graduates of this program might seek career opportunities such as the following: accountant/ director (government or nonprofit organization), corporate accountant controller, financial consultant, forensic consultant, tax accountant/ planner. Students will be ready to prepare for professional certification exams such as CMA, CPA, etc.
This online BBA requires 120 credits, with 30cr allotted for Accounting Major requirements and 40cr for Business Professional Component requirements. Overall, students receive a well-rounded business administration education to supplement accounting principles
Sample courses: Intermediate Accounting; Computer Based Accounting Systems; Cost Accounting; Federal Income Tax; Auditing.
24: Peirce College
Peirce College (source)
PC offers an online Bachelor of Science (BS) in Accounting that prepares students both for a career in this field, as well as for taking professional certification exams such as CPA, CMA or CFE. Career opportunities include corporate accounting departments or accounting firms. Job titles include Accounting Manager, Auditor, Cost Analyst, Business Analyst, Credit Analyst, Financial Examiner, Personal Financial Analyst and Staff Accountant, amongst many others. Students might also choose to pursue advanced studies in accounting, business or finance.
This online BS degree requires 121 credits, of which 43cr is for Institutional Requirements, and the remaining 78cr is for Program Requirements, which cover business, accounting, mathematics, law, management, finance, etc. Courses are taught by faculty with business experience.
Sample courses: Accounting Principles; Financial Accounting; Managerial Accounting; Auditing; Cost Accounting; Computerized Accounting.
National University (source)
NU offers an online Bachelor of Science in Accountancy (BS ACC) that prepares students for accounting careers or advanced studies, as well as base for working towards one or more professional certifications, such as CPA, CMA, CIA. Possible careers for graduates of this program include accounting (corporate, nonprofit, or public), auditing, and others, with potential employers from various levels of government, as well as industries.
This online BS requires 180 quarter units (qu) and focuses on accounting, as well as business, economics, finance, and management science. Of the 180qu, 70.5+qu are for General Education requirements, 22.5qu for Core Business, 18qu for Major Preparation courses, 54qu for Accounting Major courses, and the remainder for electives or other requirements. Electives (9qu) can be replaced with a Concentration in Accounting Professional Skills. Note: Students within six courses of graduation can apply for NU’s BS ACC to MBA (online) transition program, should they wish to continue towards a master’s degree. As well, select credits taken for the BS ACC can be applied towards the online MBA degree.
Sample courses: Financial Accounting Funds; Managerial Accounting Funds; Applied Tech for Accountants; Taxation-Individual; Taxation-Business.
McWherter Library, University of Memphis (source)
U of M offers an online Accounting program as a Major in their Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) degree. Successful students gain a grounding for pursuing a CPA professional certification, should they wish. It takes an interdisciplinary approach, and students gain a broader knowledge of business beyond accounting.
This online BBA requires 120 credits, of which 30cr are for Accounting Major courses, 42cr for BBA requirements, 41cr for General Education, and the rest in Electives.
Sample courses: Intermediate Accounting; Cost Accounting; Federal Income Tax; Accounting Systems; Audit and Assurance Services.
Morehead State University (source)
MSU offers an online Accounting program in the form of a Track of their Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) degree. It prepares students for accounting careers in various sectors including corporate, public and education.
This online BBA has a degree completion program that allows students who have completed pre-business core requirements, possibly at a Kentucky state community college, to take a minimum of credits to obtain their BBA. This also reduces total cost of completion. The total credit requirement is 120 hours, however only upper division courses are available online.
Sample courses: Principles of Financial Accounting; Principles of Managerial Accounting; Business Law and Regulations; Business Finance; Ethical Decision Making in Business.
Dede Plaza and fountain, Indiana State University (source)
Indiana State University (ISU) offers an online Bachelor of Science (BS) in Accounting that prepares students for various accountant roles, as well as for some professional certification exams. Graduates of this program might find careers in Public Accounting, Corporate Accounting, Government and Not-for-Profit Accounting and Education, each of which has numerous job roles.
This online BS degree requires 120 credits, with 27cr for Accounting Major courses, 50-51cr for Business Core. The curriculum covers topics such as accounting (various), auditing, taxation, information systems, etc. Students can complete the program in four years, or opt to study part-time. Minor options include finance, forensic accounting, insurance, risk management, and others.
Sample courses: Principles of Accounting; Financial Accounting; Cost Accounting; Auditing Theory and Practice; Fraud Examination.
Metropolitan State University of Denver (source)
Metropolitan State University of Denver (MSUD) offers an online Bachelor of Science in Accounting (BSA) that prepares students for roles such as accountant, auditor, CPA, etc. Graduates of this program might also continue on to advanced studies in auditing, forensic accounting, general accounting, taxation and other areas. Careers options include Public Accounting, Business and Industry, Government, Nonprofit, Education — some of which may require advanced studies. Professional accounting-related certifications that graduates of this BS degree might pursue are: CFE, CFP, CGAP, CGFM, CIA, CISA, CISM, CMA, CPA.
In addition to business and accounting courses, the curriculum has general studies, multicultural and global diversity requirements. Courses are taught by faculty with work experience in various aspects of accounting. Most full-time faculty also hold PhDs in the field. Students interested in a Master’s degree in Accounting might consider MSUD’s 3+2 program, which awards both the aforementioned BS, as well as a Master’s in Professional Accountancy. The graduate degree, however, is not currently online.
Sample courses: Income Tax; Accounting Information Systems; Cost Accounting; Volunteer Income Tax Assistance; Governmental Accounting.
Trine University, Fort Wayne (source)
Trine University-Regional/Non-Traditional Campuses (TU) offers an online Accounting program through their Regional/ Non-Traditional Campuses division, in the form of a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration (BSBA) with a major in Accounting. Students who successfully graduate from this degree are prepared for accounting careers and the CMA or CPA professional certification exams. A 4+1 option that combines a master’s degree (MBA) is also available, and satisfies the 150 credit hours that certification exams typically require for qualification. Possible careers are in the areas of Forensic Accounting, Governmental Accounting, Managerial Accounting, Nonprofit Accounting and Public Accounting, amongst others.
This online BSBA degree requires 120 credits, with 42cr for General Education, 33cr for the Accounting Major, 30cr for Business Core, and the remaining 15cr from other requirements. Courses are taught by faculty members with experience as accountants, entrepreneurs, administrators, managers, marketers, lawyers and more.
Sample courses: Cost Accounting; Accounting Information Systems; Income Tax; Corporate Income Tax, Auditing.
17: Baker College
Baker College in Flint (source)
Baker College (BC) offers an online Accounting program in the form of a major as part of their Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA). The program prepares students for entry-level accounting positions (in public, managerial and governmental positions), and provides the base for students who want to acquire their CPA professional certification with further studies for that exam.
This online BBA requires 183 quarter credit (qc) hours, with 63qc for the Accounting Major, 48qc for Business Requirements, 72qc for General Education, and the rest in electives. Courses are taught by faculty members with work experience in the accounting field, and students also gain knowledge from actual work experiences in addition to theory.
Sample courses: Accounting Concepts; Business Entities Taxation; Cost Accounting; Auditing, Systems, and Controls; Governmental and Non-Profit Accounting.
Carlson Library, Clarion University of Pennsylvania (source)
Clarion University of Pennsylvania (CUP) offers an online Bachelor of Science in Business Administration (BSBA) with a major in Accounting, as well as a 24-credit online academic certificate in CPA Exam Eligibility studies. (The latter requires a bachelor’s degree or within 16 credits of completion for admission.) The BSBA degree prepares students for both careers in accounting or for graduate studies in accounting, business or law. Graduates of the BSBA might pursue accountant roles in one of these areas: Corporate, Educational Institutions, Government Agencies, Nonprofit or Public organizations.
This online BSBA degree requires 120 credits for completion, of which 48cr is assigned to General Education requirements and 24-33cr for the Accounting Major (depending on CPA or Industry concentration), as well as Business Core courses and electives. Students should Clarion’s scholarship database for Accounting scholarships, of which some are designated for online students.
Sample courses: Financial Accounting; Managerial Accounting; Accounting for Equities; Cost Accounting; Personal Taxation; Auditing.
Bookstore, University of Maine at Augusta (source)
University of Maine at Augusta (UMA) offers an online Bachelor of Science in Business Administration (BSBA) with a Major in Accounting. Students further choose a concentration in one of Financial Accounting, Management Accounting or Governmental Accounting. The program prepares successful graduates for a managerial career in accounting. This includes roles such as Comptroller, Tax Preparer, CPA, City Clerk, City Accounting Assistant, IRS Agent, Financial Aid Adviser, Cost Accountant and many more — some of which may require graduate studies and/or professional certification.
This online BSBA requires 121 credits, with 60cr allotted to Major courses. The program’s curriculum helps students develops skills and knowledge in areas such as Communication, Technology, Data management, Analysis and more.
Sample courses: Financial Accounting for Management and Decision Making; Intermediate Financial Reporting; Taxation; Accounting Information Systems.
University of Northwestern Ohio (source)
University of Northwestern Ohio (UNOH) offers an online Bachelor of Science (BS) Accounting program with three tracks: (1) Accounting; (2) Accounting (CPA Track); (3) Forensic Accounting. Students are prepared for career roles such as Forensic Accountant, Payroll Accountant, Plant Controller, Financial Analyst and others. With professional certification, additional possible careers include CPA, CFA, CIA, CMA, CFE.
This online BS degree requires 180 quarter credits (qc) regardless of Track. Curriculum requirements vary by track, but Major course make up for more than half the credits. The Forensic track focuses on fraud examination, Sarbanes-Oxley Act, white collar crime and related areas, and can lead to CFE professional certification. The other two tracks offer a grounding in basic to advanced accounting principles, with the CPA track preparing graduates towards the pursuit of the CPA professional certification.
Sample courses: Accounting; Personal Taxes; Managerial Accounting; A Survey of Auditing; Forensic Accounting.
Aerial view of Crookston, Minnesota. (source)
University of Minnesota-Crookston (UMC) offers an online Bachelor of Science in Accounting (BSA), which prepares students for careers in Banking, Financial Analysis, Public or Management Accounting, Taxation and other areas. Graduates of the program gain knowledge and skills in communication, analysis, leadership, decision making, ethics, etc., and might find jobs in public, private or government organizations
This online BS degree requires 120 credits, with 63cr for the Major. Overall, curriculum courses are in accounting, business and liberal education topics. Some courses count as credits towards a student’s CPA exam requirements. Other professional certifications that students might prepare for including CIA and CMA. Students interested in a double major or minor should contact the school for requirements.
Sample courses: Principles of Accounting; Accounting Systems; Cost Accounting; Auditing; Income Tax.
University of Maryland-University College (UMUC) offers an online Bachelor of Science in Accounting (BSA), which includes a mandatory minor in Business Administration. In addition to preparing students for a variety of accounting-related careers or graduate studies, graduating students can also prepare for any one of a multiple professional certification exams: CPA, CIA, CISA, CFE, CGFM, CMA, CGAP. Note that in addition to possibly being eligible for financial aid, students have no textbook costs as course materials are available free online in the form of “open educational resources.”
This online BS degree requires 120 credits and accepts up to 90cr for transfer. Students take an Accounting major (36cr) and a Business Administration minor (15cr) as part of the curriculum. Students may choose to earn a double major or a second bachelor’s degree. (Check Web site or contact UMUC for details.) Online courses are eight weeks each and are taught by faculty members with recent experience in a wide range of primarily accounting-related careers, including CPA, COO, Controller, Financial Auditor, Financial Analyst and others.
Sample courses: Principles of Accounting; Cost Accounting; Federal Income Tax; Auditing Theory and Practice; International Accounting.
Northwestern Oklahoma State University (source)
Northwestern Oklahoma State University (NWOSU) offers an online Bachelor of Science (BS) in Accounting, which prepares students for entry-level positions in accounting roles after graduation, or for advanced studies. Graduates of the program will also be in a position to prepare for the CPA exam, which will also require additional studies to qualify (minimum 150 credit hours), and which will qualify them for advanced career roles.
This online BS degree requires 126 credits, and the curriculum is spread across the categories of General Education (54cr), Foundation Core (18cr), Business Core (24cr) and Upper-Level Accounting (30cr). Classes are either 16- or 8-weeks long, with the latter being mostly for summer session courses. Note that online students may qualify for financial aid or scholarships.
Sample courses: Intermediate Accounting, Governmental/ Non-Profit Accounting; Individual Income Tax; Cost Accounting; Auditing.
Main entrance, Northwestern State University of Louisiana (source)
Northwestern State University of Louisiana (NSU) offers an online Bachelor of Science in Accounting (BSA) which prepares students for any one of a number of accounting-related careers, including in government and business. Possible job roles include accountant or raud examiner, and NSU’s accounting grads work in multiple industries (oil and gas, business firms, financial institutions, etc.) With suitable experience and education, some graduates might find themselves eventually as a CEO or CFO.
This online BS degree requires 120 credits. The curriculum covers topics such as accounting information systems, governmental accounting, tax, financial and managerial accounting, and others, as well as general education topics.
Sample courses: Financial Accounting; Income Taxes; Cost Accounting; Auditing; Financial Policies and Practices.
Campus Recreation, Georgia Southwestern State University (source)
Georgia Southwestern State University (GSW) offers an online degree completion Bachelor of Business Administation (BBA) degree with a major in Accounting. Students are prepared for graduate studies or a variety of possible careers in banking and government justice agencies (e.g., FBI), such as accountant, accounting manager, bookkeeper, budget analyst, auditor, CFO (Chief Financial Officer), comptroller/ controller, forensic accountant, government accountant, payroll clerk, tax accountant and more. Possible certifications that graduates might pursue include CPA, CMA, CIA, CFE, CFP.
Students gain skills in problem solving, communications, critical thinking, technology, leadership, decision-making and strategy, amongst other areas. This online accounting degree requires student to complete the Associate of Science in Business Administration (ASBA) to be eligible for acceptance. Total credit requirements is 120.
Sample courses: Cost Accounting; Income Tax Accounting; Accounting Systems; Income Tax Accounting; Internal Controls and Auditing; Not-for-Profit Accounting.
Florida Atlantic University (FAU) School of Accounting – self-described as one of the largest in the U.S. by student population, offers an online accounting program as part of a concentration in their Bachelor of Business Administation (BBA) degree. The program is designed for students looking to combine business studies with accounting, for the purposes of professional careers in business and government. Potential professional certifications with suitable studies include CPA, CMA, CIA, CISA, CFGM, CFE. Contact school for details of the Accounting Scholars Program (ASP), which has a job placement rate of 100%.
This online BBA-A requires 120 credit hours and can be completed in two years or longer. Courses fall into four categories: Intellectual Foundation Program (IFP), Pre-Business Foundation Courses, Business Core, Accounting Major Courses. Note: The online portion is primarily upper-division (years 3 and 4) courses. Students must complete 60+ credits in Pre-Business and IFP courses — the latter of which are mostly on-campus only — before entering the BBA program.
Sample courses: Financial Accounting; Managerial Accounting; Money and Banking; Business Law; Cost Accounting; Accounting Information Systems; Auditing and Assurance Services.
Northern State University (source)
Northern State University (NSU) offers a two relevant online Accounting programs – the Bachelor of Science (BS) in Accounting, and the BS Professional Accountancy. (Alternately, the BS Business Administration (BSBA) includes up to three courses in Accounting in its curriculum.) The two BS programs prepare students for various careers in accounting or even graduate studies. The Professional program gets students ready for CPA exam preparation, and its graduates “enjoy over 95 percent job placement.”
Both of these two online BS accounting programs require 46 credits of Business Core courses but differ in Accounting Major in requirements. Specifically, the Professional Accountancy program requires 54cr in Major courses, while the regular track requires only 27cr.
Sample courses: Principles of Accounting; Cost Accounting; Accounting Systems; Income Tax Accounting; Auditing.
Bemidji State University (source)
Bemidji State University (BSU) offers an online Bachelor of Science (BS) in Accounting degree-completion program. The program helps students acquire knowledge of both business and accounting concepts. For students planning to acquire the CPA professional certification, some credits gained in this BS degree may count towards that goal. This means that students may be able to save money not having to take a commercial CPA exam prep program after graduating. Potential careers for graduates of this online program include Accounting Analyst, Controller, Sales Accountant, Bank Auditor, Bank Examiner, Financial Planner, Tax Accountant and many more.
This online BS requires a suitable AA (Associate of Arts) degree for admission, beyond which students will complete an additional 71 credits, for a total of 120cr. (A four-year option is available but not all lower-division courses are online.) Courses, which include categories such as General Education as well as Major and Electives, are taught by the same faculty as for the on-campus accounting program. Students can take as little as one course per semester, and depending on existing credits, can complete this program in two years or longer. Note that scholarships may be available for this program; contact BSU for details.
Sample courses: Accounting Principles; Advanced Accounting; Auditing; Tax; Government; Accounting Systems.
May Hall, Dickinson State University (source)
Dickinson State University (DSU) offers two online Accounting programs in the form of a Bachelor of Science (BS) degree with two tracks: Corporate or Professional. These Accounting programs have been recognized for innovation in hybrid learning by AICPA (American Institute of Certified Public Accountants) and AAA (American Accounting Association), and have had “nearly 100 percent” placement since the launch of the CPA Experience in Fall 2013.
Both tracks in this online BS Accounting degree require 121 credits for completion. While credit breakdown varies by track, students take courses in the same categories for either track: Pre-Major, Accounting Major (Business Core), Accounting Core, General Education. Either track can leading to professional certifications such as CPA, CMA, CFE, CIA.
Sample courses: Elements of Accounting; Computerized Accounting; Cost Accounting; Financial Statement Analysis; Income Tax; Auditing.
Dakota State University arch (source)
Dakota State University (DSU) offers two online Accounting programs. One is as a concentration in a Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) degree, while the other is a Bachelor of Science (BS) in Accounting. The BS is a professional track designed for students who plan to acquire the CPA professional certification, while the BBA is for those wanting to either finish their bachelor’s degree faster or are not currently interested in professional certification. Students graduating from either program might also pursue an MBA. Potential careers include Financial Analyst, Accounts Receivable Specialist, Assistant Controller, Income Tax Auditor, and a variety of roles at CPA firms.
Both programs require 120 credits. The BBA has more business focus in the curriculum, while the BS has more open electives, allowing for greater customization of the latter degree. Online students receive their education from the same faculty as for the on-campus Accounting programs, and each student receives a laptop and has access to iPads, Kindles, Chromebooks, and other education technology as necessary. Job placement rates for AY 2014-15 graduates range from 94 to 100% (varies by major).
Sample courses: Principles of Accounting; Accounting Systems; Income Tax Accounting; Non-Profit Accounting; Advanced Income Tax.
Bellevue University (source)
Bellevue University (BU) offers an online Bachelor of Science (BS) in Accounting. The program prepares students for accounting careers in financial institutions, government, industry, nonprofits, public practice and other areas. Students may also choose to pursue a Master’s in Accounting afterwards. Graduates of the program will be ready to prepare for CPA professional certification. Alternately, students may choose to take BU’s online Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) degree with an Emphasis in Accounting (six courses = 18 credits).
This BS Accounting program requires 127 credits, with 72cr for Major courses, 36cr for General Education, 10cr for Electives and 9cr for BU’s Kirkpatrick Signature Series courses. Students transferring from another institution and/or who hold a suitable associate’s degree may qualify for enough credits that they need only complete 51-60 more credits to obtain the BS degree. The BBA also requires 127 credits.
Sample courses: Financial Accounting ; Managerial Accounting; Cost Accounting; Income Tax Accounting; Financial Auditing.
Downtown Columbia, MO (source)
Columbia College (CC) offers an online Accounting major as part of either a BABA (Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration) or BSBA (Bachelor of Science in Business Administration. Both programs prepare students for entry-level careers in accounting, as well for graduate studies, if desired. Students can customize their degree with business and accounting elective courses, to suit their career interests.
Both the BABA and BSBA online degrees require a minimum of 120 credits, but differ slightly in curriculum, as well as in maximum transferable credits from other institutions. The BABA has a foreign language requirement (6cr), while both have a multicultural requirement (3cr).
Sample courses: Intermediate Accounting I-III; Managerial and Cost Accounting; Federal Income Tax-Individuals; Accounting Information Systems; Federal Income Tax-Corporations; Fund and Government Accounting.
Western Governors University Administration Building (source)
Western Governors University (WGU) offers an online Bachelor of Science Accounting (BSA). The program is suitable for three types of students: (1) those already having an accounting or bookkeeping career who need to complete a BS for career advancement; (2) those looking to start an accounting-related career after graduation; (3) those who want to pursue graduate studies and advanced professional certifications (e.g., CPA – Certified Public Accountant). Students are expected to need to spend at least 15 hours per week on studies.
This online BSA requires 121 competency units (CUs) for completion, with transfer credits from other institutions possible. Students learn in a range of topic areas, including accounting, business, leadership, IT, marketing, HR, economics, management and more.
Sample courses: Managerial Accounting; Macroeconomics; Microeconomics; Global Business; Business Ethics.
This ranking system combines affordability (60%) with a number of institutional “value” metrics (total of 40%) that together give an overall sense of a college’s reputation (or potential) with undergrad students, based on available statistics. These factors are consistently applied against all colleges listed in the NCES database (http://nces.ed.gov/collegenavigator/) as having a bachelor’s program in Accounting-related topics. E.g., the “candidate cohort.” Because of this approach, there may be some colleges here that have already been listed in our other bachelor’s of accounting rankings. However, schools that were left out based on net price alone, in our “Most Affordable” rankings may now appear here.
The affordability metrics are calculated using a relative scale based on the cost values for all the initial candidate colleges. E.g., based on the minimum and maximum values for each cost metric across the candidate cohort. Where any given college’s value for that cost metric falls in the overall range determines the score in that metric for that college. For example, assume that there are about 300 colleges listed in NCES as offering a bachelor’s program in accounting. If the in-state tuition values for all 300 colleges range from $1,200 per year to $60,000 per year, points are awarded to each college based on where their in-state tuition falls in that range. The lower the relative cost value, the more points a college is awarded. This approach is applied to all three cost metrics.
Non-price metrics, on the other hand, are typically already a percentage from 0-100. So their scores are determined by applying a multiple. So if Retention (see below) is worth 10% of the overall score, each college’s full-time undergrad retention score is multiplied by 0.10, to get the value of this ranking factor’s score.
Missing values are handled differently based on what they represent. Incomplete info for a college is not penalized in most cases. However, an unreported graduation rate means a college is filtered out. Otherwise, that ranking factor is set to zero, giving colleges a chance to get ranked if enough other, more important, factors support it..
The ranking factors used in this article, in approximately declining order of weight, are as follows:
- In-state tuition — Covers relative affordability for the bulk of students.
- Out-of-state tuition — Covers relative affordability for non-resident students taking one of these online programs.
- GradRate — Score based on percentage of first-time, full-time undergrads who graduate their program. Colleges without such students may have a zero score here. However, if other ranking factors support it, the college may still appear in the 35 ranked colleges on that basis.
- Net price — Covers relative affordability for all undergrads based on average yearly net prices
- Retention — Covers the percentage of full-time undergrads continuing in degree programs after freshman year.
- OnlyDE — Score based on percentage of undergrads taking all Distance Education courses (including online) for their degree program.
- SomeDE — Score based on percentage of undergrads taking some DistEd courses for their degree program.
Note that ranking factors and their weighting may vary slightly from article to article in the “Top Value Affordable” series.