Accredited online colleges provide the perfect opportunity for non-traditional accounting degree students to learn about the “language of business” from home or the office. Online accounting degrees are typically granted at the associate, bachelor’s, or master’s level for in-depth insights on how organizations communicate their finances. Accounting majors benefit from gaining highly marketable analytical and problem-solving skills for virtually any industry. The U.S. News and World Report recognizes accounting as America’s #3 best business job with above-average, 10-year growth projected at 11 percent. Accountants bring home a healthy average yearly salary of $75,280. Plus, CPAs who fulfill the 150-hour education requirement can unlock a $1 million lifetime advantage.
Separating the good and bad online schools can be a chore. Therefore, we’ve handled the research by highlighting the Top 15 Accredited Online Accounting College Degree Programs for you. We began by surveying universities holding distinguished accreditation from the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB). The agency’s approval represents quality B-schools placed among the world’s top 5 percent. Next, we consulted with the U.S. News and World Report rankings to find colleges excelling in online business education. Preference was given to online universities offering undergraduate and graduate accounting degrees. Other factors included were class size, financial aid, job placement, student services, technology, flexibility, and CPA exam pass rates.
1. Pennsylvania State University
Established in 1855 as the Farmers’ High School of Pennsylvania, Penn State is a preeminent public, research-intensive institution endowed for $3.64 billion to operate 19 Commonwealth locations and a World Campus. Boasting the world’s largest alumni association with 177,000 members, PSU is ranked the 50th Best National University and 14th Top Public School by the U.S. News and World Report. The AACSB-accredited Smeal College of Business is further recognized for America’s #1 best online bachelor’s and #7 top online graduate business degrees. In 2012, Penn State earned the Shirley Davis Award for Excellence in Synchronous Distance Learning and Sloan Consortium Online Education Award too.
Online Penn State students can select from three accounting programs to find business success. The 120-credit Bachelor of Science in Accounting is available online to develop basic accountancy skills for certifications like Certified Internal Auditor (CIA). Those working towards the CPA credential can fulfill the 150-hour requirement with the online Master of Professional Accounting. This 30-credit option furthers financial reporting and statement analysis skills before a capstone in forensic accounting. The 48-credit Master of Business Administration can be completed online with one of seven concentrations, including Accounting. MBA students solely need to complete one five-day orientation residency in University Park.
Online Tuition: $542 (bachelor’s) or $930 (master’s) per credit
2. Syracuse University
With enrollment surpassing 21,200 students, Syracuse University is an elite private, non-sectarian RU/VH research institution occupying a 683-acre physical campus in Central New York and online extension. Since its founding in 1870, Syracuse has grown a $1.16 million endowment to become placed #13 among the Princeton Review’s “Top Schools of Entrepreneurship.” According to the U.S. News and World Report, SU is the 60th Best University and 44th Top Value Nationally. Forbes magazine also recognized Syracuse University for America’s 200th Most Grateful Graduates. Holding AACSB accreditation, the Martin J. Whitman School of Management offers America’s 73rd Best Online Graduate Business Degrees.
Linked with Big Four firms like Deloitte and KPMG, Syracuse University’s online Master of Science in Professional Accounting offers top-notch advancement training. This online degree follows three different tracks based on background. The Accelerated Accounting Schedule is ideal for bachelor’s in accounting graduates to graduate in 12 months. The Professional Accounting Schedule allows working professionals to take two courses per term over 15 months. Finally, the Foundational Accounting Schedule helps non-accounting majors catch up on previous coursework for two or more years. Syracuse also provides an Online MBA with six specializations, including Accounting. Each online option satisfies the 150-hour requirement for Certified Public Accountants.
Online Tuition: $1,443 per credit
3. University of Connecticut
Belonging to New England’s Knowledge Corridor, the University of Connecticut is a flagship public, land-grant RU/VH research institution located on 4,400 sprawling acres in Storrs. In addition to its over 26,200 residential students, UConn educates another 5,000+ at satellites in Stamford, Groton, Hartford, and online. The U.S. News and World Report ranked UConn as America’s 60th Best National University and 36th Best School for Veterans. Kiplinger’s Personal Finance named the “Public Ivy” the nation’s 28th Top Value. Attaining AACSB accreditation, the School of Business was distinguished by Financial Times for the 46th Best Global MBA. The University of Connecticut also has the second Best Online Graduate Business Degrees nationally.
Through the eCamps, UConn students could pursue the Master of Science in Accounting (MSA) program online. Its student-driven, asynchronous courses have been recognized by the USDLA for Best Practices in Online Learning. Online learners develop the critical skills for public, private, and nonprofit accounting careers with CPA designation. Full-time faculty members guide students through designing their own accounting degree based on interests. Courses extend from tax code and auditing to forensic accounting and corporate finance. The 30-credit program requires 10 courses and one four-day residency in Storrs. Students could also finish the Accounting Certificate Program (ACP) online.
Online Tuition: $825 per credit ($2,475 per course)
4. University of Massachusetts – Amherst
Endowed for $307 million, the University of Massachusetts Amherst is a flagship public, land-grant research institution in the Five College Consortium that’s enrolling approximately 29,200 Minutemen and women. According to MSN, Amherst’s beautiful 1,463-acre suburban campus in located within the #1 U.S. college town, but extended learning is accessible anywhere. The U.S. News and World Report ranked UMass Amherst as the 74th Best National University and 27th Top Public College. With a 76 percent graduation rate, UMass Amherst claims the 211st spot in Money magazine’s value-based rankings. The AACSB-accredited Isenberg School of Management also stands out for the 12th Best Online MBA and 68th Best Online Graduate Business programs.
Undergraduates studying at the University of Massachusetts Amherst could pick the online Bachelor of Business Administration with an Accounting Major. Requiring no campus trips, this 120-credit program requires transferring at least 27 accredited credits. Isenberg accounting courses utilize an innovative online platform to study taxation, auditing, business law, financial statement analysis, and more. For graduates, there’s a Master of Science in Accounting (MSA) available online to appease CPA requirements. Flexible start dates in spring, summer, and fall allow completing the 30-credit curriculum in as little as eight months. Online courses include an Excel boot camp and business decision-making capstone.
Online Tuition: $525 (bachelor’s) or $750 (master’s) per credit
5. Auburn University
Devoted to the “Advancement of Science and Arts,” Auburn University is Alabama’s third largest public, polytechnic space-grant research institution with enrollment exceeding 27,200 students. In addition to Auburn Online, there’s a spacious 1,843-acre urban campus just 36 miles from Columbus, Georgia. The U.S. News and World Report selected Auburn as America’s 99th Best National University and 43th Top Public School. According to the Princeton Review, Auburn University ranks #4 for “Happiest Students.” The AACSB-accredited Raymond J. Harbert College of Business offers America’s seventh Best Online Graduate Business Programs. European CEO magazine also recognized Auburn for the “Best Executive Remote Learning Program in North America.”
Several high-quality choices exist for online learners who become Tigers. First, the Bachelor of Science in Accountancy is structured for second-degree students who are changing career paths. The five-semester undergraduate program features video-streaming lectures for completing 30 accounting credits online. After a bachelor’s degree, consider Auburn’s Master of Accountancy (MAcc) program. This rigorous, online program involves taking two classes per term over two years while working full-time. Aspiring CPAs only need to complete three days of on-campus residency. Non-business undergraduates can fulfill all prerequisites online. It’s possible to pursue the Online Graduate Certificate in Accounting without GMAT scores too.
Online Tuition: $775 (bachelor’s) or $850 (master’s) per credit
6. Colorado State University
Featuring a main 586-acre urban campus in Fort Collins with extensions in Pueblo and Global, Colorado State University is a system of public, state-funded research institutions tracing back to 1870 as Colorado Agricultural College. Enrolling over 32,200 students in 160+ academic areas, CSU has ranked #1 on the Faculty Scholarly Productivity Index. The U.S. News and World Report crowned Colorado State the 129th Best University and 61st Top Public College nationwide. According to Sierra magazine, CSU is the 11th “coolest” school for environmental sustainability. With AACSB accreditation, the College of Business confers the 50th Top Online MBA and 37th Best Online Graduate Business Degrees in America.
Colorado State University’s Global Campus provides two 100 percent online accredited accounting degrees. At the undergraduate level, the Bachelor of Science in Accounting program offers self-paced training for assembling and analyzing financial reports. Students can select from 18 specializations, such as Criminal Forensics or Information Technology Management, with five upper-division courses. Online graduate students transform into Certified Public Accountants by pursing CSU’s Master of Professional Accounting. This 30-credit online program can be completed in 12 months, including the Wiley CPAexcel Video Gold Medal Course. Online learning culminates with a capstone project to test leadership, planning, and teamwork skills.
Online Tuition: $350 (bachelor’s) or $500 (master’s) per credit
7. Washington State University
Opened in 1890 under the Federal Morrill Act signed by President Lincoln, Washington State University is a public, land-grant research institution endowed for $868 million to educate over 29,600 students. Along with the Global Campus opened in 2012, WSU occupies a 640-acre rural campus in Pullman with extensions in Spokane, Tri-Cities, and Vancouver. The Carnegie “Community Engaged” university is ranked the 143rd Best Overall and 71st Top Public College by the U.S. News and World Report. Washington Monthly also placed WSU as the 32nd Best University for “contribution to the public good.” The Carson College of Business maintains AACSB approval for America’s 34th Top Online Bachelor’s and 22nd Best Graduate Master’s Programs.
Online students attending Washington State University’s Global Campus can prepare for the in-demand financial services sector through the Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration with an Accounting Concentration. This flexible, online program is accelerated with seven-week business courses. Accounting majors take courses in auditing, taxation, statistics, business ethics, macroeconomics, cost accounting, and more. Emphasis is placed on technological innovation to produce 21st century accounting leaders. The 120-credit program also has an international experience requirement for mastering a foreign language or studying abroad. For CPA licensure, WSU students can continue into the “Military Friendly” Online MBA.
Online Tuition: $492 (bachelor’s) or $587 (master’s) per credit
8. University of Alabama – Birmingham
Maintaining SACS and AACSB accreditation, the University of Alabama Birmingham is a public, doctoral-granting research institution that’s attracted over 18,500 students from 110 countries. Located on a 275-acre urban campus in Alabama’s most populous city within the Appalachian foothills, UAB holds a $424 million endowment for on-site and online education. According to the U.S. News and World Report, Birmingham is the country’s 159th Best Overall University and 83rd Top Public College. Forbes magazine lauded UAB as the 194th Top Research Producer nationwide with the Southeast’s fourth highest NIH funding. The Collat School of Business offers students the 51st Best Online Graduate Business Programs in the United States.
University of Alabama Birmingham’s eLearning Division capitalizes on new technology to provide engaging, collaborative online courses. One degree available 100 percent online is the Bachelor of Science in Accounting. Over four years full-time or longer part-time, online undergraduates learn from award-winning faculty to earn the Certified Management Accountant (CMA) designation. Electives can be tailored for interests in auditing, forensic accounting, taxation, or governmental accounting. Graduate students can climb the career ladder with tangible skills gained in the Online Master of Accounting (MAc) program. Seasoned faculty who consult for Fortune 500 companies deliver the 30-credit curriculum for young CPAs.
Online Tuition: $544 (bachelor’s) or $626 (master’s) per credit
9. St. John’s University
Named after Saint John the Baptist in 1870, St. John’s University is a private, co-educational research institution grounded in Catholic and Vincentian values to enlighten the spirit of over 21,200 students. From its 105-acre urban campus off Utopia Parkway in the Queens borough of New York City, SJU operates extensions from Manhattan to Italy and online. Students joining the Red Storm are entering America’s 164th Best National University according to the U.S. News and World Report. Distinguished in BusinessInsider.com’s “Most Underrated Colleges,” St. John’s ranks 137th Nationally for mid-career salary at $88,900 on PayScale. The AACSB-accredited Peter J. Tobin College of Business designed the 43rd Best Online Master’s Business Degrees too.
St. John’s University may not grant an undergraduate accounting major online, but there are two top-notch graduate options. Ranging from 30 to 33 credits, the Online Master of Science in Accounting (MSA) prepares students for taking the Uniform CPA exam in New York. Wide-ranging concentrations are available, including Enterprise Risk Management, Internal Auditing, Controllership, Fraud Examination, and Assurance. Online learning culminates with the capstone project and required one-hour workshop. Another option is the 31-credit Online Master of Science in Taxation. Here accountants can leverage specialized knowledge on Internal Revenue codes and regulations. Rigorous online courses are taught primarily by CPAs holding legal degrees.
Online Tuition: $1,180 per credit
10. Florida Institute of Technology
Located on a 130-acre urban campus in Melbourne near Palm Bay, Florida Institute of Technology is a private, doctoral-granting STEM research university with over 6,600 students. Since launching its first off-campus program for the Navy in 1972, Florida Tech has expanded its SACS-accredited Online Division with 50+ programs. The U.S. News and World Report honored FIT as America’s 171th Best National University with the 92nd Best Online Bachelor’s and 107th Top Online MBA Programs. The Florida Institute of Technology landed on the publication’s list of “A-Plus Schools for B Students.” In particular, the accredited Nathan M. Bisk College of Business was chosen as the Brookings Institution’s 94th Best Value.
Online accounting education is available on three degree levels at Florida Tech. Lower-division undergraduates can begin their training with the Online Associate of Arts in Accounting. This 100 percent online option opens careers like audit associate, junior accountant, and bookkeeping clerk with 64 credits. The Bachelor of Arts in Accounting offers career-specific concentrations in Cost Accounting, Auditing, and Compensation and Benefits for CMA credentials. There’s also a Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration online. Graduate students intending to take the Uniform CPA exam for senior positions could earn the Online MBA with an Accounting Specialization.
Online Tuition: $510 (bachelor’s) or $896 (MBA) per credit
11. University of South Dakota
Affiliated with nine Rhodes Scholars, the University of South Dakota is a top-tier public, co-educational research institution established by the Dakota Territory in 1862 with a 274-acre urban campus in Vermillion. USD’s over 9,900 enrolled students attend face-to-face, online, and hybrid classes for 260+ degrees. With a 17:1 student-faculty ratio, South Dakota is ranked America’s 202nd Best National University and 110th Top Public School by the U.S. News and World Report. The “Best for Vets” school was named the Midwest’s 99th Best College on Forbes. The AACSB-accredited Beacom School of Business was included in the Princeton Review’s “Best 296 Business Schools” for the 41st Best Online Master’s Business Programs.
Online learners attending the University of South Dakota have two stellar degree choices. The Bachelor of Business Administration program is available online for undergraduates holding 45+ credits with an optional accounting emphasis. This degree completion option is suitable for working adults who wish to study cost accounting, auditing, statistics, business law, banking, and more. Meeting the 150-hour prerequisite for CPA licensing will require continuing to USD’s Online Master of Professional Accountancy (MPA). Graduate students broaden their judgmental ability for producing and analyzing financial data. The 30-credit, 12-month can be completed entirely online or with mix and match campus courses in Vermillion.
Online Tuition: $333 (bachelor’s) or $442 (master’s) per credit
12. Old Dominion University
Derived from the nickname given by King Charles II of England, Old Dominion University is a public, sea-grant research institution educating over 24,600 students as one of America’s largest distance education providers. Endowed for $213 million, ODU operates a 251-acre urban campus in Norfolk, Virginia, with satellites in Hampton Roads and online via TeleTechNet. Included among the Princeton Review’s “Best Southeastern,” Old Dominion is ranked the 210th best national university and 118th top public college by the USNWR. Times Higher Education even placed ODU among the globe’s best 400 universities. The Strome College of Business holds AACSB approval for the 49th best online bachelor’s and 58th top online MBA.
Within the School of Accountancy, ODU students could pursue the Bachelor of Science in Business Administration for Accounting online. This degree completion program is reserved for students possessing 30+ transferrable credits. Guaranteed admission is extended to associate graduates from the Virginia Community College System. Online accounting courses require live, regularly scheduled sessions from any location to develop knowledge from auditing to financial planning and environmental accounting. Online learners selecting another major could add the Accounting Minor Online too. For graduates, there’s an Online MBA with a unique specialization in Public Procurement and Contract Management. Graduate courses offer accelerated, eight-week sessions for 45 total credits.
Online Tuition: $325 (bachelor’s) or $478 (master’s) per credit
13. Florida Atlantic University
Opened in 1964 on Boca Raton Army Airfield as southeast Florida’s first public, upper-division RU/H research institution, Florida Atlantic University has grown to educate over 30,800 students. Following the motto “Where Tomorrow Begins,” FAU encompasses a main 850-acre urban campus in Palm Beach County with extensions in Dania Beach, Jupiter, Fort Lauderdale, and online. Forbes magazine ranked FAU as America’s 208th Best Research University and 196th Top Public College overall. Florida Atlantic University is the state’s sixth top-performing university with a 45 percent graduation rate. The AACSB-accredited College of Business was also recognized by the U.S. News and World Report for the 26th Best Online Graduate Business Degrees.
Online FAU students earning the Bachelor of Business Administration in Accounting will benefit from attending one of Bloomberg BusinessWeek’s “Best B-Schools.” This degree completion program is designed for undergraduates holding 60+ credits who wish to devote their third and fourth years to accountancy. Online courses in cost accounting, federal tax, assurance, business law, and international accounting lead to passing the Accounting Competency Exam. Florida Atlantic grants its Master of Business Administration online beginning every Fall and Spring. The asynchronous, 23-month program takes team-based cohorts through 46 advanced credits for CPA candidacy. There’s also an online Executive Master of Accounting concentrated in Forensic Accounting.
Online Tuition: $303 (bachelor’s) or $800 (master’s) per credit
14. University of Scranton
Founded by Irish-born Bishop William O’Hara in 1888 as St. Thomas College, the University of Scranton is a private, nonprofit Catholic research institution belonging to the Association of Jesuit Colleges and Universities (AJCU). The co-educational college enrolls over 6,000 students online and on-site upon its 58-acre urban campus in northeastern Pennsylvania. Picked for Kiplinger’s Top 50 Private Values, Scranton is ranked the North’s sixth Best College and second Most Military-Friendly School by the U.S. News and World Report. The Huffington Post also chose University of Scranton as the nation’s eighth Friendliest College. With the academic rigor of AACSB accreditation, the Kania School of Management delivers America’s 72nd Best Online MBA Program.
Firmly grounded in Jesuit tradition, Scranton’s eLearning Division encourages students to “Go Forth and Set the World on Fire” with two online accounting degrees. The Master of Accountancy (MAcc) program develops practical and soft skills online to produce strategic business leaders. The 30-credit degree’s flexible, asynchronous online format suits working professionals needing 24/7 support. Alumni are employed by regional and Big Four firms with CPA designation. Another degree alternative is the Master of Business Administration (MBA) in Accounting. Online MBA students develop well-rounded business practices with convenient Flex courses limited to 20 peers. It’s also possible to add the Online Certificate in Enterprise Resource Planning.
Online Tuition: $895 (specialized master’s) or $965 (MBA) per credit
15. Rider University
Headquartered on a 303-acre suburban campus in historic Lawrenceville just 10 miles north of Trenton, New Jersey, Rider University educates over 5,400 students on-campus and online. As a private, non-sectarian higher learning institution, Rider maintains a $58 million endowment to provide MSCHE and AACSB accredited education. The U.S. News and World Report ranked Rider as the North’s 23rd Best Regional University and 12th Top College for Former Military. Forbes magazine recognized Rider University for producing the nation’s 320th Most Grateful Graduates in its 65+ academic majors. The College of Business Administration also landed in Leadership Excellence’s Top 25 with America’s 213rd Best Part-Time MBA.
Graduate students can access two online accounting programs via Rider University’s innovative technology platform. The Master of Accountancy (MAcc) program provides advanced analytical tools, industry connections, and education credentials for CPA licensure. Within the 30-credit curriculum, online learners choose wide-ranging electives from data mining to business valuation. Cohorts begin each year to complete 12-week semesters and graduate in 16 months. The Rider Online MBA also follows the same, rigorous on-campus curriculum for working adults seeking career advancement. The 33-credit curriculum offers breadth of business knowledge before a Forensic Accounting Concentration. Within 12 months full-time or 21 months part-time, graduates could become Certified Fraud Examiners (CFE).
Online Tuition: $1,020 per credit