Accountants create financial documents, investigate financial fraud, and advise businesses and individuals on their accounting needs. Whether practicing corporate, government, or public accounting, accountants help their clients run smoothly and follow regulations. Earning a bachelor's degree in accounting prepares graduates for many in-demand jobs in accounting.
Accounting offers lucrative salaries and opportunities for advancement. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), accountants earned a median annual salary of over $71,000 in 2019. Accountants also benefit from strong job growth, as the BLS projects 90,000 new jobs in the field between 2018 and 2028. A bachelor's in accounting meets the requirement for many accounting careers.
This list ranks the top online bachelor's in accounting programs to help prospective students find the right fit for their needs and career goals. This page also introduces common courses in an accounting degree, professional certifications for accountants, and scholarship opportunities for accounting majors.
Best 10 Online Bachelor's Degrees in Accounting
|1||Keiser University||Fort Lauderdale, FL|
|2||Southwestern College||Winfield, KS|
|3||Thomas Edison State University||Trenton, NJ|
|4||Maryville University of Saint Louis||Saint Louis, MO|
|5||Bay Path University||Longmeadow, MA|
|6||Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College||Saint Mary of the Woods, IN|
|7||Eastern New Mexico University||Portales, NM|
|8||University of Memphis||Memphis, TN|
|9||Saint Leo University||Saint Leo, FL|
|10||Northwestern State University of Louisiana||Natchitoches, LA|
Online Bachelor's in Accounting Overview
A bachelor's degree in accounting teaches students to create and analyze financial documents. During a bachelor's in accounting program, students take courses in financial accounting, auditing, and budget analysis.
During these courses, learners gain the training needed for jobs as tax accountants, external auditors, and management accounting. By choosing a concentration or electives, accounting majors can prepare for specialized career paths after earning their degree.
An online bachelor's degree in accounting prepares graduates for careers in public accounting, auditing, managerial accounting, fraud detection, and other in-demand specialties. Accountants work for private businesses, government organizations, and individual clients. These accounting careers offer strong salaries and job outlook.
An online learning format offers several benefits for accounting students. Working professionals can maintain a stable income and continue working while completing a degree. An online program also prioritizes accessibility, which lets students choose a program with concentrations in their desired field without having to relocate.
Common Bachelor's in Accounting Courses
- Introduction to Accounting: In this course, students may learn about different types of accounting, such as financial and managerial accounting. Coursework also introduces key accounting principles, ethical standards in accounting, and accounting theory. In some programs, students must complete an introductory course before declaring an accounting major. After learning about auditing, taxation, financial reporting standards, and forensic accounting, accounting majors can pursue a specialization or choose upper-division courses based on their professional goals.
- Financial Accounting: This course teaches students to prepare and evaluate financial statements for businesses. Learners study accounting theories and concepts related to financial accounting. They learn about the role of accounting in making business decisions, the regulations governing financial statements and disclosures, and the recording process accountants use when preparing financial statements. This course may also cover topics like inventory valuation, acquisition of property, intangible assets in financial statements, and cash flow statements.
- Auditing: Auditors review financial information to determine whether organizations comply with rules and regulations. In this course, students learn about the theory and practice of auditing, including auditing ethics, standards in auditing, and auditing procedures. Learners study the difference between internal and external auditing while also exploring the auditor's responsibilities and methods. Coursework covers the auditing process from the examination stage to building evidence of material misstatements. Learners examine auditing in different contexts, including tax auditing and financial auditing.
- Forensic Accounting: In this course, learners study fraud detection and examination, including common forms of financial fraud, identifying fraudulent financial reporting, and ethical practices in fraud detection. Topics may also include cybersecurity and fraud, the foreign corrupt practices act, and business valuation fraud. Students also learn about the investigative process and the role of accounting in law enforcement. This course prepares graduates for careers in fraud examination, forensic accounting, and law enforcement.
- Managerial Accounting: In this course, students learn about the process of preparing financial information for managerial planning. They also study profit planning, using financial data to measure performance, and costing methods to determine profitability. Managerial accounting courses train learners to evaluate financial information in a business environment. Students learn to make business decisions with strategic non-financial information. After completing the course, students can pursue jobs in managerial accounting and eventually earn the certified management accountant credential.
Accreditation for Online Bachelor's in Accounting
Prospective accounting students should always check a school's accreditation status before applying. Accredited colleges and universities meet the highest standards for granting degrees. Schools undergo a rigorous review to earn accreditation. During the review, an independent accrediting agency evaluates the school's student learning outcomes, degree requirements, and academic mission.
Accreditation benefits students in several ways. Credits earned at an accredited school are more likely to transfer, and an accredited degree meets the requirements for more professional certifications and licenses.
In accounting, programs may also hold accreditation from programmatic accrediting agencies. These specialized agencies grant accreditation to accounting programs that follow the best practices for educating accountants. For example, the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business accredits accounting programs.
Prospective students can check a school or program's accreditation status by visiting the U.S. Department of Education database.
Bachelor's in Accounting Requirements
Before enrolling in an online bachelor's in accounting program, prospective students must meet certain requirements and complete the admissions process. Most colleges and universities require a high school diploma or the equivalent and standardized test scores to gain admission. However, some schools waive these requirements for applicants with prior college experience.
When applying to a college or university, applicants typically submit high school transcripts, ACT or SAT scores, and supplemental materials such as letters of recommendation, personal statements, or essays. Transfer students provide college transcripts, which schools use to determine transfer credits. Many schools use GPA and standardized test score cutoffs.
After gaining admission to the school, undergraduates must meet additional requirements to declare an accounting major. These requirements vary depending on the program, but they may include completing prerequisite courses in accounting or business and earning a minimum GPA.
Certifications and Licensure for Accounting
Many accountants pursue professional certifications to demonstrate their skills. For example, the CPA recognizes experienced public accountants. Accountants can also become certified internal auditors, certified management accountants, certified information systems auditors, and certified fraud examiners.
A certification or license can help accountants pursue specialized careers and increase their earning potential.
- Certified Public Accountant: CPA candidates need a bachelor's degree and a minimum of 30 credits of coursework after completing the bachelor's degree. Candidates must demonstrate two years of public accounting experience, pass the CPA exam, and apply for a state-issued CPA license to become a certified public accountant.
- Certified Management Accountant: The Institute of Management Accountants offers the CMA credential for candidates with a bachelor's degree from an accredited school. Candidates must demonstrate two years of professional experience in management accounting or financial management and pass the two-part CMA exam to become certified.
- Certified Fraud Examiner: Offered by the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners, this certification recognizes experienced fraud examiners who pass the CFE exam. Candidates need a bachelor's degree and at least two years of fraud-related professional experience. The exam tests candidates on financial transactions and fraud schemes, the law, fraud investigations, and fraud prevention and deterrence.
Bachelor's in Accounting Scholarships
Accounting students qualify for many scholarship and grant opportunities offered by private foundations and professional organizations. Online students attending an accredited college or university can apply for scholarships to help cover the cost of their degree.
In addition to the following opportunities, accounting majors qualify for many other forms of financial aid.
Who Can Apply: Offered by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and Robert Half, this award supports an accounting student interested in becoming a CPA. Applicants must demonstrate a minimum 3.0 GPA. The institute evaluates applicants on their academic achievement, leadership record, and future career interests in accounting.
Who Can Apply: This scholarship supports students transferring from a two-year college to a four-year institution to complete a bachelor's degree in accounting or a closely related field. Applicants must have a minimum 3.0 GPA and demonstrate an interest in becoming a CPA to qualify for the award.
Who Can Apply: Offered by the National Society of Accountants, these scholarships support students majoring in accounting who demonstrate a minimum 3.0 GPA. Applicants must attend an accredited college or university in the U.S. The committee evaluates applicants on their academic achievement, leadership and community involvement, and work experience.
Who Can Apply: The Educational Foundation for Women in Accounting grants several scholarships to women earning an accounting degree at an accredited college or university. Applicants must demonstrate a commitment to a career in accounting or finance through academic achievement or work experience. This scholarship also requires evidence of financial need.
Who Can Apply: Minority students pursuing an accounting degree qualify for this scholarship. Applicants must have a minimum 3.0 GPA on at least 30 credits at the college level and attend an accredited school. The AICPA also requires full-time enrollment for undergraduate applicants, with the exception of students participating in an internship.
Bachelor's in Accounting Skills
During a bachelor's degree in accounting, students gain the knowledge and skills needed for careers as accountants and auditors. In addition to building the hard skills required for accounting careers, an accounting degree also strengthens the soft skills accountants use in their jobs.
Incoming accounting majors benefit from bringing several skills into their program, including a detail-oriented outlook and strong organizational skills. When creating and reviewing financial documents, accountants must pay attention to details to identify errors and correct mistakes. SImilarly, accountants working on multiple documents often rely on their organizational skills to complete their work.
While completing an accounting degree, students strengthen their analytical abilities. Courses that incorporate case studies and analytical assignments help students identify accounting issues and devise solutions. Many programs include a capstone project to build analytical skills. Accounting majors also build stronger communication skills by completing group projects and presenting work in class.
Top 30 Online Bachelor's in Accounting Programs
#1 – Keiser University
Founded in 1977, Keiser University has grown to include 21 campuses across Florida. Since its inception, Keiser has also created a significant distance learning presence. In addition to online programs, Keiser offers resume help, interviewing coaching, and professional development workshops to distance learners.
The 120-credit online bachelor's in accounting typically takes four years to complete. The program requires students to complete 60 credits of upper-division coursework, including studies in taxation, finance, non-profit accounting, and auditing. Over 90% of recent graduates found employment in accounting. The program eliminates all in-person requirements and delivers coursework asynchronously. Keiser also offers the entire program in Spanish.
Keiser University accepts graduating high school students and military students. Active military, veterans, and military dependents receive tuition discounts.
Average Net Price: $27,649
#2 – Southwestern College
Based in Winfield, Kansas, Southwestern College maintains an affiliation with the United Methodist Church. The college boasts a low 11-to-1 student-to-faculty ratio, and the average online class size is 15 students.
SC's online bachelor's in accounting takes place entirely online, and all courses last six weeks with eight enrollment periods throughout the year. This accelerated class format allows distance learners to complete their degrees online more quickly than they could on campus. Career outcomes for the program vary, though graduates are on track to become certified public accountants, auditors, or tax examiners.
Transfer students can bring up to 94 credits when they enroll at SC. Full-time students can complete the accounting program in just over three years.
Average Net Price: $22,966
#3 – Thomas Edison State University
Based in New Jersey, Thomas Edison State University is a public institution originally founded specifically for working professionals. Working professionals have plenty of options at TESU, including a flexible online school that accepts transfer credits and credits by examination.
Distance learners can enroll in the online bachelor's in accounting, which primarily serves working professionals interested in changing or advancing their career. The degree requires 114 credits: 60 general education credits, 36 professional business credits, and 18 accounting credits. Students interested in becoming CPAs can easily jump from the program into a CPA and master's track offered at TESU. Full-time distance learners complete the program in under four years.
Applicants with prior accounting experience can complete a prior learning assessment to earn credits.
Average Net Price: $7,519
#4 – Maryville University
Just a short drive from downtown Saint Louis, Maryville University enrolls students from all 50 states and 58 different countries. Maryville is best known for its online school, where more than half of its 10,200 students take courses.
Maryville's online accounting degree eliminates all in-person requirements, though students in the program may complete some courses on campus if they prefer. Required courses for the program vary depending on whether or not students plan on becoming CPAs. The CPA track requires 12 credits, while the non-CPA track only requires six. After finishing the program, graduates can apply three courses toward a master's in accounting through Maryville.
Maryville streamlines the application process and does not require accounting applicants to submit standardized test scores. The university accepts transfer credit on a case-by-case basis. Distance learners can select from multiple start dates throughout the year.
Average Net Price: $26,540
#5 – Bay Path University
Established in 1897, Bay Path University focuses on helping women advance their careers. As such, only women can apply to all of Bay Path's undergraduate programs, including those offered online.
Students can complete Bay Path's online accounting degree either entirely online or through a hybrid format. The curriculum emphasizes accounting, statistics, and leadership skills. Many courses require group projects to prepare students for real-life accounting work. The program takes under four years to complete. Bay Path accepts transfer credit on a case-by-case basis.
Bay Path uses rolling admissions, and new sessions begin every 6-7 weeks. The university notifies applicants of their acceptance within two days of receiving their applications.
Average Net Price: $21,100
#6 – Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College
SMWC is a private college that structures its curriculum to educate the whole person, providing all students with a strong liberal arts foundation. SMWC offers several programs through distance learning, including an online accounting degree.
SMWC's BS in accounting requires 51 major credits, split nearly evenly between business core and accounting core credits. Students can also choose a concentration in entrepreneurship or professional prep, both of which require at least 12 additional credits. Students who choose the professional prep concentration must also complete an internship. The professional prep concentration prepares graduates for three industry certifications: certified management accountant, certified internal auditor, and certified public accountant.
Distance learners submit high school transcripts, a GED diploma, or college transcripts when applying. SMWC does not charge an application fee.
Average Net Price: $16,337
#7 – Eastern New Mexico University
Based in Portales, Eastern New Mexico University offers both on-campus and online programs, including an online accounting degree.
Distance learners can complete the online bachelor of business administration in accounting either without in-person requirements or through a hybrid format. The program delivers coursework both synchronously and asynchronously through Blackboard. This format requires students to attend some online courses at specific times, though many courses flex around students' schedules. Most required courses focus on the broad field of business, and students learn accounting through the specialization.
All distance learners gain access to multiple tutoring services, a student success center, and several other digital resources. Online students can also apply for scholarships through ENMU.
Average Net Price: $10,918
#8 – University of Memphis
Based in the lively city of Memphis, Tennessee, UofM is a public university that opened its doors in 1912. With over 21,000 students, UofM is among the largest schools in the Volunteer State. The university's growing online school could increase its student body over the coming years.
The accredited bachelor of business administration in accounting prepares students for an accounting career and prepares graduates for the CPA exam. Available entirely online, the program requires 120 credits and takes four years to complete. Notable courses include cost accounting, advanced financial reporting, and accounting ethics/regulations.
Average Net Price: $13,174
#9 – Saint Leo University
Saint Leo, a Catholic university, enrolls approximately 2,200 students at its main campus in the eponymous city of Saint Leo, Florida. The university expands its total student body to 13,000 through regional campuses and an online school.
Saint Leo's online accounting degree prepares students for an accounting career immediately after graduation. Faculty help place students in summer internships at Big Four accounting firms. Relevant courses in the curriculum include cost accounting, auditing, and accounting information systems.
Aiming for maximum flexibility, the program delivers all coursework asynchronously and eliminates in-person requirements.
Average Net Price: $20,036
#10 – Northwestern State University of Louisiana
Based in the port city of Natchitoches, Louisiana, Northwestern State University of Louisiana opened its doors 1884. Today, NSU offers a variety of four-year undergraduate degrees, including an online bachelor's degree in accounting.
NSU's accounting program leads to careers in auditing, accounting information systems, and taxation. The curriculum includes courses in microcomputer applications, income taxes, and money and banking. Courses in the program last eight weeks each. The program delivers coursework asynchronously, which better suits the busy schedules of working professionals.
Incoming students with accounting experience can earn credits through prior learning assessment. NSU accepts transfer credits on a case-by-case basis.
Average Net Price: $10,448
#11 – California Baptist University
Founded by the California Southern Baptist Convention, CBU is a private school with campuses in Riverside, San Bernardino, and online. Every member of CBU's staff is a Christian, and students can expect an education with strong Christian influences no matter what they study.
CBU's online accounting degree requires some religious courses, such as management with a biblical foundation, though most of the curriculum focuses on accounting topics. In total, the major requires 69 credits, all of which students complete online. The curriculum prepares graduates to sit for the certified public accountant examination.
CBU offers a flat per-credit tuition rate to all students in the accounting program. Applicants must either be recent high school graduates or have at least 24 transferable college credits.
Average Net Price: $24,170
#12 – Alaska Pacific University
Alaska Pacific University takes an innovative approach to education, focusing on student needs above all. While APU's main campus is in Anchorage, many of its programs take place online. Several online programs at APU also offer accelerated or hybrid options, letting students choose their preferred delivery method.
APU now offers an online bachelor's degree in accounting. The program ultimately awards a bachelor's degree in business administration. As such, the curriculum blends foundational business coursework with accounting-specific studies. Courses emphasize hands-on learning, and APU encourages students to gain real-world experience in accounting while earning the degree.
APU uses a cohort system, so online students complete courses along with a peer group. APU connects all students — including distance learners — with local career opportunities.
Average Net Price: $18,932
#13 – Southern New Hampshire University
Enrolling approximately 3,000 on-campus students, Southern New Hampshire University offers an intimate in-person educational experience in Manchester and Hooksett. However, SNHU primarily focuses on distance learning and enrolls over 90,000 online students. As such, graduates gain access to an extensive alumni network. Distance learners at SNHU can choose from hundreds of programs, including an online bachelor's degree in accounting.
The accounting program at SNHU requires 120 credits, all of which students complete online. Most graduates begin a career in accounting, and coursework prepares students to take and pass the CPA exam. SNHU also offers an optional concentration in forensic accounting and fraud examination. The program delivers all coursework asynchronously.
Transfer students may bring up to 90 credits with them when they enroll at SNHU. Students in the accounting BS may also opt into an accelerated BS-master's in accounting program where students begin graduate courses while completing their bachelor's degree.
Average Net Price: $39,071
#14 – Concordia University, St. Paul
Concordia University, St. Paul is a private liberal arts school that focuses on providing graduates with marketable skills. To that end, over 90% of graduates from CSP's bachelor's programs find a job or start a graduate degree.
CSP's online bachelor's degree in accounting is a blended program, meaning students complete most courses online but must attend some on-campus courses. The major requires 54 credits, and CSP offers courses in accelerated seven-week periods. The curriculum prepares students to become certified public accountants or certified management accountants. Graduates can find work as corporate accountants, loan officers, and credit analysts.
CSP stresses the importance of the faculty-student relationship, and faculty regularly assist students in achieving their career goals. Many distance learners continue working while earning their degree. CSP offers generous financial aid packages to online students.
Average Net Price: $18,591
#15 – National University
Founded nearly 50 years ago by a retired U.S. Navy captain, National University primarily serves working professionals, particularly active-duty military and veterans. NU meets this goal by offering accelerated online four-week classes that begin every month.
NU's online bachelor's degree in accounting leads to careers in corporate accounting, auditing, and nonprofit leadership. The curriculum includes courses in auditing, microeconomics, and accounting ethics. Some of National University's graduates choose to continue their education and earn a master's degree. NU runs on the quarter system, and students in the accounting program must complete 180 quarter credits to graduate.
Online students learn through a combination of lectures, readings, exams, and presentations. To better serve working professionals, NU delivers all online coursework asynchronously.
Average Net Price: $13,320
#16 – Trine University
TrineOnline, the online portal for Trine University, primarily caters to working professionals. To serve students who are unable to commute to campus for courses, TrineOnline provides an innovative approach to distance education, offering eight-week courses during six terms each year. Trine delivers most online coursework asynchronously.
Trine's online bachelor's degree in accounting combines online lectures with actual practice. All students in the program complete an internship in their local communities. The program focuses on increasing student employability, preparing graduates to take industry certification examinations. Students who want to become CPAs can take an additional 42 credits to meet Indiana's 150-credit requirement to sit for the exam. Students with previous college credit can finish the program in one year.
Average Net Price: $14,712
#17 – Peirce College
Originally created to educate soldiers returning from the Civil War, Peirce College continues to serve working professionals through its Center City campus in Philadelphia and its online school. Peirce designed each of its programs for working professionals and only accepts continuing education students.
The online bachelor's in accounting requires 121 credits, although transfer students may bring in up to 90 previous credits. The curriculum covers auditing, business law, and managerial accounting. The accredited degree strives to increase student employability, though some graduates continue on to earn a master's degree. Students living in Philadelphia may choose to complete this program in a hybrid format.
Peirce's faculty regularly takes time to help online students reach their career goals. Online students also receive access to academic advising and financial aid counseling.
Average Net Price: $6,395
#18 – Eastern Florida State College
Based in Melbourne, EFSC is a four-year public school that works around student needs. EFSC operates four campuses and an online school to provide students with maximum flexibility in earning a degree.
EFSC's online accounting degree, which awards an organizational management bachelor of applied sciences in accounting, provides students with skills in accounting and auditing. This degree completion program requires applicants to have an associate degree, and the accounting track requires just 15 credits. Graduates find work in professional management and manufacturing in addition to accounting.
EFSC has five online terms per year, and the college's asynchronous course delivery meets the needs of busy working professionals. EFSC offers rolling admissions and monthly start dates.
Average Net Price: $4,408
#19 – Mid-America Christian University
Originally a small Bible school, MACU still incorporates Christian education into all of its programs, including those offered through distance learning.
MACU's online bachelor's degree in accounting blends accounting, administration, and ethics to provide students with a holistic education. The program offers small class sizes and a dedicated faculty that helps connect students to potential careers. All of the program's coursework is grounded in a Christian worldview, particularly the ethics courses. Upon graduating, students usually pursue a master's degree and sit for the CPA exam.
MACU accepts transfer credits on a case-by-case basis. Transfer students must have a 2.0 GPA on all transferable credits. Incoming students can also earn credit for prior life and work experience.
Average Net Price: $12,944
#20 – Fort Hays State University
Based in Hays, Kansas, FHSU is among the top public universities in the Midwest. Founded in 1902, FHSU has always focused on meeting the needs of working professionals.
FHSU's online bachelor's degree in accounting requires 120 credits, including 36 in accounting. Because the program ultimately awards a degree in business administration, students must also complete 27 core business courses. Students can complete the entire degree online, though some choose to study in a hybrid format. The curriculum satisfies all requirements to become an entry-level accountant in Kansas, although some graduates continue their education and earn a master's degree.
Transfer applicants must have at least 24 prior college credits. If they do not meet this threshold, applicants must meet FHSU's freshman admission requirements, including a 2.0 high school GPA and satisfactory SAT or ACT scores.
Average Net Price: $12,420
#21 – Point University
Point University is a private, Christian school located in West Point, Georgia. Founded over 80 years ago, Point emphasizes Christian values in its education, requiring students to complete certain religion courses. For example, Point's online bachelor's in accounting requires students to complete 15 biblical studies credits to earn a minor.
Aside from the required biblical studies courses, accounting majors complete 45 credits in accounting. The degree also includes a concentration in forensics and fraud, and some graduates immediately find positions in forensic accounting or fraud accounting. Aside from required general education, biblical studies, and accounting courses, students complete 29 elective credits.
Point delivers all online coursework asynchronously and eliminates all in-person requirements in its online programs.
Average Net Price: $21,070
#22 – Park University
Park University is a private liberal arts school that opened its doors in 1875. While the school originally had maintained religious connections, Park University now emphasizes faith in oneself and encourages all 16,500 students to discover their potential.
Distance learners at Park can choose from multiple accounting degrees. Park's main accounting offering is a bachelor's degree. The 66-credit major requires courses in individual tax income, cost accounting, and finite mathematics. Program graduates begin careers as IRS agents, financial planners, and forensic accountants, and some graduates become CPAs. Students can complete this program entirely online or in a hybrid format with some courses at Park University's Missouri campus.
Park offers three online start dates throughout the year and follows the traditional semester format. Park charges a flat per-credit tuition rate for all online students.
Average Net Price: $15,359
#23 – Hodges University
Founded in 1990, Hodges University is among the newest accredited schools in Florida. While the university's two main campuses are in Fort Myers and Naples, the online program makes up a large portion of its student body.
Created for working professionals, the online bachelor's degree in accounting provides students with employable skills such as Quickbooks fluency. The accounting curriculum meets the requirements to earn various certifications, including certified management accountant. Courses in the program are accelerated and flex around the needs of students. Some graduates continue on to the university's CPA prep master's program.
Hodges lets students complete the accounting program in an entirely online or blended format. Each faculty member in the program is accessible through online office hours.
Average Net Price: $18,686
#24 – Washington State University
Pullman-based Washington State University is a major public research institution. While graduate studies make up a large portion of WSU's student body, the university's push to expand its global campus has led to an increase in distance learners.
WSU's accredited online bachelor's in accounting requires 120 credits, including 18 in accounting and 18 in business. To help students find a job after graduating, WSU requires online accounting students to meet certification requirements. All distance learners in the program receive one-on-one academic advising throughout their time at WSU.
All online business students must study abroad, complete an international internship, or complete approved international coursework.
Average Net Price: $17,297
#25 – Davenport University
Davenport University is a four-year private school that offers degrees designed to give students a competitive advantage in growing fields. The university enrolls over 7,000 students spread across its 14 campuses in Michigan and online.
DU offers three online accounting degrees, including an online bachelor of business administration in accounting. The degree emphasizes technical skills and teamwork, two important accounting skills in the current job market. Students can also specialize their degree in either internal auditing or management accounting. All accounting courses meet GAAP standards.
Other accounting options at Davenport include a bachelor of business administration in accounting fraud investigation and a master's in accountancy, both of which take place entirely online.
Average Net Price: $17,169
#26 – Regis University
Located in Denver, Colorado, Regis University is a private, Catholic school. Regis accepts students from all backgrounds, and the university focuses on helping graduates learn skills and become effective professional members of society.
Available entirely online or in a hybrid format, the accounting degree at Regis requires 120 credits, 36 of which must be upper-division accounting courses. The program suggests that accounting students planning on becoming CPAs take specific business law courses. The program culminates in a senior capstone course.
Regis offers online courses in both 16-week and accelerated eight-week formats to best meet student needs. Students interested in earning a master's degree in accounting at Regis can earn the bachelor's in accounting in tandem with a graduate-level business degree, reducing the time and cost spent on earning the two degrees separately.
Average Net Price: $26,273
#27 – Missouri State University
Missouri State University operates four campuses (three in Missouri and one in China) plus an online school designed to reach students who would otherwise be unable to attend MSU.
Students interested in MSU's BS in accounting degree must commute to campus for some evening courses. Most of the program's courses take place online. Created for working professionals, the degree requires 125 credits, though many students transfer in previous college credit. Required courses include tax accounting, auditing, and debtor and creditor rights and remedies.
Full-time students complete the degree in four years. All distance learners gain access to an academic advisor to help create a degree plan that minimizes costs.
Average Net Price: $10,235
#28 – SUNY Empire State College
Based in Saratoga Springs, New York, SUNY Empire State College is an extension of the greater State University of New York system. The majority of ESC's 18,000 students are 25-49 years old, and many ESC students enroll in online courses.
Created for busy working professionals, ESC's online bachelor's degree in accounting requires 124 credits. Full-time students can complete the program in four years. Transfer students can complete the program within a year by transferring up to 93 credits toward the degree. Students interested in CPA licensure must complete an additional 26 credits to meet New York's 150-credit requirement. Students can earn these credits through individual courses or by earning a master's degree.
ESC accepts students at three points throughout the year. Applicants must submit all previous transcripts (high school and college).
Average Net Price: $13,415
#29 – Champlain College
Champlain College is a private college that focuses on teaching students employable skills. Headquartered in Vermont, Champlain College also operates campuses in Montreal, Canada and Dublin, Ireland in addition to an extensive online campus.
Champlain's online bachelor's degree in accounting requires 120 credits and eliminates all in-person requirements. Students in the program usually spend 10-17 hours per week completing asynchronous coursework. Courses last seven weeks each with two terms per semester. The program's curriculum meets the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants Core Competency Framework, meaning CPA licensure is a common outcome. Program graduates who sit for the CPA exam have a near-perfect success rate.
Online students pay a flat per-credit tuition rate regardless of where they live. Active-duty military, National Guard, and Army Reserve students receive a tuition discount.
Average Net Price: $38,577
#30 – McKendree University
Based in Lebanon, Illinois, McKendree University offers in-person education to the Southern Illinois and St. Louis regions. In the early 1970s, McKendree began designing programs for working professionals. These efforts culminated in the creation of McK's online school.
McKendree's online accounting degree emphasizes flexibility by eliminating all in-person requirements and delivering coursework asynchronously through Blackboard. Courses last eight weeks per session with two sessions each semester. Most distance learners take two courses per session. While the accounting degree does not satisfy CPA exam requirements, students can continue their education through McKendree to meet the 150-credit requirement. Most online students do so by pursuing an online MBA at MCK.
Online students at MCK do not pay an application fee, and many distance learners receive a tuition discount.
Average Net Price: $19,676
Rating and Ranking Methodology
- Under $30,000—1 point
- Under $25,000—2 points
- Under $20,000—3 points
- Under $15,000—4 points
- Under $10,000—5 points
US News and World Report Recognition as a Top Online School for Bachelor's degrees:
- Top 50 —5 points
- Top 100 —4 point
- Top 150 —3 point
- Top 200 —2 point
- Top 264 —1 point
- Format Customizations (e.g. Hybrid/Online, Full-time/Part-Time, Accelerated, Degree Completion, etc.)—1 Point Per Customization Option
- Content Customizations (e.g. Minors, Concentrations, Specializations, etc.)—1 Point Per Customization Option (5-point cap)
- 1 point awarded for each unique feature or program that "wowed" us
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