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The 10 Best Online Masters in Accounting Degree Programs

“Accounting is the language of business.” -Warren Buffet

Online masters in accounting are the future, given that our daily lives are so busy with work, family and various other commitments, going to a physical university is not a feasible option for many. In this day and age, having the freedom to choose when you want to study and from the comfort of your own home no less, is an option that very few people would refuse. Upon completion of your masters in accounting you will have obtained the 150 credit hours required to sit for the Certified Public Accountant (CPA) exam, which will take you one step closer to being a qualified CPA.

Many people worry about the validity of a degree that has been obtained online, but that is not a concern as all of the programs we’ve surveyed for the below ranking are offered by accredited universities and carry the same weight as having physically completed your degree at the university.

  • Affordability (1/3): an institution’s cost per credit hour for out-of-state residents provided by the degree program or institutional website.

  • Flexibility (1/3):
    the number of options—including acceptance of prior college credits, self-paced learning initiatives, accelerated courses, and number of specializations—that allow students to complete a program at a pace of their choosing.

  • Student Support Services (1/3):
    an institution’s rank for providing student support service such as digital library assistance, virtual office hours, and access to career services.

1.) Colorado State University – Global Campus

Colorado State University-Global Campus is “the first and only 100% online, independent, regionally accredited state university in the nation”. Created by the Colorado State University System Board of Governors in 2007 and based in the state of Colorado, the university specializes in non-traditional, adult professional students and serving students who can’t take part in a traditional campus setting. The university is particularly known for degree completion programs, master’s degrees and industry-specific certificates. CSU–Global Campus offers 11 master’s degree programs and 20 specializations for its master’s programs. From its first class of nearly 200 students in 2008, CSU-Global has now grown to have a student body of over 12000 students with more than 5,300 graduates.

The Online Master of Professional Accounting at the Colorado State University-Global Campus is taught by qualified instructors with current industry experience who are specially trained to teach online. Designed with the purpose of getting you to the Certified Public Accountant (CPA) exam The degree consists of 30 credits priced at $500 per credit, which is guaranteed not to increase over the duration of your studies. The degree also stands out for the number of fields that you can specialise in, it is truly a good deal. With the ability to work 100% online, you are able to cover the content at your own pace when and where you able to.

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  • Estimated Tuition Per Credit Hour: $500

2.) Southern New Hampshire University

Also, known as SNHU, it is a private, non-profit, coeducational, and non-sectarian university situated between Manchester and Hooksett, New Hampshire. The university was founded in 1931 and is home to more than 3,000 on campus students and more than 80,000 online students. Comprising of 3 schools and 2 colleges and offering more than 200 online programs it truly has established itself as a primarily online university. With several new state-of-the-art on-campus developments, it is also committed to providing students with the best university experience possible.

The online Master’s Degree in Accounting at Southern New Hampshire University can be completed in as few as 15 months and offers a number of concentrations. There are dedicated student support systems in place facilitated by academic and career advisors specialized in your area of study. SNHU also has a vast alumni network which can lead to internship and career opportunities and once you have completed your degree you will be able to take professional certifications exams, including Certified Public Accountant (CPA), Certified Management Accountant (CMA) and Certified Fraud Examiner (CFE). Past graduates have a solid record of passing these exams. Tuition is moderately priced at $627 Per Credit Hour and comes with the freedom attending classes when it suits you.

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  • Estimated Tuition Per Credit Hour: $627

3.) Emporia State University

Having been established in March 1863, Emporia State University (ESU) is the third oldest university in Kansas. It is comprised of 2 schools and 2 colleges and offers degrees in more than 80 courses. Currently 5,000 students call the university home. The Teachers College is one of only four post-secondary institutions in the United States to be identified as an Exemplary Model Teacher Education program by Arthur Levine in his 2006 national study of teacher education programs. It is also home to the Memorial for Fallen Educators, which is a memorial for teachers that have fallen in the line of duty. It also boasts a low student to faculty ratio of 18:1. US News ranks it #32 in its ranking of top public schools.

The Master’s Degree in Accountancy from ESU will enable you to sit for the CPA exam in Kansas as well as other states. The program consists of 30 credit hours at the very affordable price of $371 per credit hour. Top Accounting Degrees has ranked the online program in the top 20 nationally. Students have the option to pursue their course of study entirely online, or to mix and match online and face-to-face courses. This allows great flexibility — particularly for local students — allowing to choose what suits your lifestyle. It also boasts good student support systems. For students looking for a nationally known university at a great price point, ESU might be just the program for you.

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  • Estimated Tuition Per Credit Hour: $371

4.) University of South Dakota – Beacom School of Business

The University of South Dakota, simply known as USD, is a public coeducational research university located in the small-town community of Vermillion, South Dakota. Established in 1862, it is the oldest university in the state and is also home to South Dakota’s only medical school, law school, and accredited business school. As of 2015, the university has seven colleges and universities offering 202 undergraduate and 66 graduate programs. The university is comprised of over 10,000 students and has a low student to faculty ratio of 17:1. According to USD it is “The big-time university with a small-college feel”.

The Master of Professional Accountancy is done through the Beacom School of Business, which has been continuously accredited by The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) International, since 1949. Less than five percent of the nation’s top business schools have earned this prestigious designation, therefore you can be assured that this degree is of a high standard. On completion, you will be eligible to sit for the Certified Public Accountant (CPA) exam. Consisting of 30 credit hours at an affordable price of $442 dollars per credit hour, the total program price is quite moderate. The program is conveyed completely online and also offers good support systems for a variety of student types.

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  • Estimated Tuition Per Credit Hour: $442

5.) Rutgers University

Founded in 1766, Rutgers University is the eighth-oldest college in the United States. It is an American public research university and the largest institution for higher education in New Jersey. It consists of three campuses located throughout New Jersey: The New Brunswick campus in New Brunswick and adjacent Piscataway, the Newark campus and the Camden campus with additional facilities throughout New Jersey. Boasting 31 schools and colleges, Rutgers offers a total of 100+ undergraduate majors and 200+ graduate programs to almost 70,000 students. It is also home to nearly 300 research centers and institutes. It also boasts a large alumni network of more than 486 000 alumni located through the world.

The Master of Accountancy in Governmental Accounting Program, is 100% online and does not require a GMAT, allowing you to get started right away. It is also Ranked #14 in the nation according to the 2016 US News & World Report ranking for “Best Online Graduate Business Programs” guaranteeing that the degree is held to a high standard. Consisting of 30 credit hours at a price of $1200 per credit hours, the degree may be completed in as little as a year. The speed with which students can obtain their masters and the needed credit hours to sit for their CPA exam makes this program quite a catch. However, this is not the only option that is available, as students can also choose to do the 4-course online graduate certificate program which will prepare you to sit for the Certified Government Financial Manager (CGFM) exam and the credits obtained for this course can be applied towards the 10-course master’s degree program. It also has excellent student services available.

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  • Estimated Tuition Per Credit Hour: $1200

6.) University of Connecticut

Founded in 1881, The University of Connecticut –known as UConn– is a public land-grant, Sea-Grant, and Space-Grant research university in Storrs, Connecticut, United States. It is a flagship university that is ranked as the best public national university in New England and is tied for 20th overall in the 2017 U.S. News & World Report rankings. It is also ranked #283 in U.S. News Best Global Universities Rankings 2017. Home to more than 23000 undergraduate students and over 8000 post graduate students, the university has wide offerings including over 100 majors, eight undergraduate degrees, 17 graduate degrees and five professional degree programs. UConn is also a very research intensive university.

The Master of Science in Accounting at UConn is accredited by AACSB International. According to UConn “Our program is rigorous and highly respected”, it has also been online since 2003, allowing the university to work through many iterations and further enhance their program. There are a variety of options available to complete the program online, you can do it full time over 3 semesters or over 2 semesters and complete the program in 8 months or you can choose to do part time over multiple semesters. 30 credits are required to complete the program at a cost of $825 per credit hour. The program is designed with the intention of providing you with a skill set to a successful professional career in public and private accounting. The program is also very much up to date. This has aided in the program’s growth, of which the fastest growing segment of students are actually experienced CPAs looking to update their skillset. UConn also provides excellent student support services to ensure that students may fully utilize the expertise and services of the university.

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  • Estimated Tuition Per Credit Hour: $825

7.) University of Alabama, Birmingham – Collat School of Business

The University of Alabama (known as UA) is a public sea-grant, space-grant research university located in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. It was founded in 1820 and is the oldest and largest of the public universities in Alabama. It has also been ranked among the top 50 public universities in the nation in U.S. News and World Report’s rankings for more than a decade. AU has a total of 13 schools and colleges and offers programs of study in 13 academic divisions leading to bachelor’s, master’s, Education Specialist, and doctoral degrees. Enrollment for the 2016 year was a record high of 37,665 for fall 2016 comprised of 32000+ undergraduates and 5000+ graduates.

The University of Alabama, Birmingham – Collat School of Business, Master of Accounting degree holds a separate accounting accreditation by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB), which is one of the highest honors a business school can achieve for its accounting program. It is also one of the first 18 accounting programs in the U.S to receive separate accounting accreditation by AACSB International. Other accolades include Bama’s being one of the first five schools in the U.S. designated as an Internal Audit Education Partner by The Institute of Internal Auditors. The degree can be completed through a mixture of online and traditional classes or be done completely online. The degree requires 30 credit hours to complete at a cost of $1088 dollars per credit hour. It also has a flexible transfer credit policy, allowing those who have earned a bachelor’s degree in an unrelated field, to do a bridging program and continue with their Masters of Accounting degree. Upon completion of the degree you will be able to take the CPA examination.

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  • Estimated Tuition Per Credit Hour: $1088

8.) Georgia Southern University

Georgia Southern University is a public university in Statesboro, Georgia. It was founded in 1906 as a land-grant college, and is part of the University System of Georgia. The university offers more than 120 bachelor’s degree, master’s degree, and Doctorate programs in eight colleges. It has approximately 18000 undergraduate and over 2000 graduate students, making the university the largest institution of higher ed in the southern half of Georgia. Class size, however, is still small, with a manageable student faculty ratio of 21:1. In 2014 it was listed in Newsweeks top 12 business schools. Georgia Southern has also recently been ranked 7th most popular University in the nation (tied with Yale University) which is based on the number of students who apply and actually enroll.

The Online Master of Accounting (WebMAcc) allows individuals the opportunity to pursue their masters without compromising their work and personal lives, owing to the degree being entirely online. It is a two-year program designed to fit the needs of working professionals, with students taking two courses each fall and spring, and one course each summer. Classes are taught by faculty from AACSB accredited School of Accountancy and are conveyed with the same quality and standard as in the traditional campus program. It is a 30-credit hour program with a very affordable price tag of $410 per credit hour.

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  • Estimated Tuition Per Credit Hour: $410

9.) Post University

Post University is a private, for-profit university in Waterbury, Connecticut. Founded in 1890, the university has three schools which offer over 25 undergraduate and graduate programs in day, evening, and online courses. For students in the region, three satellite centers are also available in Meriden, Danbury, and Wallingford. It has been ranked as number 19 in the 2013 U.S. News & World Report rankings of the Best Online Programs and its Online MBA program was also listed among the top 100 online graduate business programs. It also has just over 7000 students.

Obtaining your Master of Science in Accounting at Post university does not require you to put your life on hold thanks to their 100% online program which is done through The Malcolm Baldrige School of Business. Programmatically accredited by the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP), students can be sure of top notch instruction offered through Post University. The course of study is said to be very diverse and promises to impart important skills through its teachings. You will also be guided by professors who have already passed the CPA exam and have real world experience. Upon completion of the program you will be able to sit for the CPA exam in most states and also pursue various other accounting related careers.

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  • Estimated Tuition Per Credit Hour: $625

10.) Liberty University

Liberty University is a private, non-profit Christian university located in Lynchburg, Virginia. The school is classified as a doctoral research university by the Carnegie Classification. Its undergraduate student body consists of 15000+ residential and over 100,000 online students, making Liberty one of the largest Evangelical Christian universities in the world. As of August 2015, Liberty University’s 16 colleges and schools offered 522 total programs, 349 on campus and 247 online. There are 138 graduate programs and 3 doctoral programs offered on campus.

Liberty University’s online Master of Science in Accounting gives you the opportunity to complete your masters over one or 2 years, comprising of 30 credit hours at an affordable price of $565. As one might expect of a religious institution, Liberty’s Masters in Accounting stresses the ethical components of accounting behavior. That’s not all, however, as, by the end of the program, students will have been exposed to various up-to-date tools and practices in accounting, auditing, and taxation. LU’s masters in accounting program is the 8th most affordable of those surveyed The masters in accounting program is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP).

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  • Estimated Tuition Per Credit Hour: $565