Accounting is a major backbone for the business world that plays a pivotal role in the fiscal health of every company. Accountants are skilled number crunchers and money managers who recommend business strategies that boost profit. Positioning yourself for corporate success while juggling work and family commitments is difficult though. Online bachelor of accounting degree programs offer the ideal learning solution for studying accounting practices at your convenience.
For this article, we’ve selected the top 15 online bachelor of accounting degree programs to assist aspiring CPAs and CMAs. We began by identifying online universities offering accounting majors to undergraduates using the NCES College Navigator tool. Schools were then cross-referenced with the U.S. News and World Report’s online bachelor’s degree rankings. Potential online colleges had to rank within the top 150. Business schools had to feature regional and one of three business accreditations from the AACSB, ACBSP, or IACBE. Online tuition prices were recorded from each college’s website to judge affordablity. Other ranking factors were financial aid, certification exam passage, award recognition, faculty credentials, networking, technology, and student support.
1. Penn State World Campus
Launched in 1998, Penn State World Campus is the online learning division of the prestigious private, non-sectarian RU/VH research institution located in State College. The World Campus currently educates over 6,100 students in 125+ programs via the Web. In 2012, the accredited college’s online courses received the Blackboard Catalyst Award. Pennsylvania State University is also one of the world’s 21 “Centers for Actuarial Excellence.” According to the U.S. News and World Report, Penn State confers America’s #1 Best Online Bachelor’s Degrees. Bloomberg BusinessWeek ranked Penn State’s Smeal College of Business eighth nationally for recruiters. Within The Wall Street Journal, Penn State World Campus was named the fifth best B-school for accounting.
The Smeal College offers exceptional flexibility for adult learners with its Bachelor of Science in Accounting program. The diverse curriculum produces accounting generalists with well-rounded business education from finance to supply chain management. World Campus students benefit from free online tutoring and career advising like their on-campus counterparts. Requiring 120-credit program provides the foundation for taking the Uniform CPA exam. Graduates also qualify for the Certified Internal Auditor (CIA) or Chartered Global Management Accountant (CGMA) designation. Asynchronous online courses don’t require any residencies in Pennsylvania, so students hail from 60+ countries. Accounting majors receive career-enhancing contacts with the university’s over 645,000 alumni.
Bachelor of Science in Accounting
2. Regent University
Endowed for $186 million, Regent University is a private, interdenominational Christian research institution divided into eight colleges to educate over 6,100 students. The regionally accredited college is headquartered on a 70-acre suburban campus in Virginia Beach with satellites in Alexandria and online from anywhere. According to the U.S. News, Regent houses America’s 17th Best Online Bachelor’s Programs and 56th Top Online Business Education. Princeton Review recognized Regent University for the #2 “Most Conservative Students.” The ACTA What Will They Learn? report awarded an A grade to Regent’s curriculum. The Online Education Database also honored Regent for the second best online undergraduate programs.
With a student-faculty ratio of 19:1, the College of Arts & Sciences lets Regent students complete the Bachelor of Science in Accounting entirely online. Taught from a Christian worldview, the 120-credit degree gives undergraduates the necessary internal control strategies to report reliable financial data. Students are equipped to advise management on strategic decisions like investments, banking, pricing, and resource allocation. The B.S. meets the directives of the Virginia Board of Accountancy for future CPA licensing. Thanks to the Regent University C.A.R.E.S. program, online learners receive 24/7 technical and spiritual support. Military can join the Navy College Program Distance Learning Partnership (NCPDLP). There’s also a B.S. in Business Administration with an Accounting Specialization online.
Bachelor of Science in Accounting
3. Washington State University
Established in 1890 as an agricultural college five months after statehood, Washington State University is the state’s oldest public, land-grant institution with “very high research activity.” Based on a 640-acre rural campus in Pullman within the Pacific Northwest’s Palouse region, WSU enrolls more than 29,600 total students, including 3,100 online. According to the U.S. News, the nation’s 71st Top Public School grants America’s 34th Best Online Bachelor’s Programs. The Global Campus ranked within the top 10 for student support. The Education Trust picked WSU as the seventh Best College for Closing the Graduation Rate Gap for minorities. The Carson College of Business was also recognized in Bloomberg’s top-tier undergraduate schools.
Attracting over 520 students, the Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration program’s Accounting Major is the largest in the WSU Carson College. Holding separate accounting AACSB accreditation, the online program allows business professionals to further their financial expertise conveniently. The upper-division curriculum requires already earning 60+ semester hours in transferrable higher education. Online accounting courses are primarily seven weeks in length for accelerated learning via Blackboard Learn and its mobile app. Accounting majors are equipped with marketable skills in auditing, taxation, assurance, corporate finance, and economic strategy. For international perspective, Washington State University requires studying abroad or taking approved global courses.
Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration, Accounting Major
4. California Baptist University
Controlled by the California Southern Baptist Convention, California Baptist University is a private, faith-based liberal arts institution inspiring over 8,500 students to “Live Your Purpose.” From its 160-acre suburban campus in Riverside around 60 miles east of Los Angeles in the Inland Empire, CBU operates 10 regionally accredited colleges, including the Dr. Robert K. Jabs School of Business. The U.S. News and World Report ranked California Baptist University the West’s 37th Best Regional College and 21st Most Military-Friendly School with the 34th Best Online Bachelor’s Degrees nationally. TheBestSchools.org recognized California Baptist University as the fifth top online Christian college. According to the College Database, Calfornia Baptist University is placed #24 for the “Best Student-Teacher Ratios” in California.
CBU Online offers a Bachelor of Science in Accounting online for undergraduates to undertake a journey of professional and spiritual transformation. Building on a Biblical-based core, the accredited degree integrates 21st century business concepts related to fiscal policy. Students lay the foundational knowledge required for accounting credentials, such as Certified Management Accountant (CMA). As a degree completion program, the curriculum requires transfers to finish 69 major units within approximately 36 months. Online courses will survey data analytics, economics, finance, business law, and more. California Baptist University’s School of Business also offers an optional two-week summer trip in Oxford, England. Graduates are actively recruited by CPA firms like Grant Thornton.
Bachelor of Science in Accounting
5. Saint Leo University
Named for Pope Leo XIII on its founding in 1889, Saint Leo University is a private, nonprofit Roman Catholic liberal arts institution endowed for $43 million to educate over 16,200 students. Affiliated with the Holy Name Monastery, Saint Leo owns a 297-acre rural campus in the Tampa with 17 continuing education centers across the Southeast and online with the Second Life Virtual Campus. The U.S. News and World Report named Saint Leo the 62nd best regional college with the 43rd top online bachelor’s programs in America. With an estimated ROI of $265,000 from PayScale, Saint Leo University is the 30th Best Value College in Florida. G.I. Jobs also distinguished the regionally accredited university as “Military Friendly.”
With IACBE accreditation, the School of Business offers an Online B.A. Accounting Degree entirely at a distance. Rooted in Saint Leo’s core Catholic values, the program fosters students’ analytical tools for entry-level accounting positions in the public, private, or nonprofit sectors. The 120-credit curriculum features 27 accounting credits and 15 elective credits for personal specialization. Online courses will span topics from cost accounting to auditing and federal income taxation. The breadth of knowledge will help pass the Certified Management Accountant (CMA) exam. Saint Leo’s online platform integrates textbook, video, and audio formats with lively discussion boards. Undergraduates could also pursue the B.A. in Business Administration with an Online Accounting Concentration.
Online B.A. Accounting Degree
6. University of Minnesota – Crookston
Specializing in baccalaureate education, the University of Minnesota Crookston is one of the system’s five public, state-funded institutions with a slogan of “Small Campus, Big Degree.” UMC enrolls approximately 1,800 degree-seeking students upon its 108-acre rural campus near Lake Agassiz in Greater Grand Forks and virtually online. According to the U.S. News, UM Crookston is the Midwest’s 40th Best College and third Top Public School with the 63rd Best Online Bachelor’s Programs nationwide. Charging one online tuition rate, the Universirty of Minnesota – Crookston landed among the Top 10 “Most Affordable Public Schools for Out-of-State Students.” For eight straight years, the University of Minnesota Crookston has been among the Princeton Review’s Best Midwestern schools too.
The University of Minnesota’s Crookston campus grants its Accounting – Bachelor of Science (B.S.) online with a small classroom environment where auditing is emphasized. Students learn the generally accepted accounting principles for reporting organization finances. Identical to the on-campus program, the online, 63-credit major develops upon liberal education. Undergrad learners benefit from individualized attention by following career paths in public accounting, banking, finance, or management accounting. The Online Certificate of Taxation is available for budding tax professionals. The Crookston Business Department also partnered with Gleim for CPA Review courses online. Learning extends with over 300 study abroad options, corporate internships, and the Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program (UROP).
Accounting – Bachelor of Science (B.S.)
7. Colorado Technical University
Owned by the Career Education Corporation, Colorado Technical University is a regionally accredited private, for-profit distance learning institution that specializes primarily in business and technology. With enrollment surpassing 26,000, CTU has a physical headquarters in Colorado Springs to present STEM dominant education in Denver, Aurora, and online. The U.S. News and World Report recognized Colorado Tech for tying for America’s 63rd Best Online Bachelor’s Degrees and 91st Best Online Graduate Business Programs. The IMS Global Learning Consortium honored Colorado Technical University with a 2016 Gold Medal for virtual classroom technology. Colorado Technical University earned the NUTN Distance Education Innovation Award for its Intellipath platform too.
Boasting monthly start dates, the flexible Bachelor of Science in Accounting program at CTU was designed to fulfill the country’s growing demand for staff accountants and auditors. The program consists of 183 quarter credits to develop students’ knowledge of financial laws for scrutinizing business records. Courses can be taken fully online or with hybrid sessions in Colorado Springs and Denver. Accounting curricula aligns with the standards of the American Institute of CPAs. The transfer-friendly program includes crucial courses in auditing, taxation, financial statement analysis, global economics, and operations management. Students can save money with Fast Track courses or the Corporate Alliances Grant. Another option is the Bachelor of Science in Business Administration – Accounting.
Bachelor of Science in Accounting
8. Linfield College
Historically tied to American Baptist Churches USA, Linfield College is a private, four-year undergraduate liberal arts and sciences institution endowed for $103 million. Enrolling nearly 2,500 students, Linfield occupies a 193-acre rural campus in McMinnville, Oregon, near the Portland Metro with an Online Learning Division. According to the U.S. News and World Report, Linfield College is the 128th Best National Liberal Arts School with the 63rd Top Online Bachelor’s Degrees. Employing the Oregon Professor of the Year, Linfield is recognized for the 209th Most Grateful Graduates on Forbes. Linfield placed on the Princeton Review’s “Guide to 353 Green Colleges.” The Chronicle of Higher Education also named Linfield a top Fulbright Scholar producer.
Linfield College is dedicated to serving working adults who are strapped for time with online programs like the Accounting Bachelor’s Degree. Classes are 100 percent online to provide convenient preparation for public, private, and government accounting sectors. Students gain well-rounded business exposure for employment opportunities ranging from payroll management to internal auditing. The curriculum is recognized by the Washington and Oregon accountancy boards for eventual CPA distinction. Courses in the 120-credit degree are among the Pacific Northwest’s most affordable. Tuition includes free online tutoring, academic advising, and financial aid support. Those already holding an undergraduate degree could change careers with the Online Post-Baccalaureate Accounting Certificate from Linfield.
Accounting Bachelor’s Degree
9. Bellevue University
Enrolling around 10,300 students who are primarily aged 25 and over, Bellevue University is the state’s largest private, nonprofit adult education institution following the motto “Real Learning for Real Life.” Opened in 1966, Bellevue operates a main campus in Bellevue, Nebraska, with the Lozier Professional Center in Omaha and online options. The U.S. News and World Report distinguished Bellevue for hosting America’s 72nd Best Online Bachelor’s Degrees. Washington Monthly highlighted Bellevue among the “Top 10 Universities for Adult Learners. Phi Theta Kappa named Bellevue to its Excellence in Community College Transfer Honor Roll. Chief Learning Officer magazine also granted Bellevue University the Silver Excellence in Academic Partnership award.
Bellevue’s Bachelor of Science in Accounting fosters undergraduates’ strengths in numbers and logic to unlock entry- and mid-level business careers. Available entirely online, the four-year degree integrates theory with applied learning for transformative student experiences. The IACBE-accredited College of Business places emphasis on international accounting for strategic decision making across borders. The 120-credit curriculum allows for adding an optional Tax Minor and applied internship. Existing credits can be transferred to eliminate unnecessary overlaps. Online programs feature the award-winning, interactive virtual Criss Auditorium. Graduates are prepared to take the Certified Public Accountant exam. High-achieving seniors could also begin taking online courses for the Master of Science in Accounting.
Bachelor of Science in Accounting
10. University of Alabama in Birmingham
Established in 1936 as the extension of the Tuscaloosa campus, the University of Alabama at Birmingham gained independence as a public, co-educational teaching institution endowed for $424 million. With total enrollment surpassing 18,500, the University of Alabama at Birmingham is based on a 275-acre urban campus in the “Pittsburgh of the South” with a well-developed eLearning Division. The U.S. News and World Report rankings place the University of Alabama at Birmingham as America’s 159th Best University and 83rd Top Public School with the 86th Best Online Bachelor’s Programs. The Princeton Review recognized the University of Alabama Birmingham for the country’s #3 “Most Race/Class Interaction.” Bloomberg BusinessWeek lauded the Collat School of Business for top student-run investment fund and Alabama’s highest CPA exam passage.
Endorsed by the Institute of Management Accountants (IMA), the Online Bachelor of Science in Accounting program at UAB teaches students to win the numbers game of business. Online learners gain financial fluency to compete in today’s competitive economy. The technology-driven curriculum implements engaging instructional methods for fully understanding strict accounting regulations. The Collat School prepares candidates for CIA, CFE, CMA, and CPA exams. Online accounting program benefits include 24/7 technical support, networking with the Alabama State Board of Public Accountancy, and a generous transfer credit policy. Gained accounting skills are applied in a senior capstone project and seminar. Students can also help manage the UAB Green & Gold Fund.
Online Bachelor of Science in Accounting
11. Regis University
Educating over 9,200 “Men and Women in Service of Others,” Regis University is a private, nonprofit Roman Catholic and Jesuit member of the AJCU. Founded in 1877 as Las Vegas College, Regis has regional accreditation to provide values-centered education from its 90-acre urban campus in Denver and online across five colleges, including the College of Business and Economics. The U.S. News and World Report picked Regis University as the 23rd Best Regional College in the West conferring the 92nd Top Online Bachelor’s Degrees nationally. G.I. Jobs magazine has selected Regis as a “Military Friendly” college. According to College Raptor, Regis is the Southwest’s 20th best university for selectivity and student outcomes.
Regis University’s Accelerated B.S. in Accounting is available fully online to incorporate the latest technology into ethical business practices. Students develop a strong quantitative foundation for in-demand accounting careers with small businesses to large Big Four firms. Accelerated online courses are completed in eight weeks for a faster pathway to success. It’s also possible for students to complete the Bachelor of Science in tandem with MBA and specialized master’s degrees. The accredited, career-oriented program of 128 total credits offers flexible start dates twice per semester. Regis University grants more than $142 million in financial aid, with an average award amount of $22,000. Accounting majors also cash in a $400 partner discount for the Becker CPA Exam Review.
Accelerated B.S. in Accounting
12. Florida Institute of Technology
Sitting on a 130-acre urban campus in Melbourne just 50 miles from the Kennedy Space Center, the Florida Institute of Technology is a private, doctoral-granting RU/H research institution with a STEM focus. Originally called Brevard Engineering College, Florida Tech has enrollment over 6,600 equally divided between undergraduate and graduate students. The Virtual Site provides 100 percent online education via the Canvas platform, including the nation’s 92nd best online bachelor’s degrees. According to the U.S. News, the Florida Institute of Technology is the 171st Best Overall University in the United States. The top-tier college places #1 for fostering international student experiences. SuperScholar.org also recognized Florida Institute of Technology for the seventh Best Online Business Degrees.
The Bisk College houses an Online Bachelor of Arts in Accounting that’s accredited to equip undergraduates with a broad-based liberal arts foundation and career-specific business acumen. Florida Tech trains students to establish innovative accounting information systems that conform to GAAP standards. The 121-credit curriculum begins with the “Mastering eLearning” course before expanding from global business and statistics to social science and personnel law. Elective tracks allow for specialization in Cost Accounting, Auditing, or Compensation and Benefits. Online courses are eight weeks each for estimated completion in four years without transfer. Online FIT students benefit from two start dates per semester, connections with 60,000+ Panthers, and graduation ceremonies in Melbourne.
Bachelor of Arts in Accounting
13. Liberty University
Classified as a doctoral-granting research institution by Carnegie, Liberty University holds a $126 million endowment to serve around 15,000 residential and 100,000 online students. The nonprofit, selective Christian college is affiliated with the Southern Baptist Conservatives of Virginia on a suburban campus in Lynchburg at the Blue Ridge Mountains’ foothills. The U.S. News and World Report distinguished Liberty for delivering America’s 100th Best Online Bachelor’s Degrees. With a financial grade of “B,” Liberty was crowned the South’s 186th Best Overall University by Forbes. In 2016, Liberty University landed within the “Top 50 Online Colleges for Highest Student Satisfaction.” Military Times EDGE magazine named Liberty a best for vets business school too.
Adding moral and biblical perspective, the Bachelor of Science in Accounting program at Liberty introduces online learners to the “language of business.” Undergraduates develop highly prized skills for evaluating complex monetary matters and implementing viable solutions. Up to 90 credits can be transferred into the 120-credit curriculum for fast-track learning. Online courses won’t require on-campus intensives, so residents of any U.S. state could apply. The ACBSP-accredited school offers CPA aligned courses like cost accounting, taxation, auditing, business policy, and accounting information systems from a Christian worldview. Diverse minors are available from financial planning to international business. Online textbooks both new and used are easily accessible via MBS Direct.
Bachelor of Science in Accounting
14. Clarion University of Pennsylvania
Belonging to the PASSHE system, Clarion University of Pennsylvania is a senior public, state-funded teaching institution established in 1867 that’s serving over 6,800 students. Along with its main 128-acre rural campus in Clarion north of Pittsburgh and extension in Oil City, Clarion offers several programs online. The College of Business Administration and Information Sciences now houses 15 degrees from accounting to library science. According to the U.S. News, Clarion has the 120th Best Online Undergraduate Education. MONEY magazine honored Clarion University of Pennsylvania with its Best Colleges Badge. In fact, Clarion has the distinction of being Pennsylvania’s most affordable online university.
As an Online Learning Consortium (OLC) member, Clarion offers a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration with three online concentrations, including Accounting. This part-time track is enhanced by small classes devoted to building the requisite skills for financial professions. There’s a Professional Accountancy course of study for undergraduates seeking the CPA credential later. Broad business instruction fosters interdisciplinary competence and ethical awareness of the global economic climate. There’s even a Concentration in Global Understanding provided. Available electives for the 24-credit major delve into forensic accounting, nonprofit accounting, tax planning, and equity management. Graduates qualify for the Online Master of Science in Accounting or Post-Baccalaureate CPA Exam Eligibility Program.
Bachelor of Science in Business Administration – Accounting
15. Upper Iowa University
Operating on two eight-week terms per semester, Upper Iowa University is a private, nonprofit higher learning institution enrolling over 6,100 students within the Council of Independent Colleges (CIC). Headquartered on a 100-acre rural campus in Fayette near the Volga River, UIU has established over 17 extension centers and an online division since opening in 1857. Named “Best Buy” on GetEducated.com, the U.S. News recognized Upper Iowa for granting the nation’s 128th Best Online Bachelor’s Programs. Upper Iowa University became one of the state’s first Certified Higher Academic Military Partners (CHAMP) for veteran-friendly education. Victory Media selected Upper Iowa University as a STEM Jobs Approved College.
Offered either online or Web-based, self-paced, the Bachelor of Science with an Accounting Major is presented to Upper Iowa students who show competency in preparing and analyzing financial statements. Focused on public and nonprofit sectors, the online degree offers excellent preparation for the CPA exam. The School of Business is undergoing ACBSP candidacy review for its accredited, accelerated education. Online coursework is accessible 24/7 in an asynchronous format to study everything from taxation to budget analysis and external auditing. Accounting majors could add the Certificate in Corporate Financial Management. Community college graduates can transfer a maximum of 78 lower-division credits. Online students can benefit from a money-saving Corporate Advantage program.
Bachelor of Science – Accounting
Why Should I Get an Online Accounting Degree?
Our recovering economy has a bolstering need for accountants since 10-year job growth is estimated at 11 percent. According to the NACE’s 2015 Outlook report, accounting is America’s second most in-demand bachelor’s degree. More than 56 percent of surveyed employers expect to hire graduates with an accounting background.
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