What Can I Do With an Online Bachelor’s in Accounting Degree?

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The bachelor’s degree is a strong credential in the business world, and it opens up a variety of career options. Accounting is widely considered the language of business, and this allows the graduate to use numerical analysis and other tools to communicate information to executives. It also develops the student’s ability to translate financial information into a format that makes the data accessible to external parties or internal managers. These occupations, however, often require an advanced degree in Accounting.

This core competency leads to many career paths. The public and private sectors might put accountants in a slightly different position within the organization, but the function is the same. Providing executives and decision-makers with reliable access to financial information is a critical role that will always need to be filled. Students with an online Bachelor’s in Accounting degree quickly discover that their skills are needed in every organization and institution in every sector. This includes government, business, healthcare, entertainment, nonprofits, banking, and education. The median salary for this field is $65,000, and the outlook for the profession is to grow 6% from 2018 to 2028.

Career Paths, Accounting Degree Online

Communication with shareholders, creditors, executives, and managers requires a high degree of financial literacy, and the online Bachelors degree in Accounting provides students with the foundation for filling this role in any organization. There are detailed reports that need to be interpreted in order to make financial decisions, and the bachelor’s of accounting degree develops the skills that the graduate will need in order to participate in this process.

Prepare to Pursue Advanced Degrees, Credentials

Earning a bachelor’s degree in accounting leads to opportunities for advanced credentials. For example, it can open up the path for taking the CPA exam, which is a highly regarded credential across all industries. Sitting for the exam means that you can become associated with the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants or AICPA. The CPA credential serves as a respected addition to any resume, and it is a marker of distinction in the world of accounting and finance.

The first step to earning this coveted credential is to get a bachelor’s degree in accounting. Students should visit the AICPA’s website in order to learn how to prepare to sit for this exam. Make sure to research all of the requirements for any professional examination before attempting to take it because many require specific courses in order to be eligible to take the exam.

Other credentials are also available for the student who successfully completes the bachelor’s in accounting degree online:

  • Certified Management Accountant, or CMA
  • Certified Internal Auditor, or CIA
  • Chartered Financial Analyst

The Benefits of a Bachelor’s in Accounting

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that accountants and auditors with a bachelor’s degree can reasonably expect to earn around $70,000 per year. This number reflects the estimate as a median based on all of the employees within this field. Compensation can be much higher or even lower depending on the industry, employer’s needs and other variables.

According to a report by U.S. News, accountants are increasingly taking on the role of business advisers. This trend is happening because of the automation of the accounting system itself. People who earned a bachelor’s degree in accounting will be sought after in a different capacity than in the past. They will be involved in making solid financial decisions about the direction of the organization, and this career path is even more open to upward mobility than it has been in previous generations. A study conducted at Georgetown University demonstrated that the bachelor’s degree in accounting provides a stable path to a good-paying job. The report documented a variety of factors that lead to a good position with an employer.

A bachelor’s degree in accounting remains a robust and versatile credential that is still valuable in the employment market even after the technology boom affected the accounting industry through automation.

Earning an Accounting Degree Online

Selecting the institution is one of the most challenging parts of earning a bachelor’s degree online. Once you choose a school and complete your financial aid application or FAFSA, you can expect to be challenged with a variety of courses related to business, finance, and communication.

However, these courses are less intimidating than many people expect, and there are plenty of resources available to help you complete each course on time. Courses include a variety of topics that are designed to prepare the student to pursue an advanced degree or accept a position within a company right away. The student should expect to complete courses in business finance, accounting principles, auditing, supply-chain operations and preparation of a company’s financial statements. As with nearly all online degree programs, the flexibility of an online bachelor’s in accounting degree will offer students the ability to continue to work while earning their credentials.

Course work will also include topics related to accounting for management as well as tax preparation for businesses, individuals and corporations. Many online programs are designed to accommodate the busy schedules of the students. Many people seeking this degree are already working full-time, and it’s not uncommon to be juggling family responsibilities at the same time.

Preparing to Enroll

After completing the bachelor’s degree, there are a wide variety of options available, so it’s a good idea to do some rigorous self-examining before enrolling in a program. This should include your professional goal because the coursework is shaped by the eventual outcome. For example, if you plan to sit for a professional examination to become a CPA, you will need to follow a specific curriculum during the course of your studies. If you plan to become a bookkeeper or an auditing clerk, the courses might be more flexible, and you might have room for more electives.

Always make sure that you qualify for financial aid throughout your entire program. There are aggregate limits for borrowing money from the federal programs, and you should also become familiar with the repayment options before signing the loans. Preparing to enroll in an online bachelor’s degree program for accounting will help you to develop and maintain the organizational habits that you’ll need for the remainder of your professional career.