Accounting MBA Degree Programs

At a Glance

When it comes to advancing your career in accounting, you need to be able to demonstrate to your employer that you have mastered more than just the accounting basics. One way you can do this is by enrolling in a Master of Business Administration (MBA) Degree with an emphasis on accounting. The MBA degree is a highly sought-after and respected degree in the business world because it shows that you have mastered your specialty area. If you are not getting the promotions you hoped for with a bachelor degree and work experience alone, attending an accounting school to earn a MBA accounting degree could be the right career move for you.

What You Can Expect to Study in a MBA Accounting Degree Program

Before you can enter a MBA program with an emphasis in accounting, an accounting school will require you to have a bachelor's degree as well as a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) license. If you have not yet earned your CPA licensure, you will need to research the requirements in your state to do so. After passing the exam, you should be able to apply to any graduate program that interests you. Some accounting schools will allow you to study for and take the CPA exam as part of your MBA program. It will just take a bit longer for you to complete your degree than someone who already has their CPA license.

After you have successfully enrolled in a MBA degree program, you can expect to study much more than the accounting basics. At this level, you will delve in-depth into current issues facing the accounting profession today. This includes business ethics, financial reporting, fraud investigation and more. You will look at current issues as they affect various agencies like the Securities and Exchange Commission. Research methods are another important topic that is covered in MBA programs with an emphasis on accounting. You will gain the necessary skills to identify research sources, gather and analyze data and create solutions as they relate to financial accounting, auditing and taxes. This will give you professional credibility in your chosen field.

Most MBA degree programs require students to be involved in a Capstone project towards the end of their studies. A Capstone project is similar to a thesis paper in other areas of academia. You are required to study a business organization and write a research paper that offers insight into its day-to-day management. Since many MBA candidates are already employed, they chose to complete their Capstone project using their place of employment as the research subject.

Career Possibilities and Outlook with a MBA in Accounting

If you are interested in pursuing a management position in accounting, it almost always requires a MBA. Some of the specific job titles you are eligible for once you have completed your program include a financial analyst, financial planner, budget analyst, investment banker and finance officer. These positions fall under the general heading of finance careers and all reported an average annual salary between $65,000 and $75,000 in 2010, according to a report issued by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).

The field of finance as a whole is expected to grow at annual rate of 23 percent. This fast rate of growth is attributed to an increasing amount of financial products in the business and private sector as well as the large amount of people nearing retirement age.

How Does a MBA in Accounting Compare to Other Degrees?

Other than a PhD in Accounting, this is the highest degree you can obtain in the field of accounting. The salary you can expect to earn with a MBA is two to three times that of an entry-level accounting employee with only an associate degree.

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