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The top 10 U.S. colleges for an accounting degree
Are you interested in math and business? An accounting major may just be the right fit for you. This major involves lots of math classes, as well as courses in business, marketing, finance, statistics and economics.
A degree in accounting opens up numerous possibilities and can lead to careers in tax accounting, auditing, consulting and more.
Many of the best colleges for an accounting major are prestigious universities that have business schools with excellent reputations. These schools are rigorous and have a strong focus on preparing students for a successful career beyond the classroom. Accounting programs at these colleges have world-class faculty and a well-developed curriculum.
This list was developed by College Factual. Click here for the full rankings and read this article for more on how these ranking were developed.
This list is only for undergraduate programs, and salary information refers to students who have their bachelor’s degree only. Those who go on to receive their masters have access to additional professional opportunities and higher paid career options.
1. Bentley University
The accountancy department is the oldest department at Bentley University, and has a long tradition of providing a high-quality accounting education. Classes in cost accounting, auditing, financial accounting and information technology help to provide a core understanding of the business world and the role accounting plays in it. Accounting is one of the most popular majors in the school, and it is no wonder as graduates are often highly successful in their careers, earning an average starting salary of $51,000 and mid-career salary of $99,000.
2. University of Notre Dame
The Mendoza College of Business at the University of Notre Dame is a top-tier business school, combining a liberal arts education with advanced knowledge and research in accounting to provide students with a strong understanding of the field.
Students take specialized classes in strategic cost management, audit and assurance services and federal taxation among others to help develop critical thinking and leadership skills. Graduates of the accountancy program have a solid grasp of the field and find careers within the accounting industry earning an average mid-career salary of $119,000.
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3. Bryant University
Founded in 1863, Bryant University has a strong history of producing professionals who are leaders in the field. Its accounting program is no exception.
Classes in leadership, financial reporting, taxation, auditing and management introduce students to the business world, while improving communication and analytical skills. Graduates of this program have a dynamic understanding of accounting and are prepared for a career in a challenging field. They typically earn an average starting salary of $52,000 and mid-career salaries of $80,000.
4. New York University
The Leonard N. Stern School of Business at New York University offers two different undergraduate degrees in accounting, one with an emphasis in C.P.A. and the other less technical in nature. The second option allows students to blend liberal arts classes with core business and accounting classes to give them a broad education in the field.
A B.S in accounting from Stern leads to a high average starting salary of $65,000. Graduates of this program often progress to positions of leadership, earning an average mid-career salary of $114,000.
5. University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Accounting is a global field that plays a core role in all business functions. A degree from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign will prepare you for a successful career at any organization. The undergraduate program is centered on preparing graduates for a career in a variety of accounting fields, ranging from corporate to governmental.
Students are exposed to the fundamental principles of accounting, while learning how to apply current best business practices. The curriculum integrates liberal arts classes with core business classes in management, finance and analytics to create an environment that enhances critical thinking skills. Graduates of this program have been highly successful in the business world, earning an average mid-career salary of $100,000.
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6. University of Southern California
The Marshall School of Business at the University of Southern California houses the distinguished Leventhal School of Accounting. This undergraduate accounting program is one of the best in the country due to the exclusivity of the program. Students study the art of accounting, while understanding the role it plays in business. They have the ability to customize their major, so they are taking classes that prepare them for quick advancement in the business world.
Classes in finance, economics and management help promote discussions about accounting practices, while supplementing classes on accounting principles. USC graduates of the accounting program earn an average starting salary of $55,000, but typically advance quickly, to an average mid-career salary of $110,000.
7. The University of Texas-Austin
In addition to offering a Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) in accounting, the McCombs School of Business at the University of Texas also has an integrated Master in Professional Accounting (iMPA) program that allows strong students to earn both an BBA and MPA in five years.
Students can choose a corporate track or a financial institutions track, depending on their desired career plans. Upon graduation, accounting majors typically accept jobs in industry or government with an average starting salary of $51,000 .
University of Texas at Austin
8. CUNY Bernard M. Baruch College
The Zicklin School of Business at CUNY Bernard M Baruch College is a highly-ranked business school with a reputation of providing a quality accounting education. The school attracts top faculty that have developed a curriculum that exposes the relationship between accounting and other crucial business practices.
Students take core classes in cost accounting, financial accounting, auditing and taxation along with electives in areas such as corporate finance and business law. A degree from Baruch leads to well-paying jobs, with graduates earning an average mid-career salary of $89,000.
9. Boston College
Boston College is a top school known for its strong curriculum and the success of its graduates. The accounting department holds the same reputation due to its world-class faculty and collaborative classes.
Accounting majors take their core business classes in finance, taxation, economics, analysis and auditing at the Carroll School of Management. They are given the option to specialize in Accounting, Accounting Information Systems or Corporate Reporting. Each of these concentrations is challenging and prepares graduates for rewarding careers in a variety of accounting services, earning an average mid-career salary of $109,000.
10. Villanova University
The Villanova University School of Business offers an accountancy program that prepares students for careers at business firms, corporations and governmental organizations. The school has a dynamic curriculum that incorporates theory and principles with exposure to current business practices. This gives students the opportunity to gain a well-rounded business education and secure jobs after graduation.
Classes in accounting, auditing and taxation are supplemented by electives in areas such as fraud, international accounting and accounting for real estate. Villanova graduates are well-equipped for an accounting career, earning an average starting salary of $55,000 and mid-career salaries averaging $107,000.
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