Harvard University's Graduate School of Administration launched the first MBA back in 1908. This act ignited the education world, as Harvard gave birth to what has become the most popular post graduate degree in the world. This degree has evolved over the past hundred years to not only be one simple degree or curriculum, but into a broad and dynamic program. The MBA has grown to encompass numerous concentrations, specializations, majors, and certificates covering specialized topics in business on top of the foundational business and management courses; making it relevant to businesses and professionals across all sector lines.
MBA specializations focus on a particular business sector or job specialty, and give students more focused guidance and hands-on experience for their future careers. Students can pursue programs with specialized curriculum in Economics, Marketing, Business Analytics, HR, IT, and Supply Chain Management, with more choices added every semester. Online MBA Today explores different online MBA degree options in order to give prospective students information on the multitude of fields and degrees available.
Let's explore the critical field of Accounting.
Accounting is the practice and study of financial transactions and is often called "the language of business." Accountants provide stakeholders, both internal and external, with accurate, timely financial information, to help guide them in making wise business decisions.
Accounting is concerned with the various methods of financial record-keeping, internal audits, reporting and analyzing financial information, and compliance with government regulations for income tax reporting. Accounting is essential in helping a company or individual with the information needed to stay financially sound, including profits and loss for a particular period and the value of assets, liabilities, and equity held.
There are two major fields of accounting: Management and Financial. Management accounting provides information and analysis internally to keep the business running. Management accountants work human resources, operations, finance, and marketing. They create reports specific to the needs of particular managers at particular times. It is essential that they are providing information that is accurate, timely, relevant, and clear to help the managers make the best decisions for the running of the organization.
Financial accounting, on the other hand, provides information to both internal and external audiences to help assess financial performance. These accountants prepare financial statements that show past performance and evaluate present performance and financial conditions. These statements are prepared by following GAAP (generally accepted accounting principles). GAAP are regulated by the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB), which is an independent agency. It is important to note that internationally, companies follow multinational International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) instead.
According to the Bureau of Labor and Statistics, median annual wage for accountants and auditors in 2016 was $68,150, and the field is expected to grow at a rate of 11 percent between 2014-2024, which is faster than average. Accounting jobs include bookkeepers, accounts receivables clerks, payroll clerks, credit analysis managers, tax accountants, auditors, anti-money laundering specialists, and CFOs, to name just a few.
Online MBA in Accounting
An MBA in Accounting program equips students for top-level accounting jobs in firms, corporations, and financial institutions. Students take specialized courses in areas like financial reporting, auditing, budget planning, and understanding taxes, often along with the opportunity to elect an area of concentration and courses to prepare for the CPA exam. In addition, most programs also have capstone projects, with students applying what they have learned to a real-world situation. An MBA in Accounting features not just accounting courses, but a range of business courses, as well. In addition to accounting-specific courses, students also cover marketing, finance, economics, management. Students can pursue their degree with the online format or with a hybrid of online and in-person classes. This flexibility makes online MBA in Accounting programs ideal for accounting professionals to continue to pursue their careers while expanding and honing their skills. Courses in an online MBA in Accounting program can include analytical skills and decision making, business law, human resource management, auditing theory and practice, corporate and partnership taxation, and financial accounting.
Based on our latest ranking of the top online MBA programs in Accounting, here are the top five programs in the country:
- Syracuse University's Martin J. Whitman School of Management – Syracuse, New York
- Carnegie Mellon University's Tepper School of Business – Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
- University of Massachusetts, Lowell's Robert J. Manning School of Business – Lowell, Massachusetts
- Creighton University's Heider College of Business – Omaha, Nebraska
- University of Scranton's Arthur J. Kania School of Management – Scranton, Pennsylvania
OTHER MBA SPECIALTY REVIEWS:
Guide to online MBAs in Finance
Guide to Online MBAs in Information & Technology
Guide to Executive MBA degrees
Guide to Supply Chain Management MBAs
Guide to Online MBAs in Business Analytics
Guide to Online MBAs in Healthcare Management
Guide to Online MBAs in Marketing