Master's in Accounting Programs Guide

A master's degree in accounting is a common requirement for most programs, but it is one of the top 20 business schools to receive the degree. is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

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Master’s in Accounting degrees are in ever-increasing demand. Programs are ideal for those wishing to pass the CPA Exam and find employment.

Business is quickly becoming the most sought-after degree or area of study for many students at the undergraduate and graduate level. It can be difficult to discern what subjects in the field are the most important, beneficial, or relevant in our society… accounting certainly sits atop the list. 

Accountants are visible in every business, major corporation, and government agency. Some go into private practice for themselves to help people with their taxes, while others work in law firms ensuring businesses embrace logical and responsible financial practices.

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What kind of Master’s in Accounting degree should you get?

A master’s in professional accounting concentrates on fundamental accounting and financial reporting practices utilized by businesses around the world.

A Master’s in Accounting degree program offers a variety of coursework and experiences preparing learners for a successful career as a CPA. Extensive curriculum creates a fundamental understanding of accounting concepts that keeps up-to-date with the rapidly-changing environment of business.

How much money do people make with a Master’s in Accounting degree?

For many students who have an undergraduate degree in accounting, obtaining a master’s degree is the next step toward professional placement. Spending one extra year in college is enough to make a salary jump of $10,000 per year just starting out.

Right now, accountants rank as number three of the best jobs to have in the current market. The median salary is around $66,000, not including bonuses, and the Bureau of Labor Statistics projects a growth of close to 150,000 jobs in this sector by 2024.

Learn more about accounting degree salaries.

What can you do with a degree in Masters in Accounting?

Accountants are one of the most sought-after members for almost every public and private sector. Graduate level programs put students on the path towards taking the CPA exam and credits go on to meet requirements from state accountancy boards.

Successful students have their choice of numerous positions throughout many small to large-sized businesses. Employers almost always prefer Master graduates as they seek to audit, comply with tax law, and manage payrolls.

What are the requirements for a degree in Masters in Accounting?

Educational requirements vary from school to school and serve as a principal factor to consider when planning your future. A bachelor’s degree in business, accounting, or finance is a common requirement for most programs.

Applicants must take the Graduate Management Admissions Test that measures writing, verbal communication, and quantitative analysis skills. A foundation in some sort of business-related area of study allows degrees to be finished within as little as a year.


What are the best Masters in Accounting degrees?

This top 50 ranking is calculated using three variables; student response, accreditation, and return to graduate. Student responses pertain to a range of topics and are gathered from a variety of feedback sites. Accreditation is dependent on graduation rate, reputation, student/faculty ratio, entrance scores, and endowment.

Cost, including tuition and aid, in comparison to the salary of graduates, determines the return to graduate factor. Data comes from private college websites, Payscale, National Center for Education Statistics' IPEDS database, and U.S. News and World Report.

Top 10 Best Master's in Accounting Degrees

See our rankings methodology page.

  1. Stanford University

    Stanford, CA




    Stanford University is one of the most well-known and well-respected universities in the world. It is a top fundraising university as well as one of the largest within the United States. Stanford has a reputation for excellence in academics and boasts over 40 departments in three undergraduate schools and four professional schools.


    The university’s business school, the Stanford Graduate School of Business, is one of the preeminent schools for anyone who is looking to receive a Master’s in Accounting. The program’s quality is bolstered by the faculty’s involvement with students and the rest of the world. Contributions include:

    • Influencing professional and business development
    • Researching economics and statistics
    • Initiating new practices and methodologies


    The school is known for its prestigious alumni, many who have gone on to found companies like Google, Nike, Instagram, and Snapchat. Stanford accounts for more than a dozen astronauts and over 30 living billionaires as part of the alumni group.

  2. Miami University

    Hamilton, OH




    The tenth oldest public university in the United States, Miami University Ohio was founded in 1809 and is in Oxford, Ohio. The school is one of the original eight “Public Ivy” schools, a term that is given to colleges who meet the standards of private ivy league universities in terms of academic excellence.


    While the school is known for its excellence in undergraduate schooling, it is also known for having a nationally recognized Masters of Accountancy degree program. The program, which resides at the Farmer School of Business, meets CPA requirements for most states. Advantages include:

    • In-depth knowledge and on-hands experience
    • Qualification to sit for the CPA exam in Ohio
    • An optional term at the University of Seoul


    The accounting classes provided at Miami University Ohio are among the best in the state for accounting and finance. Students can get a sense of the international field of accounting in a business setting through a unique international opportunity.

  3. Baylor University

    Waco, TX




    Originally founded in 1845 by the last standing Congress of an independent Republic of Texas, Baylor University in Waco Texas is the oldest operating university in the state and one of the first west of the Mississippi River. Baylor University consistently ranks as one of the top 100 universities in the U.S.


    The Hankamer School of Business is the home of the Master of Accountancy and is one of the most selective business schools in the nation. Interdisciplinary work to help students tailor their degree to their needs and to help them find a position. The program supports:

    • Program flexibility
    • Unique coursework
    • Placement in Big 4 firms


    Acceptance into the MAcc degree program at Baylor University is notoriously tough, but it is one of the top 20 business schools to receive the degree. Both law and business schools rank nationally for their commitment to academic excellence and graduate success.

  4. University of Virginia

    Charlottesville, VA




    A research university that was founded in 1819 by Thomas Jefferson, the author of the Declaration of Independence, the University of Virginia is a unique school that has the distinction of being America’s only college to be listed as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. It is also a school known for having three U.S. presidents on the original governing board.


    The University of Virginia offers a wide array of fields of studies, but none so popular as the Master’s in Accounting. The full-time M.S. in Accounting from UVA takes approximately one academic year to complete and offers concentrations in:

    • Financial Reporting
    • Assurance
    • Tax Consulting


    The biggest draw to the school? The fact that over 300 companies actively recruit on the UVA campus each year, with 98% of graduates finding a job in less than six months after they complete the degree.

  5. Michigan State University

    East Lansing, MI




    Michigan State University is a public research university that was founded in 1855. It is the flagship university of the Michigan State University system. It is a land grant and a sea grant institution that is based in East Lansing, Michigan. MSU has been ranked as one of the top 30 public universities in the nation for the last 20 years.


    Michigan State University’s graduate school, the Eli Broad Graduate School of Management, provides a Master of Science in Accounting. This is a top ten program across the nation in accounting; a comprehensive year of study can be studied in a discipline such as:

    • Taxation
    • Information Systems
    • Public and Corporate Accounting


    Graduate accounting students can expect the same level of attention and support from the staff and faculty as in any other field of study. Faculty members are both national and international business professionals who have experience in the field and provide their students with a sense of the changing landscape of accounting within the real job marketplace.

  6. New York University

    New York, NY




    New York University, more commonly known as NYU, is a private research university that is headquartered in New York City, NY. It was founded in 1831 and remains one of the largest non-profit collegiate institutions in the nation. It has been ranked in the top 50 most reputable colleges and universities in the world for over 15-years.


    For students looking to take accounting classes for a Master’s, New York University’s Stern School of Business is a wonderful place to begin. The school itself is a founding member of the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of business and is one of the oldest and most respected business schools in the world. Highlights include:

    • Lessons from professionals in the industry
    • International accounting experience
    • An experienced and diverse faculty


    The school is a mecca for the academically minded, with the school having graduated over 30 Nobel Prize Winners, 30 Pulitzer Prize Winners, and three Turing Award winners. Although it is based in New York City, the school has campuses in Asia, the Middle East, Europe, and South America.

  7. University of Notre Dame

    Notre Dame, IN




    The University of Notre Dame, simply known as Notre Dame, was founded in 1842. It is a private Catholic research university that is in Notre Dame, Indiana. Apart from its prominence in the athletic arenas, Notre Dame is considered one of the top-ranked universities in the U.S., and a global ranking that sees the school in the top 50 colleges from around the world.


    Notre Dame continues to dominate rankings when it comes to finance and accounting degrees, specifically the Master of Accounting program. The school provides study abroad programs in China and South America for their students to apply their skills in real-world scenarios. Advantages include:

    • All graduates find placement within six months of graduation
    • Over 80% of students finding employment at a Big 4 accounting firm
    • International experience in accounting


    The school offers a broad range of majors in a variety of fields. It is best known for its graduate programs, most of which are ranked among the top 50 in their specific areas of study.

  8. University of Michigan

    Dearborn, MI




    Founded in 1817, the University of Michigan is a high research activity research university that combines a world-class faculty with a comprehensive graduate program in a range of fields to create one of the best universities for students who are looking to obtain a Master’s in Accounting. The school offers close to 300 degrees in programs at all levels of education, including 90 master’s programs.


    For graduate students of finance, the University of Michigan points students to the Ross School of Business, a college within the university that focuses on accounting classes. The MAcc program at this school is so well received that it is ranked the fifth best graduate accounting program by the Public Accounting Report. Concentrations include:

    • Public accounting
    • Investment banking


    Employers continue to come to the University of Michigan to find exceptional graduates, and over 93% of all graduates find employment before they even graduate from the program. Students see their degree helping them in all fields of accounting.

  9. Brigham Young University

    Laie, HI




    Brigham Young University was established in 1875 and is in Provo, Utah. The school is closely affiliated with the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and it is the largest religious university in the country, as well as being the third-largest private university. Most students at BYU are LDS Church members, with over 35 percent of students coming from within the state of Utah.


    The BYU Marriott School offers the MAcc program for prospective accounting graduate students. Brigham Young University has ranked as first in the nation by Public Accounting Report and consistently supports its students. The program provides:

    • 100 percent placement rate for their graduates
    • Career services that see over 70 of the top accounting firms
    • Recruiting sending students into the workforce


    Brigham Young University is renowned for the honor code students are required to follow, with the mandatory guidelines on nearly all aspects of campus life, such as abstinence from drugs and alcohol and a dress code which is fully enforced. It is also known for the large portion of students that defer enrollment or take a hiatus to serve as Mormon missionaries.

  10. Indiana University Bloomington

    Bloomington, IN




    Indiana University Bloomington is a public research university that was established in 1820 in Bloomington, Indiana. It is also the flagship university of the Indiana University system. IU is the largest university in the state and has a student body that is comprised of students from all 50 states and 165 countries.


    IU Bloomington is home to several professional programs, including a school of education, a law school, and a business school. Students who join the Kelley School of Business are in for a rigorous education that will lead to graduating with a Master’s of Accountancy. It is ranked as one the 50 best public universities in the country and ranks in the top 100 universities in the nation. The program offers:

    • Comprehensive coursework
    • Top-tier faculty
    • Mentorships from real-world professionals


    The university is also home to a large student life program, complete with Greek system and a robust athletics program. 95% of Kelley School of Business graduates find employment within three months of graduating, with many of them finding placement even before obtaining their degree.

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