All organizations and individuals need a clear picture of their bottom line so it’s no surprise that skilled accountants are in high demand.
With a doctorate in accounting, you’ll open the door to top executive positions and lucrative opportunities. These programs will prepare you to find efficient, effective, and creative solutions to the financial challenges facing modern businesses. You may pursue a career as an auditor, chief accountant, Chief Financial Officer, or financial manager, or even open your own consulting business.
Add up your options and you’ll see that the possibilities are nearly endless. The best part is that you can give your career and your salary a boost without ever leaving the comfort of your home. The doctorates on this list are flexible online programs that allow you to continue working while advancing your career prospects. It doesn’t get much better than that!
What kind of doctorate in Accounting should you get?
Some programs on this list are doctorates, while others will result in a Ph.D. If your goal is to become an accounting professor, you should pursue your Ph.D. If you’re interested in executive positions or consulting, a doctorate program is also an excellent option.
Programs of this kind are available both in person and online. Both delivery methods offer advantages, but online programs are highly flexible and convenient. With an online program, you can work around your schedule from any location. If you’re interested in online programs, but undecided on accounting, browse our list of the Best Online Colleges and Universities.
How much money do people make with a doctorate in Accounting?
The answer to this question depends on what you do with your doctorate. Let’s look at the median salary for a few potential careers, based on information from the Bureau of Labor Statistics:
- Chief Financial Officer: $104,700
- Auditor: $69,350
- Chief Accountant: $65,327
- Financial Manager: $125,080
- Accounting Professor: $80,300
Most of these careers are growing as fast or faster than average. The projected growth rate for financial managers, for example, is 19 percent over the next 10 years. So, a doctorate in accounting gives you access to careers that are both highly lucrative and in high-demand.
What can you do with a doctorate in Accounting?
You don’t need a doctorate to be an accountant. However, some of the highest paid careers in accounting prefer or require a doctorate. You can qualify for top positions like Chief Financial Officer or for research, management, and policy positions in private or government agencies. You can be an auditor, accounting executive, a financial manager, or a consultant. With a Ph.D., you can choose to become an Accounting professor or researcher.
What are the requirements for a doctorate in Accounting?
To apply to these programs, you’ll need a master’s degree from an accredited institution. Some programs expect you to meet a minimum GPA requirement, like a 3.0 or higher. Required materials may include transcripts, letters of recommendation, a resume, and a personal statement. The programs listed here may take up to four years to complete. In addition to coursework, you’ll have to complete a dissertation, which can take one to two years. Instead of a dissertation, some programs require a final capstone project. You may also take a comprehensive examination.
What are the best online doctorates in Accounting?
Your program search will be a breeze if you use this list of the best online doctorates in Accounting. To put this list together, we’ve looked at factors like school reputation, net tuition cost, and return on investment. Plus, every school on this list is accredited.
All data comes from trusted sources such as:
- Bureau of Labor Statistics
- U.S. News and World Report
- Princeton Review
- Official college and university websites and course catalogs
You can trust that every program listed here will provide advanced accounting instruction that’s flexible, convenient, and high-quality.
See our rankings methodology page.
George Fox University
College Choice Score: 100
Average Net Price: $29,038
A private Christian university in Newberg, Oregon, George Fox University was founded by Quakers in 1885. Today, George Fox enrolls 4,140 students and is ranked among the top Christian colleges in the nation by Forbes and U.S. News and World Report. Students receive a personalized education rooted in the values of Christianity and service. GFU offers an online Doctorate of Business Administration with a concentration in Accounting.
GFU’s Doctor of Business Administration program is generally completed in four years, with students working on coursework for the first three years and spending the fourth year on their dissertation. Students choose a concentration, with one option being Accounting. The program provides advanced training in business principles to business leaders and educators. Courses include:
- Conceptual Foundations of Finance
- Seminar in Accounting
- Advanced Applications of Ethical Reasoning and Compliance in Accounting
- Advanced Topics in Accounting
- Effective Teaching in Higher Education
The program is entirely online with the exception of two on-campus residencies per year. It consists of a doctoral core and an educational core that includes a teaching or consulting practicum, concentration and research courses, and comprehensive exams followed by a dissertation. Many graduates become business professors or consultants.
College Choice Score: 96.5
Average Net Price: $26,954
One of the largest Christian universities in the United States, Liberty University is located in Lynchburg, Virginia. It’s a private liberal arts university with 16 colleges and schools and more than 500 areas of study. Liberty enrolls over 15,000 on-campus students, with an additional 110,000 students taking classes online. One of Liberty’s online offerings is a Doctor of Business Administration in Accounting.
Liberty’s online Doctor of Business Administration in Accounting program explores the advanced theoretical aspects of accounting, as well as accounting best practices and ethics. The degree focuses on practical application and culminates in a doctoral research project. Students can complete the program in as little as four years. They take courses like:
- Accounting for Decision Making
- Tax Research & Jurisprudence
- Advanced Auditing
- Advanced Financial Accounting Theory
- Accounting Ethics
Applicants must have a master’s degree with a 3.0 GPA or higher for admission in good standing. Graduates work as accounting executives, auditors, budget supervisors, certified management accountants, and certified public accountants. They develop the tools to find credible, creative, solutions to accounting challenges.
Florida Atlantic University
College Choice Score: 90.3
Average Net Price: $10,100
Florida Atlantic University was founded in 1962 and is based in sunny Boca Raton, Florida. FAU has several additional Florida campuses and enrolls over 30,000 students. Students can choose from more than 180 degree programs. With a focus on innovation and accessibility, FAU is regularly recognized for its excellent online undergraduate and graduate programs. One of these online programs is a Ph.D. Program in Business with a concentration in Accounting.
The Doctor of Philosophy in Business program features a concentration in Accounting. It prepares students for research and teaching careers at universities or for careers within government agencies or firms that require advanced analytical capabilities. The program requires significant reading and writing and can be completed in four years. You can expect to take courses such as:
- Advanced Accounting Theory
- Advanced Mathematical Economics
- Advanced Econometrics
- Seminar in Capital Markets in Accounting
- Seminar on Financial Accounting
Candidates generally spend two or two and a half years completing coursework, then one or two years working on the dissertation. Students in the accounting concentration program specialize in financial, auditing, and/or accounting information systems research in either Archival or Behavioral methodologies. Candidates also take a comprehensive exam.
College Choice Score: 85.6
Average Net Price: not reported
A private online university headquartered in Prescott Valley, Arizona, Northcentral University opened its doors in 1966. From the start, Northcentral’s goal was to make professional education accessible to all learners. Today, the university provides undergraduate and graduate degrees to more than 11,000 students annually. It was inspired by the Oxford Learning Model and utilizes a one-to-one teaching model, partnering students with a faculty member. Northcentral offers a DBA in Advanced Accounting.
Northcentral’s Doctor of Business Administration with a specialization in Advanced Accounting prepares students for important roles as business leaders and problem-solvers. Students examine the relationships between business activities, economic outcomes, and business performance. The program requires 18 courses to be completed in 39 months. These courses include:
- Advanced Accounting Theory and Policy
- Advanced Cost Accounting
- Corporate Finance
- Business Financial Systems
The program is extremely flexible, with weekly course starts and no scheduled hours or group assignments. Professors are 100 percent doctoral faculty, and students benefit from one-on-one personalized mentoring. Graduates can secure positions such as a chief accountant, senior audit director, and vice president of accounting.
College Choice Score: 83.1
Average Net Price: $15,667
Capella University specializes in graduate degrees. It was founded in 1993 specifically as a graduate education school. Almost a third of Cappella students are in doctoral programs, and 86 percent of its faculty hold doctoral degrees.
Cappella offers an online Doctor of Business Administration, Accounting program. Sample courses include:
- Advanced Research in Accounting
- Accounting in the Global Era
- Becoming a Business Researcher
Students will be paired with a research mentor to guide their doctoral applied research project. The program emphasizes building a student’s ability to practically apply their doctoral research. Capella expects graduates to be able to integrate the results of their research into their professional work.