Why This Matters

  • 30 POPULAR CAREER PATHS AVAILABLE

    With a finance degree, you’re never stuck in one role. Your degree prepares you to become an auditor, accountant, adviser, analyst, purchasing manager, or logistician, to name a few of the most popular career paths.

  • THE U.S. NEEDS 476,200 FINANCIAL PROFESSIONALS BY 2029

    Job growth is 5% through 2029, which means nearly a half-million new financial professionals are needed to keep up with demand. You’ll be sought out by Fortune 500 companies, government organizations, and individuals.

  • CERTAIN FINANCE JOBS PAY MORE THAN $80,000 A YEAR

    Top-paying jobs command a median income of $80,000 or more, which is double the median for all other occupations. The highest-paying finance professions are personal financial advisers, management analysts, and financial analysts.

Our Research

We discovered that the most common finance degree is the Bachelor of Science in finance, but some programs offer a two-year associate degree. Because finance is generally linked to business, many undergraduate programs offer finance as part of the bachelor in business administration. We reviewed finance degrees offered in traditional, online, and blended formats.

The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) is the primary accrediting body for finance degrees responsible for verifying high standards of quality in the business field. Some finance programs receive regional accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) and the Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE). Accreditation is an important factor in degree choice because it lends credibility to your degree program.

We evaluated each program on the basis of flexibility, faculty, course strength, cost, and reputation. Then we calculated the Intelligent Score for each program on a scale from 0 to 100. For a more extensive explanation, check out Our Ranking Methodology.

  • 61 hours to write this article
  • 195 universities and colleges we assessed
  • 261 education programs we compared

The Top 50 Finance Degree Programs

Best Finance Degree Programs
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What You Should Know About This Degree

A degree in finance prepares you to become a financial analyst, loan officer, personal financial adviser, or accountant, among a variety of other career paths. Finance degrees are distinct from business degrees in their focus on advanced mathematics principles and application.

When researching finance degree programs, look for accreditations from the AACSB, HLC, and MSCHE. Another reputable accreditation may come from the International Accreditation Council for Business Education (IACBE).

An accredited finance degree program ensures your courses and subject matter are held to quality standards. This will be important if you choose to gain employment with an established company, transfer credits, or pursue a graduate-level degree.

Certifications aren’t required but are highly recommended. A professional certification immediately proves to clients or potential employers that you have demonstrated competency in a financial specialty. Becoming certified also gives you a competitive edge in the workforce. The most popular certifications are Certified Public Accountant, Certified Financial Planner, and Financial Risk Manager.

What’s Next?

Ask yourself the following questions when researching a finance degree program:

  • Am I eligible for this program? Undergraduate programs that culminate in a bachelor’s degree generally require a minimum high school GPA and a minimum SAT or ACT score for admission. An associate degree is a good way to gain broad finance knowledge if you don’t meet these requirements. Additionally, credits earned at an accredited community or state college might be transferable to a university.
  • How long does it take to complete this degree? Most bachelor’s-level finance degrees require 120 credits, or four years of full-time study. It’s important to understand that 45 to 60 credits of the total 120 are general education classes and not specific to finance.

As you search for the best finance degree program, pay attention to important dates, such as application and financial aid deadlines. Ensure you have all components of the application (transcripts, admission essay, and so on) in order before the deadline.

Learn about financial aid options by completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and speaking with your prospective school’s financial aid office. New or transfer students might be eligible for program-specific funding that’s available on a first-come, first-serve basis.