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Finance is a diverse field with countless high-paying career opportunities, and earning a finance degree is a great way to set yourself up for success in this in-demand industry. But what if you don’t want to commit four years to earning a finance degree?

If you’re interested in pursuing a finance degree but are worried about the time commitment, there are several ways you can take your education into your own hands and accelerate your timeline. Online finance degree programs offer a flexible and convenient way to earn your degree while also saving time.

To help you kickstart your career, we created a list of the fastest online finance degree programs, and we’ll take a closer look at methods you can use to streamline your education and get your degree as quickly as possible.

How Long Does It Take to Earn a Finance Degree?

Before diving into the fastest online finance degree programs, it’s essential to understand the typical timeline for earning a finance degree. A bachelor’s degree in finance typically takes about four years of full-time study. For reference, full-time is generally equivalent to 12 credit hours per semester.

However, the actual time can vary depending on various factors, such as the required credits, course load, and individual circumstances.

How Can I Earn My Finance Degree as Fast as Possible?

If you’re eager to expedite your journey toward a finance degree, there are several strategies you can use to complete your program faster than usual.

From earning prior learning credits to enrolling in accelerated programs, here are three effective methods to help you earn your finance degree as fast as possible.

Earn prior learning credits

One way to save time and accelerate your finance degree is by earning prior learning credits. Prior learning assessments allow you to earn college credits for knowledge and skills acquired through various experiences, such as:

  • Advanced Placement (AP) exams: If you have taken AP courses in high school and obtained a qualifying score on the corresponding exams, you may be eligible to receive college credits.
  • International Baccalaureate (IB) exams: Similar to AP exams, IB exams can also grant you college credits if you achieve the required scores, allowing you to skip some core classes that would otherwise be necessary to complete your degree.
  • College-Level Examination Program (CLEP) exams: CLEP exams assess your knowledge in specific subject areas. Depending on your performance, you can earn credits towards your finance degree.
  • Military experience: If you have served in the military, your training and experience may be evaluated for college credit, allowing you to progress faster toward your degree.
  • Workplace training: Certain certifications and training programs offered in your workplace may be recognized for college credit, helping you expedite your finance degree.

By leveraging prior learning credits, you can bypass specific introductory courses or earn credits towards elective classes, reducing the time needed to complete your finance degree. Be sure to check with your university to see how many credits you can earn from prior learning assessments, as most institutions cap the amount you can put toward your degree.

Take more classes

Another effective strategy to fast-track your finance degree is to take more classes per semester. Most schools allow students to enroll in up to 18 credit hours per semester, which is more than a full-time course load. By taking additional classes, you can accumulate more credits within a given semester and reduce the time it takes to earn your degree.

However, you must handle the increased workload without compromising your academic performance or overall well-being. Consider your personal circumstances and commitments before enrolling in an intensive course schedule. If you’re confident you can commit to the increased demand, enrolling in more courses is a great way to get through your degree program quickly.

Furthermore, some institutions offer winter and summer sessions in addition to the traditional fall and spring semesters. Taking advantage of these additional terms can help you complete courses more rapidly, allowing you to finish your finance degree sooner than the standard four-year time frame.

Enroll in an accelerated degree program

Accelerated degree programs are specifically designed to expedite the completion of a degree. These programs offer a structured curriculum that allows students to earn their finance degree faster than traditional programs.

Typically, accelerated degree programs require a higher commitment and intensity as they condense the coursework into a shorter time frame. Admissions requirements for these programs may vary, but they often consider factors such as previous academic performance, relevant work experience, and motivation to complete the program efficiently.

Accelerated programs may incorporate various strategies to streamline the learning process, including shorter terms, accelerated coursework, and more focused study plans. By enrolling in an accelerated degree program, you can complete your finance degree significantly faster, enabling you to enter the job market or pursue further studies without delay.

As is the case when considering taking more courses, you should consider your circumstances and responsibilities before enrolling in an accelerated degree program. The increased workload may be too demanding for some students to balance work and other obligations. Only choose such a program if you can commit to the rigorous schedule.

Our Research

This list features some of the country’s fastest online finance degree programs. Each school featured is a nonprofit, accredited institution, either public or private, with a high standard of academic quality for post-secondary institutions.

We evaluated each school’s program on tuition costs, admission, retention and graduation rates, faculty, and reputation. Then, we calculated the Intelligent Score on a scale of 0 to 100. Read more about our ranking methodology.

Next, we compared this comprehensive list of the fastest online finance degree programs to a list of aggregated college rankings from reputable publications, such as U.S. News & World Report, to simplify a student’s college search. We pored through these rankings so students don’t have to.

Read More about Online Finance Degrees

The 50 Fastest Online Finance Degree Programs

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Auburn University Harbert College of Business

DeSales University

University of Maryland Global Campus

Lamar University

Northern Illinois University

University of Houston at Clear Lake

Bellevue University

Cambridge College Global

Eastern Kentucky University

Albertus Magnus College

University of Scranton

UMass Lowell

University of Michigan at Dearborn

California Lutheran University

Indiana University

JWU College of Professional Studies

Southern New Hampshire University

University of Miami