Accounting Degree Review, an independent resource for current and prospective accounting and finance students, provides data-based rankings and reviews of top traditional and online accounting and finance degree programs and certificates from across the U.S.
The firm recently released its latest report of the Top 30 Best Value Online Accounting Undergraduate Certificate Programs. "We chose only regionally accredited colleges and universities with a proven track record of quality in online education," the report outlines. "For this ranking, we focused mainly on certificates offered at the undergraduate level. Most (but not all) are AACSB or ACBSP accredited."
The firm used three evenly weighted metrics to inform the rankings: affordability (non-resident tuition rate as published), graduate success (College Scorecard reported salary) and Student Support (IPEDS graduation rate). "With these stats, we have an idea of which programs are likely to do the most to help students succeed—during and after school—without costing them too much," the report emphasizes.
We are proud to announce that our Certificate Program in Accounting is ranked #2.
Low cost, flexible online scheduling and a short time frame make UC Berkeley Extension's accounting certificate an ideal choice for career-changing professionals and other non-traditional students.
As the report cites, "While Berkeley may be the model college for undergraduates, Berkeley Extension is a model of adult education. Bringing all of the educational excellence of Berkeley, along with affordable, flexible online courses taught by experienced, expert practitioners, Berkeley Extension is ideal for working adults who want challenge and support."
While Berkeley may be the model college for undergraduates, Berkeley Extension is a model of adult education.
The Certificate Program in Accounting is approved by UC Berkeley's Haas School of Business, ensuring students get Berkeley-quality education. To receive the certificate, students must complete 6 required courses and 6 semester units of electives for completion.
The total cost is estimated to be $9,400 (excluding cost of course materials). According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual wage for accountants and auditors was $68,150.
Adding to the ROI of the certificate, for those who are interested in sitting for the CPA Exam, all of the courses offer excellent preparation for this multi-part test.
For example, recent certificate graduate and career-advancer Erik Bridy felt prepared to take the CPA Exam after completing each of the courses.
The courses you take are specifically tailored to the CPA exam, which is great.
"The certificate gave me the fundamentals and foundation to understand the CPA Exam. If I didn't take the certificate, I would have been completely lost. For instance, one of the sections for the CPA Exam is auditing, so I took the Auditing course. I took Financial Statement Analysis, and Intermediate Accounting I and II, and those are all directly related to the CPA Exam FAR section. I took the tax course and that directly relates to the Regulation section. The courses you take are specifically tailored to the CPA exam, which is great. The classes give you a flavor and a broad brushstroke of what you’re going to see on the exam."
And working professionals can take the certificate fully online—whenever, wherever. This was a perk that Erik enjoyed: "For me, it is absolutely ideal because I can go online at any hour of the day and do the work. If I need to go on a business trip or I'm going on vacation, I can still study, participate in the discussions and watch the lectures. The flexibility and the accessibility were great for me." Read more of Erik's educational journey.
For those who are interested in changing careers, take a look at Brian Luo's story. In order to career-switch into a full-time accounting position, Brian knew he needed to add CPA to his résumé. While much of his undergraduate coursework met some of the exam requirements, Brian says that our courses prepared him to sit for the exam.
"The classes cover a variety of concepts and they helped me to understand the language that you use in taxation," he says. After finishing the accounting certificate, Brian met the requirements for CPA licensure. Today, he's working as a tax preparer at Spott, Lucey & Wall and is concurrently working toward his Master of Science in Taxation at Golden Gate University.
The report concludes: "Low cost, flexible online scheduling and a short time frame make UC Berkeley Extension's accounting certificate an ideal choice for career-changing professionals and other non-traditional students."