Accounting is very popular major choice, with about 59,000 students a year graduating with the degree. It was ranked the 7th most popular major in recent years.
Perhaps the reason the degree is popular is the average accounting grad earns three percent more than other college-educated professionals. The typical accounting grad earns $44,500 in their early career and $44,500 in their mid-career. Students who earn advanced degrees could earn even more than this.
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Which schools are ranked the best for a bachelor’s in accounting?
So which schools produce the best outcomes for students pursuing an accounting degree? The following top ten schools were ranked based on positive student outcomes like graduate salaries, graduation rates, and student loan default rates among other quality metrics.
*Salary estimates are made with data from PayScale and the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
- Bentley University: Massachusetts
Bentley is known for its innovative business programs and it’s accounting degree is no exception. This school is ranked best for a bachelor’s accounting in 2019. If desired, students can also receive their graduate degree in accounting here too.
The average accounting grad who graduates from Bentley earns $51,000 in early career. Accounting is the top ranked and most popular degree at the school, followed by finance and business management (in order of popularity.)
- The University of Illinois at Urbana – Champaign: Illinois
Students who graduated with a degree in accounting from the University of Illinois at Urbana – Champaign accounting students make an average of 30% more than the typical accounting grad. Accounting is also the best ranked major at the school.
This large public university is considered a great value for the money. The freshman retention rate is high and 87% of the teachers are full time. With more than 20,000 students, this institution is one of the biggest schools in the nation.
- The University of Notre Dame: Indiana
The University of Notre Dame is well known among sports fans, but many don’t realize what an excellent choice the school is for accounting students. Graduates of Notre Dame’s accounting program make about $60,000 in their early career and $119,300 in their mid-career.
This private school affiliated with the Roman Catholic faith has an excellent student to faculty ratio of ten to one. The freshman retention rate is amazing with 98% of students returning for their second year.
- Bryant University: Rhode Island
Accounting is the 4th most popular degree at Bryant University following marketing, finance, and business administration. As you can see, the school is well known for business degrees all around with 14% of undergrads pursuing accounting.
Among Bryant’s notable results is the very low student loan default rate of 1%. The nationwide average is 7%, indicating Bryant grads are doing better than average paying down their debt. We would expect no less from students with such keen minds for business and finance.
- CUNY Bernard M. Baruch College: New York
Set in the bustling New York City, CUNY Bernard M Baruch College is a great choice for students who like to be in the thick of exciting city life while getting a great education. The average salary of grads from the program earn as much as $52,300 in their starting career and $88,800 in their mid career. The accounting program is the 2nd most popular program in the country and is also ranked highly for veterans.
- Boston College: Massachusetts
Boston College is a fairly priced private school with a low student loan default rate. Nearly 90% of the students graduate in four years with an average debt load of $16,100 in federal loans.
Students from the accounting program do particularly well, earning on average $57,000 in early career and $109,000 in mid-career.
- Loyola University of Maryland: Maryland
Good morning, Baltimore! For students who want to enjoy the thrill of city life, Loyola University Maryland is a good choice. Accounting is the highest ranked major at the school as well as the 3rd most popular behind Business Administration and Communication.
Students who are interested in an advanced degree can stay at Loyola to obtain their masters as well.
- Binghamton University: New York
Binghamton University is a great choice for young accounting hopefuls. Students who graduate from this popular program earn on average $56,400 a year in their early career. This public university offers a low student loan default rate, high freshman retention rate, and an above average amount of full-time teachers.
- Fairfield University: Connecticut
This private school set in the suburbs of Connecticut offers a quiet sanctuary to learn to become an accounting genius. The school boasts a low student loan default rate, and a low student to faculty ratio of twelve to one!
About 100 or so students graduate from the accounting program in a year, and grads earn on average $54,000 in their early career. Students can also earn a graduate degree in accounting from Fairfield as well which will further increase their salary prospects.
- Villanova University: Pennsylvania
Villanova is a private school with a low student loan default rate and an impressive student to faculty ratio of twelve to one. Nearly 90% of the students graduate in four years and earn higher than average starting salaries. Accountants who earned their bachelor’s degree from Villanova make $55,000 in their early career. Students can earn their graduate degree in Accounting here as well.
Which one of these highly ranked schools will you choose to pursue your accounting dreams?
Looking for a school closer to home? Go to the full ranking and filter to find colleges near you.