Online Finance Degrees

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Do you enjoy working with numbers and being a part of the corporate setting? Then consider earning your degree in finance online.

Online Finance Degrees

The financial world is a lucrative, fast-paced arena that offers a variety of career opportunities to work your way up the corporate ladder.

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From working as a financial assistant to the lead executive of a financial department, there are a number of exciting ways to utilize your online finance degree.

Careers in Finance

Careers in the field of finance typically focus around helping a business successfully manage its financial endeavors. With responsibilities that include bookkeeping, financial planning, and strategic team management, these jobs require a variety of mathematical, business, and leadership skills.

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The table below gives you a brief description of a few popular financial careers as well as their median annual salary based on data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Careers Median Annual Salary
Vice Presidents (VP), Finance $179,520
Finance Directors $131,710
Finance Managers $131,710
Business Analysts, Finance/Banking $93,000
Finance Assistants $44,760

While most individuals who graduate from an online finance program begin in entry-level positions, it is possible to work your way up the ranks to earn well over six figures a year.

As with any position, you may make more or less than the numbers shown above based upon your skills, education, and experience level.

Types of Online Finance Degrees

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From associate’s degrees to top graduate programs, there are several options available to earn an online degree in Finance!

Fortunately, many top accredited universities in the U.S. are now offering online courses that allow you to earn your degree on a schedule that suits your needs. Depending on the employer, you may need additional education or work experience to qualify for some of these jobs.

Online Associate’s Degrees in Finance

An associate’s degree in finance typically takes two years to complete, but by working in an online setting you may have the option to work at an accelerated pace. This online degree program gives you a solid foundation for entry-level work in a variety of financial careers, including work as a bank teller, broker, or financial analyst.

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During the course of your program, you can expect to cover a variety of financial topics that include:

  • Business statistics
  • Management and leadership
  • Accounting and investment
  • Corporate finances

While an online associate’s degree can get you started in the finance world, it is also a great first step toward earning an online bachelor’s degree in finance.

Online Bachelor’s Degrees in Finance

finance assistant doing online report

By combining business theory with in-depth courses in the principles of finance, an online bachelor’s degree in finance is designed to get you started in a fast-paced corporate career.  This degree program is well suited for those interested in working in contract management, corporate financial management, financial planning, and investments.

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Throughout the course of your education, you will learn essential skills for the business workplace, including:

  • Preparing and analyzing financial information
  • Evaluating and managing security portfolios
  • Strategies for forecasting corporate financial decisions
  • In-depth research and data interpreting skills for strategic decision making

Completion of a bachelor’s in a finance degree program can also prepare you to sit for professional certification exams, including the Certified Management Accountant (CMA) and Certified Financial Planner (CFP).

Online Master’s Degrees in Finance

finance director working on monthly finance report

When enrolling in a quality online master’s degree in finance program, you can graduate with a well-rounded understanding of financial business applications and advanced financial theory.

Graduates from this program will have the expertise to pursue careers in mutual fund and private equity management, as a financial risk manager, or as a corporate finance officer.

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Examples of advanced courses you can expect to encounter in an online master’s degree in finance program include:

  • Analysis of financial markets
  • Multinational managerial finance
  • Financial accounting theory
  • Mergers and acquisitions

After successfully completing a master’s in Finance program, you will be prepared for various professional certifications, such as the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) certification.

Finance Career Outlook and Salary Information

Business Analyst reading financial documents

With an increasingly regulated business environment, companies are on the lookout for professional financial auditors and analysts to help them navigate the changing market. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, occupations in business and financial operations are expected to experience an 8% increase over the next 10 years.

When it comes to salary, financial occupations can be very well-paying and are typically above the national average median wage across all occupations. For example, business and financial operations careers have a median annual wage of $76,570.

View a list of the top 40 Finance careers to compare jobs and salaries in this field.

Is an Online Degree in Finance Right for Me?

busy office employee working at laptop

Due to the increased interest in flexible online learning and a changing student population, top universities are now offering highly-reputable finance courses online. Earning degrees online isn’t for everyone, but they can be an excellent choice for adult students that are juggling the demands of career and family obligations while attending school.

There are several advantages to earning your finance degree online, including:

  • State-of-the-art technology to connect you with financial experts around the country
  • Ability to schedule classes around business hours
  • Virtual tutoring and mentorship programs for advanced finance classes

Finance vs. Accounting

finance assistant checking financial updates

It can be easy to confuse the fields of finance and accounting, and many universities offer degrees in both courses of study. While both fields are related to the financial situation of a company, they typically deal with different aspects of the business’s financial department.

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Essentially, the field of accounting deals with the past, while finance is concerned with the future.

Those in accounting handle financial information and statements, and professionals in this field help businesses ensure that financial events are accurately recorded.

Finance, on the other hand, deals more with taking a company’s financial data and analyzing it to help the business make long-term financial decisions and projections.

Interested in accounting? Check out our in-depth discussion of accounting degrees and programs.

Comparing Top Finance Degree Programs

Finance is a competitive field, and it is essential that you choose a degree program from a reputable university. Consider the following factors while you are researching the various options available for schools that offer online finance degree options.


college campus offering online finance degrees

Accreditation is the voluntary review process that a college goes through to ensure that its educational offerings meet high-quality standards. When earning an online degree in Finance, it is imperative that you research the accreditation of your program to ensure that your degree is considered reputable once you enter the workforce.

For more information, the website of the U.S. Department of Education is an excellent starting point to find out more about recognized accrediting agencies across the country.

Student-to-Faculty Ratio

Small class sizes are just as important in online learning as they are in the classroom setting. Top universities often strive to keep the student-to-faculty ratio low in order to provide their distance learning students with a personalized educational experience that gives them the greatest chance at success in their online Finance degree program.

In addition to researching the student-to-faculty ratio of your prospective school, it is also helpful to look at the credentials of the finance faculty that will be teaching your courses.

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For information on a number of factors that are important to choosing the right school for your needs, it is helpful to take the time to thoroughly look through each college’s website.

Academic Advising and Student Services

finance director checking company's financial statements

Most reputable universities offer academic advising and student services that can help their online students reach their goals. These support services are especially helpful when you have enrolled in a challenging online finance degree program, and they may include the following:

  • Academic and career advisement to help you reach your business career goals
  • Virtual workshops and seminars that provide finance skill-building opportunity
  • Mentorship programs with leading finance professionals
  • Flexible scheduling options to work around a professional career

For a rewarding, lucrative career in the ever-evolving business world, earning a degree in finance is an excellent starting point to reach your long-term goals.

From helping small businesses get their feet off the ground to working with multi-million dollar corporations, there is room for exponential growth when pursuing a career in the world of business finance.

Ready to start your journey?
Elizabeth Abner
WRITTEN BY Elizabeth Abner

Elizabeth is pursuing a Doctor of Philosophy in Foreign Policy and earned her master's degree in business administration. For her undergraduate studies, she earned a Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration with a concentration in international business. Elizabeth's research is focused on universities offering online degree programs.