Earn a Associate in Accounting Online
- $320/credit (60 credits)
- Transfer up to 45 credits toward your associate degree
- Program accredited by ACBSP
- Stacks seamlessly into BS in Accounting
- No application fee or SAT/ACT scores required
- Increase your earning potential with an associate degree
Online Associate in Accounting Program Overview
Develop the accounting and business skills that employers desire with an online Associate of Science (AS) in Accounting from Southern New Hampshire University. The associate degree in accounting is perfect for professionals who want to enter an accounting-related field or lay the groundwork for continuing their education in accounting or business.
Once you earn your associate degree, you'll be prepared to jump into entry-level roles in your industry. You'll learn how to apply financial, managerial and cost accounting principles to your daily work and become an asset to any company.
No matter where your education takes you, earning your associate degree could be a good investment. According to data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, median weekly earnings of those with associate degrees were $157 more than those whose education stopped after graduating high school.1
In the associate in accounting program, you'll learn how to:
- Identify organizations that establish accounting standards regulations
- Maintain financial records and statements
- Analyze, interpret and present information to stakeholders
- Identify the steps in the ethical decision-making process
If you're interested in higher-level education, check out our bachelor's in accounting degree online.
The online associate degree in accounting provides a solid foundation in accounting principles and practices to prepare you for entry-level positions in nearly every industry. And when it comes to office and administrative support, earning your associate in accounting could position you well for many roles.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), bookkeeping, accounting and auditing clerks made a median annual salary of $42,410 in 2020.1 Similarly, financial clerks were reported to make $41,520 in the same time period.1
With your associate degree in accounting, you'll be qualified for these roles and a number of entry-level jobs including:
- Accounts receivable clerk
- Accounting assistant
- Billing clerk
- Payroll clerk
The technical skills you'll gain from your associate degree in accounting will be integral in these positions. But you might find that being a good candidate for a particular role requires other qualities – like being analytic, inquisitive and proactive.
"Do research, ask questions, keep searching for the whys and what-ifs, and take advantage of opportunities to learn new technologies," said Mona Stephens, accounting lead faculty at SNHU. "Employees who can demonstrate these skills will stand out."
Earning an associate degree can also make a significant financial impact on your life. In 2020, associate degree holders' weekly earnings were almost 20% higher than those of workers who did not continue their education beyond high school, according to the BLS.1 People with associate degrees also experienced lower unemployment rates in 2020 than workers with a high school diploma.1
“An AS degree is a great starting point for those who want to work in a specific field, gain some necessary experience, and continue their education to improve employment longevity,” said Dr. Mark Hobson, an associate dean of business.
If you want to move on to higher-paying roles in accounting, you'll want to continue your education after finishing your associate degree. Our bachelor's in accounting is an obvious next step, but we also provide a myriad of other business degrees – and beyond – that are worth exploring.
That's exactly what Makya Vandiver-Hawkins '21 decided to do after completing her associate degree program.
"I am continuing on to a bachelor’s in business administration with a concentration in accounting because of all of the work that I have completed in obtaining my associate in accounting degree," said Vandiver-Hawkins.
And if the end goal is becoming a qualified accounting professional, a bachelor's degree in accounting can also provide the educational requirements necessary to pursue professional certifications such as certified management accountant (CMA) and certified public accountant (CPA). Requirements to sit for the CPA exam vary from state to state. Our licensure and certification disclosure page outlines SNHU's programs and fulfillment of CPA exam requirements by state.
Start Your Journey Towards an Online Accounting Degree
Why SNHU For Your Associate Degree in Accounting
With no set class meeting times, you can learn on your schedule and access online course materials 24/7.
As part of our mission to make higher education more accessible, we’re committed to keeping our tuition rates low. In fact, we haven’t raised our online tuition rates, some of the lowest in the nation, since 2012.
Prior coursework could also help you save time and money. SNHU’s transfer policy allows you to transfer up to 90 credits toward your bachelor's degree and 45 credits for an associate degree from your previous institutions—that means you could save up to 75% off the cost of tuition. You could also save time and money by getting college credit for previous work experience, or by taking advantage of military discounts and employer tuition assistance if available to you.
Founded in 1932, Southern New Hampshire University is a private, nonprofit institution with over 100,000 graduates across the country. SNHU is institutionally accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE), which advocates for institutional improvement and public assurance of quality.
Recently, SNHU has been nationally recognized for leading the way toward more innovative, affordable and achievable education:
- U.S. News & World Report named SNHU the 2021 Most Innovative University in the North and one of the nation's "Best Regional Universities"
- Awarded the 21st Century Distance Learning Award for Excellence in Online Technology by The United States Distance Learning Association (USDLA)
- A $1 million grant from Google.org to explore soft skills assessments for high-need youth
At Southern New Hampshire University, you'll have access to a powerful network of more than 300,000 students, alumni and staff that can help support you long after graduation. Our instructors offer relevant, real-world expertise to help you understand and navigate the field. Plus, with our growing, nationwide alumni network, you'll have the potential to tap into a number of internship and career opportunities.
96.5% of students would recommend SNHU (according to a 2019 survey of 9,200+ online students). Discover why SNHU may be right for you.
Expanding access to quality higher education means removing the barriers that may stand between you and your degree. That’s why you can apply at any time and get a decision within days of submitting all required materials:
- Completed free undergraduate application
- Prior transcripts, which we can retrieve at no cost to you
- Test scores are not required as part of your application
Acceptance decisions are made on a rolling basis throughout the year for our 6 (8-week) undergraduate terms.
How to Apply
If you’re ready to apply, follow these simple steps to get the process going:
- Complete a free undergraduate application
- Submit any additional documents required
- Work with an admission counselor to explore financial options and walk through the application process
If you have questions or need help filling out your application, call 1.888.387.0861 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Courses & Curriculum
This 60-credit online accounting degree curriculum can give you a foundation in essential accounting principles and practices. You’ll understand how to handle a company’s finances, the basics of economics, statistics and how marketing plays a role in the world of accounting. Courses are taught by instructors with professional credentials and experience in accounting, taxation and fraud examination.
Interested in accounting, but afraid of taking math courses? Don't be. According to our instructors, communication skills are more important than being a math whiz when it comes to accounting.
"We have technology to do the math," said Mona Stephens, accounting lead faculty at SNHU. "Accounting is really all about problem-solving and storytelling."
Throughout your studies, you'll gain a foundational understanding of accounting. Some expected courses in your associate in accounting program include:
- Financial Accounting. Study the steps of the accounting cycle and how to prepare financial statements. You'll develop skills in financial accounting information analysis, stakeholder communications and accounting procedures.
- Managerial Accounting. Explore the financial impact of business decisions. Learn how to use accounting and productivity information to improve organizational performance. With new data-gathering skills, you'll be able to plan growth strategies and make informed decisions.
- Intermediate Accounting I. Examine foundational concepts including the accounting cycle, journal and adjusting entries. You'll learn to address accounting scenarios by applying theory and using proper accounting standards.
- Federal Taxation I. Learn about current U.S. tax laws, the Internal Revenue Code (IRC) and source documents relevant to federal tax returns for individuals. Using the applicable tax laws, you'll learn how to prepare federal tax returns for individuals.
These courses are taught by instructors with years of experience in accounting and who are committed to helping you earn your degree.
"The instructors at SNHU are remarkable," said Tabitha Paige Tillery '20. "They made sure that you knew they were there for you. Didn't matter the hours I was doing my schoolwork, someone was always there to help."
Akeda Toby-Locke '19 agreed.
"My instructors were always one call or email away when I had concerns or questions about my courses," she said. "They guided me on completing my assignments to their expectations and the best of my ability, and shared helpful resources and information that provided additional knowledge and insights about the courses."
No matter the course, our instructors can help equip you with the relevant specialized accounting skills you need to start a career in accounting.
But according to our own faculty, accountants need to be more than just technically proficient in accounting.
"The accountant of the future needs to be intellectually curious, always learning, able to figure out how to solve problems, analyze and visualize data, and effectively communicate with non-accountants," said Stephens. "A great way to start is to hone those intellectual curiosity and problem-solving skills."
That's why the associate accounting curriculum integrates other general education and business-related knowledge. Major courses include some less expected classes such as:
- Business Law I. Examine the background and ethical aspects of the U.S. legal system as it applies to business organizations. Understand how contracts, criminal and cyber law, product liability and torts impact business.
- Business Systems Analysis and Design. Gain a basic level of IT knowledge relative to its use in business. You'll learn to apply effective solutions to business programs using concepts and methodologies. This course includes both team-oriented assignments and structured computer labs using spreadsheet and database management tools.
- Introduction to Marketing. Discover how to create and deliver communications in order to reach consumers in a valuable way. You'll learn about marketing research, audiences, product selection, promotion, distribution and pricing.
- Human Relations in Administration. Good managers must develop skills in human resource management to support higher productivity. You'll learn techniques for becoming a more effective manager and colleague.
When you graduate with your associate degree in accounting, you can count on having both widely applicable skills and highly specified accounting knowledge. This means you can go on to pursue entry-level jobs or more advanced degrees in any number of fields.
Curriculum Requirements & Resources
- Technology resources: We provide cloud-based virtual environments in some courses to give you access to the technology you need for your degree – and your career. Learn more about our virtual environments.
- Save time and tuition: Depending on your scores, you could earn up to 12 math credits – the equivalent of 4 courses – toward your degree for less than $50 per assessment with our Pathways to Math Success assessments.
|View Full Curriculum in the Catalog|
|Courses May Include|
|AS in Accounting|
|ACC 201||Financial Accounting||Students will learn the steps of the accounting cycle and how to prepare financial statements in accordance with industry established rules and regulations. Students will develop skills needed to analyze financial accounting information, communicate this information to stakeholders, and understand the accounting procedures that produce this information.|
|ACC 307||Intermediate Accounting I||Review introductory concepts including the accounting cycle, journal and adjusting entries. Learn to address more intricate accounting scenarios such as recording more complex financial statement elements. Apply theoretical frameworks and various accounting standards and regulations to the proper preparation of financial statements.|
|ACC 330||Federal Taxation I||Learn about current US tax laws and the Internal Revenue Code (IRC), as well as the relevant source documents, associated with federal tax returns for individuals. Apply the appropriate tax laws as required by law in relation to the specific circumstances and tax liabilities of individuals. Prepare federal tax returns and communicate various tax return information to individuals|
|BUS 206||Business Law I||Students will examine the background, foundation, and ethical aspects of the United States' legal system as it applies to business organizations. Students will also learn the impact of torts, product liability, criminal law, contracts, sales, business organizations, and agency and cyber law in a business setting.|
|FIN 320||Principles of Finance||Students will examine the corporate finance discipline, including the financial management of organizations and the skills needed to make decisions about financing, investments, and dividends. Students will learn how the analysis of financing and investment options can inform decisions that add value to an organization and its investors.|
|MKT 205||Applied Marketing Strategies||Students will learn how the marketing mix is used to position a product or service for a specific target market by analyzing pricing, distribution, product development, and promotional strategies. By applying marketing and consumer research, students will generate informed recommendations. Students will also examine the impact of communications and distribution channels on marketing efforts.|
|Total Credits: 60|
Minimum Hardware Requirements
PC (Windows OS)
Apple (Mac OS)
Currently supported operating system from Microsoft.
Currently supported operating system from Apple.
8GB or higher
8GB or higher
100GB or higher
100GB or higher
Required for campus students. Strongly recommended for online students.
Required for campus students. Strongly recommended for online students.
SNHU Purchase Programs
5 Mbps Download, 1 Mbps Upload and less than 100 ms Latency
5 Mbps Download, 1 Mbps Upload and less than 100 ms Latency
- Laptop or desktop? Whichever you choose depends on your personal preference and work style, though laptops tend to offer more flexibility.
- Note: Chromebooks (Chrome OS) and iPads (iOS) do not meet the minimum requirements for coursework at SNHU. These offer limited functionality and do not work with some course technologies. They are not acceptable as the only device you use for coursework. While these devices are convenient and may be used for some course functions, they cannot be your primary device. SNHU does, however, have an affordable laptop option that it recommends: Dell Latitude 3301 with Windows 10.
- Office 365 Pro Plus is available free of charge to all SNHU students and faculty. The Office suite will remain free while you are a student at SNHU. Upon graduation you may convert to a paid subscription if you wish. Terms subject to change at Microsoft's discretion. Review system requirements for Microsoft 365 plans for business, education and government.
- Antivirus software: Check with your ISP as they may offer antivirus software free of charge to subscribers.
Tuition & Fees
As a private, nonprofit university, we’re committed to making college more accessible by making it more affordable. That’s why we offer some of the lowest online tuition rates in the nation—and haven't raised our costs in a decade.
We also offer financial aid packages to those who qualify, plus a 30% tuition discount for U.S. service members, both full and part time, and the spouses of those on active duty.
|Online Undergraduate Programs||Per Course||Per Credit Hour||Annual Cost for 30 credits|
|Degree/Certificates (U.S. service members, both full and part time, and the spouses of those on active duty)*||$675||$225||$6,750|
Tuition Rates are subject to change and are reviewed annually. *Note: students receiving this rate are not eligible for additional discounts.
Additional Costs No Application Fee, $150 Graduation Fee, Course Materials ($ varies by course)
Frequently Asked Questions
Can you get an associate in accounting?
Yes, you can. An associate degree in accounting is a great way to jumpstart an accounting career and can help you gain professional experience faster.
While many accounting jobs require a bachelor’s degree, an accounting associate degree will give you the skills you need to succeed in entry-level roles. An online associate degree in accounting can also act as a stepping stone toward more advanced degrees and industry certifications.
With an online associate degree in accounting, you’ll gain a strong foundation of key career skills through general education courses, including communication, critical thinking, problem-solving and decision making.
You’ll also explore accounting, finance and business topics, and learn how to apply this knowledge to daily accounting work. Your accounting associate degree will explore:
- Financial accounting
- Managerial accounting
- Business law
- Business systems analysis
- Human relations
- Information technology
- International business
How much do accountants with an associate degree make?
It depends on your career path. While earning an associate degree in accounting can help you earn more than workers without a college degree, specific salaries will vary.
The median annual salary for bookkeeping, accounting and auditing clerks, for example, was $42,410 in May 2020.1 The highest paid 10% in this field earned more than $63,900.1 Financial clerks earned a median salary of $41,520 and bill and account collectors earned a median salary of $38,100 the same year.1
Continuing your accounting education with a bachelor’s degree, online master’s in accounting, accounting certification or a graduate certificate in accounting can open up more job opportunities and lead to higher pay.
What is the best online college for accounting?
The best online college for accounting is the one that prepares you for the career you want and offers the flexibility to help you achieve your goals, whether you’re working full time or balancing coursework with family obligations.
That's why Akeda Toby-Locke '19 chose Southern New Hampshire University.
"In the beginning, I was very nervous, as this was my first time studying online," she said. "But as time went by, it became my norm, and I really enjoyed the flexibility to study and complete my assignments by the specific deadlines on my time."
At SNHU, the online associate in accounting is designed to give you the skills you need to get started in entry-level accounting jobs faster. And our innovative online programs ensure you have the support you need to complete your degree.
Online students have access to a wide range of virtual student services, including writing help, tutoring and academic and career advising.
During her associate degree program, Makya Vandiver-Hawkins '21 relied on these resources and the continuous support of her SNHU community to help her earn her degree.
"Studying online was, at times, difficult when there were times that I needed to have someone by my side walking me through something," said Vandiver-Hawkins. "Thankfully there is 24/7 tutoring that I took advantage of during these times."
Online clubs and student organizations are also offered to help you grow your personal network and get hands-on learning experience.
SNHU’s generous transfer policy allows up to 45 credits from a previous institution to be applied to one of our associate degree programs. If you’ve completed some college coursework already, this means you can save money and time, and start your career even faster.
Is an associate in accounting worth it?
If you want to start your accounting career right away, then yes. With an associate in accounting, you can gain the skills you need to kick off an accounting career and start gaining valuable professional experience faster.
“In the current employment market, more students are seeking degrees and credentials on a faster pace to meet the needs of employers," said Dr. Mark Hobson, an associate dean of business.
Earning an online associate degree in accounting can also help boost your long-term earning and career potential.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), associate degree holders earned about 20% more each week in 2020 than workers with only a high school diploma.1 Workers with an associate degree also saw lower unemployment rates in 2020, at just 7.1% compared to 9% for workers with a high school diploma.1
But there's more to an associate degree in accounting than just earning potential. It's an opportunity to put your goals within reach.
"[This program] helped me get a degree that I can use and helped prove to myself that I could accomplish anything," said Tabitha Paige Tillery '20.
If you want to advance your career even further, earning an associate degree can give you a head start toward earning a bachelor’s in accounting degree. An SNHU bachelor’s degree in accounting can provide the educational requirements needed to pursue valuable professional certifications, like certified management accountant (CMA) and certified public accountant (CPA).
How much does an accountant with an associate degree make an hour?
It varies based on your specific role and the industry in which you work. For example, the median annual salary for bookkeeping, accounting and auditing clerks was $42,410 in May 2020, or about $20.39 per hour for full-time workers.1
But pay varied for bookkeeping, accounting and auditing clerks depending on the industry in which they worked. Bookkeepers working full time in finance and insurance earned a median salary of $44,140 in 2020, while full-time bookkeepers working in retail earned a median wage of $37,230 in that same time period.1
Accountants earned a median salary of $73,560 in 2020.1 But these jobs typically require a bachelor’s degree or master’s degree in accounting and may require a professional certification.
Are online degrees taken seriously?
Yes, they are. As technology evolves and more of our daily lives move online, students and employers alike are recognizing the value of an online degree.
Online learning continues to grow in higher education. According to the National Center for Education Statistics, more than 3.8 million students took at least one distance learning education course at degree-granting institutions in fall 2019.2
At SNHU, our online accounting courses are taught by faculty with years of experience in the field, ensuring you have access to the most up-to-date information and accounting practices. And while your coursework may be online, you’ll gain key career skills through hands-on learning opportunities so you can apply your learning to the day-to-day work of accounting right away.
Southern New Hampshire University is a private, nonprofit institution accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE) as well as several other accrediting bodies.
This program and its concentrations are accredited by the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP). Student achievement data can be found on College Navigator.
Sources & Citations (1, 2)
1 Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, on the internet, at:
- https://www.bls.gov/emp/chart-unemployment-earnings-education.htm (viewed Dec. 1, 2021)
- https://www.bls.gov/OOH/office-and-administrative-support/bookkeeping-accounting-and-auditing-clerks.htm (viewed Dec. 1, 2021)
- https://www.bls.gov/ooh/office-and-administrative-support/financial-clerks.htm (viewed Dec. 1, 2021)
- https://www.bls.gov/ooh/office-and-administrative-support/bill-and-account-collectors.htm (viewed Dec. 1, 2021)
- https://www.bls.gov/OOH/business-and-financial/accountants-and-auditors.htm (viewed Dec. 1, 2021)
2 National Center for Education Statistics, Distance Learning Fast Facts, on the internet, at https://nces.ed.gov/fastfacts/display.asp?id=80 (viewed Dec. 1, 2021)