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Stephen Burkhart working at his desk with text Stephen Burkhart '16

Forensic Accounting Certificate Online Graduate Certification Courses

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Register By: July 01 Classes Start: July 03

Boost Your Forensic Accounting Career

  • $627 per credit for 12 credits
  • Complete in as little as 20 weeks
  • Start your path toward an advanced career in forensic accounting
  • Upskill for the job you want
  • Become adept in fraud detection and prevention
  • Accountant/auditor jobs expected to grow 6% through 20311

Graduate Certificate in Forensic Accounting Program Overview

Dig deeper into the world of investigative accounting by enrolling in the online Forensic Accounting and Fraud Examination Graduate Certificate at Southern New Hampshire University. Gain an eye for detail with a background in accounting basics and legal concepts while you learn from faculty with real-world forensic accounting expertise.

The graduate forensic accounting certificate online can prepare you for specific accounting practices, including mergers and acquisitions, tax investigations, economic crime investigations, civil litigation support, specialized audits and terrorism investigations.

SNHU's forensic accounting courses can provide you with the advanced skills you need to succeed in higher-level positions. It also can better position you to take the Certified Fraud Examiner exam through the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners.

Learn how to:

  • Detect and prevent fraudulent statements
  • Understand the legal aspects of fraud

Should you choose to further your education beyond a certificate program, the 4 forensic accounting courses in the certificate are actually 4 of the 12 classes you'd need to complete your MS in Accounting with a concentration in Forensic Accounting.

"This could be valuable for students who need an additional degree for advancement or for a student who needs more content to prepare for the CPA exam," said Mona Stephens, accounting faculty lead at SNHU.

SNHU provides additional information for education programs on our Licensure and Certification Disclosures page. View disclosure information.

Career Outlook

Forensic accounting combines accounting principles with the detection and prevention of fraud against the government, corporations, organizations and individuals.

The demand for professionals with accounting certificates and accounting degrees is rising, creating a strong job market for those with an accounting background. Accounting and auditing career opportunities are expected to grow 6% through 2031, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics – the same as the average growth rate for all occupations.1 In 2021 alone, about 1.4 million were employed as accountants or auditors.1

And forensic accountants have become crucial to business since – according to a 2020 survey – 47% of organizations had experienced fraud in the last 2 years.2 That's about $42 billion lost in that time period.2

That could be why accountants are paid so well. The median annual salary for all accountants and auditors was $77,250 in 2021, almost$30,000 more than the median pay for all occupations.1

The BLS also notes that accountants and auditors who have earned professional recognition should have an advantage in the job market.

And that works out well for those pursuing SNHU's forensic accounting certificate. That's because the 4 forensic accounting courses you'll take can help in preparing you for the Certified Fraud Examiner (CFE) exam.

What can CFE certification do for your career? According to the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners3:

  • You could earn about 34% more than non-certified colleagues.
  • You can increase your marketability, since CFE is known as the standard of excellence.
  • You could help your company's bottom line: The ACFE notes that CFEs uncover fraud about 50% sooner.

At this point, you might be most interested in the pay. The median annual salary for forensic accountants in 2017-18 was $82,938.3

However, when you add CFE certification on to that, your pay has the potential to bump up. A lot. According to ACFE, credentialed CFEs earned a median annual salary of $104,500 in 2017-18 – over $20k more than their non-certified counterparts.3

Forensic accountants also have plenty of choices as to where they could work. The ACFE reports that employment3 of forensic accountants takes place with:

  • Consulting firms, like those that focus on risk consulting or forensic accounting
  • Financial institutions
  • Forensic accounting divisions at public accounting firms
  • Government organizations
  • Insurance companies
  • Law enforcement agencies
  • Lawyers

NOTE: Students applying for SNHU's online forensic accounting certificate program must also submit a resume showing 2 years of accounting experience – specifically in auditing and financial reporting analysis – for consideration. A forensic accounting certificate on its own does not qualify you for a specific job or career. However, when both a bachelor's in accounting or a related discipline and a certificate in forensic accounting are combined, they can give you a leg up if you're seeking to advance in your current role, or they can give you an opportunity to tap into a new area of business.

Start Your Journey Toward an Online Forensic Accounting Certificate

Courses & Curriculum

The online forensic accounting certificate can introduce you to a range of advanced forensic accounting and fraud examination topics, including legal aspects of fraud and the role of technology in detection and prevention.

Throughout your courses, you'll learn:

  • A basic understanding of fraud, prevention and detection
  • Types of fraud, and various techniques to find them
  • Interview principles and techniques
  • Best practices for computer investigations

Those who take part in the forensic accounting certificate program typically do so to prepare for the Certified Fraud Examiner exam.

Mona Stephens with the text Mona Stephens"Students learn to identify the red flags that indicate various types of fraud, fraud schemes and scams," said Mona Stephens, accounting faculty lead at Southern New Hampshire University. "Projects are completed that demonstrate understanding in recognizing legal and regulatory issues, how to conduct fraud examinations and interviews, as well as use of technology and analytics in fraud examinations."

The 4 classes in the online forensic accounting certificate program also transfer into SNHU's MS in Accounting with a concentration in Forensic Accounting, leaving you with only 8 classes to complete a full master's degree.

Tuition & Fees

At SNHU, we’re committed to making education more accessible, by making it more affordable.

Beyond low tuition rates, we help our students save through transfer credits, credit for prior learning, grants and scholarships, tuition assistance and more. U.S. service members, both full and part time, as well as the spouses of those on active duty are also eligible for a 25% tuition discount.

This certificate is not eligible for federal financial aid. Students seeking alternatives to federal financial aid can explore tuition assistance, grants and scholarships, as well as private loans. To learn more about private loans, visit our Funding Your Education with Student Loans page.

Online Graduate Programs Per Course Per Credit Hour Annual Cost for 15 credits 
Degree/Certificates $1,881 $627 $9,405 
(U.S. service members, both full and part time, and the spouses of those on active duty)*
$1,410 $470 $7,050 

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, Course Materials ($ varies by course)

Frequently Asked Questions

University Accreditation

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 certificate is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP). Student achievement data can be found on College Navigator.

ACBSP logo

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