Forensic accounting programs can be found at 4-year colleges and universities, and may go by other names, such as financial crime investigation. Undergraduates may enroll in a bachelor's degree program, while graduate students may pursue a specialization in forensic accounting through Master of Business Administration or Master of Accounting programs or via certificate programs.
Forensic Accounting Schools
Below are a few examples of schools offering accounting programs:
|College / University||Location||Institution Type||Degrees Offered||Tuition (2018-2019)*|
|CUNY John Jay College of Criminal Justice||New York, NY||4-year, public||Bachelor's||In-state: $7,270
Out-of-state: $14,940 (undergraduate)
|University of Baltimore||Baltimore, MD||4-year, public||Bachelor's, Master's, Graduate Certificate||In-state: $15,260
Out-of-state: $21,416 (graduate)
|Missouri State University-Springfield||Springfield, MO||4-year, public||Graduate Certificate||In-state: $6,038
Out-of-state: $11,114 (graduate)
|Utica College||Utica, NY||4-year, private not-for-profit||Bachelor's, Master's, Graduate Certificate||$21,382 (undergraduate)|
|University of Northwestern Ohio||Lima, OH||4-year, private not-for-profit||Bachelor's||$11,350|
|Carlow University||Pittsburgh, PA||4-year, private not-for-profit||Certificate, Bachelor's||$29,454|
|La Salle University||Philadelphia, PA||4-year, private not-for-profit||Graduate Certificate||$25,020 (graduate)|
|Christian Brothers University||Memphis, TN||4-year, private not-for-profit||Master's||$13,307(graduate)|
Source: *National Center for Education Statistics
School Selection Criteria
Students should consider the following when choosing a forensic accounting school:
- Some programs build an internship experience into the curriculum or offer it as an elective option, affording enrollees the possibility of pursuing particular interests through fieldwork while earning academic credits.
- Some programs qualify graduates to sit for the Certified Fraud Examiner (CFE) or Certified Forensic Accountant (Cr.FA) exams; other programs might provide credits applicable toward Certified Public Accountant (CPA) exam eligibility.
- Students should research a school's reputation and position within published school rankings.
- Students who do not already hold a bachelor's degree can opt to pursue accelerated programs that combine a bachelor's and master's program.
Bachelor's Degree Programs
Most bachelor's degree programs in forensic accounting require fulfillment of approximately 128 credit hours. Some schools require courses in computer and accounting information systems as well as accounting research and analysis.
Generally designed for working professionals, some certificate programs require that enrollees already hold a bachelor's degree in accounting or a related area such as finance, economics or business. Some schools also offer courses in corporate fraud, government investigation and tax accounting.
Master's Degree Programs
Many master's programs in forensic accounting also require that candidates hold a bachelor's degree in accounting or a relevant field. Some programs might also include courses covering topics such as witnessing principles.
Forensic accounting programs focus on fraud detection and other aspects of financial crime. Programs are most commonly offered as master's degrees or graduate certificates, but bachelor's degree programs are available.