Graduate Certificate in Financial Analysis: Online Certificate

Get info about online programs in financial analysis. Read about program requirements, course topics and degree levels, and check out career and continuing education options.

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Essential Information

There are many graduate certificate programs in financial analysis that can be earned entirely through online study. Students can view lectures and download course materials as their schedules permit, although there are set due dates for completing assignments. Applicants should have a bachelor's degree, preferably in finance or business.

A little more than a year of full-time study is required to complete this type of program. Credits earned in certificate programs can often be applied towards a master's degree, or a certificate can be earned in conjunction with a master's degree.

Graduate Certificate in Financial Analysis

Financial analysts provide guidance to businesses, insurance companies and banks based on detailed assessments of the securities and investments undertaken by organizations. An online graduate certificate in financial analysis prepares students currently working in financial institutions, such as insurance companies, banks or brokerage houses, for advancement to higher positions. Certificate programs train students in an intensive core of financial courses and best practices.

Program Information and Requirements

In general, the curriculum of a financial analysis graduate certificate program prepares students to understand the advanced functions and roles played by markets and financial institutions and how flow of funds through various economic channels affect both personal and business sectors.

Online programs can be completed utilizing e-mail and video conferencing for work and assignment submission. Students need a broadband connection and access to a computer for these programs.

Course Topics

Students undertaking a graduate certificate in financial analysis program typically have an undergraduate degree in business or have worked in some capacity within the financial sector. Certificate candidates study a core of classes related to finance and the financial industry. Typically, training programs offer the following core classes:

Managerial Accounting

Students learn the fundamentals of managerial accounting, including cost analysis and capital budgeting. Students acquire the tools to utilize accounting information in their directorial strategies.


Students learn the basics of finance, with an emphasis on financial analysis for business planning. Capital management and forecasting are two of the requisite financial skills students acquire.


Within securities classes, students study the history and purpose of financial markets, as well as securities valuation and selection strategies. Students gain exposure to general principles of securities portfolio management.

Career Information

Recipients of graduate certificates in financial analysis increase their marketability as financial or business analysts. They may work within banking, insurance or financial industries. Certificate-holders may opt to continue their advanced studies to become Chartered Financial Analysts (CFA).

In its 2015 forecast, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) predicts faster than average growth for financial analysts, anticipating the addition of 32,300 jobs from 2014-2024. As of May 2015, roughly 268,000 financial analysts working throughout the U.S. earned a median annual wage of $80,310.

Continuing Education Information

The Chartered Financial Analyst Institute (CFAI) administers the examination to qualify CFAs. Although it is not necessary to become a CFA to work in the financial sector, many positions, particularly managerial positions, show preference to individuals carrying the CFA designation. CFA-certification can be completed in as little as 18 months.

In online financial analysis graduate certificate programs, students learn skills related to cost analysis, accounting, budgeting, and business planning. Certification is also available, which may increase job opportunities.

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