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Online Finance Certificate and Diploma Information

Get info about online certificate programs in finance. Read about program requirements, course topics and degree levels, as well as career and continuing education options.

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Essential Information

Certificate programs in finance are fairly easy to find online and offer basic training in finance for entry-level business professionals. Most programs can be completed totally online in less than a year, with some taking only a few weeks. Students without business experience may be required to complete an internship.

In these online finance certificate programs, students learn about investments and risk management. Other courses may cover financial planning, tax planning and estate planning. Students may be required to research and execute a final project. Some online finance certificate programs may qualify graduates to take the examination to become a certified financial planner.

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Certificate in Finance

A certificate in finance can teach students how to address risk and return issues, evaluate investment opportunities and understand financial statements and documentation. These programs are typically designed for business professionals who are not financial managers, but are appropriate for students looking to begin a career in finance. Students that have attended college may be able to transfer previously earned credits.

Program Information and Requirements

Although students are typically able to work at their own pace, most schools expect students to complete an online finance certificate program in less than 12 months. Some programs can be as short as 12 weeks. Many schools also provide internship opportunities to students who do not already have careers in business or finance.

Some online finance certificate programs are geared toward professionals who want or need to obtain continuing education credits for certification. Others may qualify graduates to obtain the Certified Financial Planner credential. In order to participate in these online programs, students should have computer systems able to play Internet-based video and audio and run chat programs to communicate with instructors and classmates.

List of Common Finance Courses

The curriculum of most online certificate in finance programs contains courses in economics, financial analysis, corporate investment and risk management. Because these programs are designed for professionals in the business world, most schools do not require students to complete general education prerequisites before they begin their finance courses.

Capital Investment

This course trains students to make efficient and effective investment decisions and discusses which types of investments are appropriate for different kinds of financial projects.

Understanding Financial Statements

Students learn how to read and interpret balance sheets and income statements. They also learn how to explain a company's financial condition to colleagues and clients.

Risk and Return

Students get a comprehensive overview of how the risk-return relationship effects budgeting and investment decisions.


Career Information

Many jobs in the financial industry may require bachelor's degrees, but graduates of online certificate programs in finance could find work as a budget analyst, personal financial advisor or other professional. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), most budget analysts made from $47,550 to $108,600 as of 2015. Those with a master's degree may have better job prospects, the BLS reported. Most personal financial advisors made $39,300 to $187,200 or more as of 2015, and bachelor's degrees are often preferred by employers, the BLS reported.

Continuing Education Information

Students looking to enter into a degree program in finance can find several programs both online and in the classroom. Additionally, most schools allow credits earned during a certificate program to be transferred into bachelor degree programs.

Online certificate programs are available in the field of finance. These programs are typically designed for working professionals who want to broaden their knowledge of such topics as capital investment, financial statement analysis and risk/return concepts.

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