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Banking College Program Overviews

Colleges and universities across the country offer a wide range of banking-related programs, from certificate programs covering the basics of banking to Master of Business Administration (MBA) programs preparing graduates for financial management opportunities.

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Essential Information

At the undergraduate level, certificate, associate's degree and bachelor's degree programs give students a solid background in the fundamentals of the banking industry, with coursework in accounting, business mathematics and consumer credit analysis. Certificate programs are brief, while associate's and bachelor's degree programs include general education courses and cover advanced banking topics, such as investment strategies and international business.

MBA programs with a concentration in banking and finance are more intense programs that focus on developing management and leadership skills. Courses may include bank management, mergers, global finance and capital markets.


Banking Certificate of Completion

Banking certificate programs equip students with a well-rounded knowledge of banking practice and theory, preparing them for a career in the financial services sector. Emphasis is placed on lending and banking fundamentals. Many certificate programs are designed for professionals who need to upgrade specific skills. Students entering a banking certificate program should be proficient in high school math and English.

In addition to providing students with a foundation in banking, courses offered as part of a banking certificate program cover the areas of business and economics. The following courses are common in a banking certificate program:

  • Financial institutions
  • Business communications
  • Economics and personal finance

Associate of Applied Science in Banking and Finance

Preparing graduates for a wide range of positions in the financial management industry, banking and finance associate's degree programs place an emphasis on bank organization, accounting principles, financial management, bank structure, business cycles and business law. Students are prepared to specialize in such areas as accounting, investment, bookkeeping, credit and loans. Many programs also offer internship opportunities within a financial institution.

Associate's degree programs in banking and finance provide graduates with the ability to relay potentially complicated financial information to others, analyze numerical data and handle money. The following are among the topics that common courses address:

  • Economics
  • Business law
  • Financial planning
  • Accounting and financial management
  • Bank lending
  • Marketing and management

Bachelor of Science in Business Administration (Banking and Finance Concentration)

Business administration bachelor's degree programs focusing on banking and finance provide students with a solid foundation in business, emphasizing areas such as finance, management and accounting. Bachelor's degree programs also cover the ethical, legal and behavioral aspects of business. Graduates will be able to complete basic accounting tasks, provide financial advice, analyze business models and perform financial analysis. Possible requirements before entering a core banking program include mathematics, accounting and economics courses.

Bachelor's degree programs in business administration that focus on banking and finance offer courses providing a broad education in business combined with a focus on banking and finance. Common coursework includes:

  • Money and banking
  • Financial planning and management
  • Macroeconomics
  • Microeconomics
  • Trade and finance

Find schools that offer these popular programs

  • Banking Related Services
  • Credit Management
  • Financial Mgmt Services
  • Financial Planning Services
  • International Finance
  • Investments and Securities
  • Public Finance Mgmt

Master of Business Administration (Banking and Financial Institutions Concentration)

Applicants to these programs often hold a bachelor's degree in business or a closely related field. Those who hold a non-business bachelor's degree may need to complete several business courses prior to enrollment.

Combining banking and finance skills with a broader business knowledge, MBA programs with a banking and finance emphasis cover leadership and development, commercial banking resource management, financial statement analysis, organizational development, managerial economics and statistical analysis. Students are equipped with solid financial, leadership, communication, problem-solving and negotiation skills. Students completing an MBA with a banking and finance emphasis are prepared for careers as financial managers, financial planners, cash managers, controllers, treasurers and more.

Common prerequisites needed to enter a master's degree program focusing on banking and finance include quantitative methods, accounting and economics courses. Such courses are included in undergraduate business programs. Preparing graduates for management and leadership positions within the financial industry, common courses offered as part of an MBA program focusing on banking and financial institutions include:

  • Marketing
  • Corporate financial management
  • Bank and human resource management

Popular Career Options

Banking certificate programs prepare students for entry-level employment in banking and finance. Job titles include:

  • Bank teller
  • Personal banker
  • Customer service representative
  • Title company representative
  • Loan officer

Associate's degree programs in banking and finance prepare graduates for entry-level employment in a variety of settings, including:

  • Mortgage companies
  • Brokerage companies
  • Governmental lending agencies

Graduates of a banking and finance bachelor's degree are prepared to seek a broad range of employment in business, including management and supervisory positions. Common job titles include credit counselor, financial analyst and:

  • Commercial banker
  • Asset manager
  • Investment banker
  • Financial planner
  • Mortgage lender
  • Financial services sales representative

Employment Outlook and Salary Info

Employment for financial managers is expected to increase by 7% between 2014 and 2024, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). The BLS also reported the median annual salary for financial managers was $112,700 in 2015.

Continuing Education Information

Associate's, bachelor's and master's degree programs in banking are available for students interested in further education. Many programs accept credits earned in a certificate program. Additional education can lead to more advanced positions, such as mortgage lender, bank manager, financial manager and small business lender.

With degree programs in banking ranging from a banking certificate to a master's degree, students have several options when considering their education. A banking certificate can be completed pretty quickly, while other undergraduate programs offer more advanced courses in banking and the master's degree program focuses on leadership and management skills.

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