We rank the fastest online associate degree programs in finance.
Getting into the fastest online associate’s of finance degree programs can be the start of a successful career in the finance industry.
Indeed, it’s a career worth pursuing considering the massive size of the financial services industry in the United States alone—about $4.85 trillion in revenues in 2021!
Such is its significant impact on the national economy that the financial services industry accounts for 7.4% of the national gross national product.
In all these programs, nonetheless, there’s a common theme—graduates of these associate degree programs are qualified for entry-level jobs in the financial services industry. Their knowledge and skills are relevant to finance, from financial and managerial accounting in organizations to international finance.
You can become a part of the booming financial services industry by completing an online associate degree in finance.
Online programs offering associate degrees in finance and related areas are designated as follows:
Key Point: The type of online associate degree in finance you choose will impact what you study and your career focus.
It should be noted that some associate degrees that are finance-related are actually a concentration within a business administration or business management program, but many programs offer standalone associate degrees.
Online programs offering associate degrees in finance and related fields typically cover one or more of these fundamental areas:
Key Point: Expect an online associate in finance degree program to concentrate in one or more of major areas of finance.
The admission requirements for on-campus and online programs are usually the same, as are their academic quality and graduation requirements.
But in the case of accelerated online programs, additional requirements may be imposed, with approved credits for transfer and willingness to tackle accelerated coursework being common.
The common admission requirements for online associate degree programs include the following:
Key Point: Associate degree programs don’t typically require letters of recommendation, personal statements, or resumes. Standardized test scores may or may not be required.
Earning an online degree in finance at the associate level means completing the requirements for a 60-semester credit or 90-quarter credit curriculum.
The actual number of credits for completion can vary between online programs but only slightly (e.g., 61-63 semester credits).
Transferring credits to your online associate in finance program can accelerate your time to graduation. Not only will you spend less time earning your degree, but you will also cut the cost of your college education.
The most common type of credits that can transfer are from general education courses that were earned from previous college coursework.
The typical online associate degree programs accept transfer credits from various sources, including:
Key Point: Utilizing transfer credits can shorten the time it takes to earn your degree. Be sure to work with an admissions officer to maximize the opportunity.
Even better, if you earn your online associate degree in finance from an accredited college, you can usually transfer most of the credits towards a bachelor’s degree program.
Graduates can transfer the credits earned in these associate in finance degree programs into traditional or online bachelor’s degree programs in finance, banking and finance, and business administration, among others.
The typical time-to-completion for online degree programs in finance at the associate level is 2-3 years of full-time studies. But in the case of accelerated online programs, it can be two years or less with transfer credits, accelerated coursework, and full-time matriculation from start to finish.
Online programs with self-paced learning even allow students to complete the coursework faster, thus enabling faster time-to-completion.
While learning outcomes differ between online degree programs in finance, online students gain foundational finance knowledge and skills necessary for entry-level jobs and continuing education.
Students learn through major courses in:
Key Point: An associate of finance program will cover a wide range of subjects.
In the best online associate degree programs, on-campus faculty members also teach in the online programs. On-campus and online students then benefit from the same academic quality and receive the same diploma (i.e., no distinction stated).
The benefits of earning an online degree cannot be overemphasized, from the flexibility and convenience of asynchronous courses to the acceptability of the degree in the industry.
Online students also praise the ease of use of their accelerated online programs’ learning management system (LMS), an online learning platform that serves the needs of both learners and teachers.
Think of the LMS as a one-stop-shop where you can access your student account, learning materials, references, and resources provided by your teachers and college.
You can also participate in the synchronous live classes and the asynchronous class activities, such as threads and discussion forums, and submit your assignments and group projects. You and your peers also use the LMS for interactions amongst yourselves and with the faculty and staff.
And don’t think for a second that online associate degree programs are rife for cheating and plagiarism! This is far from the truth as the best LMS, such as Moodle, Blackboard, and Canvas, have built-in apps that guard against cheating, plagiarism, and other academic mischiefs.
Teachers are also now adept at their detection, too, such as each student’s writing style.
Earning an online degree has its pros and cons in terms of cost. There are fewer travel and related expenses with learning anywhere, anytime. However, there’s also the cost of an Internet connection and technology fees imposed by the college on online students.
But in most schools, the on-campus and online per-credit tuition are the same—and if there’s a difference, it’s only a slight increase for online programs.
The per-credit tuition for online programs ranges between $90 and $435+, with total costs over two years ranging from $6,000 to $26,000 for first-year students without transfer credits.
Online students, fortunately, are eligible for federal, state, and school financial aid! There are usually no distinctions between on-campus and online students, too, as long as the eligibility requirements are met.
But non-traditional students in online associate degree programs may be precluded from certain types of financial aid, not because of their modality of education but because of their income. This is especially true of working professionals and adult learners.
While an associate in finance degree can help you get your foot in the door of the financial services industry, it isn’t enough for career advancement into supervisory, management and executive positions.
Earning a bachelor’s degree in finance and other related fields is the first step, followed by seeking a master’s degree and professional certifications.
Examples of jobs that would require additional degrees include Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA), Certified Public Accountant (CPA), and Financial Modeling and Valuation Analyst (FMVA).Back to Top
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there is a projected growth rate of 7% in business and financial occupations over the next decade (2021-2031).
The financial sector and business organizations are among the largest employers, and there are a projected 980,200 openings, on average, every year for these occupations.
Among the popular occupations for associate degree holders in finance are:
Key Point: Associate degree holders in finance will find plenty of employment opportunities! Even better, jobs in the finance sector carry a median annual wage of $76,570 in business and financial occupations.
Here are the criteria that we took into consideration when determining the 20 fastest accerelated online associate degree in finance programs:
The three most popular business program accrediting agencies are:
With the likes of Frank Gehry’s Vontz Center for Molecular Studies, the University of Cincinnati campus is considered among the world’s most beautiful campuses by campus planners and architects! Many of the existing buildings and renovations in its urban campus are led by signature architects, from the residence halls to the Fifth Third Arena.
Earning an online degree from UC is made easier, too, with its online Associate of Applied Business in Financial Management Technology program. Students learn the fundamentals of business planning, risk management, personal finance, financial accounting, managerial accounting, and economics and statistics. Students also develop their transfer skills, aside from the opportunity for a seamless transition into UC’s BTAS program.
College isn’t just about academics but also about real-world experiences that contribute to success in life! UC provides opportunities for real-world learning, such as working on international wildlife conservation projects and getting funding for start-up ventures.
UC is great for students who:
Thrive in a fast-paced learning environment where research and development opportunities abound for ambitious students
UC might not be the best fit for students who:
Prefer the familiarity that a small campus community brings
Student diversity isn’t just a buzzword at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, with its student body coming from across the United States and around the world, and includes a significant indigenous student population. With diversity comes fresh and innovative thinking, too, and it’s evident in UAF’s status as a top-ranking public research university.
Students in the Associate in Applied Business in Finance program not only learn the classic concepts of business and finance but also about emerging technologies. There are plenty of hands-on learning opportunities, from social media campaigns to entrepreneurial ventures, and even the opportunity to earn micro-credentials. The online courses include accounting, business finance, and customer service, and students can specialize in other areas, too, like marketing and public management.
With its federal designation as an Alaska Native Serving Institution, UAF is at the forefront of promoting and protecting indigenous culture and studies.
UAF is great for students who:
Like the balance between a small university and a research university with numerous academic programs
UAF might not be the best fit for students who:
Prefer a more homogeneous student body
As the first to establish an online learning community in Michigan, Davenport University has a rightful claim to be the online learning leader. But Davenport doesn’t rest on its laurels either, as its innovations in its Global Campus show, from the expansion of its undergraduate and graduate degree programs to its use of Instructional Design in-class evaluations. No wonder its associate degree holders are sought-after by employers!
Among its best online degree programs is the Associate of Business Administration - Finance program, an IACBE-accredited program where students learn from experienced professors. The online finance degree features Accounting Foundations, Corporate Finance, and Investment Planning courses.
Davenport has been recognized for its performance in numerous metrics, such as the 2020 Michigan Performance Excellence Award and the ACE/Fidelity Investments Award for Institutional Transformation. This is solid proof that Davenport strives to provide world-class academic quality to its students.
Davenport is great for students who:
Thrive in a competitive academic environment and a fairly small community of learners and teachers
Davenport might not be the best fit for students who:
Like a large student body and numerous opportunities for extracurriculars
Location: Grand Rapids, Michigan
Institution Type: Private university
Admission Rate: 93%
Graduation Rate: 28%
Total Student Enrollment: 6,100+
Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission
Student success isn’t just a byword at Franklin University! With its coaching program, where undergraduate and graduate students receive mentoring from university-appointed coaches, success is closer than you think. These coaches are professionals in their industries, too, and provide monthly guidance to the students assigned to them.
Students in the Associate of Science in Financial Management program also have access to above-par student support services that contribute to their academic success. Graduates with an online degree can also transfer the credits earned to a bachelor’s degree in financial management.
Students learn the preparation, presentation, and analysis of financial statements and data to promote effective business decisions via 6-week and 12-week courses.
First-year students get a warm welcome starting with the Welcome Week with its Tower Tradition pinning activity and the Welcome Bash. Fraternities and sororities are actively involved during Welcome Week, too.
Franklin University is great for students who:
Like the combination of a small community of learners and a larger community of stakeholders, including alumni
Franklin University might not be the best fit for students who:
Prefer a full-on party experience during their college years
Location: Columbus, Ohio
Institution Type: Private university
Admission Rate: 100%
Graduation Rate: 42%
Total Student Enrollment: 5,900+
Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission
With affordable tuition rates for both in-state and out-of-state students, Wilmington University attracts students from all walks of life! With 200+ academic programs, from biology to cybersecurity, there’s something for every Wildcat, too. The rolling and guaranteed admissions policy and classes starting every eight weeks enable non-traditional students to take advantage of the online associate degree programs.
The Associate of Science in Finance program features 20 courses, including Business Statistics, Principles of Management, Corporate Finance, and Financial Planning. Students learn the fundamentals of finance with business applications and prepare for the transfer of credits to a bachelor’s degree program in finance or business.
Students have plenty of opportunities to get on and off campus, from participating in social events to immersing themselves in the community. The Student Center is a hub of activity with its gathering spaces and wide amenities on campus.
WilmU is great for students who:
Want an accessible education from a well-known private university with a large campus and student body
WilmU might not be the best fit for students who:
Prefer the small campus experience
As North Carolina’s largest community college, Wake Technical Community College offers numerous associate degree programs in diverse areas. More than 70,000 adults take advantage of its degree, diploma, and certificate programs, with the popular areas being information technology, healthcare, and business. High school students are also welcome via its partnership with Wake County Public School System.
Students in the Associate in Applied Science in Accounting and Finance program learn the fundamentals of the language of business—accounting—and use them in finance-related matters. With a strong foundation in both accounting and finance, graduates are more than ready to take on challenging entry-level jobs!
Students have abundant opportunities for enriching college experiences, from campus-wide events to leadership opportunities. More than 50 student organizations are on campus, many of which offer community immersion opportunities.
Wake Tech is great for students who:
Want technical training that employers value while also getting a college education suitable for advanced studies
Wake Tech might not be the best fit for students who:
Prefer a small community college
Associate degree programs are aplenty at Madison Area Technical College, but these aren’t just the things it can offer learners and the community at large! There are also career training programs in welding, architecture, and gender studies, skill refresher programs, a study abroad program, and Honors Program. Indeed, Madison College appeals to diverse learners, from high school to adult learners.
Students in its Associate in Finance program receive quality instruction, too, in a wide range of finance-related topics, including personal finance, real estate, and investments. Graduates are sought-after in the area, particularly for entry-level jobs in the financial services sector. The online associate degree program combines 8-week accelerated courses with simulations and projects and offers concentrations in Risk Management and Insurance, Accounting, and Human Resources.
The student support services are among the best among community colleges! There are 56 student clubs and organizations, academic and advising services and career services.
Madison College is great for students who:
Benefit from affordable tuition at a community college and love the large student body and diverse academic programs
Madison College might not be the best fit for students who:
Thrive in small community colleges
With five campuses and nine counties as service areas, Columbia State Community College is the go-to institution for exceptional education and training in teaching, fine arts, and other areas. Graduates of its associate degree programs can transfer their earned credits to bachelor’s degree programs in several four-year institutions, such as Middle Tennessee State University and Tennessee Tech University.
The Associate of Applied Science in Finance program is among the best business education programs in the area. The ACBSP-accredited online associate degree program features courses in accounting, economics, investments, management, and organizational behavior.
There are plenty of extracurriculars to choose from at Columbia State! The Department of Student Engagement, Athletic Department, Student Government Association, and student organizations plan year-round activities. Boredom isn’t part of Columbia State’s vocabulary!
Columbia State is great for students who:
Like a mid-sized community college where most things are just right
Columbia State might not be the best fit for students who:
Like large universities where parties are more commonplace than you think
Students have so many personal growth and professional advancement opportunities at Milwaukee Area Technical College that it has become the go-to community college in Milwaukee and beyond! With 170+ programs and 35+ transfer agreements with four-year universities, there’s something for everyone. Popular areas of study include business and management, creative arts, design and media, and community and human services.
The transfer-friendly Associate in Applied Science in Banking and Financial Services program trains students in the real-world fundamentals of finance in diverse settings. Students also earn a certificate and technical diploma in financial services during their first year in the online associate degree program.
Small class sizes, accommodating professors who are experts in their subject matter, and a great community environment makes MATC an excellent school to earn associate degrees, diplomas, and certificates.
MATC is great for students who:
Benefit from intensive technical training in their chosen field
MATC might not be the best fit for students who:
Like a more solid liberal arts education
Location: Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Institution Type: Public two-year vocational-technical college
Admission Rate: 100%
Graduation Rate: 19%
Total Student Enrollment: 15,200+
Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission
Up-to-date technologies in the classrooms and laboratories, small class sizes, and practical training make Fox Valley Technical College a standout institution, not to mention among the most affordable tuition. Aside from its outstanding associate degree programs, FVTC also offers certificate, technical diploma, and apprenticeship instruction programs.
The Associate of Applied Science in Banking and Financial Services program is among the best training grounds for competent finance professionals. Students earn the online associate degree by mastering the fundamentals of the banking and financial services industry, from its accounting systems to its laws.
The excellent graduate outcomes prove the success of FVTC’s philosophy! Most of its graduates land employment within six months after graduation and in jobs related to their training. More than half still work in the district five years after graduation.
FVTC is great for students who:
Want intensive technical training in their field of study that employers recognize and seek in their employees
FVTC might not be the best fit for students who:
Lean more toward a philosophical approach to their college education
With 75+ associate and 40+ certificate degrees, Cincinnati State Technical and Community College is a popular destination for learners who want quality and accessible training. The combination of academic excellence with clinical practice and cooperative education is its hallmark. Did you know that it’s among the country’s most successful and largest co-op education programs?
The Associate in Applied Business in Finance program trains students for success in entry-level finance and management positions in diverse industries. Graduates can transfer their online associate degree credits to four-year universities, too. Major courses include financial accounting, managerial accounting, personal finance, and business law.&
With its diverse and dynamic campus community, Cincinnati State students and stakeholders enjoy a balance between world-class training and extracurricular fun. Plus, it has 600+ industry and business partners that students and alums can tap into for their ends.
Cincinnati State is great for students who:
Love the excellent technical training that comes with experienced instructors, up-to-date laboratories, and hands-on learning experiences
Cincinnati State might not be the best fit for students who:
Prefer a small college community
With eight counties and their surrounding areas as its service areas, Northeast Iowa Community College is among the largest of its kind in Iowa. Aside from its outstanding associate degree programs, NICC also offers customized industry training programs, adult education programs, and certification options that meet the demands for educated and skilled professionals in its service areas.
The Associate of Applied Science in Finance program features industry-relevant courses like financial and managerial accounting, business law, and banking. Graduates possess the fundamentals of banking, business, and finance that serve them well in entry-level jobs and career advancement.
Students have a dedicated representative body that promotes their interests, iMPACT, and conducts extracurriculars for them.
NICC is great for students who:
Thrive in a small community college that values academic quality and a wholesome college experience
NICC might not be the best fit for students who:
Prefer a large campus and student body in a community college
The combination of workplace-ready skills and the readiness for success is what characterizes the graduates of Stark State College. With its experienced faculty members, affordable tuition, and good student support services, Stark State continues to enjoy success with its 230+ degree and certificate programs in business, healthcare and engineering technologies, among other areas.
The Associate of Applied Business in Finance trains students to become workplace-ready finance professionals. The rigorous coursework in the online associate degree program includes financial and managerial accounting, fraud examination, and financial statement analysis. Students also earn banking associate and tax preparer certificates along the way.
Thanks to the fun annual activities like the Welcome Week, Spring Fling, and Harvest Fest, it isn’t all studies at Stark State.
Stark State is great for students who:
Benefit from the technical training that enables them to pursue challenging careers
Stark State might not be the best fit for students who:
Love the idea of a small community college where familiar camaraderie is the order of the day
Professional faculty, flexible scheduling options, and academic excellence are at the heart of every academic program at Berkeley College! Many of its associate degree programs can also be earned in 16 months, while its bachelor’s degree programs can be completed in three years. Berkeley College also offers certificate and continuing education programs.
The Associate in Applied Science in Financial Services program features courses that develop the student’s technical skills in accounting, finance, and management. There’s even an information management systems course, proof that Berkeley College strives to provide up-to-date training. Students in the online associate degree program also develop their soft skills via dedicated general education courses.
Located in the best real estate in the Big Apple, Berkeley College offers a quality college education and provides its students and graduates with enviable internship, employment, and entrepreneurial opportunities.
Berkeley College is great for students who:
Love a small college but want quality education and training suitable for competitive workplaces, particularly in New York City
Berkeley College might not be the best fit for students who:
Like a large student body or a more selective college on their resume
From its humble beginnings as the “college without walls” due to classes held in available buildings, NorthWest Arkansas Community College has become among the largest community colleges in Arkansas. Its main campus is home to several centers, including the Washington County Center, the Center for Health Professions, and the Shewmaker Center for Global Business Development. There’s even a nature preserve!
With accreditation from ACBSP, the Business and Computer Information Systems programs are known for their excellence in academics and training. This includes the Associate of Applied Science in Business Management - Banking and Finance program, where students learn about financial markets, accounting, and economics, among others. The credits earned can be transferred into a bachelor’s in finance degree program.
Challenges of the good kind abound at NWACC, from the honors courses to service learning projects and study abroad opportunities.
NWACC is great for students who:
Like a large campus filled with centers of excellence and an even larger student body that contribute to personal and professional growth
NWACC might not be the best fit for students who:
Like a small community college
Aside from the certificate and associate degree programs, North Hennepin Community College offers 12+ bachelor’s degree programs through partnerships with four-year universities in Minnesota. Students can also earn bachelor’s degrees in certain fields of study via NHCC.
Associate of Applied Science in Finance Management students engage in intensive skills development in personal, corporate and public finance, investments, accounting, and management. Students also learn real-world skills like formulating business models and marketing plans. The finance degree is intended for immediate workplace application.
The dynamic arts scene at NHCC is among the best in the area! The Fall Concert Series is the most anticipated with its jazz ensemble, orchestra, and vocal ensemble show.
NHCC is great for students who:
Want to earn a bachelor’s degree at community college tuition
NHCC might not be the best fit for students who:
Prefer a strong liberal arts education
A University System of Georgia component university, Middle Georgia State University maintains five campuses and an online campus. Academic excellence, lifelong learning, active community engagement, and innovative partnerships make it possible for MGA to be on top of its game.
Students in the Associate of Science in Financial Technology benefit from an industry-specific curriculum developed with assistance from experts in the financial industry. The curriculum emphasizes using information technology with finance applications, including analytics, big data, and cybersecurity.
The residential life at MGA is among the best in the area, thanks to scenic locations and excellent amenities.
MGA is great for students who:
Like being part of a larger community of learners, teachers, and stakeholders
MGA might not be the best fit for students who:
Prefer a commuter college
With more than 35,000 students served annually, Harper College is among the largest and best community colleges in Chicago. Students flock to its accelerated online programs for their academic quality, technical training, and affordable costs. Harper College offers associate and certificate programs, workforce training, continuing education, and professional development programs.
The Associate in Applied Science in Business Management - Financial Management program is intended for working professionals, adult learners, and first-year students who want career-specific competencies. The fast-track modality includes investment management, accounting, and international finance courses.
The 200-acre campus has an informal layout with fascinating architecture, varied interior and exterior views, numerous entrances, and energy-saving features.
Harper College is great for students who:
Want more academic programs that train students for successful careers via outstanding technical training
Harper College might not be the best fit for students who:
Like a small campus community where rubbing elbows is easier
As the largest community college in Mississippi, Hinds Community College serves more than 25,000 students yearly. Students choose from over 70 career and technical programs and nearly 500 courses with a guaranteed transfer of credits.
The Associate of Applied Science in Banking and Finance Technology program is among its standout programs. Students tackle an intensive curriculum featuring courses in consumer lending, business policy, and financial management. Skills development emphasizes both technical and transferable skills. Students must complete the coursework requirements and OPAC certification testing to earn the associate degree.
With 130+ athletic titles, HIndsCC is among the winningest community colleges in Mississippi! It has also been awarded several accolades, including the NJCAA Academic Team of the Year and Loyalty Award.
HindsCC is great for students who:
Thrive in a technical training environment, a large campus, and student body, and exciting athletics
HindsCC might not be the best fit for students who:
Prefer a small community campus, both in size and student body
Partnerships with employers enable Bryant & Stratton College to design degree programs that meet these employers’ contemporary and changing needs. Students learn career-specific competencies that contribute to their potential as productive employees, including technical and transferable skills.
The Associate of Applied Science in Financial Support Services program is an exceptional preparation for successful finance careers. Students pursuing a finance degree learn the fundamentals of financial instruments, insurance, and accounting through fast-paced online courses.
Career LifePrep is an integral part of the college experience of its students, and it starts from admission but doesn’t end at graduation. Every possible guidance, from admissions and financial aid to career services, is provided.
Bryant & Stratton is great for students who:
Like the strong sense of community that comes with being in a small college
Bryant & Stratton might not be the best fit for students who:
Prefer a large university with plenty of academic programs and extracurriculars