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What’s the difference between an MBA and a Master of Accountancy?

3 Min Read

Students contemplating a career in accounting may be wondering which career path is right for them. Students often take one of two careers paths: a Master of Business Administration with a focus in Accounting, or a Master of Accountancy.

To help students understand the differences between the two programs, both of which are offered by The University of Scranton, here’s what they should know:

Graduates with an MBA focusing on Accounting:

  • Hold a generalized degree

An MBA in accounting is a path for students completing a bachelor’s degree in accounting. This degree program offers the technical core of an MBA with a broad overview of accounting and the skills needed to obtain a job in today’s technology-based business environment

  • Flexible career choices

An MBA with a focus on accounting provides graduates with a variety of job opportunities upon course completion. For those who aren’t sure which field they want to pursue, or who may want to change roles later on, this degree provides that flexibility.

  • Fill many roles

Considering the vast array of knowledge gleaned from an MBA, a graduate can fill many roles within a company. A growing number of businesses require their employees to “wear many hats,” to which this degree lends itself.

By completing the Master of Accountancy program, graduates:

  • Have a deeper understanding of accounting

The online Master of Accountancy program at Scranton offers a challenging curriculum that provides students with a deeper understanding of accounting skills, practices, and theories. Coursework isn’t a broad patchwork of accounting techniques, but a series of in-depth courses that build a foundation for comprehensive and insightful learning.

  • Can specialize in a specific area

Students have the ability to customize their programs and take courses that focus on a specific area of accounting such as taxation or fraud. An increasing number of companies are looking for job applicants with tailored accounting skills, meaning graduates with deeper knowledge of special topics don’t just stand out in a pool of candidates – they’re sought after.

  • Are better prepared to sit for exams

To obtain a career in accounting, many graduates decide to take licensing exams in a specialized field. The coursework involved in the Master of Accountancy program better prepares graduates to take exams such as Certified Public Accountant, Certified Fraud Examiner, or Certified Management Accountant.

  • Can work for the Big 4

If the goal is to work at one of the four biggest accounting firms – KPMG, PricewaterhouseCoopers, Ernst & Young, or Deloitte, completing the Master of Accountancy is the right career choice. The Big 4 look for candidates with high-level skills, advanced degrees and licenses.

The MBA and the Master of Accountancy lead to high-paid employment in the accounting field, with the skills necessary to negotiate a higher salary and better benefits. Both paths offer qualifications that are valuable to an employer and show a level of commitment and skill that’s in demand in today’s workforce.

Both programs at Scranton are housed in the Kania School of Management, which holds the prestigious Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) accreditation. To learn more about each program, you can request information from The University by filling out this form.

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