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Today’s Top Online Master’s in Forensic Accounting Programs

Earning an online master’s degree in forensic accounting prepares you for a fascinating career investigating and preventing financial crimes. Keep reading to learn about top forensic accounting master’s programs offered online in 2024.

Author: Kenya McCullum

Editor: Staff Editor

Search hundreds of schools for the master’s YOU want……

If digging into financial records for criminal activity sounds intriguing, forensic accounting is where your passion for numbers, investigation, and true crime can translate into an exciting career. Forensic accounting professionals get to work on interesting fraud and other financial crime issues, which requires specialized training offered in today’s top online master’s degree programs.

Below, we’ll introduce you to the best online forensic accounting master’s programs available in 2024. We’ll also tell you what you need to know about program enrollment, how much you can expect to pay for tuition, and more. Additionally, we provide information on forensic accounting graduates careers, including figures on both job growth and earning potential.

Best Master’s in Forensic Accounting Online Programs for 2024

Solving financial mysteries and uncovering fraud might be your calling, but choosing the right online master’s program in forensic accounting can be a puzzle itself. Don’t worry, we’re here to help. We’ve rounded up the best online master’s degree programs in forensic accounting for 2024, addressing your concerns about accreditation, timeline, and career outcomes. Let’s dive into the programs that will equip you with the skills to bring financial justice to the forefront of your career.

About the ranking
Stevenson, Maryland
Private not-for-profit

Those interested in forensic accounting and fraud examination should consider the master’s program at Stevenson University. The degree pulls from a variety of subject areas, such as finance, forensic science, law, and litigation. Specific course topics include litigation theory, fraud and accounting, auditing, and tax investigation and analysis. To make the program as flexible as possible, all courses are hosted virtually and many classes are offered at times that fit around a working professional’s schedule, in the evening or on weekends. At $705 per credit hour, this program is more affordable than others, and Stevenson University has many financial aid options.

Program Highlights:

Master of Science in Forensic Accounting

  • Credits: 36
  • Length: 18 months
  • Mode: Online
  • Accreditation: IACBE

School Services & Accreditation

Career Services Yes
Academic Counseling Yes
Accreditation MSCHE
Morgantown, West Virginia

West Virginia University offers a robust master’s in accounting. While there are some general accounting courses, the curriculum mainly focuses on forensics and fraud. Students learn how to investigate and prove financial crimes, such as money laundering, that are committed by individuals and corporations. The curriculum pulls from multiple disciplines, including cybersecurity, law, and accounting. Course topics include business cybersecurity management, data analytics, and management. By the end of the program, students are prepared to sit for the exam hosted by the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners. For flexibility and convenience, all courses are offered online.

Program Highlights:

Master of Science in Forensic and Fraud Examiniation

  • Credits: 30
  • Length: Varies
  • Mode: Online
  • Accreditation: CFE

School Services & Accreditation

Career Services Yes
Academic Counseling Yes
Accreditation HLC

College Spotlights: Inside Popular Forensic Accounting Master’s Programs

Below you will find our profiles of three additional master’s in forensic accounting online programs. We’ve chosen to take a deeper dive into these programs to highlight elements such as affordability, curriculum quality, study convenience, and access to quality student support services. These three programs will give you a good idea of what you should expect from the forensic accounting program you ultimately choose.

Florida Atlantic University

Florida Atlantic University offers an Executive Master of Accounting degree with a concentration in Forensic Accounting. The program is designed to give students the skills they need to investigate and prevent financial fraud, resolve financial disputes, provide litigation support, testify as an expert witness in fraud cases, and contribute to criminal investigations for financial crimes like money laundering. To be admitted to the program, applicants must have a bachelor’s degree from a regionally-accredited university or college earned with a competitive grade point average. International applicants are required to earn a high score on the IELTS or TOEFL examinations.

To provide students with the knowledge and skill required to conduct financial examinations that detect irregularities, this program offers coursework in internal accounting, fraud examination principles, forensic accounting in the healthcare industry, and financial statement analysis.

Liberty University

Liberty University’s Master of Science in Accounting program with Forensic Accounting concentration is a 30-credit hour program that takes on average a year to complete. Students attend classes completely online and receive intensive training that allows them to promptly move through the curriculum. Course subjects include, among others, fraud and information technology, accounting ethics, fraud examination, and corporate governance classes.

To be admitted into this program, prospective students are required to possess a bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university earned with a minimum 3.0 GPA. Students must complete prerequisite accounting classes in cost accounting, auditing, taxation, and financial accounting prior to beginning their degree courses of study. Non-native English speakers must earn a high score on the TOEFL exam for admission.

Southern New Hampshire University

Southern New Hampshire University offers a forensic accounting concentration in its Master of Science in Accounting program designed to help students understand the laws, regulations, and policies that are important to forensic accountants. Graduates gain the knowledge and skills needed to help organizations investigate and recover from issues of fraud. Specific coursework topics include fraudulent financial statements, interview techniques, and using computers to investigate fraud. Students additionally complete courses in core accounting subjects such as cost accounting, business law, auditing, financial reporting, economics for business, and individuals’ federal taxation.

Admission to the program requires a previously obtained bachelor’s degree earned with a cumulative GPA of 2.75 or higher. Applicants with a GPA below 2.75 may be admitted on a provisional basis.

Advantages of Earning an Online Master’s in Forensic Accounting

As you begin your program search, you’ll want to consider the pros and cons of earning your forensic accounting master’s degree online. There are several good reasons to enroll in an online program. Here’s a look at some of the most common:

  1. Affordability

    For many people, costs can be the prohibitive factor that keeps them from earning a graduate degree. However, with online degrees, an advanced education does not have to be prohibitively expensive. Online degree programs are often more cost effective traditional on-campus programs, sometimes substantially so. Plus, students in online programs enjoy the convenience of not having to travel to campus to attend classes. That means a bigger bang for their tuition bucks.

  2. Acquiring Investigation Skills

    From identity theft to fraud to money laundering, forensic accountants need to follow the clues that criminals leave behind to find the evidence needed for their investigations. Master’s degree programs train future forensic accountants to dig out and examine critical evidence of forensic accounting crimes, and, and explain the importance of that evidence in reports to law enforcement and in court testimony.

  3. Flexibility

    Chances are that you’re not in a position to dedicate all of your time to earning your master’s degree. You probably have a full-time job and family responsibilities that require your time and attention as well. One of the biggest advantages of an online forensic accounting degree program is that you can complete your coursework at those times that best fit your busy work and life schedules.

  4. Certification Preparation

    An online master’s in forensic accounting prepare students to take the examination to become a licensed Certified Public Accountant (CPA) as well as to obtain important professional credentials like the Certified Fraud Examiner (CFE) and Certified Internal Auditor (CIA).

What You’ll Learn in a Forensic Accounting Master’s Program

Forensic accounting master’s degree programs combine the advanced accounting concepts that can be used in any field with the specialized forensic principles designed to help students become skilled investigators. By the time students complete their course of study, they will have gained vital knowledge and skills in subjects such as managerial accounting, auditing, and computer investigation abilities, as well as a foundational understanding of applicable laws related to financial crimes. The following are examples of several specific classes you’ll likely take in your forensic accounting master’s program.

Popular Courses

  • Fraud Examination

    This class covers how fraud examinations are conducted and the principles that professionals use when they work to uncover a crime. Students learn how to examine the accuracy of financial statements, find red flags in those documents, document irregularities that are evidence of a crime, and create and implement fraud prevention measures within an organization.

  • Auditing Technologies

    Students in this course learn how auditors review financial statements and other relevant accounting and business documents. Different techniques are discussed, from classic auditing strategies that have been used for years to emerging methods being incorporated into audits today.

  • Interview Techniques

    One of the most important skills that forensic accountants need to have is the ability to interview people to gather the information that augments what they find in financial documents. This course reviews the principles and techniques that professionals use to help them efficiently and effectively interview people.

  • Fraud Prevention and Deterrence

    In addition to finding instances of fraud in an organization, forensic accountants also help businesses in stopping fraud before it starts by setting up prevention and deterrence programs. Students in this course learn about cybercrime, white-collar crime, occupational fraud, fraud risk assessments, and the causes of various financial crimes.

  • Accounting Ethics

    Students in this course are taught the ethical principles and standards that accountants are expected to adhered to in their day-to-day work. The course allows students to apply these ethical standards to workplace challenges that forensic accountants commonly face.

Accreditation for Online Master’s Programs in Forensic Accounting

Forensic accounting is a unique and intricate field of accounting, so people need to get specialized training to qualify for jobs and thrive in the profession. To ensure that you get this training, it’s important that you only consider programs and schools that have been properly accredited. Accreditation ensures that the programs you consider have been vetted for academic quality.

Accrediting organizations look at several factors in their evaluation processes, including the skills taught in the curriculum, the background of the faculty, and the services the schools provide to students to help them succeed. Online master’s degree programs in forensic accounting are accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business, the International Assembly of Collegiate Business Education, or the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs.

What You Can Do with a Master’s in Forensic Accounting

After completing a master’s in forensic accounting online, graduates have the advanced skills in such areas as auditing, investigation, and interviewing that are needed to succeed as forensic accountants. The following are examples of some of the most common occupations of forensic accounting master’s graduates.

Fraud Investigators

When fraud is suspected in an organization, fraud investigators are responsible for finding the evidence that will either prove or disprove it. Tasks include analyzing paperwork, conducting data analysis, drafting reports on their findings, and presenting evidence in court. Fraud investigators additionally take statements from witnesses and advise organizations on how to prevent fraud in the future.

10th Percentile Median Annual Pay 90th Percentile




Source: PayScale, 2019

Forensic Accountants

Forensic accountants apply their understanding of accounting principles and the law to support both civil and criminal matters. Some of the areas they investigate include business fraud, breach of contract, and breach of warranties. During civil and criminal litigation, forensic accountants may be called upon to review evidence and give testimony in court.

10th Percentile Median Annual Pay 90th Percentile




Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2019

Financial Consultants

Financial consultants are responsible for helping their clients to understand their money matters and take the proper steps to successfully reach their financial goals. Some of the areas where these financial consultants provide professional services include giving advice on building and maintaining investment portfolios, creating and overseeing client budgets, and assessing and managing estates.

10th Percentile Median Annual Pay 90th Percentile




Source: PayScale, 2021

Anti-Money Laundering Specialists

These professionals use their expertise to track and prevent money laundering crimes. Anti-money laundering specialists possess strong database, analytical, and communication skills to detect possible crimes based on financial documents and to create comprehensive reports explaining their findings.

10th Percentile Median Annual Pay 90th Percentile




Source: PayScale, 2021

Budget Analysts

Budget analysts are hired by public and private organizations when they need to professional help in organizing their finances and operations. These professionals are responsible for reviewing an organization’s budget proposal to ensure accuracy and completeness, consolidating departmental budgets to get a clear picture of where and how much organizations spend, and monitoring spending to ensure that budgets are adhered to.

10th Percentile Median Annual Pay 90th Percentile




Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2019

Costs and Financial Aid for Online Master’s Degrees in Forensic Accounting

Paying for any degree can be challenging, so before enrolling in a forensic accounting master’s program, you should know how much of a financial investment you are committing to. The three programs listed in the table below will give you an idea of what you might expect to pay for your forensic accounting master’s education. And for more great information and advice on paying for your education, be sure to visit OMD’s financial aid page.

What Your Online Master’s in Forensic Accounting Could Cost

School Name No. of Credits Cost/Credit Total Tuition Cost










Frequently Asked Questions About Online Forensic Accounting Master’s Degrees

What are the admissions requirements for an online master’s in forensic accounting?

Although each forensic accounting program has its own admissions requirements, the following are some requirements common to most programs:

  • A previously earned bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university
  • A cumulative grade point average of 3.0 or higher
  • Submitting of a current resume, letter of intent, and letters of recommendation
  • Proof of English proficiency if an international student

How long will it take to finish my master’s in forensic accounting online?

A master’s degree in forensic accounting can be completed in as little as one year or up to two years for full-time students. If you enroll as a part-time student, you’ll likely finish your studies in about three years, depending on how many classes you take at a time.

Can I earn a master’s in forensic accounting 100% online?

You can generally earn a forensic accounting master’s degree 100% online since these programs don’t require any laboratory work. However, some programs may be offered in a hybrid format, where you take some courses online and others on campus.