How Much More Can I Earn With a Master’s in Accounting Versus a Bachelor’s in Accounting?

masters accountingIf you want to make high-end salaries, then you have to have high-end education. This is especially true in the professional world, where more and more people are entering the job market with advanced degrees. In the world of accounting, a person’s salary is largely based upon that person’s level of education. Though people with just an undergraduate accounting degree can expect to make good money, only those who take it one step further are able to make the great money. You can earn significantly more money with a master’s in accountancy over just a bachelor’s, both in the beginning and as you get deeper into your career. You must think about both the now and the future when making this decision.

Understanding the Numbers

If you’re going to make an informed decision, you will need to understand the numbers in play with each degree. A Georgetown University survey of the accounting profession found that people who held bachelor’s degrees made roughly $60,000 per year on average. This does not reflect the starting salary. Rather, it’s the number that captures all people in the industry who hold that particular credential. The same survey found that those with master’s degrees in accountancy earned just more than $80,000 per year. Only a small percentage of the people who earned a bachelor’s degree went on to get the master’s, despite the obvious salary benefit.

How Salary Figures Translate to Starting Salaries

Good numbers on accountancy starting salaries are not readily available to compare between bachelor’s degrees and master’s degrees. You should know, though, that accounting is a profession where people are able to climb the ranks as they put in more time. Still, those individuals who get their master’s degree will earn more money in the beginning than people simply depending upon an undergraduate accounting degree. The latest figures indicate that the master’s may be worth $10,000 or more in starting salary. This is something that you will certainly want to keep in mind if you are looking to pay off expensive loans early in your career.

Master’s Degrees and the Ability to Grow in Your Career

In addition to just considering the pure salary numbers, you have to consider the growth opportunities available to people with master’s degrees. If you want to climb the ladder within a company, you will need to have that advanced credential. Many companies have a policy that requires a person to have an advanced degree in order to climb into upper management. When you land one of these positions, you will have much greater earning capacity than if you simply stuck it out in a lower-level accounting position. As a young professional, you have to plan for the future, even if you are primarily concerned with your present circumstances. The master’s will pay off down the road for people who are willing to put in the time and years.

A master’s degree in accountancy can be a great option for any person who wants to earn more money both in the beginning and down the road. The numbers suggest a tangible advantage for those who earn the credential.


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