What’s the Difference Between a Master’s in Accounting and a Master’s in Management Degree?

As an accountant with big aspirations, you might be wondering what the difference is between a master’s in accounting and master’s in management degree. What distinguishes these two separate but related graduate business degree programs? Which option is right for you?

Distinctions Between Accounting and Management Degree Programs

The biggest differences between a master’s in accounting and master’s in management degree are degree of specialization and subject matter focus. Both programs include graduate-level studies in the field of business. Both can help you get a job, and each option appeals to a different type of employer. It’s even possible for master’s in accounting students to take some management courses and for master’s in management students to take some accounting classes. However, the focus of these two programs is different, with accounting students completing more in-depth studies in accounting and management students often studying more general business classes.

What to Expect from a Master’s in Accounting Degree Program

A look at the curriculum of a master’s in accounting program illustrates the differences between a master’s in accounting and master’s in management degree. A master’s in accounting program, sometimes known as a Master of Science (M.S.) in accounting program, is specialized. You will take some general business classes, including coursework in leadership, according to U.S. News & World Report. However, most of your core courses will revolve around learning advanced accounting skills that help you succeed in various accounting functions, from tax preparer to financial accountant and even managerial accountant.

What to Expect from a Master’s in Management Degree Program

Often, another difference between a master’s in accounting and master’s in management degree is the name of the degree. Graduate-level studies in management are often part of a Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree program. While MBAs offer concentrations in management and leadership – and even subjects like accounting – they tend to be less specialized than a M.S. in business degree program. You will take some management courses, but you probably won’t study the subject in as much detail as a M.S. in accounting student would study the field of accounting. Instead, you will take a variety of business courses in subjects such as strategy, operations, finance, marketing and information systems, according to U.S. News & World Report.

Which graduate business program is the best choice? It depends on the individual. While a specialized M.S. in accounting or another business subject can help you stand out from the crowd of MBA holders, it’s only a good choice for students who are deeply interested in the specialized topic, according to U.S. News & World Report. Otherwise, this focused program might seem too limiting. Likewise, a more versatile MBA program might seem too broad for students who want to study a business discipline like accounting in-depth. Now that you know the differences between a master’s in accounting and master’s in management degree, you can make an educated decision about which program might be right for you.

Related resource:

Top 10 Best Online Masters in Accounting Degree Programs 2014