Accounting Schools in North Dakota

    In North Dakota, there are several accounting programs for students seeking a degree. The following guide to accounting schools in North Dakota will help you understand your options and make the right decision based on your interests and career goals. Accounting programs in North Dakota provide concentrations in areas such as financial planning, corporate accounting, and data analytics. Pursuing an online accounting degree can save you time commuting to and from school while providing a flexible learning model for self-directed students. Accelerated programs are also an option for students who wish to complete graduate studies and pursue CPA status.

    Quick Facts

    • 11 not-for-profit colleges and universities offer an accounting degree program in North Dakota.1
    • 3 schools offer a certificate in accounting.1
    • 3 schools offer an associate’s degree in accounting.1
    • 8 schools offer a bachelor’s degree in accounting.1
    • 3 schools offer a graduate degree in accounting.1
    • 3 schools ranked in College Factual’s Best Accounting Schools 2023.2
    • No schools ranked in the Princeton Review’s Best Colleges for Accounting Majors 2023.3
    • No programs ranked in US News & World Report’s Best MBA Accounting Programs 2023.4
    • 3 schools ranked in US News & World Report’s Best Online Bachelor’s in Business Programs 2023.5
    • No schools ranked in US News & World Report’s Best Undergrad Accounting Programs 2022-2023.6
    • No schools are accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) in Business and Accounting.7
    • No schools have accounting programs accredited by the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP).8
    • 3 schools have accounting programs accredited by the International Accreditation Council for Business Education (IACBE).9

    Comparison of North Dakota Accounting Schools and Programs

    The table below provides detailed information on not-for-profit accounting programs in North Dakota to help you compare your options. Programs that appear in bold text offer hybrid or online options. For further school statistics, including median SAT, ACT, and GMAT scores, see our North Dakota business schools page.

    SchoolAccreditationAccounting Degree(s)Acceptance Rate10Grad Rate1Avg Net Price1Median Debt*10Median Earnings 10 Years After Entry10
    Dakota College at BottineauAAS-Accounting Technology;
    AS-Accounting;
    UG Cert-Bookkeeping
    N.Av.33%$9,946$10,507$45,258
    Dickinson State UniversityIACBEBBA-Accounting;
    BBA-Accounting: Digital Marketing;
    UG Cert-Accounting Technician;
    Cert of Completion: CPA Preparation
    99.4%44%$14,971$18,442$49,125
    Mayville State UniversityBS-Accounting;
    BS-Accounting/BAS-Business Administration;
    BS-Accounting/BSBA;
    Minor-Accounting
    61.0%35%$14,347$18,585$45,406
    Minot State UniversityIACBEBS-Accounting;
    Minor-Accounting;
    MInor-Fraud Examination;
    Concentration-Accounting
    88.4%45%$12,360$19,609$47,001
    North Dakota State University-Main CampusBS-Accounting;
    Minor-Accounting;
    MAcc
    95.5%63%$15,962$23,199$58,936
    Turtle Mountain Community CollegeAAS-Accounting Technician;
    UG Cert-Accounting Technician
    N.Av.38%$4,520N.Av.$28,917
    University of JamestownBA-Accounting;
    BA-Accounting: Financial Planning;
    BBA-Accounting;
    Minor-Accounting
    75.8%49%$19,950$27,000$53,878
    University of MaryIACBEBS/BA-Accounting;
    Minor-Accounting;
    5-Year BS-Accounting to MBA
    78.8%64%$18,369$24,000$58,561
    University of North DakotaBAcc;
    Minor-Accountancy;
    Accelerated Bacc/MAcc;
    MAcc-Professional: Business Administration;
    MAcc-Professional: Data Analytics;
    MAcc-Professional; Information System and Controls;
    MAcc-Professional: Tax Compliance and Planning;
    MAcc-Fundamentals
    89.0%63%$17,359$22,057$61,403
    Valley City State UniversityBA/BS-Business Administration: Managerial Accounting & Finance81.5%47%$12,164$20,369$48,672
    Williston State CollegeAAS-AccountingN.Av.33%$9,149$10,099$42,430

    Table Notes:
    *Median Debt: The median debt is the cumulative federal loan debt, excluding PLUS loans, at the time of graduation for students who completed an undergraduate program (certificate, associate, or bachelor’s degree) as reported by College Scorecard for academic year 2020-2021 based on ‚Äč‚ÄčNational Student Loan Data System (NSLDS) data.
    **Median Earnings 10 Years After Entry: Median earnings are the middle value of earnings, at which half earned more and half earned less, measured 10 years (2020-2021) after the first year of study (2010-2011) for all students, institution-wide, who received federal loans and who are employed but not enrolled in school. Note that this value includes those who completed their program of study as well as those who discontinued study without receiving an award.

    Top-Ranked Accounting Schools in North Dakota

    College rankings can be a useful tool to measure the overall reputation of a school or program. Weighing multiple rankings when evaluating your college choices can be helpful because different publishers may use different ranking factors in their methodologies. While the best program for your goals may rely on a combination of factors not typically considered in overall rankings, such as location or funding, seeing a program ranked on multiple lists can be a strong indication of reputation and academic quality.

    College Factual’s Best Accounting Schools 2023

    • University of North Dakota (#138)
    • North Dakota State University (#158)
    • University of Mary (#253)2

    US News & World Report’s Best Online Bachelor’s in Business Programs 2023

    • Mayville State University (#157 tie)
    • Minot State University (#157 tie)
    • Valley City State University (#170-214)5

    Highest First-Time CPA Exam Pass Rate with a Bachelor’s Degree

    The National Association of State Boards of Accountancy (NASBA) releases reports including data on candidate performance on the Uniform CPA Exam.11 The following business schools had the highest first-time CPA exam pass rates in North Dakota in 2019 (the most recent report available*) for candidates with a bachelor’s degree, with the overall pass rate for first-time test-takers in North Dakota being 54.4%:

    1. Minot State University 64.5%
    2. University of North Dakota 61.8%
    3. University of Mary 50.0%
    4. North Dakota State University Main Campus 45.5%

    *As NASBA makes significant changes to the CPA Exam as part of the CPA Evolution initiative, new candidate score reports by state are not anticipated until at least mid-2024.

    Schools in North Dakota with Accounting Degrees

    To give you an idea of the breadth and depth of accounting degrees offered in North Dakota, we have profiled select programs below. Be sure to visit the websites of programs of interest for more detailed information on courses, admissions requirements and deadlines, and faculty.

    Undergraduate Accounting Programs

    Minot State University

    Students at Minot State University (MSU) can earn a Bachelor of Science (BS) in Accounting that provides an overview of accounting theory and practice. Students in this 120-credit program learn business and economic fundamentals before moving on to complex accounting theory. This broad approach gives students the ability to explore all facets of business and finance, preparing them for a wide variety of careers upon graduation. Students are given the opportunity to enhance their degree with a minor in Fraud Examination and delve deeper into specialty accounting topics with courses such as Energy Law; Accounting Information Systems; and Advanced Auditing and Assurances. Students are also encouraged to participate in organizations such as the Accounting Club and pursue accounting internships prior to graduation to gain real-world experience and make valuable networking connections. MSU also offers a 12-credit Accounting Concentration for non-accounting majors.

    University of Jamestown

    The University of Jamestown (UJ) offers a Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Accounting and a Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) in Accounting that provide students with a well-rounded liberal arts and business education. BA in Accounting majors at the UJ take 34 credits of accounting coursework and 30 credits of business, finance, and mathematics core. They also have the option of adding a 21-credit concentration in Financial Planning. BBA in Accounting students must complete 32 credits of business administration coursework and 19 credits of accounting classes. Students work in a collaborative, team-based environment to master accounting concepts and learn effective technical and communication skills. Data analysis and critical-thinking skills are also emphasized to provide students with the confidence to make major financial and business decisions. Required accounting coursework for both programs includes Income Tax Accounting; Auditing; and Cost and Managerial Accounting.

    Graduate Accounting Programs

    North Dakota State University

    North Dakota State University (NDSU) offers a Master of Accountancy (MAcc) which prepares students for CPA licensure. This program is designed for both students with undergraduate degrees in accounting and those with non-accounting degrees who wish to make a career switch. Students without undergraduate degrees in accounting must complete prerequisite accounting courses before applying. This degree program can be completed in as little as 11 months, but part-time students will take longer to finish. Technical competency, research skills, and accounting theory are all emphasized in this 30-credit program. NDSU uses a collaborative approach to help students solve complex business problems. Students can expect to take courses like Information Resources Management; Fraud Examination; and Government and Not-for-Profit Accounting. Upon graduation, students will be prepared for a wide variety of accounting and financial roles, as well as certification examinations such as CPA, Certified Management Accountant (CMA), and Certified Fraud Examiner (CFE).

    University of North Dakota

    Students at the University of North Dakota (UND) can earn a Master of Accountancy (MAcc): Professional Track. This program is designed for students who already hold an undergraduate degree in accounting and prepares them to sit for the CPA exam. Four concentrations are offered: Business Administration; Data Analytics; Information System and Controls; and Tax Compliance and Planning. Regardless of concentration, students take courses designed to emphasize critical thinking skills such as Seminar in Accounting Issues, during which students examine contemporary accounting problems. They are also encouraged to participate in an internship to gain hands-on experience prior to graduation. This program can be completed either full-time or part-time, allowing for flexibility in scheduling. Undergraduate accounting students at UND can pursue the Accelerated Bachelor in Accounting (BAcc)/MAcc (ABM) degree program that allows them to complete both degrees at an accelerated rate.

    Online and Hybrid Accounting Programs

    Dickinson State University

    Dickinson State University (DSU) offers a Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) in Accounting with an optional Digital Marketing Concentration that can be completed fully online. This 121-credit degree provides a well-rounded view of the business world with a focus on accounting and finance. The curriculum requires 34 credits of business core classes and 31 credits of accounting major-specific coursework, including required classes such as Organizational Behavior, Business Policy, and Cost Accounting. Those interested in CPA certification can enroll in the online CPA Preparation Certificate of Completion program, which allows them to complete the remaining credits needed for licensure. DSU also offers an Accounting Technician Certificate that can be completed online. This certificate program consists of 16-18 credits depending on course selection and prepares students for entry-level positions as accounting clerks, bookkeepers, and auditing clerks.

    University of Mary

    Students at the University of Mary can earn a 124-credit Bachelor of Science (BS) or Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Accounting that prepares students for the CPA examination. Accounting majors complete required courses such as Auditing; Cost Management and Strategy; and Income Taxation for Business Entities. Leadership opportunities are also emphasized in this degree program, providing students with the skills necessary for a successful career in business. Mary’s accounting program is offered in a traditional format as well as an online and evening format for students who require more flexibility. Undergraduate accounting students at Mary may choose to participate in an accelerated program and graduate in three and a half years before moving on to a Master of Business Administration (MBA) program that they can complete with an additional year and a half of study, earning both degrees in just five years.

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    CPA Requirements in North Dakota

    The North Dakota State Board of Accountany (the Board) requires that CPA candidates hold at least a bachelor’s degree and complete 150 credit hours at an accredited institution of higher learning that must include 24 credits of accounting courses and 24 hours of general business courses. Applicants may sit for the CPA exam after completing 120 credits but need to complete the remaining credits before being eligible for licensure. Candidates must also accumulate at least one year of verified experience in the accounting field and provide proof of completion of Professional Ethics: The AICPA’s Comprehensive Course. If an applicant has already passed a portion of the exam in a different state, the scores from those will be honored in North Dakota and can be used toward passing the overall exam. Once the CPA license has been issued, it must be maintained by completing continued professional education (CPE).

    Career Opportunities for Accounting Grads in North Dakota

    Accounting graduates in North Dakota may find job opportunities with some of the major corporations headquartered in the state. MDU Resources Group, Alerus Financial, and Titan Machinery are all multi-billion dollar companies located in North Dakota. Bank of North Dakota (BND), First International Bank and Trust, and Gate City Bank are also headquartered in the state. Entrepreneurial graduates may also choose to open their own practices. Accounting positions may also be available in the state or local government sectors.

    North Dakota Accounting Salary and Jobs by Metro Area

    Metro AreaAccountants & Auditors Employed12Average Annual Salary12
    Bismarck900$72,280
    Fargo, ND-MN1,510$69,930
    Grand Forks, ND-MN390$70,220

    Popular Accounting Degree State Pages:

    References:
    1. National Center for Education Statistics: https://nces.ed.gov/collegenavigator/
    2. College Factual Best Accounting Schools 2023: https://www.collegefactual.com/majors/business-management-marketing-sales/accounting/rankings/top-ranked/
    3. The Princeton Review. The Best 382 Colleges 2023 Edition. Penguin Random House, 2022.
    4. US News & World Report’s Best MBA Accounting Programs: https://www.usnews.com/best-graduate-schools/top-business-schools/accounting-rankings
    5. US News & World Report’s Best Online Bachelor’s in Business Programs 2023: https://www.usnews.com/education/online-education/bachelors/online-bachelors-business-rankings
    6. US News & World Report’s Best Undergraduate Accounting Programs: https://www.usnews.com/best-colleges/rankings/business-accounting
    7. Association to Advance College Schools of Business, Accredited Universities and Schools, Business & Accounting: https://www.aacsb.edu/accredited
    8. Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs, Accredited Schools, Separate Accounting: https://acbspsearch.org/
    9. International Accreditation Council for Business Education, Members: https://iacbe.org/accreditation/member-status-information/results/
    10. Department of Education College Scorecard: https://collegescorecard.ed.gov/data/
    11. The NASBA Candidate Performance Report, 2019 University Edition: https://nasbareport.com/
    12. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment Statistics, May 2022 State Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates, North Dakota: https://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes_nd.htm