Online Accounting Degrees in Illinois

    • Expert Reviewer: Deborah Wadsworth (M.S. Accounting)
    • Last Updated: November 13th, 2023

    An online accounting degree provides essential financial knowledge while offering the flexibility crucial in our fast-paced world. Illinois stands out as a promising state for those seeking both affordability and quality in this growing field. This article focuses on three top online accounting programs in Illinois for 2024.

    Aimed at helping students at a critical juncture in their education and career, this guide evaluates the affordability and quality of Illinois’ online accounting programs. It emphasizes the convenience of digital learning, which allows for a balanced life-academically, professionally, and personally-and exposes students to a diverse, dynamic learning environment.

    Navigating the complexities of choosing an affordable online accounting degree becomes less daunting with the proper guidance. This article serves as an authoritative source for understanding the financial and academic aspects of Illinois’ online accounting programs, spotlighting those that offer the best combination of affordability, quality, and flexibility.

    Affordable Online Bachelor’s in Accounting Degrees in Illinois

    Our investigation starts with a comprehensive list of Illinois-based online accounting programs, which undergo rigorous evaluation for quality and credibility. All programs making the cut hold regional accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission (HLC), a notable accrediting body overseeing educational quality in the north-central region. Further elevating their reputability, several programs also secure business accreditation from esteemed organizations such as AACSB, ACBSP, and IACBE.

    online Accounting degrees in Illinois award badgeQuality control extends beyond accreditation. We manually verify key data points against reliable publications, ensuring our rankings uphold the highest standards of credibility. This process eliminates institutions that don’t meet our rigorous academic and ethical benchmarks, including removing For-Profit schools from our list. Our focus narrows to Public and Non-Profit institutions committed to offering affordable education without compromising on quality.

    Financial aspects come into play as we rank these vetted schools based on their reported tuition per credit hour. The result is a curated list of programs that offer a balanced blend of affordability, quality, and convenience, with comparative data on both state and national levels. This nuanced analysis aims to guide prospective students, global corporations, and governing bodies toward the most cost-effective choices for online accounting education in Illinois.

    1. Western Illinois University
    2. Illinois College
    3. McKendree University

    We encourage you to delve into the detailed data and comparative analyses provided, helping you make an informed decision in pursuing an online accounting degree.

    1. Western Illinois University

    Bachelor of Business in Accountancy Online

    School Info

    Business Accred:AACSB
    Regional Accred:HLC
    School Type:Public
    Phone:(309) 298-3157
    Email:[email protected]
    Location:Macomb, IL

    Western Illinois University (WIU) offers an online Bachelor of Business in Accountancy, boasting a remarkable 70.67% overall pass rate on the CPA exam 2017 among all Illinois public universities and a 94% employment rate within three months of graduation.

    The application process at WIU is straightforward, with a rolling admission policy for both US and international students, allowing flexibility in application submission. Prospective students require a minimum high school GPA of 2.0 for admission. The acceptance rate is 65%, making it a moderately selective institution compared to the state average acceptance rate of 79%. This selective nature potentially elevates the quality of the student body. New entrants at WIU predominantly comprise employed individuals, aligning with the average student age 22. This demographic distribution may appeal to younger individuals or those looking to kickstart their careers soon after high school.

    WIU’s online Bachelor of Business in Accountancy program provides a rigorous academic environment. It holds specialized accounting accreditation by the CMA (Institute of Certified Management Accountants) and accreditation by AACSB International, ensuring a quality educational experience. The program offers options in Management Accounting and Taxation, catering to varied interests within the accounting field. Besides, the integrated program feature allows students to pursue both bachelor’s and master’s degrees in a span of five years. Students also have the opportunity to engage in Beta Alpha Psi (BAP) student organization activities, enhancing their professional network and community involvement.

    Affordability is a notable advantage of this program. With a tuition rate of $317 per credit, it costs 18% less than the state’s average tuition and is 42% more affordable than the national average tuition per credit, making it the most cost-effective choice on our list. The average debt of 2021-2022 graduates who borrowed is $22,620; this figure is 15% higher than the state average but still 6% lower than the national average, presenting a relatively favorable debt scenario. Although WIU is GI Bill certified, it does not participate in the Yellow Ribbon Program, which might be a consideration for veterans. The school’s alum tracking suggests an ongoing interest in its graduates’ financial and professional well-being, providing additional support in post-graduation life.

    2. Illinois College

    Online Bachelor of Arts in Accounting

    School Info

    Business Accred:
    Regional Accred:HLC
    School Type:Private
    Phone:(855) 822-5202
    Email:[email protected]
    Location:Jacksonville, IL

    Illinois College offers an online BA in Accounting program, serving as a stepping stone for aspiring accountants toward promising career avenues. This program extends beyond core accounting principles, offering a deeper dive into the business realm, thus paving the way for versatile corporate roles.

    Illinois College adopts a rolling admission policy, simplifying the application journey for domestic and international candidates. Entrance to this program necessitates a diploma or GED, with the school also weighing the rigor of the applicant’s secondary school record. Boasting an acceptance rate of 85%, Illinois College stands more selective than many other institutions, potentially reflecting a competitive student body. The data reveals a notable portion of employed individuals among new entrants, suggesting a supportive atmosphere for those balancing work and study.

    Illinois College offers a vigorous and accelerated academic path to acquaint students with the latest accounting innovations. Experienced faculty lead the coursework, exploring critical accounting arenas such as financial accounting, auditing concepts, income tax, risk assessment, and business ethics. The program also features a capstone course and an optional internship, enabling students to translate theoretical insights into practical expertisea crucial step towards proficiency in the field. Compared to other state institutions, this program’s emphasis on real-world application through internships sets it apart.

    The per-credit cost is $400, marking the program 14% more affordable than the national average, a significant draw for cost-conscious students. The financial narrative continues with the average debt of graduates at $15,861, notably below both state and national averages. Furthermore, only 48% of graduates carry debt, the lowest percentage in the state, presenting a favorable economic picture for students. Veterans can find financial relief as the institution holds GI Bill certification and participates in the Yellow Ribbon Program. In a broader financial context, Illinois College is a wise choice for prospective accountants, blending quality education with economic sensibility.

    3. McKendree University

    Online Accounting Degree

    School Info

    Business Accred:IACBE
    Regional Accred:HLC
    School Type:Private
    Phone:(800) 232-7228
    Location:Lebanon, IL

    McKendree University’s online BBA in Accounting program offers busy adults a flexible pathway to balance work, personal commitments, and education. The School of Business designed this program to allow students to accumulate hours toward CPA exam requirements amid a rigorous accounting curriculum.

    The application process at McKendree University operates on a rolling basis for both domestic and international candidates. A diploma or GED is a requisite for admission, with a notable emphasis on the rigor of the applicant’s secondary school record. A minimum high school GPA of 2.5 is necessary. The university boasts an acceptance rate of 89%, significantly outpacing the state average by 11%, showcasing a welcoming admissions stance. The student body reflects a mature community with an average age of 32, and a significant number of new entrants are employed, indicating a blend of professional and academic pursuits among students.

    The academic experience at McKendree University spans eight-week sessions, with many students choosing to enroll in two courses each session. The Brightspace course management system facilitates the delivery of online classes, ensuring a structured yet flexible learning ambiance. The coursework, tailored for theoretical and practical mastery, prepares students for the CPA exam and beyond. Additionally, the program offers accounting classes at the Scott Air Force Base Center, showcasing its versatility. The full-time and part-time instructional staff’s diverse academic and professional backgrounds enrich the learning environment.

    At $405 per credit, McKendree University’s tuition is 12% more affordable than the national average cost per credit, positioning McKendree as a cost-effective choice among its peers in Illinois and nationally. The institution holds GI Bill certification and actively participates in the Yellow Ribbon Program, alleviating the financial burden for eligible military veterans. The average debt of 2021-2022 graduates who borrowed stands at $19,473, slightly above the state average yet notably below the national average. 67% of graduates incur debt, providing a realistic financial outlook for prospective students.

    View affordable programs by state: California | Florida | Illinois | Indiana | Kentucky | Massachusetts | Missouri | Pennsylvania | Texas

    1. National Center for Education Statistics:
    2. The Accreditation Council for Business Schools & Programs:
    3. The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business:
    4. The International Accreditation Council for Business Education: