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Finance Degree vs. Accounting Degree: What’s the Difference?

January 11, 2022

If you have an affinity for numbers, you might be considering the pursuit of an accounting or finance degree. Determining which of these is best for you involves digging into the subtleties of each field and learning more about where getting a degree can take you in the future.

Choosing where you get your degree also matters. If you’re considering an accounting or finance degree in Oklahoma, be sure to check out the wealth of affordable opportunities offered by Oklahoma Baptist University.

What Can You Do with a Finance Degree or Accounting Degree?

Both of these career fields offer a wide range of opportunities for specialization.

As an accountant, you could pursue a career as a controller, cost accountant, financial auditor or tax accountant. As someone who aspires to a career in finance, you could land a job as a financial advisor, financial analyst, investment banker or portfolio manager. If you aspire to the C-suite, you might obtain the title of Chief Financial Officer, or CFO.

Overview of Having an Accounting Degree in Oklahoma

Accountants spend their days examining and preparing financial records such as financial statements. This field focuses on the details, potentially dealing with budgets, projections, cash flow analysis and planning, etc. Careers exist in virtually every industry, spanning public and private sectors, nonprofit organizations, and more.

Areas of specialization for people with accounting degrees include auditing, tax planning/consulting, and public accounting (the term used for general accounting roles such as preparing financial statements).

Across the U.S., people in this career field earn a median salary of $73,560 ($35+ per hour). In Oklahoma, accountants and auditors make an average annual salary of $66,860. This career field is projected to grow in demand by approximately 6% over the next decade in OK, and up to 10% across the country.

Overview of Having a Finance Degree in Oklahoma

Whereas accounting-related fields are very specific and detail-oriented, finance-related careers take a broader approach. Careers in this realm can encompass economics and financial markets, including investing, money management and financial planning.

With a finance degree, you will be prepared to move and management money, whereas someone with an accounting degree might be tasked to track those movements and transactions. Finance graduates can help determine the value of goods and services, analyze trends in specific industries or regions, and develop or apply financial models to obtain insight and develop knowledge.

The median salary for financial analysts in the U.S. is $83,660 ($40+ per hour). In Oklahoma, financial analysts earn an average of $74,050 per year. This field is projected to grow in demand by 7% over the coming decade.

Before you decide on the best path for you, consider the types of traits and characteristics that might make you better suited to one or the other of these fields.

Is Getting an Accounting or Finance Degree Hard?

Both accounting and finance degree programs typically begin with some basic courses in business ethics, business law, statistics, and an overview of principles of marketing, international business and management strategies.

For an accounting degree, you might move on to areas of more specific focus that include intermediate and advanced accounting courses, cost accounting, taxation, financial reporting, forensic accounting, fraud detection and auditing.

In the finance realm, further study potentially includes courses in micro- and macro-economics, financial and banking institutions, asset markets, corporate finance, risk analysis and management, electronic banking, organizational management, and areas of specialized interest such depending on your future goals and objectives.

Certainly, students must approach their coursework with the appropriate level of attention and dedication. However, graduates typically recall their experience as both challenging and rewarding – and with the knowledge that their lucrative career prospects made every bit of their efforts worthwhile.

Students who excel in these degree programs tend to be detail-oriented, have a reasonable level of numerical proficiency and strong communication skills. Whether you find the coursework challenging for either of these fields of study will depend on you and your interests – and whether you select the degree program that is best suited to your objectives.

Which Degree Is Better: Accounting or Finance?

The answer to this question depends on the individual. Consider your personality traits as well as your short-, medium- and long-term objectives. Start with an in-depth evaluation of your goals for the future and work backwards, taking the educational path that will best lead you to fulfilling your vision.

If you need a little help clarifying your view for the future, talking to the right people can be incredibly helpful. Talking to a university advisor is one great way to get the answers you need. You could also consider talking to professors as well as professionals working in your career field of interest.

Ultimately, when you choose the right school to pursue a degree, you’ll have all the answers and support you need to thrive.

Which School Is Best for Finance & Accounting Degrees in Oklahoma?

If you’re considering getting an accounting degree in Oklahoma, consider the Bachelor of Professional Accountancy (B.P.A.) in Accounting at Oklahoma Baptist University. You’ll also have the option of getting your B.P.A. with an interdisciplinary emphasis.

If you’re more inclined toward getting a finance degree in Oklahoma, take a closer look at the Bachelor of Business Administration in Finance at OBU.

Both of these exceptional programs are offered through the prestigious Paul Dickinson School of Business at OBU, accredited by the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP) and named a Business College of Distinction for 2021/2022.

To learn more, contact us today to schedule a campus visit or you can apply online now. We look forward to showing you why Oklahoma Baptist University is the best place to get a finance or accounting degree in Oklahoma.