Financial analysis is the process of assessing a company’s financial stability and business profitability. A financial analyst performs economic assessments and projections, researches financial trends, writes financial reports, and guides investment decisions. With a degree in this field, you can be a research analyst, investment analyst, rating analyst, or equity analyst.
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If you’re comfortable with numbers and have an interest in business and finance, you can start your journey toward becoming a financial analyst by earning an associate degree. Below is a comprehensive guide to the best schools that offer financial analysis associate degrees, the jobs you should have on your radar, and the annual wages you can start dreaming about.
What Is Financial Analysis?
Financial analysis is the process of evaluating whether a business is in good financial standing and how it can grow through investments. There are many techniques and methods used to analyze the economic viability of a company. These include cash flow analysis, trend analysis, comparative financial statements, and fund flow. A financial analyst can apply all of these.
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What Is a Financial Analysis Associate Degree?
A financial analysis associate degree is a two-year program that will lay the foundation of your knowledge in basic accounting and the financial industry. Financial analysis is a course that is number-heavy. You need to be comfortable with subjects like math and accounting.
In a finance course, you will learn the strategies of budgeting, financing, and forecasting. You will also learn about stocks, banking, financial models, and economics. You will learn to use and master some of the most common accounting tools such as Excel, PowerPoint, Quickbooks, and Xero.
You will become familiar with budgeting and payroll management tools such as PlanGuru and SurePayroll. You will learn to use and navigate ecommerce solutions such as PayPal and ApplePay, both of which will be useful in your job as a financial analyst.
Financial Analysis Associate Degree Requirements
The standard admissions requirement for a financial analysis associate degree at a college or university is a high school diploma or a General Educational Development (GED) certificate. By contrast, massive open online courses (MOOCs) and online bootcamps usually do not require anything for their programs other than having the means to access the online learning platform.
How Much Does a Financial Analysis Associate Degree Cost?
The average annual cost of attending a two-year college program is $11,391. This total includes school fees plus room and board. If we consider only tuition and fees, the average annual cost is about $3,621. This information is based on data on the cost of higher education for the 2019 to 2020 school year, collected by the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES).
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Financial Analysis Associate Degree Financing Options: How to Pay for Your Financial Analysis Degree
There are several available financing options for those who want to enroll in an associate degree program. The different financial aid sources include grants, scholarships, work-study jobs, public and private loans, and military aid.
The first step is to talk to your school’s financial aid office to see if they offer flexible payment plans or student loans. If the school has no financial aid or scholarship options, you can fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
Most private lenders do not offer loans to those enrolling in a community college or getting an associate degree, but some lenders might allow it. It is best to choose a private loan option with the lowest interest rate and no hidden fees.
Best Financial Analysis Associate Degree Programs and Schools: Overview
|Borough of Manhattan Community College||Associate of Science in Financial Management||Middle States Commission on Higher Education|
|Central Piedmont Community College||Associate in Applied Science in Accounting and Finance||Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges|
|Columbus State Community College||Associate of Applied Science in Finance||Higher Learning Commission|
|Davenport University||Associate of Business Administration in Finance||Higher Learning Commission|
|Hillsborough Community College||Associate of Science in Accounting Technology, Financial Option||Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges|
|Houston Community College||Associate of Applied Science in Banking/Finance||Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges|
|Joliet Junior College||Associate of Applied Science in Accounting||Higher Learning Commission|
|North Hennepin Community College||Associate of Applied Science in Finance Management||Higher Learning Commission|
|Northeast Iowa Community College||Associate of Applied Science in Finance||Higher Learning Commission|
|Northern Virginia Community College||Associate of Applied Science in Accounting
||Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges|
Best Colleges for Financial Analysis: Top Financial Analysis Associate Degree Programs
We’ve created a list of universities and colleges where you can get an outstanding financial analysis associate degree. See below for the best options available.
Associate of Science in Financial Management | Borough of Manhattan Community College
Borough of Manhattan Community College is a public community college in New York City. The financial management associate degree program is offered by the Department of Business Management. The curriculum provides a solid foundation in financial economics, covering accounting, business law, investment strategies, calculus, and banking.
Associate in Applied Science in Accounting and Finance | Central Piedmont Community College
Central Piedmont Community College is located in Charlotte, North Carolina. It is a public community college that offers a range of technical programs. The AAS in Accounting and Finance teaches students how to process, analyze, and communicate information related to financial operations.
Associate of Applied Science in Finance | Columbus State Community College
Columbus State Community College is in Columbus, Ohio. The Finance AAS degree will equip students with skills to get entry-level or management positions in the finance field. This program has open admissions and only requires a high school diploma or GED.
Associate of Business Administration in Finance | Davenport University
Davenport University in Grand Rapids, Michigan, is a private school that offers an Associate of Business Administration in Finance. The program teaches students to prepare financial statements and identify economic trends. Students will also learn to interpret and analyze financial investment data and identify good financial opportunities.
Associate of Science in Accounting Technology, Financial Option | Hillsborough Community College
Hillsborough Community College is in Hillsborough County, Florida. It is a public community college offering more than 200 degrees in various technical and medical fields. This AS program prepares students for financial occupations that require accounting skills, financial analysis skills, and knowledge of business laws.
Associate of Applied Science in Banking/Finance | Houston Community College
Houston Community College is an open admission public institution that offers high-quality, affordable education. Its AAS in Finance/Banking trains students for the financial services industry. It is a 60-credit two-year program covering the fundamentals and principles of accounting, banking, trading, lending, microeconomics, and financial management.
Associate of Applied Science in Accounting | Joliet Junior College
Joliet Junior College in Illinois is a public community college. It offers more than 180 programs in the fields of business, agriculture, health, and tourism. Its AAS in Accounting prepares students for careers in accounting or auditing. The program includes general education courses and its core curriculum covers business processes, tax accounting, and managerial accounting.
Associate of Applied Science in Finance Management | North Hennepin Community College
North Hennepin Community College in the Minneapolis suburbs offers a 60-credit Finance Management AAS. The program provides the foundational knowledge needed to get entry-level positions in financial occupations. It covers general business management subjects, business and personal finance, and credit and collections.
Associate of Applied Science in Finance | Northeast Iowa Community College
Northeast Iowa Community College is a public community college in Calmar, Iowa. It offers an AAS in Finance program through the Business, Marketing, and Hospitality Department. It is a 63-credit curriculum that covers all the basic finance subjects needed if you want to continue with a four-year degree in the future.
Associate of Applied Science in Accounting | Northern Virginia Community College
Northern Virginia Community College is a public college located in Annandale, Virginia. Its Associate Degree in Accounting teaches the fundamental principles of accounting, analytical skills, and critical thinking skills. Once students complete the program, they can take three more courses and be eligible to become a Certified Public Accountant (CPA).
Best Online Financial Analysis Associate Degree Programs and Schools: Overview
|Franklin University||Associate of Science in Financial Management||Higher Learning Commission|
|Genesee Community College||Associate in Science or Associate in Applied Science in Accounting||Middle States Commission on Higher Education|
|Johnston Community College||Associate Degree in Accounting and Finance||Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges|
|Lone Star College||Associate of Arts in Business||Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges|
|Milwaukee Area Technical College||Associate in Applied Science in Banking and Financial Services||Higher Learning Commission|
|Northwest Arkansas Community College||Associate of Applied Science in Business Management, Banking and Finance Option||Higher Learning Commission|
|Palomar College||Associate in Science in General Business||Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges of the Western Association of Schools and Colleges|
|Portland Community College||Associate of Applied Science in Accounting||Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities|
|Rasmussen University||Associate Degree in Accounting||Higher Learning Commission|
|Southern New Hampshire University||Associate of Science in Accounting||New England Commission of Higher Education|
Best Colleges for Financial Analysis: Top Online Financial Analysis Associate Degree Programs
If you find online programs a more convenient way to get an associate degree, you can check the list below for schools that offer purely online or mostly online classes on finance and accounting.
Associate of Science in Financial Management | Franklin University
Franklin University is a private university in Columbus, Ohio. In the AS in Financial Management program, students will learn real-world practices from financial management professionals. The curriculum starts with general education in English, math, and science before transitioning to core courses in accounting, microeconomics, investment, marketing, and finance.
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Associate in Science or Associate in Applied Science in Accounting | Genesee Community College
Genesee Community College is a public community college in Batavia, New York. It offers a two-year AS or AAS in Accounting online. This program teaches you how to prepare financial statements and become a master of Excel spreadsheets.
Associate Degree in Accounting and Finance | Johnston Community College
Johnston Community College is a public community college offering an online program in accounting and finance. The associate degree curriculum uses the language of business to train students to analyze and process information related to financial operations.
Associate of Arts in Business | Lone Star College
Lone Star College is a public community college located in Houston, Texas. The AA in Business is a two-year program you can take online. The curriculum includes the general subjects of math, history, and English, as well as more specific subjects in business, corporate finance, economics, and accounting.
Associate in Applied Science in Banking and Financial Services | Milwaukee Area Technical College
Milwaukee Area Technical College is a vocational college based in Milwaukee. The school offers flexible day, night, weekend, and online class schedules. This AAS is a two-year program that can be taken fully online. The course will help students learn the foundations of accounting and apply financial principles to banks, insurance providers, credit unions, and corporations.
Associate of Applied Science in Business Management, Banking and Finance Option | Northwest Arkansas Community College
Northwest Arkansas Community College is a public college located in Bentonville, Arkansas. This AAS in Business Management is available 95 percent online. The Banking and Finance track teaches students about financial markets, economic concepts, and lending laws and practices.
Associate in Science in General Business | Palomar College
Palomar College is a public community college in San Diego County, California. Its fully online Associate Degree in General Business will provide students with a comprehensive overview of business fundamentals tailored to their interests in the field of business. You can focus on accounting, ecommerce, advertising, retail, or media.
Associate of Applied Science in Accounting | Portland Community College
Portland Community College in Oregon has a two-year accounting degree. This program builds foundational knowledge in managerial accounting. You will pick up accounting skills as you learn all about business, math, financial management, and tax regulation.
Associate Degree in Accounting | Rasmussen University
Rasmussen University in Florida offers an online Associate Degree in Accounting. This program will take approximately 18 months, and it will give you foundational knowledge in accounting, proficiency in financial computer applications, and problem-solving and critical thinking skills for financial literacy.
Associate of Science in Accounting | Southern New Hampshire University
Southern New Hampshire University, located in Manchester, offers an AS in Accounting that students can earn online. The course covers comprehensive finance topics, including microeconomics, macroeconomics, managerial accounting, and financial accounting.
What’s the Average Financial Analysis Associate Degree Salary?
According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average annual salary of a financial analyst is $83,660 or about $40 per hour. PayScale reports, however, that an entry-level financial analyst makes $56,165 per year, which is about equal to the median salary of people who hold an associate degree.
Whether you can start earning top dollar as soon as you have your associate degree in hand depends on several factors. In any event, you should take the salaries listed in the table below with a grain of salt. You may need further education, training, or certification to maximize your earning potential.
Top Financial Analysis Associate Degree Jobs and Salaries: Overview
|Financial Analysis Associate Degree Jobs||Average Salary|
|Personal Financial Advisor||$89,330|
|Accountant or Auditor||$73,560|
|Securities, Commodities, or Financial Services Sales Agent||$64,770|
|Tax examiners, Tax Collector, or Revenue Agent||$55,640|
Best Financial Analysis Associate Degree Jobs Explained
- Average Salary: $134,180
- Job Outlook: 17%
- Number of Jobs: 681,700
- Highest-Paying States: New York, New Jersey, Washington DC
Financial managers are responsible for managing an organization’s overall financial health. The job includes monitoring financial reports, directing financial activities, monitoring investment programs, and creating financial plans for long-term growth.
Personal Financial Advisor
- Average Salary: $89,330
- Job Outlook: 5%
- Number of Jobs: 275,200
- Highest-Paying States: New York, Maine, Montana
Clients hire personal financial advisors to discuss their financial goals and avoid financial risk. They advise on personal economic issues such as investments, insurance, mortgages, taxes, estate planning, and anything related to financial management.
- Average Salary: $78,970
- Job Outlook: 5%
- Number of Jobs: 52,500
- Highest-Paying States: Washington DC, Maryland, Virginia
Budget analysts are hired by companies to help plan finances, prepare budget reports, and monitor the company’s spending. They also audit an organization’s overall financial expenditures to determine which projects the company budget is best used for.
Accountant or Auditor
- Average Salary: $73,560
- Job Outlook: 7%
- Number of Jobs: 1,392,200
- Highest-Paying States: Washington DC, New York, New Jersey
Accountants and auditors prepare and analyze an organization’s financial records, identify risks, and help the organization comply with tax laws. They ensure that all financial transactions are recorded accurately, and they help develop a system that makes financial recording more efficient.
- Average Salary: $71,790
- Job Outlook: -2%
- Number of Jobs: 119,400
- Highest-Paying States: New York, Washington DC, Massachusetts
Insurance underwriters evaluate insurance applications and determine the coverage amounts and premiums. They are often hired by insurance companies to analyze the information given in application forms and to determine the risks of insuring that client.
- Average Salary: $66,610
- Job Outlook: 1%
- Number of Jobs: 199,400
- Highest-Paying States: Washington DC, Massachusetts, Hawaii
The role of cost estimators is to estimate the costs of a project before running it. The types of projects that they work on include construction and manufacturing. These estimates involve money, time, labor, and materials.
Securities, Commodities, or Financial Services Sales Agent
- Average Salary: $64,770
- Job Outlook: 4%
- Number of Jobs: 466,300
- Highest-Paying States: New York, Connecticut, Washington DC
The role of financial service representatives is to connect buyers and sellers in business and financial markets. They search for investors, conduct trades, and find individuals who want to use financial products.
- Average Salary: $63,960
- Job Outlook: 1%
- Number of Jobs: 322,100
- Highest-Paying States: New York, Maryland, Hawaii
Loan officers, also called credit managers, are contacted by people who need a loan. These officers assess, process, and authorize these loans. Their job includes verifying an applicant’s credit rating and ensuring that the loans comply with federal and state regulations.
- Average Salary: $59,610
- Job Outlook: 16%
- Number of Jobs: 101,300
- Highest-Paying States: Washington DC, Massachusetts, New York
Fundraisers are event and campaign organizers who aim to raise money and donations for a specific cause. They also work on marketing and promotional campaigns to help an organization reach its financial goals.
Tax Examiner, Tax Collector, or Revenue Agent
- Average Salary: $55,640
- Job Outlook: -4%
- Number of Jobs: 56,900
- Highest-Paying States: Alaska, Connecticut, New Jersey
Tax examiners and collectors calculate and determine the amount of taxes that need to be paid by an individual or organization. They collect these taxes on behalf of state and federal governments.
Financial Analysis Bootcamp vs Financial Analysis Associate Degree: Which Is Better?
One advantage of coding bootcamps is their tailored education. They are a good fit for anyone with a background in accounting or finance who wants to level up their coding skills, earn a higher salary, or improve their craft. Associate degrees are for complete beginners. They provide foundational knowledge of finance and are a stepping stone to bachelor’s degrees.
To see whether a bootcamp or a degree is the better option for you, read below for a full rundown of the benefits of each education track.
Benefits of a Financial Analysis Associate Degree
- It prepares you for more advanced study. An associate degree can stabilize your educational journey. You can easily earn college credits and apply them to a bachelor’s or master’s degree.
- You can land a regular and high-paying job. Having an associate degree can earn you a spot as a regular employee in a company. The credential is worth more on the job market than a certificate.
- You will have a wealth of career options. An associate degree builds the foundation that will expose you to different areas of the finance industry. You have the freedom to choose your own destiny. Your specialization will determine whether you become an accountant, a financial analyst, a financial manager, or a fundraiser.
- Employers will give you a second look. An associate degree is a recognized credential. If you have the right skills and experience, an AAS may be all you need to get employers to choose you over another candidate.
- It’s never too late to start one. Some associate degrees are part of professional training or continuing education programs. Some employers will even pay for you to get one if it is in the company’s interest to do so.
Benefits of a Financial Analysis Bootcamp
- It offers an intensive learning experience. Bootcamps are ideal if you want an intensive learning environment and to be mentored by experts in the finance industry.
- It’s quick. A bootcamp will help you acquire a specific set of skills in just a few weeks. You will need to pass a final examination to graduate.
- It’s flexible. Bootcamps are convenient and practical. Many of them are even conducted entirely online. In these cases, classes are a mix of live and recorded lectures, interspersed with interactive and collaborative projects.
- Its education model is focused and structured. Unlike traditional schools that have general education requirements, bootcamps focus on teaching specific skills.
- It can get you a job fast. Bootcamps can get you a job faster, especially if the skill you are learning is very specific to what a company needs. They will also prepare you for job interviews and provide you with other career services.
Should You Get an Associate Degree in Financial Analysis?
You should get an Associate Degree in Financial Analysis if you want a high-paying, stable job in the finance industry. To become a successful financial analyst, you will need to have a successful track record of giving data-driven advice about investments and profitability.
The finance industry is a highly competitive environment, and the education requirements companies are looking for often start with a bachelor’s degree. However, employers will make room for someone with an associate degree if they have the necessary skills and qualifications.
Financial Analysis Associate Degree FAQ
An associate degree can earn you an entry-level position in the finance industry. This position will allow you to gain experience to become a regular employee. If you’re aiming for a higher salary, you can continue your studies and get a bachelor’s degree.
A Bachelor’s Degree in Business, Accounting, or Finance is usually the minimum requirement to become a financial analyst. But you can also enroll in short classes and data analytics bootcamps if you just want to strengthen your analytical skills. And if you want to test the waters but aren’t ready to commit, an associate degree can be a springboard to career advancement.
Financial analysts work long hours, more than 40 hours per week, especially around quarterly deadlines. The difficulty depends on the type of work you do. The bulk of the stress is felt by financial analysts who work in investment banking. This is because of the unpredictability of the banking industry and its emphasis on being profitable.
Some employers do employ individuals with associate degrees. When they do, they focus on previous work experience and what skills a candidate might be able to bring into the company. Some companies even offer educational assistance for employees who want to continue their studies and get a bachelor’s degree.
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