Associate Degrees in Accounting in California


Updated January 5, 2023

Looking for the best Associate Degree in Accounting in California? You should consider these top-tier programs and jobs in the accounting field. is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

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Associate Degrees in Accounting in California

Earning an Associate Degree in Accounting in California

The best degrees in California for accounting can lead to better career prospects. An associate degree is a great way to prepare for work in a variety of fields that are growing and needed.

Associate degree-holders typically make about $963 per week. This amounts to about $3,852 a month and $50,076 annually. Those who graduate from an associate program face an unemployment rate of 4.6%, while those who only have a high school diploma face 6.2% unemployment.

Accounting Associate Programs for You

Working and Living in California in the Accounting Profession

Graduates with an accounting degree can find jobs in a variety of industries, including public accounting firms, government agencies, and businesses of all sizes. Many accountants work in the accounting and finance departments of their organizations, but there are also opportunities for those with accounting degrees to work in other departments such as human resources, marketing, and operations. An accounting degree can give students the skills they need to become certified public accountants. An accounting degree can be obtained at many colleges and universities, and the coursework typically covers topics such as financial accounting, managerial accounting, taxation, and auditing. Some accounting programs also allow students to specialize in areas such as forensic accounting or information technology.

California's median annual salary for all occupations is $47,920, or $23.04 an hour. According to the BLS, the lowest 10% of earners take home approximately $29,780 per year, and the highest 10% of earners make approximately $91,000 per year. A comparison of accountants' and auditors' salaries is offered in the table below.


Accountants and Auditors in California
Accountants and Auditors Nationally
All Occupations in California
All Occupations Nationally

Salaries for Accountants and Auditors in California and Nationwide


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Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics
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California ranks number 49 out of 51 states (including Washington, D.C.) on the cost of living index, according to MERIC. In the U.S., the cost of living index measures the national average cost of living against specific states. Assuming that the U.S. average is 100, all locations in the U.S. are either higher (more expensive) or lower (less expensive). California's cost of living index is 139.8, which is 39.8% higher than the national average. Compare the cost of groceries, housing, utilities, and more in California.


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Source: Missouri Research and Information Center
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Jobs for accountants and auditors are projected to grow at a rate of 6.9% over the next decade. The BLS projects the number of these professionals to grow from 1,392,200 in 2020 to 1,488,200 by 2030. These positions require an associate degree to qualify.

Associate Degrees in Accounting in California

#1 Associate Degrees in Accounting in California

Humphreys University-Stockton and Modesto Campuses

  • Stockton, CA
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Humphreys University-Stockton and Modesto Campuses offer an online associate in accounting. Students gain knowledge and industry-relevant skills through coursework and experiential learning opportunities. Enrollees can apply their earned credits to a bachelor's degree, certificates, and educational credentials.

Enrollees can benefit from career services, academic advising, and other success-centered resources. Online degree-seekers can access virtual library services and academic tutoring. Attending classes on campus makes it easier for students to access the school's facilities and professors' offices.

The college notes that 100% of all students receive financial aid, with 60% using loans.

Humphreys University-Stockton and Modesto Campuses at a Glance:

Type of School: Private not-for-profit, 4-year or above

Location: Stockton and Modesto

Admission Rate: Data not available

Student-to-Faculty Ratio: 12-to-1

Undergrad Tuition In State: $14,580

Undergrad Tuition Out of State: $14,580

Transfer Credit Accepted: Data not available

Average Tuition
Retention Rate
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
Institution Type
Percent Online Enrollment
99% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Yes Western Association of Schools and Colleges Senior Colleges and University Commission

Financing an Associate Degree in Accounting

You can use financial aid to pay for college. Many opportunities for financial aid include scholarships, grants, fellowships, and work-study programs. Some students also qualify for federal student loans. Many colleges also offer scholarships to applicants, which can help them reduce the financial burden of earning a degree.

Checklist for Maximizing Your Financial Aid

Average Cost of Attending College in California

The cost of education in California varies based on which college you attend. There are some similarities that exist among institutions of all sizes. Find out whether attending a public institution is the right choice for you by reviewing the information below.

Public 4-Year School Tuition Rates: California vs. National Average


National Average


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Source: National Center for Education Statistics
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Considering attending a private college or university? Generally, private schools charge a higher tuition rate. The graph below provides information about attending private colleges in California.

Private 4-Year School Tuition Rates: California vs. National Average


National Average


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The chart has 1 Y axis displaying annual salaries in USD.
Source: National Center for Education Statistics
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Federal Student Loan Information

Are you considering borrowing student loans to pay for your education? Before you take out a loan, there are a few things you should keep in mind.

The following data will assist you in determining what students typically borrow:

Undergraduate Federal Loans
Demographic Percent who borrowed Amount borrowed
Total 66.6% $27,400
Female 69.6% $28,100
Male 62.5% $26,500
White, not Hispanic or Latino 66.1% $26,700
Black, not Hispanic or Latino 85.7% $34,800
Hispanic or Latino/a, of any race 67.7% $25,700
Asian, not Hispanic or Latino 43% $22,700
Other or Two or more races, not Hispanic or Latino 70.4% $28,300
Source: NCES

Online vs. On-Campus

Pros and Cons: Online Degrees


  • Cheaper tuition
  • Flexible, asynchronous classwork
  • No on-campus fees for parking, tech, etc.


  • Less structure
  • Minimal peer-to-peer interaction
  • Less facetime with professor
  • No access to on-campus amenities

Pros and Cons: On-Campus Degrees


  • Gym, library, etc. access
  • Smaller class options
  • Face time with peers and professors


  • More expensive
  • Transportation or housing costs
  • Rigid scheduling
The main differences between online and on-campus programs include cost and class size. Online programs offer flexible, affordable, and convenient degrees.The benefits of attending class, however, are numerous.

Top Accounting Degree Options Available by State
State Degree Level
California Bachelors, Masters, Doctorate
Florida Associate, Bachelors, Masters
Georgia Associate, Bachelors, Masters, Doctorate
Illinois Associate, Bachelors, Masters, Doctorate
New York Associate, Bachelors, Masters, Doctorate
North Carolina Associate, Bachelors, Masters
Pennsylvania Associate, Bachelors, Masters, Doctorate
Texas Associate, Bachelors, Masters, Doctorate
Virginia Associate, Bachelors, Masters, Doctorate
Washington Associate, Bachelors, Masters

Private vs. Public

There are several differences between public and private colleges, including cost. Typically, the government determines the costs for public institutions, which are covered by grants and scholarships. In private schools, merit scholarships are often available to students with high academic performance.

Students attending private colleges benefit from smaller classes, which allows them to interact more closely with their professors and explore the possibilities of their chosen field of study. Here are some pros and cons of attending a private vs. a public institution.

Pros and Cons


  • Unique program offerings
  • Cultural or religious options
  • Local prestige
  • Higher costs
  • Less regulatory oversight


  • Government-issued tuition costs
  • Government funding, benefits, and regulation
  • Oftentimes large classrooms

Frequently Asked Questions

In California, how much do accountants and auditors make?

In-state accountants and auditors make a mean annual salary of $92,840.

In today's environment, are accounting majors in high demand?

The total number of accountants and auditors is projected to grow by 6.9% from 2020 to 2030.

Are there any opportunities to study for an associate degree in accounting online?

An associate degree in accounting can be obtained online. Most schools today offer some form of online education.

In order to complete an associate degree, how long does it take?

Typically, full-time learners take two years to earn an associate degree. Part-time enrollees take longer.

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