Student poster project presentation.

Master of Science 

Forensic Accounting

Program of Study

Program of Study

This 30-credit program can be completed in two semesters of full-time study.

  • Statistical Methods for Forensic Accounting and Assurance
  • Fraud Examination
  • Financial Statement Fraud and Corporate Governance
  • Digital Forensics
  • Financial Statement Analysis
  • Advanced Cost Management
  • Auditing of Advanced Accounting Systems
  • Research Seminar in Accounting
  • One accounting elective
  • One business elective

Additional Information

See the Graduate Bulletin for details.

For more information, contact Dr. Mark Hughes at [email protected].

Career Paths

Forensic accountants analyze financial records, trace funds, locate hidden assets, investigate transactions, and interview people involved with white-collar crimes such as money laundering, insurance fraud, embezzlement, misappropriated products and services, credit card theft, false bankruptcy, etc.

The type of forensic work you’ll be doing depends on the focus of the business or public agency that employs you.

As a forensic accounting student at UAlbany, you have access to career services offered by the Massry School of Business and can easily connect with recruiters from major accounting firms, corporations, and government agencies.

This program is approved for licensure or certification in New York State and the institution has not made a determination regarding the educational requirements for any other state.

Sample Job Titles

  • Forensic Accountant
  • Forensic Auditor
  • Certified Fraud Examiner
  • Associate Forensic Advisor
  • Risk Assurance Associate
  • Investigative Auditor
  • Director of Loss Prevention
  • Fraud Investigator
  • Bankruptcy Analyst
  • Compliance Officer

Sample Potential Employers

The Big Four: Deloitte, Ernst & Young, KPMG, PricewaterhouseCoopers

Mid-Size Firms: Baker-Tilly, BDO Seidman, CBIZ, Citrin Cooperman, Grant Thorton, Mazars, RSM, Hilltop, UHY Advisors

Corporations: Bain Capital, Cantor Fitzgerald, Comcast, Ayco (division of Goldman Sachs), IBM, MGM Resorts, Moody's, Showtime Networks, Viacom, Xerox

New York State Government: Office of the State Comptroller, Office of the Attorney General, Department of State, Division of Criminal Justice Services, Department of Taxation and Finance

United States Federal Government: Department of the Treasury, Internal Revenue Service, Department of Defense, Government Accountability Office, Securities and Exchange Commission

Becoming a Certified Public Accountant

Public accounting is a regulated profession that requires you to meet certain requirements before you can obtain your license to practice.

As a certified public accountant (CPA), you’ll be legally authorized to prepare and review financial statements and other fiscal information for corporations, nonprofits, and/or government agencies.

The AACSB-accredited MS in Forensic Accounting program at UAlbany meets the education requirements for certified public accountant licensure in New York and qualifies you to apply for the Uniform CPA Examination.

This comprehensive accounting exam is developed by multiple organizations and required for CPA licensure in all 50 states.

young businesswoman calculating bill

"Earning my master’s in forensic accounting was a game-changer for my career. I’m the only person in my office with a background like this, and my recruiter told me that’s why I was their first choice as a forensic advisor."

- Jennifer Celiberti, '16, CPA, Grant Thornton, Forensic Advisory

“The forensic accounting program enabled me to guard against fraud more effectively in my organization. As the primary accountant for a growing business, I now know how to recognize and investigate indicators of fraud, and how to create policies that prevent financial misconduct.” 

- Ally Kiefer, '17, CFE, Staff Accountant

Admissions Requirements

Priority Review Deadline

  • Fall: November 1
  • Spring: Not Available
  • Summer: Not Available

Departmental Assistantship Consideration

  • Fall: March 1
  • Spring: Not Available
  • Summer: Not Available

 No Departmental Assistantship Consideration

  • Fall: July 1
  • Spring: Not Available
  • Summer: Not Available
Required Application Materials
  • Transcripts from all schools attended
  • Three Letters of Recommendation
    One academic reference is required, however two academic references are preferred
  • Resume
  • Statement of Goals
    The statement is generally one to two pages discussing what you have to offer the program and what you wish to get out of the program.  It should include a brief description of the applicant's field of interest, related background, desired area of study and research emphasis or career goals.
  • GMAT Official Scores*

*The GMAT will be waived for admission through Fall 2024.

Special Notes

Admission to the program requires a NYSED-approved undergraduate degree in accounting from an accredited U.S. university, or its equivalent (including 24 accounting credits and 36 business-elective credits). The application deadline for International Students is March 1.

This program is licensure qualifying. Students who have previously been convicted of a felony are advised that their prior criminal history may impede their ability to complete the requirements of certain academic programs and/or to meet licensure requirements for certain professions.  If applicants have concerns about this matter please contact the Dean’s Office of the intended academic program.

Student Learning Objectives

Learning objectives that UAlbany students are expected to attain through their course of study within their academic program.

Master of Science
  • Students will be able to demonstrate proficiency in the interpretation and application of the typical techniques utilized to manipulate and misrepresent the financial condition of the company.
  • Students will demonstrate an understanding of the legal and regulatory environment surrounding the detection of employee and management fraud in the corporate setting.
  • Students will be able to demonstrate an understanding of the ethical responsibilities of accountants and the importance of ethics in the financial reporting process.
  • Demonstrate knowledge of the impact of the global business environment on the practice of forensic accounting.
  • Demonstrate knowledge of the impact of technology on the practice of forensic accounting.
  • Each student will demonstrate an ability to communicate complex forensic accounting issues.
  • Demonstrate an ability to critically analyze complex reporting environments with respect to fraud.