35 Best Master’s Degrees in Taxation 2021

A Master’s Degree can advance graduates’ prospects in the tax world. To help with the search, Grad School Hub has ranked the nation’s 35 Best Master’s Degrees in Taxation.

As Benjamin Franklin once said, “In this world, nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.” Though it may not be possible to master death, it is possible to master taxes. A Master’s Degree in Taxation builds advanced skills in aspects of taxation such as planning, regulations, and research.

Taxation programs deepen understanding of the tax world from the individual and corporate to international levels. Those with graduate Taxation degrees may work as revenue agents, tax collectors, or tax examiners. They may work for accounting firms, corporations or private businesses, or the government. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, individuals in these careers earn a median pay of $53,130 as of May 2017. While some Taxation master’s programs are designed for licensed Certified Public Accountants, most include state CPA training as part of the curriculum.

Accredited Online College Programs

35 Best Master’s Degrees in Taxation 2021

  1. California Polytechnic State University
    Location

    San Luis Obispo, CA

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    California Polytechnic State University is a public university in San Luis Obispo, CA. The university's intensive, full-time, 10-month Master of Science in Taxation program takes first place in Grad School Hub's rankings. Required courses include Current Developments in Taxation, Effective Communication Skills for Managers, and International Taxation. A key program feature is the Learn By Doing winter internship, which gives students the opportunity to apply their tax skills in an accounting firm. Cal Poly has also developed a Graduate Tax Guest Speaker Series, which brings industry professionals from major companies to graduate classrooms. To top it all off, the program has a near-100 percent job placement rate.

  2. California State University, Fullerton
    Location

    Fullerton, CA

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    California State University, Fullerton is a public university with the largest student body in the CSU system. The university's graduate taxation program is open to students of all undergraduate major areas. While the curriculum is designed for accounting or business administration students, others may apply and satisfy additional requirements. For all students, a course in Tax Research, Practice and Procedures is required, as well as seminars in Taxation of Corporations and Shareholders and Taxation of Partnerships. Elective seminars are offered in areas such as international business operations and property transactions. The program culminates in a Terminal Evaluation Project.

  3. University of Southern California
    Location

    Los Angeles, CA

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    The University of Southern California offers a Jennifer and James R. Parks Master of Business Taxation for Working Professionals. Classes are provided to students residentially and online, allowing students to choose a combination that fits their needs. On-campus courses are held one night a week, while online courses are held once weekly. Students can complete online exercises and activities throughout the week at their own pace. Program requirements include courses in Communication for Accounting and Tax Professionals and Tax Theory and Ethics. Most students in the program are already licensed CPAs, with an average of six years of relevant work experience. A minimum of one year of tax-related work experience is required.

  4. State University of New York at Albany
    Location

    Albany, NY

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    The State University of New York at Albany is a public research university with three campuses in the Albany, NY, area. SUNY Albany's Taxation Master of Science program is reviewed and approved by an advisory council of taxation experts. The curriculum covers taxation on various levels, including corporate, state, national, and international. Core courses include Principles of Tax Research, Seminar in Taxation and Financial Planning, and Taxation of Partnerships. Students have the opportunity to take a tax law course each semester at the Albany Law School. Most students complete the program within two years depending on their enrollment status.

  5. Northeastern University
    Location

    Boston, MA

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Northeastern University is another top-ranking university in Boston, MA, and just-so-happens to be classified within the top tier of research universities by the Carnegie Foundation. The university's graduate taxation program focuses on Internal Revenue Code analysis, planning, and tax legislation changes. The curriculum was designed to build applicable real-world skills for working professionals. The program can be completed in as few as twelve months of full-time study, or at students' own pace in a part-time or online capacity. All on-campus classes are held in the evenings. Course requirements include Estate and Gift Taxation, Partners and Partnerships, and Tax Research Methodology.

  6. Arizona State University – Tempe
    Location

    Tempe, AZ

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    The Arizona State University – Tempe campus is the largest of its four campuses. Located in the heart of Tempe, the urban campus is eight miles east of downtown Phoenix. It is situated around pedestrian malls and surrounded by an arboretum. ASU is ranked at No. 115 for National Universities by U.S. News & World Report. ASU's graduate taxation program aims to build students' communication, decision-making, and strategic thinking skills. The program prioritizes individual attention through small class sizes and mentorship opportunities. The plan of study includes courses in Analytics for Accountants; Corporate Governance, Ethics, and Sustainability Reporting; and Taxes and Business Strategy. Students sit for the Arizona CPA exam while completing the program. Overall, the MST can be completed in nine months.

  7. Bentley University
    Location

    Waltham, MA

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Bentley University is a private university located nine miles west of Boston, MA. The university's graduate school specializes in the relationship between business and technology. U.S. News & World Report ranks Bentley at No. 3 for Regional Universities North and at No. 7 for Best Value Schools. Bentley's Masters in Taxation program is tailored for working professionals, with courses offered in the evenings and online through live-stream. Core courses include Corporations and Shareholders, Multi-Jurisdictional Taxation, and Transactions. Elective offerings include Intellectual Properties, Mergers and Acquisitions, and Tax Accounting Problems. Students may complete an internship or practicum and accompanying research paper.

  8. Rutgers University – Newark
    Location

    Newark, NJ

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Rutgers University has three regional campuses in New Jersey, including one in Newark, 30 minutes from New York City. Founded in 1776 in New Brunswick, Rutgers is the eighth oldest college in the nation. Rutgers' Newark campus is ranked 115th best for National Universities by U.S. News & World Report. The university offers a Master of Accountancy in Taxation at its Newark campus. The program is designed to be completed by working professionals on a part-time basis. Rutgers' MST satisfies the educational requirements for the state CPA exam, though it is also suitable for current CPAs seeking career advancement. The curriculum is focused on global relations, real-world issues, and technological advancements in taxation. Courses include Consolidated Returns, Ethics in Business, and Law & Legal Reasoning.

  9. Mississippi State University
    Location

    Starkville, MS

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Mississippi State University is a public research university near Starkville, MS. Its full name is the Mississippi State University for Agriculture and Applied Science. It is one of Mississippi's flagship universities, and the largest campus in the state by enrollment. U.S. News & World Report ranks MSU at No. 97 among the nation's Top Public Schools. The university's Master of Taxation allows students to design their program of study to fit their career goals and interests. Required courses include Business Assurance, Seminar in Financial Accounting Theory, and Taxation of Corporations and Shareholders.

  10. Fordham University
    Location

    New York, NY

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Fordham University is a private Roman Catholic research university in New York City. U.S. News & World Report ranks Fordham at No. 70 for National Universities. Fordham's Master of Science in Taxation program can be completed in one full-time year or on a part-time basis to suit work schedules and individual needs. The curriculum builds skills in accounting, communications, estate and gift tax, general tax, and international tax. Course requirements include Current Law and Regulation Changes in Taxation, Federal Research and Procedure, and a Research Seminar. Students are presented with opportunities to network with taxation experts on campus and attend guest-speaker presentations.


  • Our Methodology, Explained


    Grad School Hub compiles rankings based on public data released from educational, commercial, and government databases. Sources such as the National Center for Education Statistics and the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics play a significant role in how we source our educational data. After collecting insight for each institution, we organize information into five weighted categories.

    Metric Data Used Percentage
    Academic Quality Full-time faculty percentage, student-to-faculty ratio, student retention and graduation rates 30%
    Affordability Tuition rates, median student debt, and financial aid 10%
    Reputation Admission and enrollment rates 30%
    Program Offerings Number of program options 20%
    Online Enrollment Score Portion of learners taking at least one online course 10%

    A more comprehensive evaluation of how each category is determined and scored is accessible on our Ranking Methodology page.


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