Online IACBE vs AACSB Accredited Degree Programs


IACBE vs. AACSB: What’s the Difference Between Business Accreditations?

Higher education has experienced significant upheaval over the last few years. With the many challenges, some students have taken different paths with their academic and career trajectories, but many are still seeking ways to upskill and diversify their education and training. 

Some 60% of students still find value in pursuing a college degree, according to the Bipartisan Policy Center. And their experience has been good for those still seeking a college education. The question is how to determine which academic or training path will best meet your needs as you pursue your current career trajectory. 

As you explore your options, accreditation from the Association to Advance Collegiate School of Business (AACSB) or the International Assembly for Collegiate Business Education (IACBE) is one way to determine whether the program is worth your time and effort. With an accredited program, you know that you’re gaining an education and experience from a school that’s been vetted for quality and innovation. 

Accreditation from the best way to ensure you gain the greatest value from your business education. So, what’s the difference between IACBE vs. AACSB? Here’s what you should know.

IACBE vs. AACSB Accreditation: What’s the Difference? 

The AACSB and the IACBE are two organizations that offer accreditations to institutes of higher learning. Some of the main differences between the programs include the number of assessed programs, with the IACBE offering accreditation to more than 2,000 programs. 

The length of the accreditation varies, with AACSB accreditation lasting five years and the IACBE accreditation lasting for seven years. The programs differ slightly, with AACSB accessing accounting and business programs. So, let’s examine what each of these nonprofits is about. 

What’s the IACBE? 

The International Assembly for Collegiate Business Education (IACBE) was established in 1997 to recognize the quality of programs available for business. They have an outcome-based process designed to support accessible recognition for business education. Recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA), the IACBE reviews educational processes to evaluate teaching and learning effectiveness. 

What’s the AACSB?

The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) was established in 1916 as an international nonprofit that evaluates business programs. The AACSB issues accreditations to about 5% of eligible programs, totaling around 650 programs at higher education institutions worldwide. It’s a well-recognized and respected accreditation option focusing on accounting and business programs. 

Key Differences Between IACBE vs. AACSB Accreditation?

The key differences between IACBE and AACSB come down to the level of depth you can expect in the accreditation guidelines and the cost variables for the accredited program. Given those differences, you might expect a public institute of higher education or a research institute to have AACSB accreditation for their business programs, according to Business Education & Accreditation. 

AACSB-accredited programs generate more revenue and invest more in their equipment, assets, and professors. Conversely, a private institution might be accredited by IACBE. And institutes offering master’s and baccalaureate degrees are more likely to have IACBE accreditation. 

Why Is Accreditation Important? 

Accreditation is important because it’s a great way to determine the level of quality you can expect from the program. The accreditation offers a level of distinction, which may also affect the overall quality of your educational experience and the value of your degree as you pursue your career and advancement opportunities. 

Potential Career Options for IACBE vs. AACSB Degree Holders  

Accredited IACBE and AACSB programs typically improve your job prospects for the future. Of course, part of the positive job outlook is because we may already recognize the educational institution’s quality programs. 

Salary and Job Outlook

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, jobs in accounting have a projected growth expectation of 96,000 jobs through 2030. With solid employment options in accounting and business, pursuing an education at an accredited institution is the logical next step to differentiate yourself from other candidates in your field. 

Works Cited: 

Gallup, Inc. “The State of Higher Education 2022 Report.”, Gallup, Apr. 2022, 

Bipartisan Policy Center. Is College Worth the Time and Money?, Sept. 2021 – 

Brink, Kyle and Smith, Clair, “A Comparison of AACSB, ACBSP, and IACBE Accredited U.S. Business Programs: An Institutional Resource Perspective” (2012). Business Education & Accreditation, v 4 (2) p. 1-15, 2012, Available at SSRN:

“Accountants and Auditors : Occupational Outlook Handbook.” U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Apr. 2022, 

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