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|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی||تعداد کلمات|
|8203||2002||23 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید||9130 کلمه|
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Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Journal of Accounting Education, Volume 20, Issue 3, Summer 2002, Pages 139–161
This article reports the findings of an exploratory study into students’ perceptions of the extent that journal articles are helpful for learning public sector accounting. Data used in the study were mainly derived from face-to-face interviews with six students. Abstracting the meaning of articles was a dominant concept of learning for the majority of students who participated in this study. The students found journal articles to be a valuable aid to learning. Whilst they perceived academic articles as helpful in facilitating learning, they ranked the usefulness of professional articles higher than academic articles. The study also found that the majority of students who participated used a deep approach in reading a journal article; i.e. they tried to gain a full understanding of the article.
Adaptation and change of the accounting curriculum is necessary to properly prepare students to communicate effectively, apply appropriate factual analyses, and make sound judgments about the challenges facing them in this new century. In addition, scholars suggest that the accounting curriculum must be updated to be responsive to the needs of prospective employers (Rebele & Tiller, 1986, Rebele et al., 1991, Rebele et al., 1998a and Rebele et al, 1998b). Accounting teaching is predominantly based on textbooks; consequently undergraduate students often receive little exposure to journal articles. However, some academics claim that the conventional wisdom of accounting textbooks (especially management accounting) has little relevance to practice (Ryan, Scapens, & Theobold, 1992). Thus textbooks need to be supplemented by articles from academic and professional (or practitioner) journals. Academic articles can help reduce the perceived gap between theory and practice, and enable students to understand the roles of accounting in organizations and society. Professional articles can help students integrate theoretical and practical concepts, and increase the practical relevance of accounting course material. Faculty are the primary audience for academic journals. In contrast, professional articles are published in journals whose readers include practitioners as well as academicians. Articles published in academic journals are generally long and are based on theoretical frameworks and/or reasonable assumptions and logic. Professional articles are short, concise, and relate to problems facing practitioners and the business community as a whole. Despite calls for greater use of articles in accounting teaching, there is little research on whether student learning styles differ when academic and professional journal articles are used in undergraduate courses (Caldwell et al., 1996 and Williams et al., 1988). This article seeks to shed light on this topic. Johnstone and Biggs (1998), Bonner and Lewis (1990) and Libby and Luft (1993) suggest that integrating technical information with practical experience and promoting lifelong learning skills are necessary for developing the knowledge and performance of accountants. Further, the Accounting Education Change Commission (AECC) proposes that accounting curricula should be configured to convey attitudes of life-long learning as well as essential information and technical skills (AECC, 1990). The author believes that the use of academic and professional articles may serve this purpose, as these articles deal with both theoretical and practical issues. Little is known about the benefits of journal articles in an accounting course (see Saudagaran, 1996). The motivating factor for this study derives from a desire to examine this apparent gap in prior research. In so doing, the study sets out three primary objectives: 1. To assess students’ conceptions of learning; 2. To determine the usefulness of journal articles in facilitating student learning; and 3. To determine how a student approaches reading a journal article. The findings reported here should be helpful for accounting educators who would want to incorporate journal articles in their classes. Furthermore, the findings may generate issues for future research in accounting education. The context for this study is the Contemporary Issues in Public Sector Financial Management course at the third-year undergraduate level within the School of Accounting and Finance at the Gold Coast Campus of Griffith University in Australia. This course critically examines fundamental issues underlying recent developments in public sector financial management, accountability, and control. It attempts to synthesize a variety of theoretical perspectives to help future managers grapple with issues of financial management, internal reporting and control. No existing textbook appears to capture the breadth of these issues; consequently the course is based completely on articles from both academic and professional (or practitioner) journals. Appendix A provides a list of the readings used. The author attempts to achieve the following primary objectives with students enrolled in the course: 1. Provide students with theoretical knowledge to critically evaluate financial management and accountability issues within public sector organizations; 2. Provide an understanding of the values and assumptions underlying accounting and accountability systems in the public sector and the way we think about the nature and roles of accounting in public sector organizations; 3. Provide students with theoretical knowledge to analyze standard accountability reports of various public sector entities and express their views in a coherent manner; 4. Provide students with opportunities to develop their awareness of the latest developments so that they can enter a job knowing what public sector accounting is like today; 5. Develop the ability to initiate and conduct research; and 6. Develop skills to think creatively and act ethically. The professional accounting bodies in Australia expect that accounting curricula will be designed to enable students to acquire the above cognitive and behavioral skills.1 Scholars claim that these skills are required to allow knowledge and understanding to be used appropriately and effectively at work, and in collaboration with others (e.g. Marton et al., 1997 and Tate, 1993). Accounting professionals outside Australia also encourage more student involvement in the learning process (for details, see AECC (Accounting Education Change Commission), 1990, AICPA (American Institute of Certified Public Accountants), 1998 and Arthur Andersen & Co., 1989). The next section of the paper defines concepts relevant to the study. The third section describes the research method employed. Subsequent sections present the results and a discussion of the implications of the findings.
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
Abstraction of meaning was a dominant concept of learning to the majority of students who participated in this study. Journal articles were seen as valuable aid to students’ learning. The majority of students who participated in the study used a deep approach to reading a journal article, although the deep approach is not always best and its usefulness may vary from subject to subject. The way students learn has an important implication for their learning outcomes. As Marton and Saljo (1997) remarked: The way students learn which we believe to be of fundamental importance, and since this difference goes between two approaches to learning, of which one is clearly preferable to the other, should we not try to make the students who tend to adopt the less appealing approach, change to the more highly valued one? The study has limitations. It is based on a small sample size and one course. The data collected may have been influenced by the learning materials selected and the particular style of the instructor. Also, the researcher being the instructor may bias the results, though this has benefits of getting close to the interviewees. This study provides no insights into how valuable journal articles may be in a class where textbooks are required. Further, there was no treatment versus control groups and, consequently, there was a lack of experimental rigor in the study. A follow-up study may investigate these issues using a larger sample and a more rigorous experimental design. Notwithstanding, this study is naturalistic in nature in that it uses an in-depth case study method. Small sample sizes are inherently the nature of naturalistic research. This does not mean we cannot learn from this sort of study. This paper brings attention to the issue of using journal articles in class and provides insight into what kind of journal articles (i.e. professional vs. academic) students seem to learn the most from. Additionally, insight into how students approach reading a journal article is interesting and would be helpful to know for instructional purposes.