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Title: Do accredited undergraduate accounting programmes in Australia meet the needs and expectations of the accounting profession?
Contributor(s): Bayerlein, Leopold  (author)orcid ; Timpson, Mel (author)
Publication Date: 2017
Open Access: No
DOI: 10.1108/ET-04-2016-0074
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Abstract: Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to assess the overall alignment of undergraduate accounting degree programmes from all Certified Practicing Accountants Australia and Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand accredited higher education providers in Australia with the profession's minimum educational expectations (MEEs). Design/methodology/approach: The paper uses a series of quantitative and qualitative analyses to determine whether or not the content and focus of these programmes prepares students for contemporary accounting practice. Findings: The results of these analyses demonstrate that most accredited undergraduate accounting degrees in Australia are largely unaligned with the profession's expectations, with 18 (out of 57) degree programmes showing no overlap between their learning outcomes and the profession's MEEs. In addition, only two (out of 57) programmes are shown to address all of the profession's minimum expectations. A subsequent analysis of the focus and structure of the evaluated degree-level learning outcomes revealed additional inconsistencies between the interpretation of individual MEEs by the profession and the higher education sector. Originality/value: This paper demonstrates that accredited undergraduate degrees are predominantly unable to prepare students for entry into the accounting profession, and that the prior efforts to align accounting curricula with the profession's needs and expectation have thus far been largely unsuccessful. The findings of this paper are relevant for higher education providers and the accounting profession because they reflect the current level of alignment between the content and focus of undergraduate accounting education and the profession's expectations. In addition, the findings of this paper highlight that the current accreditation process of the professional accounting bodies in Australia does not generate the desired alignment between academia and accounting practice.
Publication Type: Journal Article
Source of Publication: Education and Training, 59(3), p. 305-322
Publisher: Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Place of Publication: United Kingdom
ISSN: 0040-0912
Field of Research (FOR): 160506 Education Policy
150199 Accounting, Auditing and Accountability not elsewhere classified
130203 Economics, Business and Management Curriculum and Pedagogy
Socio-Economic Outcome Codes: 939999 Education and Training not elsewhere classified
930299 Teaching and Instruction not elsewhere classified
930501 Education and Training Systems Policies and Development
Peer Reviewed: Yes
HERDC Category Description: C1 Refereed Article in a Scholarly Journal
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Appears in Collections:Journal Article

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