The Business Activity Model: A New Approach to Intermediate Financial Accounting

Professional groups and academics alike are calling for educational reform so that today’s students gain the knowledge, skills and attitudes they need to succeed in the accounting profession. Up until now, introductory accounting courses received far more attention than intermediate financial accounting, a two-semester course usually considered the "core" of the accountancy major. In response, Villanova University and six other colleges and universities1 recently adopted a creative instructional strategy for intermediate accounting courses called the Business Activity Model (BAM). BAM seeks to: * Motivate students by illustrating specific types of real-world analyses that financial professionals perform for their clients. * Promote technical competency by requiring students to apply current accounting standards and information technologies to complex client accounting and reporting issues. * Help students develop life-long research skills by requiring them to seek answers to ambiguous, complex, realistic financial reporting problems with limited instructor assistance. * Advance critical thinking by training students to think and analyze in business contexts filled with uncertainty. * Foster oral and written communication skills by requiring students to demonstrate their proficiency at conveying complex accounting and reporting topics in a simulated client setting. BAM instructors rely primarily on simulation and case method rather than lectures. Over two semesters, students confront real-life business situations in which they must provide a full range of accounting, tax and consulting services to a fictitious client. Working as professional service teams, students model accounting and financial reporting processes found in the real world by conducting analytical reviews, soliciting information from clients, preparing adjusting and correcting entries, and drafting financial statements and note disclosures for their clients.

Main Author: Catanach, Anthony
Format: Villanova Faculty Authorship
Language: English
Published: 2001
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