Educators awarded for innovative accounting curricula

Seven educators received 2017 Effective Learning Strategies (ELS) Awards, which are given annually to professors in recognition of their innovative teaching practices and curricula in three levels of accounting coursework.

Each winning educator or team receives $2,500 and a plaque, and all will have the chance to present their curricula at the American Accounting Association's annual meeting in August 2018. Their curricula will be included alongside past winners as part of the Accounting Professors' Curriculum Resource tool. Winners were selected by the AICPA's Pre-certification Education Executive Committee's ELS Educator Awards Task Force.

Wendy Tietz, a professor at Kent State University, received the Bea Sanders/AICPA Innovation in Teaching Award for the first sequence of accounting (first- and second-year studies). Her submission, "Create Customized Financial Accounting Case Assignments With the Accounting Case Template (ACT)," is a web tool that allows instructors to build custom assignments for their courses by choosing from a number of options. As part of the coursework, students analyze two companies to determine which is healthier financially. Chris McCullick, assistant professor, and Ashley Minnich, professor, both of William Jewell College, received honorable mention for their submission, "Brainteasers, Black Lights, and Balance Sheets: Applying Introductory Financial Accounting Concepts in an Interactive Escape Room Environment."

Jeffrey Miller, associate professor at Sam Houston State University, and Grace Lixuan Zhang, assistant professor at Weber State University, received the George Krull/Grant Thornton Teaching Innovation Award for junior- and senior-level accounting courses. Their submission, "Student Distinctive Consolidated Financial Statement Assignment," challenges students to determine the measures in preparing consolidated financial statements by using technology to document work they've performed.

Maureen Butler, associate professor at the University of Tampa; Kimberly Swanson Church, assistant professor at the University of Missouri; Gail Hoover-King, professor at Purdue University Northwest; and Angela Wheeler Spencer, associate professor at Oklahoma State University, received the Mark Chain/FSA Teaching Innovation Award for graduate-level accounting teaching practices. Their entry, "AICPA Core Competencies — An Experiential Learning Case to Increase Student Awareness of Professional Competencies for Accounting Career Success," challenges students to explore the functional, personal, and business perspectives needed for successful entry into the accounting profession.

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