Valuable resources for the accounting classroom

Liven up your classes with these tools from the 2018 CTLA/AAA Annual Meeting.
By Courtney Vien

Faculty members recommended a variety of new and exciting resources at the 2018 Conference on Teaching and Learning in Accounting/AAA Annual Meeting in Washington, D.C. In many cases, they presented on materials they created themselves. Here are a few of our best finds:

Accounting Teaching Tools. This site, run by Veronica Paz, CPA/CITP/CFF, CGMA, DBA, associate professor at Indiana University of Pennsylvania, contains a virtual treasure-trove of resources for teaching accounting, including videos, PowerPoint decks, multiple-choice review questions, and more. They’re all conveniently organized by course title and lesson, and the breadth of courses covered is remarkable: You’ll find materials for everything from introductory financial accounting through forensics, accounting information systems, and graduate advanced auditing. What’s more, the site offers templates for flashcards and infographics you can use to create your own materials, as well as links to apps that can make your classroom more interactive, such as PlayPosit, Sli.do, and Stoodle.  

Accounting Challenge. This free app, developed by Poh-Sun Seow, Ph.D., associate professor, and Suay-Peng Wong, lecturer, of Singapore Management University, is a fun way for students to learn introductory accounting terminology. The colorful and easy-to-learn app challenges students to answer as many multiple-choice questions as they can in 100 seconds. They get points for answering questions quickly and correctly, and can track their scores on a leaderboard and attempt to beat their own or classmates’ times.

Teaching the Accounting Cycle. Seow also presented a free online tutorial, developed by his colleagues at Singapore Management University, that takes students through the accounting cycle. The interactive animated tutorial, which is appropriate for introductory financial accounting classes, has four modules, each linked by a common storyline about a young entrepreneur. It presents accounting concepts in a clear, highly accessible manner and engages students with a variety of activities. The modules include Introduction to Financial Accounting, Double-Entry Accounting, Accrual Accounting, and Preparation of Financial Statements and Closing Entries.

LiveSlides. A free add-in for PowerPoint, LiveSlides enables you to seamlessly incorporate content from various websites and apps into your presentations. It’s compatible with YouTube, Twitter, Poll Everywhere, Tableau, Google Docs, Google Maps, and other sites, so you can embed videos, live polls, Q&As, and other types of media and interactive elements into your slides.

Interactive textbooks. We’ve all heard the complaint that students don’t read textbooks. Interactive textbooks, which combine ebooks with apps and activities, may be one way to get them to engage more with their books.

Several publishers offer interactive textbooks. SmartBook, by McGraw-Hill, incorporates adaptive learning, presenting students with personalized exercises that allow them to learn at their own pace and progressing to more difficult questions as they master the material. Cynthia Phillips, CPA, Ed.D., and Joseph Trainor, CPA, Ph.D., both associate professors at St. John’s University in Queens, N.Y., who presented on the platform at CTLA, reported that students enjoyed using it and said that it increased their learning, but cautioned that the assignments take much longer than McGraw-Hill predicts they will. They assign SmartBook modules to students as homework assignments before class.

Courtney Vien is a senior editor for magazines and newsletters at the Association of International Certified Professional Accountants. To comment on this article or to suggest an idea for another article, contact her at Courtney.Vien@aicpa-cima.com.

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