Financial Accounting Syllabus

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Financial Accounting

Course Objectives: This course introduces the fundamentals of financial accounting to graduate students. Throughout the course, communication skills will be emphasized. After completing the course, a student is expected to understand how accounting information is produced, interpret and analyze financial statements, communicate firms’ financial health and appreciate ethical issues in accounting. Since the course content will be approached from the perspective of a user, rather than a producer, of financial accounting information, a student’s analytical ability is emphasized.

Overview of Course Content: Accounting is the language of business and therefore a solid understanding of accounting is imperative to quality business education. Accounting produces economic information about a business that aids decision-makers to make decisions. Depending on the classes of decision-makers, we can roughly divide accounting into financial accounting and management accounting. Financial accounting produces financial statements that primarily serve external decision-makers, such as investors, financial analysts, creditors and government agencies. Management accounting, on the other hand, generates information primarily used by internal decision-makers, such as managers. This course concentrates on financial accounting. Financial accounting measures the economic consequences of a business’s activities and aggregates these measurements in the form of accounting reports or financial statements. The information in the financial statements serves external decision-makers in different ways. For example, financial analysts and investors use accounting information to value the firm; creditors base debt contracts on accounting information; accounting measures of performance often determine managers’ compensation contracts. No matter how financial accounting information is used, it is clear that a thorough understanding of the accounting information produced by...
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