Case Study

Topics: Cost accounting, Transfer pricing, Management accounting Pages: 21 (5076 words) Published: December 19, 2012
Winter Quarter 2004

INSTRUCTOR: Professor D. L. Jensen
428 Fisher Hall (I check my e-mail several times daily and will respond ASAP)
292-2529 at office (Please leave recorded message; if I'm not in, I'll return your call.)
488-8177 at home (Please leave recorded message; if I'm not in, I'll return your call.)
Office Hours: By appointment or chance

640 Fisher Hall
Office Hours:


Anthony and Govindarajan. Management Control Systems, Eleventh edition. Homewood: Irwin, Inc., 2004 (abbreviated A&G)

Supplementary materials (abbreviated S) are sold in a package by CopEz. Some supplementary items may be distributed in class or made available on the Internet.


Horngren, Charles T., George Foster, and Srikant M. Datar. Cost Accounting: A Managerial Emphasis. Eleventh edition. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice-Hall, 2003 (or another cost accounting text)

Kaplan, Robert S., and Robin Cooper. Cost and Effect: Using Integrated Cost Systems to Drive Profitability and Performance. Cambridge, MA: Harvard Business School Press, 1998.

Kaplan, Robert S., and David P. Norton. The Balanced Scorecard: Translating Strategy into Action. Cambridge, MA: Harvard Business School Press, 1996.

Porter, Michael E. Competitive Advantage: Creating and Sustaining Superior Performance. New York: The Free Press, 1985.

Ronstadt. The Art of Case Analysis. Third edition. Lord Publishing, 1993. (1-800-525-5673)

COURSE METHOD: The requiring reading for the course includes cases and chapters contained in the assigned textbook and supplementary materials. Most class sessions will be organized around cases and team activities--usually debates or role--play presentations. Most written assignments will take the form of argument paragraphs on debate resolutions.

Cases are descriptions of real-life problem situations. Most cases are based on the actual observations and experiences of the case writer. No matter how many pages the writer employs to set forth the case, the description is necessarily incomplete. Consequently, the student or reader of the case must be prepared to "fill in the blanks" by reference to his or her own knowledge and experience about business situations.

Preparation of Cases
Unlike problems or exercises, cases do not have solutions. Cases require the reader to make interpretations of factual matters, and these interpretations will differ from one reader to another. Furthermore, cases require the reader to make judgments on issues that may be a source of unreconciled differences between readers. One of the benefits of case work is that it prepares us for a world in which different interpretations and judgments are the rule rather than the exception. Accordingly, cases should be viewed as vehicles for discussion rather than problems for solution. I recommend the following procedure in preparing a case for class:

1. Read the case quickly (invest no more than 5 minutes in this initial reading) and note the study questions (if any) at the end of the case.

2. Read the assigned chapter or article(s) making brief written notes of ideas and issues related to the case. These notes should be brought to class and can serve as a basis for your participation in discussion. (Some students find that it's best to perform the first two steps in the reading procedure a day or so before the last two steps.)

3. Read the case carefully; as you read, extend and embellish your notes.

4. Prepare the writing assignment (usually a debate argument based on an issue raised by the case).

Additional guidance on case preparation is presented in Ronstadt's book, The Art of Case Analysis (Third...
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