Ohio State University
July 10, 2004
Ethics in Accounting
Ethics are not merely something, which is comprised of a person's belief or thoughts, but that of what is best for an organization or company. Ethical decisions in business are handled everyday, and most organizations have some sort of established code of conduct to help guide management to make the correct decision. Ethical decisions are not always easy and may require some thought as to the reactions or impact of a decision. There are already established laws regarding employment, accounting, and regulatory rules when it comes to conducting business.
Laws are not always designed to make an ethical decision, but they may promote ethical behavior. According to the Answers.com, many organizations are implementing a "code of ethics is to provide guidance to employers and employees in ethical dilemmas, especially those that are particularly ambiguous" (Answers.com). In addition to the creation of codes, many governments require special licensure. This is meant to protect the general public from unscrupulous individuals. Furthermore, professional organizations may each have their own set of codes that members are expected to adhere to.
According to the text, many institutions have been struggling on how to incorporate ethics into accounting programs. What was developed was a series of modules that could be easily incorporated into existing programs. Recently the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business International (AACSB) has "reemphasized the importance of teaching ethics to business students" (Mantzke, 2005).
The struggle to determine what is ethics also is a barrier for educators to overcome. This is due to the fact that ethics can mean so many various things to each individual. One of the solutions suggested is a simple framework by which an evaluation can be made on a potential decision. This simple framework is comprised of...