Implementing the user approach in accounting courses

The market place for accounting graduates is making it very clear that it is dissatisfied with current accounting graduates. Accounting programs need to conduct self-evaluations of their programs to update them to satisfy the needs of prospective employers. Employers from public accounting firms and from industry and government want well-educated business persons who have an in-depth understanding of accounting information systems and the wide variety of roles of accounting information in problem solving and decision making. In order to achieve this objective, course designers need to make key decisions about the topics to cover is courses. Greater emphasis must be placed on information interpretation in skills that will provide “value added” to accounting students functioning in the “information age.” It is not enough for courses to be redesigned to adopt a “user” approach and include student-centered pedagogical approaches. In essence, accounting educators need to adopt a Total Quality Management perspective in choosing what topics to cover. These decisions will result not onlyin significant program changes, but in all likelihood will necessitate retraining programs for faculty. Business as usual no longer is acceptable. The current accounting education movement needs to be concerned not only with how accounting topics are being taught, but also must be concerned with what is being taught. We believe that the AECC was correct in their assertion that “no one modelof accounting education will be appropriate for all colleges and universities.” Each institution, working with its stakeholders, can create unique and sustainable programs and therefore this should result in a rich variety of approaches to accounting education.