My goal is to facilitate a learning environment where students go a little further up their mountain. In doing so they become better versions of themselves. “Whenever a theory appears to you as the only possible one, take this as a sign that you have neither understood the theory nor the problem which it was intended to solve.” – Karl R. Popper
This graduate course focuses on understanding varying forms of financial accounting theory. Several of the topics discussed in this course include: regulatory elements of financial accounting, international accounting, normative theories of accounting, conceptual frameworks, positive accounting theory, unregulated corporate reporting decisions, social and environmental reporting, capital market research, behavioral research, and critical perspectives on accounting. The main goal of this course is to help students develop competencies that are required for success in the accounting profession. Understanding the origins of accounting research and how this translates into the accounting profession is critical. In line with The American Accounting Association Pathways Vision Model this course builds on the premise that a prosperous society comprises of accountants who can exercise critical thinking and accounting judgments given the multiple shades of gray within economic activity.
This undergraduate course contributes to students’ understanding of financial accounting and the development of critical thinking with respect to financial accounting. Primarily we delve into how accounting meets the information needs of investors, creditors, regulatory agencies and taxing authorities. The main goal of this course is to help students understand the elements of, relationships among, and the accounting concepts underlying the primary financial statements. Over time I help students develop their ability to use financial statements and related information in making business decisions. For example, we move through the accounting cycle to accomplish the task of processing financial transactions and to create financial statements.
Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA):
This course provides graduate and undergraduate students with the opportunity to learn how the tax system affects low-income individuals. The purpose of this course is to provide students with the skills to prepare federal and state income tax returns for a US and foreign taxpayers and to provide a meaningful service to our community. The main goal of this course is to develop students’ ability to prepare tax returns, conduct tax research, improve client communication skills, and develop problem-solving confidence.
I have also been fortunate to teach additional courses in other countries. One of my most memorable teaching experiences was working with groups of students to attend business case competitions. It was personally rewarding to witness my students place in the top three at more than twenty of these national and international events. I have also taught Executive Education (EMBA) courses and a menu of accounting related courses such as Cost Accounting, Managerial Accounting, and Strategy. Over my short career I have been blessed to work with more than 600 students, many who have taught me and helped me to become a better version of myself.
At the end of every term, students evaluate their professors. Generally there is an overall instructor rating. In this instance the scale is from 1 to 5, where 1 is “unacceptable” and 5 is “excellent”. Even though teaching evaluations may not be the only measure of success I am of the opinion that it is important to be transparent and disclose all of my teaching evaluation scores. Below you will find the average scores for each course that I have independently taught. This summarizes the opinions of more than 600+ students. For those of you who enjoy statistics, this is a large enough sample size to draw a meaningful conclusion about my teaching. I have also included student comments from the courses that I am currently teaching.
Overall instructor rating:
Accounting research = 4.9
Financial Accounting = 4.93
Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) = 4.9
Case Competition = 4.95
Cost Accounting = 4.85
Executive Education (EMBA) = 4.75
Managerial Accounting = 4.8
Strategy = 4.7
Student Comments (Graduate Accounting Research):
“I have always dreaded the thought of accounting research, but now I’m actually considering a PhD.”
“There is certainly a method to Ed’s madness, and as it turns out its not at all madness. I learned a lot about who I am and who I want to be as a student, person, and professional. His unique approach to the class is challenging, but it helps us learn and find out what we are good at. I am thankful for Ed challenging me in so many aspects of my life/education.”
“Ed’s class is probably the hardest I have ever taken. While he expects a lot from students he also makes it very clear what is expected and is always available to help.”
Student Comments (Financial Accounting):
“His overall mastery and ability to convey the information was a major factor in my success.”
“Ed does an impeccable job of motivating students to show a high degree of commitment to this class.”
“Ed got to know all of his students by name, little things about their lives and generally cared about our well-being and education.”
Student Comments (Volunteer Income Tax Assistance):
“I have grown as a human being and as an accountant from this course.”
“The hands on experience with taxes and the tax software were amazing.”
“I learned how to complete foreign tax returns!” Sitting one-on-one with someone challenged me to be a better version of myself.”