ACCTN581-22H (NET)

Professional Development Capstone

20 Points

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Division of Management
School of Accounting, Finance and Economics


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Paper Description

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The objective of this paper is to help students develop critical thinking and sound analytical skills about the past, present and future of accounting theory and practice. Various approaches to the development of theory in general and accounting theory in particular will be critically examined and different schools of thought in the field of accounting research will be covered. The paper also aims to make students familiar with theoretical and practical issues, and controversies in accounting.
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Paper Structure

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The Paper is structured round the assessment items. These flow from the paper description above and require you to critically consider a number of issues. The paper is supported by a number of videos as well as the text book and links to a number of readings to help you on your way.

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Learning Outcomes

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Students who successfully complete the course should be able to:

  • 1. Identify and discuss elements of the statutory environment.
    Linked to the following assessments:
  • 2. Analyse aspects of voluntary, and corporate social and environmental reporting.
    Linked to the following assessments:
  • 3. Critically discuss the various theories that underpin accounting.
    Linked to the following assessments:
  • 4. Critically discuss professional and ethical impacts on accountants.
    Linked to the following assessments:
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Your final grade will consist of coursework marks with no final examination: Internal Assessment/Final Examination 1:0

There are four assessment activities. These are also advised in the Components required.

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Assessment Components

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The internal assessment/exam ratio (as stated in the University Calendar) is 100:0. There is no final exam. The final exam makes up 0% of the overall mark.

The internal assessment/exam ratio (as stated in the University Calendar) is 100:0 or 0:0, whichever is more favourable for the student. The final exam makes up either 0% or 0% of the overall mark.

Component DescriptionDue Date TimePercentage of overall markSubmission MethodCompulsory
1. Online posting (Part One due 9th January by 11.30pm)
12 Jan 2022
11:30 PM
  • Online: Submit through Moodle
2. Essay One
17 Jan 2022
11:30 PM
  • Online: Submit through Moodle
3. Briefing Notes/paper
30 Jan 2022
11:30 PM
  • Online: Submit through Moodle
4.  Essay Two
9 Feb 2022
11:30 PM
  • Online: Submit through Moodle
Assessment Total:     100    
Failing to complete a compulsory assessment component of a paper will result in an IC grade
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Required and Recommended Readings

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Required Readings

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Paper Reading List Link

Online posting

Crowther, D. (2004). Corporate social reporting: genuine action or window dressing. Perspectives on Corporate Social Responsibility, 140-160.

Laufer, W. S. (2003). Social accountability and corporate greenwashing. Journal of Business Ethics, 43(3), 253-261.

Schaltegger, S., & Burritt, R. L. (2010). Sustainability accounting for companies: Catchphrase or decision support for business leaders? Journal of World Business, 45(4), 375-384.

Schaltegger, S., & Burritt, R. L. (2006). Corporate sustainability accounting: a nightmare or a dream coming true? Business Strategy and the Environment, 15(5), 293-295.

Lin, L.-W. (2010). Corporate social responsibility in China: Window dressing or structural change. Berkeley Journal of International Law, 28, 64.

Lyon, T. P., & Maxwell, J. W. (2011). Greenwash: Corporate environmental disclosure under threat of audit. Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, 20(1), 3-41.

Ramus, C. A., & Montiel, I. (2005). When are corporate environmental policies a form of greenwashing? Business & Society, 44(4), 377-41

Also for this first assessment use your experience, prior learning, general reading and Google!

Essay 1:

1. Corporate Governance in New Zealand: Principles and guidelines

Publisher: Financial Markets Authority

2. FMA Corporate Governance Handbook 2018- Summary of submissions

Publisher: Financial Markets Authority

3. New NZX Corporate Governance Code – what listed companies need to know

4. The Essentials of being a Director

Publisher: Institute of Directors and Financial Markets Authority


For further reference you may wish to read

Corporate Governance Statement 2018- (Contact, Scales Corporation, etc.)

Briefing Notes/paper

Eisenhardt, K. M. (1989). Agency theory: An assessment and review. Academy of ManagementReview, 14(1), 57-74.

Shapiro, S. P. (2005). Agency theory. Annual Review of Sociology, 31, 263-284.

Cunliffe, A. L., & Luhman, J. T. (2012). Agency theory, SAGE Key Concepts series: KeyConcepts in OrganizationTheory (1st ed., pp. 192). UK: SAGE Publications Ltd.

Laplume, A. O., Sonpar, K., & Litz, R. A. (2008). Stakeholder theory: Reviewing a theory thatmoves us. Journal ofManagement, 34(6), 1152-1189.

An, Y., Davey, H., & Eggleton, I. R. (2011). Towards a comprehensive theoretical framework for voluntary IC disclosure. Journal of Intellectual Capital, 12(4), 571-585.

Fernando, S., & Lawrence, S. (2014). A theoretical framework for CSR practices: integrating legitimacy theory, stakeholder theory and institutional theory. Journal of TheoreticalAccounting Research, 10(1), 149-178.

Cotter, J., Lokman, N., & Najah, M. M. (2011). Voluntary disclosure research: which theory is relevant? Journal of Theoretical Accounting Research, 6(2), 77-95.

Essay 2

Benston, G., Bromwich, M., Wagenhofer, A. 2006 Principles- versus rules-based accounting standards: The FASB's standard setting strategy. Abacus,

Francis, J., Schipper, K. 1999 Have financial statements lost their relevance? Journal of Accounting Research

Pelger, C. 2019The return of stewardship, reliability and prudence: A commentary on the IASB’s New Conceptual Framework Accounting in Europe

Nobes, C.W. 2005 Rules-based standards and the lack of principles in accounting. Accounting Horizons

Hlaciuc, E., Mihalciuc C.C., Cibotariu I.S., Apetri A.N. 2009 Some issues about the transition from U.S. generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP) to international financial reporting standards (IFRS) in Annales Universitatis Apulensis : Series Oeconomica

Benston, G.J., et al. 2007 The FASB's conceptual framework for financial reporting: A critical analysis Accounting Horizons

For Ethics see the Institute of Directors and CAANZ plus material provided, there is much professional material available online

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Online Support

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Moodle Paper
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On-line submission of assessment items.
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Linkages to Other Papers

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Prerequisite papers: ACCT572 or ACCTN572, ACCT573 or ACCTN573, ACCT574 or ACCTN574 and ACCT575 or ACCTN575




Restricted papers: ACCT581

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