Course Title: Understanding Global Accounting Practices through an International Study Tour

Part A: Course Overview

Course Title: Understanding Global Accounting Practices through an International Study Tour

Credit Points: 12

Course Code




Learning Mode

Teaching Period(s)


City Campus


615H Accounting


Sem 2 2014,
Sem 2 2015,
Sem 1 2016,
Sem 2 2017


City Campus


615H Accounting


Sem 2 2015,
Sem 1 2016,
Sem 2 2017

Course Coordinator: Dr Peta Alana Stevenson-Clarke

Course Coordinator Phone: +61 3 99250363

Course Coordinator Email:

Pre-requisite Courses and Assumed Knowledge and Capabilities

No pre-requisite courses required. It is desirable that students have an understanding of the RMIT course ACCT1110 Financial Reporting and Regulation or ACCT1048 Financial Accountability and Reporting or its equivalent.

Course Description

This course is centred around an international study tour that involves a series of site visits to major corporations and regulatory/professional bodies and presentations from their senior managers/regulators. Insights are gained into the structures and processes of these organisations and a range of contemporary issues faced in accounting, finance and performance management. Examples of topics addressed are:

The regulation of financial reporting, especially the structure and activities of the IASB, FASB and AASB.
The corporate governance transparency expected of company directors and management,
The global financial crisis, behaviours of securities market agents and FASB and IASB responses.

Objectives/Learning Outcomes/Capability Development



Objectives/Capabilities Development
The university expects its graduates to be active participants in both their professional and social communities, to be able to seriously reflect on their actions, to learn from experience which enable the development if context sensitive judgements, and to value life-long learning.
Course Aims
The aims of this course are to provide students with:
1. International experiences that assist in developing a far-reaching appreciation of the context of global corporations and regulatory bodies.


2. Insights and techniques to be able to engage in debates about contemporary accounting and reporting issues addressed by accounting standards setters, corporate regulators and corporate financial officers.


3. Ability to apply complex aspects of corporate reporting regulations or guidelines to an assessment of corporate social responsibility reporting practices at the level of organisational case studies.


4. Personal skills in professionally presenting themselves and interacting with high level international managers and regulators


5. An understanding that business organisation and regulatory bodies operate within a broader social context, and as such, they create various social, economic and environmental impacts.


6. Following from the above point, the course also aims to provide insights into the various accountabilities that organisation have, with these accountabilities extending to providing information about corporate social and environmental performance.


Learning outcomes

Successful completion of this course means that students should be able to:


1. Better understand the role of accounting in organisations and society, through an appreciation of the issues faced by global corporations and regulatory bodies with respect to a range of contemporary issues in accounting, finance and performance management


2. Have an appreciation of current developments and issues in international financial reporting, including the potential impacts of any new accounting standards being developed for global use


3. Understand how organisations in Singapore and Europe are accounting for their social and environmental impacts – in particular, how the large, multinational companies we will be visiting are reacting to changing community expectations, and government regulations pertaining to environmental performance and climate change


4. Appreciate the diversity of corporate social and environmental reporting practices being adopted by host organisations, and understand what ‘sustainability’ means to the various organisations in terms of how it impacts the running of their operations, and the processes they put in place to monitor their performance


Overview of Learning Activities

Students on the tour are expected to undertake reading before the tour so as to gain some understanding of:
• The reasons we have regulation of financial reporting together with various arguments for and against such regulation
• Incentives for organisations to provide various types of financial and sustainability-related information
• The role of accounting standards setters, such as the FASB and IASB
• Some of the current projects being developed by the FASB and the implications these will have for corporate reporting
• The concepts of sustainability and sustainability reporting

Overview of Learning Resources

Students will be supplied with full set of readings.

Overview of Assessment

Assessment includes Learning Journal, Institutional Primer, Participation in Study Tour and Major Assignment.