The importance of understanding student learning styles in accounting degree programs

Cameron, Robyn-Ann, Clark, Pat, de Zwaan, Laura, English, Dianne, Lamminmaki, Dawne, O'Leary, Conor, Rae, Kirsty, & Sands, John (2015) The importance of understanding student learning styles in accounting degree programs. Australian Accounting Review, 25(3), pp. 218-231.

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Accounting education is critical and any improvements in tertiary education of accounting students should result in better prepared graduates entering the profession. This study evaluates accounting students’ learning styles and the interaction of learning styles and teaching methodologies during degree programmes. Nine classes of accounting students (648 students) spread across four years and two degree programmes were evaluated. Students self-evaluated their learning style, pre-instruction. They were then subject to two separate teaching techniques (one active and one passive) in each course. Learning styles were then re-assessed and teaching techniques evaluated. Accounting students displayed a preference for passive learning, even those far advanced in their degrees. Furthermore, when learning styles matched teaching methods used, usefulness was assessed as high but when learning styles and teaching methods differed, usefulness deteriorated. Overall, the teaching methods were deemed more effective by active rather than passive learners. The implications are significant. To maximise educational benefit for the accounting profession, student learning styles should be assessed before designing appropriate teaching methodologies. This has resource implications which would have to be considered.

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ID Code: 69527
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Additional URLs:
Keywords: HERN
DOI: 10.1111/auar.12065
ISSN: 1835-2561
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > COMMERCE MANAGEMENT TOURISM AND SERVICES (150000) > ACCOUNTING AUDITING AND ACCOUNTABILITY (150100) > Accounting Auditing and Accountability not elsewhere classified (150199)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > QUT Business School
Current > Schools > School of Accountancy
Deposited On: 08 Jul 2014 22:48
Last Modified: 22 Sep 2015 04:32

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