Business Schools Still Lack Ethics

Article excerpt

The good news: In the wake of high-profile corporate ethics scandals such as those at Enron and Arthur Andersen, a majority of states are requiring an ethics course as a condition for certified public accountant license renewal. The bad news: The majority of business schools are not requiring such stand-alone ethics courses as a condition of graduation.

In fact, research by a team from Kansas State University's College of Business Administration, Manhattan, suggests that ethics courses in business schools have declined during the past two decades, while continuing education in accounting is showing the opposite trend, especially in the wake of the accounting and corporate scandals. "Presently, continuing education is outstripping university requirements for ethics courses in accounting degree programs," says Diane Swanson, associate professor of management.

Swanson and associate professor of accounting Dann Fisher agree that one reason accounting degree programs lag in ethics education is because innovative research and team teaching across accounting and management departments are scarce nationally. …