Academic journal article Journal of International Technology and Information Management

An Excel Planning and Teaching Decision Aid for Bonner's Conceptual Framework

Academic journal article Journal of International Technology and Information Management

An Excel Planning and Teaching Decision Aid for Bonner's Conceptual Framework

Article excerpt

INTRODUCTION

In 1999, Bonner prescribed a conceptual framework entitled "Choosing teaching methods based on learning objectives: An integrative framework" to plan and teach accounting. Since then, Barth's (2008) call for using pedagogical conceptual framework have motivated the authors to plan and teach accounting based on Bonner's (1999, 2008) conceptual framework. Bonner's conceptual framework involves a holistic-mapping-process in which an instructor holistically maps a set of accounting learning objectives (ALO), general learning objectives (GLO), necessary conditions (NC), and teaching methods (TM). In this paper, following Albrecht and Sack's (2002) call for pedagogical innovation, we develop an Excel planning and teaching decision aid (EDA) for the holistic-mapping-process of Bonner's conceptual framework. This EDA assists, but does not replace, the holistic-mapping-process of Bonner's conceptual framework. Also, it supports, but does not supplant, the conventional judgment-based planning and teaching process (Bernstein, 1996). However, the EDA offers several significant advantages over the conventional judgment-based process. First, the EDA, as a decision aid, lessens an instructor's cognitive strain of the holistic-mapping-process under Bonner's conceptual framework. Second, the EDA, based on computational logic, reduces potential error of judgment heuristics under the conventional judgment-based planning and teaching process (Kahneman & Shane, 2002). Third, the EDA application, which utilizes the common Excel software, is easy to set up. Fourth, the Excel application, once it is set up, provides a fast and rigorous way of identifying the optimum teaching methods for a particular course. Fifth, the Excel application can be recycled and used across semesters or academic years for updated course materials (Gibson, Buche, & Waite, 2008). Last but not least, the Excel application documents the instructor's effectiveness and efficiency in planning and teaching, which complements the students' documents/evaluations of the instructor's teaching performance (Sullivana & Skanes, 1974).

The remainder of this paper is organized as follows. First, we describe four phases of Bonner's conceptual framework and its holistic-mapping-process. Second, an Excel planning and teaching decision aid (EDA) is derived from Brown and Gibson (1972) and Ammarapala and Luxhoj (2000) for Bonner's holistic-mapping-process. We rewrote Brown and Gibson's basic equation in pedagogical terms to set up the EDA (see details in Appendix A) and explain how the EDA generates four tables (a critical value table, an objective value table, a subjective value table, and a sensitivity index table) for a sensitivity analysis that prioritizes teaching methods. Third, we illustrate how an instructor uses the EDA to plan and teach Chapter 10 of Arens, Elder, and Beasley's Auditing and Assurance Services, 13th edition, 2009 (see details in Appendix B).

BONNER'S CONCEPTUAL FRAMEWORK

Bonner (1999, 2008) prescribes a conceptual framework for choosing teaching methods based on learning objectives. Figure 1 shows four phases of Bonner's conceptual framework and its holistic-mapping-process. (1)

[FIGURE 1 OMITTED]

In Phase 1 of Bonner's conceptual framework, an instructor begins by identifying accounting learning objectives (ALO) for a particular accounting topic. According to Bonner (1999, 2008), the instructor should consider students' prerequisite skills in identifying the accounting learning objectives (ALO). If students do not have the prerequisite skills, acquiring such skills should be identified as one of the accounting learning objectives (ALO). For example, since students learning about the topic of fraud auditing should know the accounting and legal definition of fraud, the instructor should identify learning the definition of fraud as one of the accounting learning objectives (ALO).

In Phase 2 of Bonner's conceptual framework, the instructor sorts the accounting learning objectives (ALO) into four general learning objectives (GLO). …

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