For more than two decades, employers have criticized the writing, oral communication, interpersonal, and teamwork skills of new college hires. As a result accounting professionals and educators have advocated that greater attention be given to skill or personal competency development in the accounting curriculum. In its Core Competency Framework, the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) identified interaction as one of the key personal competencies, stating that accounting professionals must be able to work with others to accomplish objectives. The Institute of Management Accountants’ practice analysis (1999, 5) found that team participation and leadership was increasing. The report noted that more than 70 percent of management accountants work in companies where at least some management accountants serve on cross-functional teams. And the first position statement issued by the Accounting Education Change Commission (1990, 7) identified the ability to work with others, particularly in groups, as one of the capabilities needed by accounting graduates. These three documents echoed the accounting profession’s plea for enhanced team skills. As a result many business schools and accounting programs have introduced pedagogical changes into their curriculums. This article focuses on ways to enhance the development of students’ team or group skills.

This article is from the Accounting Instructors’ Report, an electronic journal that provides teaching tips and insights to those who teach accounting and other business courses.

Debra Kerby, Ph.D., Truman State University
Sandra Weber, Truman State University

Read Develop Team Skills in Introduction to Accounting Courses.