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Coping with COVID: pivoting perspectives from teaching a third-year undergraduate financial accounting course

Richard D. Morris (School of Accounting, University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia)
Lili Dai (School of Accounting, University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia)
Sander De Groote (School of Accounting, University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia)
Emma Holmes (School of Accounting, University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia)
Leonard Lau (School of Accounting, University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia)
Chao Kevin Li (School of Accounting, University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia)
Phuc Nguyen (School of Accounting, University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia)

Accounting Research Journal

ISSN: 1030-9616

Article publication date: 29 March 2021

Issue publication date: 23 August 2021

255

Abstract

Purpose

Coronavirus (COVID-19) has caused upheaval in university teaching practices. This paper aims to document how the teaching team on a large third-year undergraduate financial accounting course in an Australian university coped with the impact of the virus. Changes in teaching practices when classes shifted from face-to-face to online instruction during the COVID-19 crisis are described and examined using the crisis management process framework of Pearson and Clair (1998). Teaching team members were asked to write brief reflections on their experiences teaching the course during the period from February to July 2020. These were then thematically analysed and included as outcomes within the Pearson and Clair (1998) framework.

Design/methodology/approach

Description of COVID-19 induced changes to teaching a large undergraduate financial accounting course at an Australian university.

Findings

Six outcomes emerged: learning new technology; collegiality; the course review; the online delivery experience; redesigning assessments and; time investment; conjectures are offered about the survival of some of the changes made during the year.

Research limitations/implications

The research only covers one teaching team’s experience but that is the purpose of the special issue.

Practical implications

Lessons for the future are explored.

Social implications

The implications of online teaching are explored.

Originality/value

The paper provides a historical record of how the teaching team on a large undergraduate financial accounting course coped with an unexpected, major event that necessitated rapid and radical changes to teaching methods.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

The authors thank two anonymous reviewers and Victoria Clout (the editor) for helpful suggestions that have significantly improved this paper. They are also grateful for helpful comments and suggestions from Mandy Cheng, and the conference participants at the 2020 ARJ Pivot in COVID-19 Special Issue Symposium.

Citation

Morris, R.D., Dai, L., De Groote, S., Holmes, E., Lau, L., Li, C.K. and Nguyen, P. (2021), "Coping with COVID: pivoting perspectives from teaching a third-year undergraduate financial accounting course", Accounting Research Journal, Vol. 34 No. 3, pp. 279-289. https://doi.org/10.1108/ARJ-09-2020-0295

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2021, Emerald Publishing Limited

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