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Is Hong Kong ready for accounting education reform: an analysis of tri-partite views

Theodore T.Y. Chen (Department of Accounting, Hong Kong Shue Yan University, Hong Kong, China)

Accounting Research Journal

ISSN: 1030-9616

Article publication date: 28 October 2014




The purpose of this study is to determine whether Hong Kong is ready for accounting education reform.


The approach for this study is using a Likert-scale questionnaire for the academic institutions, the Hong Kong Institute of Certified Public Accountants and the big four accounting firms, followed by detailed follow-up interviews with each.


There is general agreement among accounting academics and the profession that the Accounting Education Change Commission initiatives should be adopted in Hong Kong. Hong Kong accounting academics in public institutions do not oppose to a balance between teaching and research, but would oppose to an emphasis of teaching over research. This is important as an overemphasis on research could mean less time for teaching and curriculum development. The big four accounting firms are either happy with the way Hong Kong universities have been educating the accounting graduates or have no complaints against them. This is also important as an urge for accounting education reform usually comes from the practitioners as in the USA.


The USA was the first country that saw the need for accounting education reform as accounting practitioners felt that curriculum and pedagogical considerations placed heavy emphasis on the technical aspects of accounting at the expense of a general, broad-based education. Similar needs for change were also found in the UK and Australia. As Hong Kong is one of the world’s major financial centres with a large securities exchange, there is a great deal of emphasis on accounting standards, financial reporting, corporate governance, etc., and hence the importance of accounting education. Is Hong Kong ready for the change?



T.Y. Chen, T. (2014), "Is Hong Kong ready for accounting education reform: an analysis of tri-partite views", Accounting Research Journal, Vol. 27 No. 3, pp. 249-265.



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