Ethical attitudes are especially important for accounting students as they transition from higher education into a profession where continuing education requirements for ethics are pervasive across state boards. We examine if generational categorization impacts ethical attitudes. We compare 172 student responses from an ethical survey to results reported in the prior literature from 1997, 2004, and 2007. We find evidence consistent with current students becoming less tolerant of ethically questionable behavior. Also, we explore students with self-declared Certified Public Accountant (CPA) aspirations to other students revealing minimal differences. This suggests that discussions around ethical attitudes might be beneficial in the workplace as multigenerational individuals need to make subjective decisions when working together. More specifically, our study encourages the development of additional ethical vignettes that include technological innovation twists to foster more robust classroom ethics discussions as many students fail to find a significant ethical gray area with the traditional vignettes.
Christine Cheng gratefully acknowledges the funding of the Donald and Velvia Crumbley Professorship while at Louisiana State University.
Cheng, C., Flasher, R. and Schenck, K. (2020), "Decade Comparisons: Do Students’ Ethical Attitudes Shift?", Calderon, T.G. (Ed.) Advances in Accounting Education: Teaching and Curriculum Innovations (Advances in Accounting Education, Vol. 24), Emerald Publishing Limited, pp. 31-45. https://doi.org/10.1108/S1085-462220200000024008Download as .RIS
Emerald Publishing Limited
Copyright © 2020 Emerald Publishing Limited