Soft Skill in Accounting Education and Related Issues

Describe about the Soft Skill in Accounting Education and Related Issues.

Introduction

According to Viviers Fouché and Reitsma (2016), soft skills are defined as the presence of traits and interpersonal skill in an individual, whicn is used to evaluate the relationship of one person with another.  In every field, the role of soft skills becomes very essential for progress of the business and industry. In addition, it has special importance in the field of education. From last two decades, it was observed that there is dramatic change in the business world because of the technology, business complexity and globalisation. For the aforementioned fact the accountant are needed to be acquainted with various types of technical skills. Some of these soft skills included the skill of communicating, coordinating and working under stress for solving various types of complex situations. The need is increasing for these skills in accountant and therefore the change in the accounting education is essential to fulfill the requirements of modern business world. In this 21st century, the adaptability with these skills is very crucial for solving the technicalities, which are necessary to maintain by the accounting students (Maelah, Aman, Mohamedand Ramli 2012). It is observed that the shorter degree in the accounting results in the developing fewer skills and competencies. Therefore, it is very important that the soft skills required for accounting is very necessary for both teachers and students in accounting. It is becoming a challenge for the accounting educators to specify the purpose of the accounting education as it continuously changes with the dynamic global, environment (Pierre and Rebele 2014).  The soft skills needed for the accounting students includes the creative thinking, critical thinking, analytical skills, team work, problem solving, communication, interpersonal relationship, leadership, public speaking, decision making, time management, numerical ability, etc.

The research questions focuses on the facts on the reason why the accounting student’s do not possess the speaking or listening skills. It is further important to state the reason abiding the fact why the there is a gap in the developing of these skills. The research question also states about the perceptions of the accounting student and the teachers.  For this business research study, we would study the existing system of the accounting education by conducting a small survey limited to the single location. It is observed that the educators or teachers cannot fully prepare the students with the soft skills, which are important for facing new business complex problems. Teachers should learn these skills first and then these skills should be taught to students of accounting

Hypotheses

We would use the opinions or the responses from the teachers and students in accounting for this research study. For this research study, the hypotheses are established as below:

H1: There is a gap in soft skills communication skills for inability to develop the process of speaking or learning.

H2: The average rate of employment in the students with soft skills is more than the average rate of employment in the students without soft skills in accounting.

H3: The perception of accounting students and teachers about developing these skills are not contributing positively

H4: The educators or teachers don’t have enough knowledge of soft skills for teaching advanced accounting skills.

Operational definition and Measurements

For conducting study on the role and development in the soft skills in the accounting education, we need to understand the perception of both the accounting students and the teachers. According to Watty, Jackling and Wilson (2014) Soft skills are defined as the qualities which an  individual must possess for the purpose of setting himself apart for the mass who may have similar type of skills and experience.

As stated by Robles (2012), that the soft skill as “the cluster of personality traits, social graces and optimism that marks each one of us to varying degrees”. For this research study, we would measure the variables by using the ordinal scale of measurements, which would, depend on the responses getting from the respondents or students and teachers in accounting (Burke and Gandolfi 2014).

Research Methodology: Data Collection and Analysis

  1. Sampling techniques

For this research study, we have to collect the data by using the proper method of random sampling. For the process of data collection, we would use the random sampling method for the selection of students and teachers of accounting from the educational institute. For collection of data, we would use the well-prepared questionnaire. The questionnaire would be easy to understand so that every respondent provide the correct response for all questions. Order of the questions in the questionnaire would be prepared accordingly. The questions would be related to the soft skills in the accounting education and related issues. The topics in the questionnaire would be related to taxation, financial management, management accounting, auditing etc (Madsen 2014). The sample size selected for this research study would be adequate and it would not be too less. Small samples give the biased results for the research study. Therefore, we would select more than 30 respondents for this study.

Method of analysis

After collection of data or responses from the respondents, we would prepare this data in the tabular form according to the different questions or variables related to the role of soft skills in accounting education. For the further analysis, we would use the statistical tools and techniques for checking the different issues and claims regarding the soft skills in students of accounting. We would use the descriptive statistics and inferential statistics for checking these issues. The descriptive statistics is helpful for checking the primary nature of the data (Freeman et al. 2013). We would use the frequency distribution tables for understanding the nature of soft skills for the students in accounting. We would use the inferential statistics or the testing of hypothesis for checking the different claims such as average rate of employment in the students with soft skills is more than the average rate of employment in the students without soft skills in accounting. After this statistical data analysis, we would summarise the results for the study of soft skills in accounting education.

Research Process

For this research study, after establishing the research questions or hypotheses we would collect the data by using the proper method of random sampling technique. We would use the simple random sampling for this research study and this research study would be limited to the particular location for avoiding the expenditure for data collection process. Proper methods of statistical analysis should be used for research process (Culpin and Scott 2012). We would collect the responses from the students or teachers by using the well prepared questionnaire. After collection of data we would use the descriptive statistics and inferential statistics for the statistical data analysis for the responses. We would use the proper methods and techniques of statistical data analysis for the collected data. Then we would find out the proper conclusions for this research study. We would take the decisions based on the comparisons of critical value and test statistic value or p-value and alpha value (Howieson et al. 2014).

Expected Research Outcomes

In the process of research study, the researcher expects some outcomes or results from the research process. For this research study, we would expect that the teachers in the education of accounting have the less advanced soft skills for teaching accounting. The educators have the less knowledge of the new technology and softwares related to the accounting education (Keevy 2016). It would be expect that most of the students are not curious about the use of soft skills in the accounting filed. In addition, we expect that the employment rate for the students with higher soft skills in accounting is more than the ones with less soft skills. The research outcomes will clearly state why the accounting student do not posses then necessary skills for the using the soft skills. The outcome will be able to identify the problem in developing the various types of the accounting skills. The different types of the accounting issues will be able to directly relate to the problems based on the hypothesis framed for the research study.  The study will be able ale to give feedback for the development of the different types of the communication skills. (Low, Samkin, and Liu 2013).

References

Burke, M.M. and Gandolfi, W.R., 2014. US Accounting Education: Misalignment With The Needs Of Small And Medium Companies. American Journal of Business Education (Online), 7(4), p.339.

Culpin, V. and Scott, H., 2012. The effectiveness of a live case study approach: Increasing knowledge and understanding of ‘hard’versus ‘soft’skills in executive education. Management Learning, p.1350507611431530.

Freeman, M.A.R.K. and Hancock, P.H.I.L., 2013. Milking MOOCs: Towards the right blend in accounting education. The Virtual University: Impact on Australian Accounting and Business Education, part B, pp.86-100.

Howieson, B., Hancock, P., Segal, N., Kavanagh, M., Tempone, I. and Kent, J., 2014. Who should teach what? Australian perceptions of the roles of universities and practice in the education of professional accountants. Journal of Accounting Education, 32(3), pp.259-275.

Keevy, M., 2016. Using case studies to transfer soft skills (also known as pervasive skills): Empirical evidence. Meditari Accountancy Research, 24(3).

Low, M., Samkin, G. and Liu, C., 2013. Accounting education and the provision of soft skills: Implications of the recent NZICA CA academic requirement changes. The E-Journal of Business Education & Scholarship of Teaching, 7(1), p.1.

Madsen, P.E., 2014. Has the quality of accounting education declined?. The Accounting Review, 90(3), pp.1115-1147.

Maelah, R., Aman, A., Mohamed, Z.M. and Ramli, R., 2012. Enhancing soft skills of accounting undergraduates through industrial training. Procedia-Social and Behavioral Sciences, 59, pp.541-549.

Pierre, E.K.S. and Rebele, J.E., 2014. An agenda for improving accounting education. The Routledge Companion to Accounting Education, p.102.

Robles, M.M., 2012. Executive perceptions of the top 10 soft skills needed in today’s workplace. Business Communication Quarterly, 75(4), pp.453-465.

Viviers, H.A., Fouché, J.P. and Reitsma, G.M., 2016. Developing soft skills (also known as pervasive skills): Usefulness of an educational game. Meditari Accountancy Research, 24(3).

Watty, K., Jackling, B. and Wilson, R.M. eds., 2014. Personal Transferable Skills in Accounting Education. Routledge.

 

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