Sharing ideas in accounting

Two recent developments might help to reassure Mr Stittle (THES, December 30) and others who feel concerned about the state of accounting education.

The first is the establishing of a Special Interest Group focusing on accounting education in the British Accounting Association (which is the major body for UK-based academics who teach on degree-level programmes in accounting). This initiative has been reinforced by funding from the Department of Employment under its Discipline Network scheme. The mission is to enhance the educational base of accounting practice through the creation of a forum for sharing ideas on accounting education. The first major activity was a national conference held at the University of Sheffield last month on the theme of "Competencies in Accounting Education".

The second initiative is the creation of an inter-institutional Accounting Education Research Centre which is based in the school of financial studies and law at Sheffield Hallam University. The AERC is concerned with promoting research in accounting education and training of relevance to academics, professional bodies, accounting practitioners and students.

Those of us who have been involved in setting up the BAA SIG and the AERC hope that their existence will facilitate improvements in educational standards as a basis for more effective practice in this important area.

Richard M. S. Wilson Convenor, BAA SIG Chairman, AERC University of Keele

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