Date of Award
This thesis is comprised of a series of case studies covering various principles and standards of financial accounting. The thesis was created throughout a single academic year and the case studies are ordered to follow the basic elements of a balance sheet. These case studies include financial statement analysis, income and asset ratios, statement of cash flows, accounts receivable, revenue and inventory recognition, depreciation and fraud, GAAP standards compared to IFRS standards, debt, stockholders' equity, securities, revenue growth and regulatory issues, tax liabilities, and pensions and retirement plans. The purpose of this thesis format is to provide analysis for and within multiple areas of financial accounting. Most of the cases studies begin with an overview of the main topic of the study, followed by questions to be analyzed and answered. These questions ranged from creating journal entries to comparing companies' financial performances. Many of the case studies involved a heavy usage of Excel for creating tables, financial statements, and comparisons. Usually, the case studies also contained an analysis section of questions, which left more space for user interpretation in the answers to be provided. Because these case studies are based on established financial accounting standards, there are not necessarily any new findings. Rather, each case study is a reinforcement of individual accounting principles. The case studies confirm that there is a necessity to the existence of these principles, and their usage is based on logical thought and established facts that have become commonplace in the field of financial accounting. The thesis was also a tool to hone critical thinking and research skills. It allowed users to gain proficiency in Excel, among other technologies, such as the accounting codification website. It reinforced the basic concepts of theoretical accounting while allowing users to apply this knowledge to contextualized problems. In summary, this thesis, as well as the corresponding class taught by Dr. Victoria Dickinson, was an extremely valuable experience for those of us entering the accounting world. We were able to strengthen our learning in other accounting courses because this class subjected us to different types of studies, analyses, and concepts.
Mayo, William, "GAAP: An Analytical Study of Financial Accounting Standards" (2017). Honors Theses. 954.