The purpose of the Final Project Paper is for you to culminate the learning achieved in the course by describing your understanding and application of knowledge in the field of accounting. The Final Paper should also focus on real life, real time application of topics covered in this course; the uses you have seen and the uses you can envision.
Focus of the Final Project
Select one of the major topics listed below using course topics previously referenced as the basis for the paper.
- Debt securities are common investment vehicles and are exchanged (purchased and sold) in markets including numerous exchanges. Since (fixed rate) values are market determined, how are price changes reflected in the investment account for a security classified when held to maturity? What are the FASB accounting requirements for securities held to maturity? How does price influence return? What happens if the securities were purchased for the purpose of selling them? Provide a discussion of all potential scenarios and the relevant accounting requirements.
- What is a lease and how is it used as a financing vehicle? How are leases accounted for within the firm’s financial reports? What is the difference between a capital lease and an operating lease? What is residual value? What are executory costs? What considerations are relevant in a lease or sell decision? Provide a discussion of all potential scenarios and the relevant accounting requirements.
- What is a pension plan as used in a firm and related to employee compensation? What is the difference between a defined contribution plan and a defined benefit plan? What is accumulated benefit obligation and how is such associated with a projected benefit obligation? What is the funded status and where is it reported? How does a firm report post-retirement benefits in accounting statements? What is an actuary and what is the actuary’s duty in this process? Provide a discussion of all potential scenarios and the relevant accounting requirements.
- What is shareholder’s equity, how is it calculated, and where and how is it reported? What is comprehensive income and how does it influence equity? What happens to shareholder’s equity when the firm issues more shares or buys back shares in the open market? What are retained earnings and how and where are they accounted? What are corporate dividends and how are they distributed and accounted for? Provide a discussion of all potential scenarios and the relevant accounting requirements.
- What is the Statement of Cash Flows and how do decision makers use it to assess the viability of the firm? What types of elements are incorporated into a statement of cash flows? What constitutes inflows and outflows reported on the statement of cash flows? How would you represent such activities in a report and what activity notes would be incorporated? Provide a discussion of all potential scenarios and the relevant accounting requirements.
Your paper must:
- Identify the main issues in the chosen area and accurately respond to each of the questions from the chosen area.
- Build upon class activities by referencing new learning that has occurred.
- Present specific current and/or future applications and relevance to the typical workplace.
Guidelines for Writing the Final Paper
- Paper must be seven to ten (7-10) double-spaced pages in length, exclusive of Appendix, References, Exhibits, etc.
- Formatted according to APA style as outlined in the approved APA style guide (including title page and reference list).
- Must include an introductory paragraph with a succinct thesis statement.
- Must address the topic of the paper with critical thought.
- Must conclude with a restatement of the thesis and a conclusion paragraph.
- Must include at least three other appropriately documented, related articles drawn from the University’s library (excluding your textbook).