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ACC30008: Accounting Theory

07 Apr

1
SP 1, 2018
ACC30008: Accounting Theory
Assessment 2: Assignment
Word limit: 2000 (+/- 10%)
Weighting: 30%
Due date: 9am AEDT Monday 1 May 2018
Assessment overview
The assignment is based on the Harvard Business School case study provided to you
[i.e., Eccles, R.G., Serafeim, G., Andrews, P, (2013).
Mandatory Environmental, Social,
and Governance Disclosure in the European Union
, 9-111-120, Harvard Business
School: Boston]
Pages 12-14 of the case study explains five hypothetical scenarios that were
discussed in the 5
th workshop organised by the European Commission (EC). The
objective of exploring these five scenarios was to determine how the 2003 Accounts
Modernisation Directive should be amended. The 2003 Accounts Modernisation
Directive which went into effect in 2005 read as:
To the extent necessary for an understanding of the company’s development,
performance or position, the analysis [in the annual review] shall include both
financial and, where appropriate, non-financial key performance indicators
relevant to the particular business, including information relating to environmental
and employee matters.
Assessment details
a) Explain why the 2003 Accounts Modernisation Directive should be amended?
Your answer should be informed by scholarly academic research on corporate
social responsibility, sustainability and integrated reporting. You are required to
draw on at least two theories explaining voluntary corporate reporting when
forming your answer. (Word limit: 800 words)
b) Out of the 5 scenarios discussed in the 5th Workshop, which one do you think is
the most suitable option? When arriving at your conclusion, discuss the pros and

2
cons of each of the 5 scenarios. Your discussion should go beyond the pros and
cons highlighted in the case and draw on relevant theories you have learned in
this unit of study. You should demonstrate that you have conducted sufficient
research using both academic and non-academic sources to build insightful
arguments. (Word limit: 1200 words)
Additional guidance
In this research assignment you will be providing your personal view based on
research evidence, theory and original thought.
In your assignment, you are expected to draw on:
relevant accounting theories
scholarly articles from academic journals
reports issued by professional accounting bodies, accounting firms (particularly,
the Big 4), regulatory bodies, the IIRC and other transnational organisations
media reports on sustainability and integrated reporting
Sustainability and Integrated reporting are covered in Chapter 9 of the textbook. The
theoretical knowledge necessary to complete this research assignment is not
confined to one or few topics but spread across many topics in this unit. The
theoretical knowledge provided in Chapter 8 of your textbook is particularly relevant
to this assignment. However, theories explained in Chapters 7 and 10 can be drawn
upon to inform your arguments where appropriate as well.
The class on “research skills and assignment workshop” is designed specifically
around this assessment. You would benefit more from this class if you had already
started your assignment and made sufficient progress in relation to each of the four
questions prior to attending this class. This is because you will have a better
understanding of the assignment and thus be able to clarify your doubts in this class.
The assignment should take the form of a report and include an executive summary.
The entire assignment should not exceed 2000 words (+/- 10 %). There is no need to
provide a table of contents and an executive summary. The word count includes
footnotes, endnotes and appendices. A reference list should be provided but is not
incldued in the word count.
Do not reproduce the assignment questions in your submission.
To avoid plagiarism, you are required to provide a reference whenever you include
information from other sources in your work. Further details regarding plagiarism are
available in Section C of the unit outline and will be discussed in class.

3
Referencing convention required for this unit is the Swinburne Harvard System.
Helpful information on referencing using the Swinburne Harvard System can be
found at:
http://www.swinburne.edu.au/lib/studyhelp/harvard_style.html
Prior to submission of your assignment make sure your work is properly edited and
proofread. Please use spelling and grammar checkers. You would like to obtain
assistance from the Language and Academic Skills (LAS) Centre to improve your
assignment and your writing skills. If you intend to obtain assistance from LAS then
you should contact them as soon as possible. This can be done even before you have
started working on your assignment. The following weblink will provide more
information about LAS and how to contact them:
http://www.swinburne.edu.au/student/study-help/las.html
You may also benefit from using Writer’s Diet (http://writersdiet.com/?page_id=4) – a
free online tool that help you improve the quality of your written work.
Submission details
This assessment need to be submitted through the Blackboard assessment
submission system (via Turnitin). A hardcopy of the assignment should also be
submitted to KAPLAN through a specially assigned drop box or personally handing
in.
Online submission: An electronic version of the assignment should be submitted via
Turnitin no later than AEDT 9.00am on 1
st May, 2018. Do not attach an assignment
submission coversheet or reproduce the assignment questions in your submission.
Hard copy submission: A printed version of the assignment should be placed in the
especially assigned assignment drop box or handed in at the KAPLAN reception. A
duly filled Assessment Cover Sheet must be submitted with the printed version. The
standard Assessment Cover Sheet is available from the “Current Students” website.
Assessment criteria
Your work will be assessed using the following marking rubric.
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Criteria Does not meet requirements Meets requirements Exceeds requirements Score
Pass (50-59%) Credit (60-69%) Distinction (70-79%) High Distinction (80-100%)
Written
communication
(20%)
Did not meet criterion
The written project exhibits
multiple errors in grammar,
sentence structure, and/or
spelling; inadequate writing
skills (e.g., weaknesses in
language facility and
mechanics) hinder readability
and contribute to an
ineffective research project
Writing is unengaging, and
reader finds it difficult to
maintain interest; tone is not
consistently professional or
suitable for an academic
research project
Acceptable standard of presentation with
clear communication.
Written research project displays good word
choice, language conventions, and
mechanics with a few minor errors in
spelling, grammar, sentence structure,
and/or punctuation; errors do not represent
a major distraction or obscure meaning
Writing is usually engaging and keeps the
reader’s attention; tone is generally
professional and appropriate for an
academic research project
Good standard of
presentation, including editing,
grammar, punctuation, and
structure. Clear
communication of ideas.
Readability of the project is
enhanced by facility in
language use/word choice,
good mechanics, and syntactic
variety; uses language
conventions well (e.g.,
spelling, punctuation,
sentence structure,
paragraphing, grammar, etc.)
Writing is somewhat
compelling and mostly
sustains interest throughout;
tone is mostly professional
and appropriate for an
academic research project
High standard of presentation,
including editing, grammar,
punctuation, and structure.
Excellent communication of
ideas.
Readability of the project is
enhanced by facility in
language use/word choice,
excellent mechanics, and
syntactic variety; uses
language conventions
effectively (e.g., spelling,
punctuation, sentence
structure, paragraphing,
grammar, etc.)
Writing is mostly compelling
and generally sustains interest
throughout; tone is
consistently professional and
appropriate for an academic
research project
Excellent standard of
presentation, including editing,
grammar, punctuation and
structure. Outstanding
communication of ideas.
Readability of the project is
enhanced by facility in
language use/word choice,
excellent mechanics, and
syntactic variety; uses
language conventions
effectively (e.g., spelling,
punctuation, sentence
structure, paragraphing,
grammar, etc.)
Writing is compelling and
sustains interest throughout;
tone is consistently
professional and appropriate
for an academic research
project
Referencing
(10%)
Did not meet criterion. External sources are acknowledged but
incorrectly referenced.
Harvard system of referencing
has been used however closer
adherence to the demands of
the Harvard style guide is
required.
External sources are generally
referenced correctly using the
Harvard style but there are
minor errors in formatting or
the use of punctuation.
All external sources are
referenced correctly using the
Harvard referencing style.
Extent of
Research (10%)
Most of the references are
from sources that are not
peer-reviewed or professional,
and have uncertain reliability;
few if any appropriate citations
are provided; reader doubts
Academically legitimate references are
generally used but only a minimal number
of them; clear and fair citations are
presented in most cases; most of the
information/content/evidence comes from
sources that are reliable.
Presents good evidence from
academically legitimate
sources; attribution is clear
and accurate; references are
primarily peer-reviewed
journals or other approved
Presents compelling evidence
from academically legitimate
sources but more evidence
can be provided; attribution is
clear and accurate; references
are primarily peer-reviewed
Presents extremely compelling
evidence from academically
legitimate sources; attribution
is clear and accurate;
references are primarily high
quality and extent peer

5

the validity of much of the
material
sources. Several relevant
citations have been omitted.
journals or other approved
sources. Most relevant
citations are used.
reviewed journals or other
approved sources.
Question 1
(30%)
Research problem, concept,
or idea is not clearly
articulated, or its component
elements are not identified or
described; research
information is poorly
organized, categorized, and/or
superficially examined;
research information is often
inaccurate or incomplete;
presents little if any analysis
or interpretation; inaccurately
and/or inappropriately applies
research methods,
techniques, models,
frameworks, and/or theories to
the analysis; presents few
solutions or conclusions;
solutions or conclusions are
often not well supported,
inaccurate, and/or
inconsistent, and are
presented in a vague or
rudimentary manner
Adequately identifies and describes (or
sketches out) the research problem,
concept, or idea and its components;
gathers and examines information relating
to the research problem, concept, or idea;
satisfactorily presents and appraises
research information with only minor
inconsistencies, irrelevancies, or omissions;
generally applies appropriate research
methods, techniques, models, frameworks,
and/or theories with a few minor
inaccuracies; outlines solutions or
conclusions that are logical and consistent
with the analysis and evidence; identifies
and/or lists solutions or conclusions in a
clear manner
Effectively formulates a clear
description of the research
problem, concept, or idea, and
specifies major elements to be
examined; selects and
prioritizes information
appropriate to addressing the
research problem, concept, or
idea; accurately and
appropriately analyzes and
interprets relevant research
information; precisely and
effectively applies appropriate
research methods, techniques,
models, frameworks, and/or
theories in developing and
justifying multiple solutions or
conclusions; solutions or
conclusions are insightful,
coherent, well supported,
logically consistent, and
complete
Effectively formulates a clear
description of the research
problem, concept, or idea, and
specifies major elements to be
examined; selects and
prioritizes information
appropriate to addressing the
research problem, concept, or
idea; accurately and
appropriately analyzes and
interprets relevant research
information; precisely and
effectively applies appropriate
research methods, techniques,
models, frameworks, and/or
theories in developing and
justifying multiple solutions or
conclusions; solutions or
conclusions are insightful,
coherent, well supported,
logically consistent, and
complete
Effectively formulates a clear
description of the research
problem, concept, or idea, and
specifies major elements to be
examined; selects and
prioritizes information
appropriate to addressing the
research problem, concept, or
idea; accurately and
appropriately analyzes and
interprets relevant research
information; precisely and
effectively applies appropriate
research methods, techniques,
models, frameworks, and/or
theories in developing and
justifying multiple solutions or
conclusions; solutions or
conclusions are insightful,
coherent, well supported,
logically consistent, and
complete
Question 2
(30%)
Research problem, concept,
or idea is not clearly
articulated, or its component
elements are not identified or
described; research
information is poorly
organized, categorized, and/or
superficially examined;
research information is often
inaccurate or incomplete;
presents little if any analysis
or interpretation; inaccurately
Adequately identifies and describes (or
sketches out) the research problem,
concept, or idea and its components;
gathers and examines information relating
to the research problem, concept, or idea;
satisfactorily presents and appraises
research information with only minor
inconsistencies, irrelevancies, or omissions;
generally applies appropriate research
methods, techniques, models, frameworks,
and/or theories with a few minor
inaccuracies; outlines solutions or
Effectively formulates a clear
description of the research
problem, concept, or idea, and
specifies major elements to be
examined; selects and
prioritizes information
appropriate to addressing the
research problem, concept, or
idea; accurately and
appropriately analyzes and
interprets relevant research
information; precisely and
Effectively formulates a clear
description of the research
problem, concept, or idea, and
specifies major elements to be
examined; selects and
prioritizes information
appropriate to addressing the
research problem, concept, or
idea; accurately and
appropriately analyzes and
interprets relevant research
information; precisely and
Effectively formulates a clear
description of the research
problem, concept, or idea, and
specifies major elements to be
examined; selects and
prioritizes information
appropriate to addressing the
research problem, concept, or
idea; accurately and
appropriately analyzes and
interprets relevant research
information; precisely and

6

and/or inappropriately applies
research methods,
techniques, models,
frameworks, and/or theories to
the analysis; presents few
solutions or conclusions;
solutions or conclusions are
often not well supported,
inaccurate, and/or
inconsistent, and are
presented in a vague or
rudimentary manner.
conclusions that are logical and consistent
with the analysis and evidence; identifies
and/or lists solutions or conclusions in a
clear manner
effectively applies appropriate
research methods, techniques,
models, frameworks, and/or
theories in developing and
justifying multiple solutions or
conclusions; solutions or
conclusions are insightful,
coherent, well supported,
logically consistent, and
complete.
effectively applies appropriate
research methods, techniques,
models, frameworks, and/or
theories in developing and
justifying multiple solutions or
conclusions; solutions or
conclusions are insightful,
coherent, well supported,
logically consistent, and
complete.
effectively applies appropriate
research methods, techniques,
models, frameworks, and/or
theories in developing and
justifying multiple solutions or
conclusions; solutions or
conclusions are insightful,
coherent, well supported,
logically consistent, and
complete.

 

 
 

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