Professional studies courses often focus on mastering a common body of knowledge but ignore student interaction and the development of critical thinking and communication skills. In a cost accounting course at Connecticut's Sacred Heart University offered in fall 1993, various group and individual activities were implemented to incorporate these skills into the course. The requirements of the course included two quizzes, a computer project, class participation and activities, and a final examination. The approach to the course was based on pedagogical recommendations developed by the Accounting Education Change Commission (AECC) in 1989, which stressed the importance of solving unstructured problems requiring the use of a variety of information sources, learning by doing, incorporating technology into the learning process, group work, and teaching methods that build written and oral communication skills. Activities used in the course included extracurricular events with community accountants groups, research on current issues likely to affect the current working environment, and role playing presentations related to flexible budgeting. Numerous excerpts from the instructor's journal describing the implementation of these activities are included.
Colvin, S. R. (1994, February). Participative earning experiences in the professional studies classroom. Proceedings of the Eighteenth National Conference on Successful College Teaching (Orlando, FL).