Introduction to Financial Accounting


School of Business

ACT201: Introduction to Financial Accounting


Instructor:Office: NAC857Blog:



Office Hours: MW: 11:15 am to 1:15 pm

or by appointment.

Teaching Assistant: TBAEmail: Office Hours: TBA


Financial Accounting is the information system that identifies, records, and communicates to various stakeholders the economic events of an organization.  Without knowing how to interpret information coming from the accounting system, managers cannot correctly evaluate how well their company is doing and take a decision about the best way to make their company grow in the future.  Lenders and investors cannot make informed decisions about how to allocate their funds in the absence of a comprehensive and correct accounting information system.

Course Objectives

The purpose of this introductory level financial accounting course is to introduce the theoretical foundation of the accounting tools used by the professionals and to provide an orientation to the practical applications of those tools.

Required Text

Weygandt, Kieso, Kimmel: Accounting Principles, 9th Edition, Wiley & Sons

Course description

The students will learn to recognize when a transaction has occurred, how to record that transaction, and how to present that transaction in a meaningful way so as to meet the information needs of various stakeholders of the organization.  Students will become familiar with basic accounting tools including journals, ledgers, T-Accounts, adjusting entries, trial balance, income statement, balance sheet and statement of cash flows. Students will gain an understanding of the inter-linkage between the three major financial statements (income statement, balance sheet and statement of cash flow).  Student learning will be assessed through assignments, quizzes and exams.

Marks/Weight Distribution

Assignments                 10%

Quizzes                        10%

Mid-term 1                   25%

Mid-term 2                   25%

Final Exam                   25%

Class participation          5%


There will be regular assignments giving students the opportunity to practice problems so that students can strengthen their learning of the course materials.  Regular submission of assignments will help students evaluate their extent of learning and understanding of course materials. Assignments will have to be turned in at the beginning of class lecture on the due date.  If a student is unable to attend the class on the due date, he/she may arrange someone else to drop the assignment at the beginning of class lecture on the due date. Late assignments will be accepted till the beginning of the next class day after the due date but 50% marks will be deducted as penalty for the delay. No assignments will be accepted after that under any circumstances.

Grading Policy

NSU grading policy will be followed.

Course Policies

  • Assignments, Quizzes, and Exams – The assignments and quizzes are designed to prepare you for the exams. So, they are mini-exams in themselves. Quizzes will be given at the beginning of the class. If you are late, you will miss the quiz forever. The exams are most likely to be non-comprehensive. All quizzes and exams have to be taken. There would be no re-take of any exam. Tentative dates for the assignments, quizzes and exams are given in the course outline. Assignments will be available in the resource drive or in the blog in due time or announced in the class.
  • Missed quizzes and exams – You will get a zero in it. There is absolutely no scope of make-up for missed quizzes under any circumstances. Make-up exams taken within one week of the regular exam will account for 85% marks instead of 100%. Similarly, make-up exams taken after one week of the regular exam will account for only 75% marks instead of 100%. However, make-up exams are usually more difficult than regular exams, thus should be avoided at any cost.
  • Academic Dishonesty – Any sort of academic dishonesty, such as, plagiarism, cheating will not be tolerated. Penalty can be severe. You should acquaint yourself with ‘Student Code of Conduct’ and other university policies. Remember, when you cheat, you only cheat yourself. So, please DON’T.
  • Attendance and participation – Class attendance is mandatory. Roll call will be done at the beginning of the class. You will be considered late if you miss the roll-call. Three late attendances will be considered as an absence. An absence will cost you 0.25 from overall total score. Exams will be based on materials covered in class. I strongly recommend that you put your best effort to attend each and every class meeting ON TIME. You can greatly affect your grade by attending classes regularly. As the topics are interwoven, failure to attend a class will leave you with confusion and unanswered questions. If you miss a class, collect the class notes from a friend before the next class. Please go through the assigned readings and come to the class prepared. It is your responsibility to remain up-to-date.



Some Rules

  • The ground rule for our class is respectful open communication. We have many things to learn from each other. Every single question is appreciated.
  • When you come to the class, you become part of a learning community. Please be conscious of your community role, and work toward creating a healthy learning atmosphere in the class.
  • Don’t chat during the class.
  • No assignment or quiz would be dropped.
  • If you have to leave the class early when it is in progress, sit near the door and leave silently.
  • While in class, please switch off your cell phone. If anyone is seen using a cell phone, it will negatively affect class participation marks. In case of emergency, please leave the class silently and use your cell phone outside of the class.
  • Never assume anything. If there is any concern, you should talk to me.
  • NSU policy will be followed for any disciplinary action, if taken.




  • Teachers open the door and show it to you but you must enter by yourself” – A Chinese proverb.
  • I am here to assist you in every possible way to make your learning experience enjoyable.
  • Feel ABSOLUTELY free to see me with whatever questions you may have.
  • Please make use of my office hours.
  • If you cannot see me during the office hours, make an appointment.
  • You may consult my TA in my absence for help.
  • Contact me through blog or email if it is difficult to meet me physically.



Some expectations / Study hints

  • Attend all classes on time.
  • Read the assigned topic before coming to the class even if don’t understand it fully.
  • Take notes during the class, review the notes after the class, and fill-in details.
  • Think and reason more, memorize less.
  • Break the ice, and discuss with your classmates.
  • Form study groups.
  • Actively take part in class-discussions. It is the most effective way of learning.
  • Don’t be afraid of asking the silliest question.
  • Avoid last-minute cramming.
  • Please talk to me if something does not make sense.
  • Don’t make excuses in the last minute to skip a quiz or an exam. It does not help in the long run.
  • Have respect for yourself, for others, and for your dreams.

Exam Rules

  • You must come on time.
  • Quizzes and exams will be closed book.
  • You must come prepared for all your quizzes and exams.
  • Being late does not necessarily guarantee that you are going to get extra time for writing your quizzes and exams.
  • You must bring your own pencil, pen, eraser, calculator, etc.
  • All cell phones must be switched off.
  • Any deviation from the standard procedure will not be taken lightly.
  • Any unfair means adopted in the quizzes or exams will be seriously dealt with.



Suggestions from Previous Classes

  • Read, read, and read.
  • Don’t miss any class and pay attention.
  • Read assigned readings before coming to the class.
  • Take lecture notes and study them. Review the notes before exam.
  • Do not copy other student’s assignment! Do it yourself. Otherwise you will regret later on when there will be no chance of coming back.
  • Prepare for the next exam as you go along. Don’t wait until the night before exam!
  • Review the terms and practice the assignments. Assignments are very good way of preparing for the problems to be given in the exam.


Extra Credit!

  • Read the course outline carefully and understand the rules and requirements.
  • Download “Stud_Prof.xls” from the resource drive or the blog.
  • Fill in all the blanks with relevant information. Follow the comments (which will be displayed if you take the mouse pointer over the cells near the small red triangles in top-right corner) when filling out the blanks.
  • Save the file using your nsu id number. (For example, 0910001030.xls)
  • Send the file to me as an attachment using the following format.
CC your own email address
Subject [SP103] ACT201.section; nsu_id; your name
  • You must do this by the 30th of September, 2010 to qualify for 1% extra credit. This will be an acknowledgement to your understanding of this course outline.
  • Words of Caution: If you ask any question that is explained here, you will not only lose the extra credit, but also risk losing more points!

Class Schedule: ACT201 (Fall 2010)

Lec.No Date Day Lecture Topic Assigned Readings
0 22-Sep-10 W Introduction to the Course and Warm-up
1 27-Sep-10 M Accounting in Action: Building Blocks of Accounting (A#1) Chap 1
2 29-Sep-10 W
3 04-Oct-10 M Recording Process(A#2) Chap 2
4 06-Oct-10 W
5 11-Oct-10 M Adjusting the Accounts(A#3) Chap 3
6 13-Oct-10 W
7 18-Oct-10 M Completing the Accounting Cycle(Q#1) Chap 4
8 20-Oct-10 W
25-Oct-10 M Mid-Term 1 Chap 1-4
9 27-Oct-10 W Accounting for Merchandising Operations (A#4) Chap 5
10 01-Nov-10 M
11 03-Nov-10 W Accounting for Inventories(A#5) Chap 6
12 08-Nov-10 M
13 10-Nov-10 W Accounting for Receivables(Q#2) Chap 9
14 15-Nov-10 M


Mid-Term 2

Chap 5, 6, & 9
15 24-Nov-10 W Accounting for Long-term Assets(A#6) Chap 10
16 29-Nov-10 M
17 01-Dec-10 W Statement of Cash Flows(A#7) Chap 17
18 06-Dec-10 M
19 08-Dec-10 W Financial Statement Analysis(Q#3) Chap 18
20 13-Dec-10 M
Rev 15-Dec-10 W Review for Final Exam & Course Wrap-up
TBA Final Exam Chap 10, 17, & 18

Note: The faculty member reserves the right to make changes any time if needed.