Knowledge, Skills and Values of BSA Graduates

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  • 1

    CHAPTER 1

    THE PROBLEM AND ITS SETTING

    INTRODUCTION

    The last decades have been marked by changing environment characterized by

    series of globalization, voluminous transactions, changing technology and regulation, and

    growth of the world economy. These changes have increased the level of competition

    among organization and triggered for quicker and more decisive action by management.

    As employers supposed that employees play an important role and give the company a

    sustainable competitive advantage, they are seeking and expecting a diverse range of skills

    and attributes in its human capital. The job of the accountant seems to be at the heart of

    this logic. A fundamental aspect of the accounting profession is that accounting

    information is important for business decision making. In virtually all companies,

    accounting information is recorded, managed and often analyze. The accounting profession

    worldwide has come under close scrutiny. Changes had expanded the roles of accountants

    and at the same time expanded the qualities expected in the accounting work

    It has been argued however that graduates are not being adequately prepared for

    employment in the modern business environment. This mismatch occurs because the

    jobseekers, in general, are not seen by employers as having the necessary skills for

    employment. Graduates lack many of the attributes required by employers, partly because

    educators fail to promote their acquisition. This perceived mismatch between the attributes

    which employers expect and attributes graduates display, give rise to what researchers have

    labeled an expectation-performance gap. From prior literatures different reasons have

    been identified for accountancy graduates not possessing knowledge, skills, and values as

    per employers expectations, namely; differences in the expectations of accountancy

    academics and employers and students perception of the employers expectations to them.

    While the requirements of professional bodies have been highlighted and several

    studies examine the views of employers and practitioners in terms of the skills and

    attributes they require in entry level graduates, there are few studies which acknowledge

    the views of the students about to enter employment. The question is: are accountancy

    students generally aware of the new skills currently expected for future accountants in this

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    highly changeable global business context. Accountancy students are key stakeholders in

    the whole process, employers expectations may shape the accounting student motivation

    and implementation of a rigorous strategy that facilitate the acquisition of skills and

    attributes (through internships) from his passage by the college.

    This study examines perceptions of graduating BSA students about the knowledge,

    skills and values they consider expected by the employers in BSA graduates. The study

    also examines the knowledge, skills and values expected by employers and explores gaps

    between student perceptions and employer expectations.

    THEORETICAL/CONCEPTUAL FRAMEWORK

    In order to investigate the relationship of employers' expectations and graduating

    accountancy students' perceptions, the underlying research conceptualizes the notion of it

    as similar to the notion offered by Bui and Porter. (2010, p.4)

    Expectation gap: reflecting the perceptual differences in the expectations of

    accountancy academics and employers.

    Constraints gap: exists as an exacerbating agent to performance gap, representing

    the factors that are assuming to limit the ability of accounting educators in the

    development of the skills and knowledge to students.

    Performance gap: reflecting ineffectiveness of teaching practices.

    Actual

    competencies

    of the

    Graduates

    Competencies

    expected by

    educators

    Competencies

    desired by

    educators

    Competencies

    expected by

    employers

    Performance Gap Constraints Gap Expectation Gap

    Expectation-Performance Gap

    Educators

    performance Students

    perception

    Institutional

    Gap

  • 3

    STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM

    This study aims to compare employers expectations in the knowledge, skills and

    values of Bachelor of Science in Accountancy graduates and graduating accountancy

    students perceptions on these expectations. Specifically, answers to the following

    questions are sought:

    1. To what extent are the following knowledge, skills and values are expected by the

    employers on the BSA graduates:

    1.1 Knowledge

    1.1.1 General Knowledge

    1.1.2 Organizational and Business Knowledge

    1.1.3 Information Technology (IT) Knowledge

    1.1.4 Accounting and Finance Knowledge

    1.2 Skills

    1.2.1 Intellectual Skills-Analysis

    1.2.2 Intellectual Skills-Problem Solving

    1.2.3 Intellectual Skills-Strategic/Critical Thinking

    1.2.4 Interpersonal Skills

    1.2.5 Communication Skills

    1.3 Values

    1.3.1 Professional Ethics

    1.3.2 Integrity

    1.3.3 Objectivity and Independence

    1.3.4 Professional Competence and Due Care

    1.3.5 Confidentiality

    1.3.6 Professional Behavior

    1.3.7 Moral Values

    2. To what extent are the following attributes of BSA graduates expected by the

    employers.

    2.1 Knowledge

    2.2 Skills

    2.3 Values

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    3. To what extent are the following knowledge, skills and values are perceived by

    the BSA students as expected by the employers on the BSA graduates.

    3.1 Knowledge

    3.1.1 General Knowledge

    3.1.2 Organizational and Business Knowledge

    3.1.3 Information Technology (IT) Knowledge

    3.1.4 Accounting and Finance Knowledge

    3.2 Skills

    3.2.1 Intellectual Skills-Analysis

    3.2.2 Intellectual Skills-Problem Solving

    3.2.3 Intellectual Skills-Strategic/Critical Thinking

    3.2.4 Interpersonal Skills

    3.2.5 Communication Skills

    3.3 Values

    3.3.1 Professional Ethics

    3.3.2 Integrity

    3.3.3 Objectivity and Independence

    3.3.4 Professional Competence and Due Care

    3.3.5 Confidentiality

    3.3.6 Professional Behavior

    3.3.7 Moral Values

    4. To what extent are the following attributes of BSA graduates perceived by the

    BSA graduating students as expected by the employers.

    4.1 Knowledge

    4.2 Skills

    4.3 Values

    5. Is there a significant difference between the extent of expectation of the employers

    and the extent of expectation of the employers at the perception of the graduating

    students in each of the following items:

    General knowledge

    Organizational and Business Knowledge

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    Information Technology (IT) Knowledge

    Accounting and Finance Knowledge

    Intellectual skills-Analysis

    Intellectual Skills-Problem Solving

    Intellectual Skills-Strategic/Critical Thinking

    Interpersonal skills

    Communication skills

    Professional Ethics

    Integrity

    Objectivity and Independence

    Professional Competence and Due Care

    Confidentiality

    Professional Behavior

    Moral Values

    6. Is there a significant difference between the extent of expectation of the

    employers and the extent of expectation of the employers at the perception

    of the graduating students overall in each of the following:

    Knowledge

    Skills

    Values

    SCOPE AND DELIMITATION

    The current study is a small, indicative one with a limited sample size and scope.

    There are 17 universities/colleges situated around Cavite that offers Bachelor of Science

    in Accountancy course. Out of which, 14 universities/colleges have graduating BSA

    students which can be explained by the new 5 year course curriculum. These 14 schools

    have a total graduating students of 355 and due to time and cost considerations, the study

    was conducted to only 60 students convenient to the researcher.

    Another limitation of the study is that limited number of employers agreed to

    participate in answering the research questionnaire.

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    SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY

    The papers findings are of interest to several different parties, primarily the

    professional accounting body, universities/colleges and students. The paper describes an

    empirical study, which provides a better understanding of new knowledge, skills, and

    values expected with greater extent for future accountants in this changing business

    environment. Employers expectations may shape the accounting student motivation and

    implementation of a rigorous strategy that facilitate the acquisition of skills and attribute

    from his passage by the university/college.

    DEFINITION OF TERMS

    The government has undertaken efforts to improve the entry-level qualification

    requirements for the Filipino CPAs by releasing the well-defined set of competencies, Core

    Competency Framework for Entry Level to the Philippine Accountancy Profession. The

    core competencies for accountants identify the knowledge, skill, and professional values

    that new CPAs need to have in order to successfully face the challenges of todays changing

    environment and the future.

    Knowledge

    General knowledge of emphasis here are gaining an understanding of the different

    cultures in the world and developing an international perspective.

    Organizational and Business Knowledge core knowledge in areas such as

    economics, quantitative methods and business statistics, organization behavior,

    marketing and operations management and conversant of the international business

    and have an understanding of how the global business system works.

    Information Technology (IT) Knowledge conversant with IT concepts for

    business systems and sound knowledge on internal control in computer-based

    systems, development standards and practices for business systems, management

    of the adoption, implementation and use of IT, evaluation of computer business

    systems, and managing the security of information.

    Accounting and Finance Knowledge core knowledge related to accounting and

    related areas and proficiency in the international accounting and auditing standards,

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    cost management and the latest concepts in management accounting, recent tax

    laws and business and commercial laws. It also includes knowledge of corporate

    finance and the Philippine capital markets, professional ethics and environmental

    accounting and reporting.

    Skills

    Intellectual skills ability to carry out abstract logical thinking and understand

    critical thinking. It also includes creative thinking or the generation of new ides;

    visualization or seeing things in the minds eye, and reasoning skills or the

    discovery of a rule or principle underlying the relationship between two or more

    objects and applying it when solving a problem.

    Interpersonal skills ability to work in groups and being a team player. It includes

    the skills to participate as member of a team and contributing to group effort;

    teaching other new skills; working to satisfy clients expectations; negotiation skills

    and working with diversity or working well with men and women from diverse

    backgrounds.

    Communication skills active listening skills and the ability to communicate

    effectively ones points of view, both orally and in writing, at all organizational

    levels; being able to justify ones position, deliver powerful presentations ad to

    persuade and convince others.

    Values

    Professional ethics include integrity, objectivity and independence, professional

    competence and due care, confidentiality, and professional behavior.

    Moral values able to discern between what is morally right or wrong.

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    CHAPTER 2

    RELATED LITERATURE

    This section reviews the literature that addresses the perceptions of various

    stakeholder groups (graduate, employers and academics) on the attributes of graduates.

    Perceptions of Students

    Students are a key stakeholder group when it comes to examining views about

    developing skills and attributes to equip them for a career in the accounting profession.

    Students rated continuous learning as the most important skill to future careers and

    in terms of the Jones and Sin (2003) model, were focused on developing routine technical

    expertise, oral and written communication skills, analytical and problem solving skills and

    appreciative skills including decision making and critical thinking. Indicative of their stage

    of life, students focused on ongoing development of personal skills such as professional

    attitude, self-motivation, leadership and the ability to work in a team.

    Perceptions of Graduates

    The debate over the desired type and level of skills expected of accounting

    graduates has been motivated by the shifting role of accountants as knowledge

    professionals in the international business environment (Howieson, 2003). A better

    mixture of skills is seen as necessary to address the diversity of business challenges. For

    instance, Daff et al., (2012) suggest that Emotional Intelligence (EI) is a desirable quality

    in accounting graduates as it is allows accountants to excel in strategic decision-making,

    teamwork, leadership and client relations. They contend that in the quest to find the best

    employees, employers have focused on EI whereas accounting faculty has placed less

    emphasis on EI skill development and a greater emphasis on generic skills

    Prior studies have indicated that the successful acquisition of particular skill sets

    within a tertiary degree is related students perceptions of the importance of generic skills

    in the work environment (Rainsbury, Hodges, Burchell and Lay, 2002). De Lange et al.

    (2006) found that graduates perceived that there needed to a greater emphasis on

    interpersonal and communication skills in their undergraduate studies. The perceived skills

  • 9

    gap in this study, were also identified as having the highest degree of difference between

    emphasis given and emphasis that should have been given to the skill. Similarly, Jackling

    and de Lange, (2009) found that graduates perceived their accounting courses were directed

    towards attainment of technical skills with less emphasis on generic skills. Of interest to

    the present study is that the Jackling and de Lange (2009) study indicated that in their

    accounting studies graduates perceived that in terms of generic skills, the greatest emphasis

    was given firstly to written communication, followed by team skills interpersonal skills

    and oral expression. Stone and Lightbody, (2012) provide further important evidence of

    the need for accounting students to develop listening skills as part of their skill set. . In an

    earlier New Zealand study, Wells et al. (2009) found that the two key areas for

    improvement based on graduate perceptions were teamwork and application of learning to

    real world situations.

    Perception of Employers

    Prior research demonstrates that often employers and graduates have different

    perspectives about the skill set required for an accounting professional studies have

    specifically investigated employer perceptions of accounting graduates employment

    capabilities. For instance, Bui and Porter (2010) via a series of interviews found that

    employers considered communication skills to be essential as well as presentation skills.

    All employers interviewed in Bui and Porters study considered teamwork skills essential

    for accounting graduates and emphasised the importance of accounting students engaging

    in work experience during studies to develop such skills. Bui and Porter did however find

    some differences between firms of different size in terms of the expectation of accounting

    graduates. For instance, medium-sized firms appeared to have high expectations of

    graduate capabilities and expected them to take on senior roles within one year. The Big

    4 firms were interested in research skills being well developed in accounting graduates.

    Similarly, employer interviews in Jackling and de Langes (2009) study showed that team

    skills were most frequently mentioned as desirable skills in graduates. Other skills

    emphasized by employers were leadership potential, verbal communication and

    interpersonal skills. There was evidence from the Jackling and de Lange (2009) study of a

    clearly identified gap in graduate perceptions of skills acquired in their university studies

  • 10

    and employer expectations of the skill set of accounting graduates. Velasco (2012), argues

    that the perception by graduates that employers values higher grades, when employing

    students is a misconception since the study indicates that employers value, more aspects

    related with personality and other personal qualities of young graduates. The study further

    shows that soft skills are more important in the selection process and higher grades are

    valued more in the public sector. Similarly Bouyer (2011) in outlining the expectations of

    Big 4 firms in terms of graduate recruitment, indicated that employers favour accounting

    graduates with a global mindset i.e. able to work in diverse teams including being able to

    to interact with people from different cultural backgrounds. In the ALTC Accounting for

    the Future project, the changing graduate skill requirements were investigated (Hancock

    et al., 2010). Through interviews with 47 employers the broad skill categories more

    frequently referred to be interviewees were: communication and presentation; teamwork

    and good interpersonal skills; self-management; initiative and enterprise; problem solving;

    technological competence and planning and organizing skills. These capabilities emerged

    as discriminators for professional success and consistent with Velasco (2012) demonstrate

    that employers put less emphasis on academic success.

    The literature on employer expectations suggests that there is an overall

    expectation-performance gap. Although it may be unrealistic to expect new graduates to

    immediately meet the requirements of employers, there is evidence that the expectations

    of employers requires a greater level of attention to be given to the graduate employment

    capabilities being incorporated and delivered in accounting courses. Employers also appear

    to focus on what may be termed as higher order personal and interpersonal skills including

    ability to engage clients, negotiate and act strategically (Hancock et al., 2010).

    Perception of Academics

    Various studies have found that the views of academics about the subject-matter

    taught in universities differ from the views of practitioners. It was found that academics

    teaching financial accounting believed that they should focus on technical aspects in the

    course while practitioners preferred a much wider coverage of topics. Watty (2005) in a

    study of academics from 30 universities in Australia, found that accounting educators

  • 11

    considered accounting education to be compliance-driven and largely prescribed by

    accreditation requirements of professional accounting bodies.

    More recently the study of Bui and Porter (2010) illustrated that accounting

    educators viewed that the principal role of university education as the development of

    students intellectual capabilities, which is reflected in written communication skills and

    analytical skill as primary learning objectives. Of the six accounting academics interviewed

    in Bui and Porters study, three were of the view that universities have a role in educating

    students to become good citizens by encouraging them to develop holistically. This view

    was encompassed in a broader view that universities should enable students to think

    independently and develop skills of adaptability as well as becoming ethically aware.

    Overall Bui and Porters study provides evidence of the expectation gap between

    employers and educators, as there were clearly identified differences in expectations of the

    skills and capabilities between the two stakeholder groups.

    In summary from the literature review there appears to be a lack of uniformity in

    the views of the stakeholders in terms of the skill set that is required of accounting

    graduates entering the profession.

    With this, the following research hypotheses are addressed:

    Ho: There is no significant difference between the expectation of employer of the

    knowledge, skills and values of the BSA graduates and the perception of the BSA

    graduating students of these expectations.

    Ha: There is significant difference between the expectation of employer of the

    knowledge, skills and values of the BSA graduates

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    CHAPTER 3

    METHODOLOGY

    RESEARCH DESIGN

    This study used the action research employing the quantitative approaches since it

    aimed to produce reliable data that tells about the knowledge, skills, and values expected

    by the employers. All the responses were statistically analyzed using non-parametric tests

    because of the ordinal nature of the likert scale data.

    RESEARCH PARTICIPANTS

    The researcher conducted a study involving data collection from 60 graduating

    BSA students in seven colleges/universities in Cavite and 60 employers across

    organizations in PEZA, Cavite.

    EMPLOYERS

    There are 397 operating registered enterprises in the Philippine Economic Zone

    Authority that are located in the Cavite economic zone. Using the slovins formula to get

    the sample size, there were 200 questionnaires distributed to different organizations. Of the

    200 questionnaires distributed, 60 were returned completed. In total, a 30 % response rate

    was achieved. It is acknowledged that the response rate is relatively low, but the researcher

    deemed that such unanswered questionnaires were generally because the organization did

    not employ BSA graduates.

    BSA GRADUATING STUDENTS

    There were 17 colleges/universities in the Cavite that offers Bachelor of Science in

    Accountancy course. Out of these 17 schools, only 14 schools have graduating BSA

    students which can be explained by the new 5 year curriculum implementation. The total

    population of the graduating students are 355, out of which, only 60 were successfully

    surveyed.

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    TABLE 1

    DEMOGRAPHICS OF STUDENT RESPONDENTS

    College/University

    Gender EAC UPHS-M RC AUP OCT PCU-D TOTAL

    Men 4 2 5 3 4 4 22

    Women 5 4 5 7 2 3 26

    Total 9 8 10 10 6 7 50

    TABLE 2

    DEMOGRAPHICS OF EMPLOYER RESPONDENTS

    CEZA Employers

    Experience Total Number of Respondents

    Less than 5 years 17

    Between 5-10 years 11

    More than 10 years 22

    Total 50

    RESEARCH INSTRUMENT

    The researcher made used of questionnaire to gather data which was being

    administered both to graduating accountancy students (studying last level in Bachelor of

    Science in Accountancy) and employers during the period January 2015 to March of the

    same year.

    Survey sheets were prepared to gather answers about the knowledge, skills and

    values expected by the employers and perceived by the graduating accountancy students

    to be expected by the employers.

    The individual items for knowledge, skills and values were based on the Core

    Competency Framework for Entry to the Philippine Accountancy Profession released by

    the government which were individually defined as stated in the definition of terms which

    allows the researcher to compile a list of 16 items divided into 3 categories under

    knowledge expected: (1) general knowledge, (2) organizational and business knowledge,

  • 14

    (3) information technology knowledge and (4) accounting and finance knowledge; under

    skills expected: (1) intellectual skills-analysis, (2) intellectual skills-problem solving, (3)

    intellectual skills-strategic/critical thinking, (4) interpersonal skills and (5) communication

    skills and under values expected: (1) professional ethics, (2) integrity, (3) objectivity and

    independence, (4) professional competence and due care, (5) confidentiality, (6)

    professional behavior and (7) moral values. Thus, respondents were asked to rate each

    item on a scale ranging from 1 (no extent) to 5 (very great extent) and the Likert five-point

    scale was used to analyze respondents answers.

  • 15

    CHAPTER 4

    PRESENTATION AND INTERPRETATION OF DATA

    Respondents express the extent of expectation on different knowledge, skills and

    values by the industry on the view of employers and students. Median values expressed by

    study groups for each attribute were used to test the statistical difference and relationship

    of the opinion of different groups.

    EMPLOYERS EXPECTATIONS

    TABLE 3

    KNOWLEDGE, SKILLS, AND VALUES OF BSA GRADUATES EXPECTED BY

    THE EMPLOYERS

    KNOWLEDGE MEDIAN DESCRIPTION

    Accounting and Finance Knowledge 5 VGE

    General Knowledge 4 GE

    Information Technology (IT) Knowledge 4 GE

    Organizational and Business Knowledge 4 GE

    SKILLS MEDIAN DESCRIPTION

    Communication Skills 5 VGE

    Intellectual Skills Analysis 5 VGE

    Intellectual Skills - Problem Solving 5 VGE

    Intellectual Skills - Strategic / Critical Thinking 5 VGE

    Interpersonal Skills 5 VGE

    VALUES MEDIAN DESCRIPTION

    Confidentiality 5 VGE

    Integrity 5 VGE

  • 16

    Moral values 5 VGE

    Objectivity and independence 5 VGE

    Professional behavior 5 VGE

    Professional competence and due care 5 VGE

    Professional ethics 5 VGE

    Description: (5) Very Great Extent, (4) Great Extent, (3) Moderate Extent, (2) Slight

    Extent, (1) No Extent

    Table 3 lists the knowledge, skills and values for entry level qualifications as

    provided by the Core Competency Framework with corresponding extent of expectations

    by the employers in the order of value among them. In answer to research question 1, the

    table shows that with median score of 5, employers have very great expectations of the all

    the skills and values listed: intellectual-analysis, intellectual-problem solving, intellectual-

    strategic/critical thinking, interpersonal and communication and values: professional

    ethics, integrity, objectivity and independence, professional competence and due care,

    confidentiality, professional behavior and moral values, as well as in the accounting and

    finance knowledge. It can be observed that the rest of the proposed knowledge are expected

    with great extent only such as, general, organizational and business, and information

    technology with median score of 4.

    TABLE 4

    OVERALL ANALYSIS-EMPLOYERSRANKING

    Categories Median Remark Cronbach's Alpha

    Skills 5 VGE 0.92

    Values 5 VGE 0.96

    Knowledge 4 GE 0.79

    After conducting tests for individual items, the researcher try to make inter-

    category analysis as shown on table 4. In this context, to answer research question 2, it is

    noticeable that skills and values received important overall median of 5 which means very

  • 17

    great extent. This shows that employers recognize the importance of these attributes. On

    the other hand, though rank last, knowledge is recognized as greatly expected. In addition

    Table 4 shows that the Cronbachs alpha was satisfactory (between 0.79 and 0.96) which

    demonstrates that the items share a common understanding and validate the reliability and

    the internal consistency of the measure.

    STUDENTS PERCEPTIONS

    TABLE 5

    KNOWLEDGE, SKILLS, AND VALUES OF BSA GRADUATES PERCEIVED AS

    EXPECTED BY THE GRADUATING STUDENTS

    KNOWLEDGE MEDIAN DESCRIPTION

    Accounting and Finance Knowledge 4 GE

    General Knowledge 3 ME

    Information Technology (IT) Knowledge 3 ME

    Organizational and Business Knowledge 3 ME

    SKILLS MEDIAN DESCRIPTION

    Communication Skills 4 GE

    Intellectual Skills Analysis 4 GE

    Intellectual Skills - Problem Solving 4 GE

    Intellectual Skills - Strategic / Critical Thinking 4 GE

    Interpersonal Skills 4 GE

    VALUES MEDIAN DESCRIPTION

    Confidentiality 5 VGE

    Moral values 4 GE

    Professional behavior 5 VGE

    Professional competence and due care 5 VGE

    Integrity 4 GE

  • 18

    Objectivity and independence 4 GE

    Professional ethics 4 GE

    Description: (5) Very Great Extent, (4) Great Extent, (3) Moderate Extent, (2) Slight

    Extent, (1) No Extent

    Table 5 enumerates the knowledge, skills and values for entry level qualifications

    as provided by the Core Competency Framework with corresponding perceived extent of

    expectations of the graduating BSA students sorted by value among them. In answer to

    research question 3, the table displays that different categories of values received median

    score of 5 namely: confidentiality, professional behavior and professional competence and

    due care. This shows that students recognizes employers very great extent expectations on

    these values. Students also stress employers great expectations on accounting and finance

    knowledge, different skills and values while knowledge on organizational and business,

    information technology and information technology were believed to be moderately

    expected.

    TABLE 6

    OVERALL ANALYSIS-STUDENTSSRANKING

    Categories Median Remark Cronbach's Alpha

    Skills 4 GE 0.84

    Values 4 GE 0.92

    Knowledge 3 ME 0.77

    Table 6 shows ranking of attributes in order of importance among students. In

    answer research question 4, it is evident that skills and values received important overall

    median of 4 considered as great extent. This means that students believed that employers

    expect with great extent these attributes of graduates. On the other hand, knowledge is

    recognized as moderately expected. In addition Table 4 shows that the Cronbachs alpha

    was satisfactory (between 0.77 and 0.92) which demonstrates that the items share a

    common understanding and validate the reliability and the internal consistency of the

    measure.

  • 19

    COMPARISON

    INTER-CATEGORY ANALYSIS

    TABLE 7

    COMPARISON OF EMPLOYERS EXPECTATIONS AND STUDENTS

    PERCEPTIONS-INTERCATEGORYANALYSIS

    KNOWLEDGE EE MEAN

    RANK SP

    MEAN

    RANK U Z P

    RE-

    MARK

    General GE 77.02 ME 43.98 809.0 -5.51 0.000 SD

    Organizational

    and Business GE 77.67 ME 43.33 770.0 -5.79 0.000 SD

    Information

    Technology GE 77.85 ME 43.15 759.0 -5.90 0.000 SD

    Accounting and

    Finance VGE 77.78 GE 43.23 763.5 -5.85 0.000 SD

    SKILLS EE MEAN

    RANK SP

    MEAN

    RANK U Z P

    RE-

    MARK

    Intellectual

    Analysis VGE 70.1 GE 50.90 1224.0 -3.36 0.001 SD

    Intellectual-

    Problem Solving VGE 74.77 GE 46.23 944.0 -5.06 0.000 SD

    Intellectual-

    Strategic /

    Critical Thinking

    VGE 68.62 GE 52.38 1313.0 -2.81 0.005 SD

    Interpersonal VGE 72.88 GE 48.12 1057.0 -4.42 0.000 SD

    Communication VGE 68.97 GE 52.03 1292.0 -3.08 0.002 SD

  • 20

    VALUES EE MEAN

    RANK SP

    MEAN

    RANK U Z P

    RE-

    MARK

    Professional

    ethics VGE 67.88 GE 53.12 1357.0 -2.68 0.007 SD

    Integrity VGE 65.71 GE 55.29 1487.5 -1.85 0.064 NSD

    Objectivity and

    independence VGE 67.23 GE 53.78 1396.5 -2.40 0.017 SD

    Professional

    competence and

    due care

    VGE 64.6 VGE 56.40 1554.0 -1.49 0.138 NSD

    Confidentiality VGE 64.32 VGE 56.68 1571.0 -1.38 0.169 NSD

    Professional

    behavior VGE 65.18 VGE 55.83 1519.5 -1.70 0.088 NSD

    Moral values VGE 67.28 GE 53.73 1393.5 -2.45 0.014 SD

    Legend: (EE) Employers Expectations

    (SP) Students Perceptions

    (U) Mann-Whitney U

    (P) Asymp. Sig. (2-tailed)

    (VGE) Very Great Extent, (GE) Great Extent, (ME) Moderate Extent, (SE)

    Slight Extent, (NE) No Extent

    (SD) Significant Difference, (NSD) No Significant Difference

  • 21

    GRAPH 1

    COMPARISON OF EMPLOYERS EXPECTATIONS AND STUDENTS

    PERCEPTIONS-KNOWLEDGE

    GRAPH 2

    COMPARISON OF EMPLOYERS EXPECTATIONS AND STUDENTS

    PERCEPTIONS-SKILLS

    0 1 2 3 4 5

    Accounting and Finance Knowledge

    General Knowledge

    Organizational and Business

    Information Technology (IT)

    Students' Perceptions Employers' Expecations

    0 1 2 3 4 5

    Analysis

    Problem Solving

    Strategic

    Interpersonal

    Communication

    Students' Perceptions Employers' Expecations

  • 22

    GRAPH 3

    COMPARISON OF EMPLOYERS EXPECTATIONS AND STUDENTS

    PERCEPTIONS-VALUES

    In this section, the researcher used Mann Whitney U test to verify if there is a

    significant difference between employers expectations on the different knowledge, skills

    and values of BSA graduates and students perceived expectations. The results shown in

    Table 5 indicate that even though there are differences between employers expectations

    and students perceptions, similarities remain. In fact, students have recognized in the same

    way as employers the knowledge and skills that are expected more, however the rate given

    for each item was different. In answer to research question 5, the Mann Whitney U test

    shows significant difference in all items of knowledge and skills and some values such as

    professional ethics, objectivity and independence and moral values as z < 1.96 which is

    confirmed by the fact that P value is less than 0.05. The result also show that there is no

    significant difference.

    0 1 2 3 4 5

    Moral Values

    Professional Behavior

    Confidentiality

    Professional Competence and

    Objectivity and Independence

    Integrity

    Professional Ethics

    Students' Perceptions Employers' Expecations

  • 23

    OVERALL ANALYSIS

    TABLE 8

    COMPARISON OF EMPLOYERS EXPECTATIONS AND STUDENTS

    PERCEPTIONS-OVERALL ANALYSIS

    CATEGORY EE MEAN

    RANK SP

    MEAN

    RANK U Z P

    RE-

    MARK

    Knowledge GE 79.35 ME 41.65 669.0 -6.17 0.000 SD

    Skills VGE 69.38 GE 51.63 1267.5 -3.14 0.002 SD

    Values VGE 67.69 GE 53.31 1368.5 -2.62 0.009 SD

    Legend: (EE) Employers Expectation

    (SP) Students Perception

    (U) Mann-Whitney U

    (P) Asymp. Sig. (2-tailed)

    (VGE) Very Great Extent, (GE) Great Extent, (ME) Moderate Extent, (SE)

    Slight Extent, (NE) No Extent

    (SD) Significant Difference, (NSD) No Significant Difference

    GRAPH 3

    COMPARISON OF EMPLOYERS EXPECTATIONS AND STUDENTS

    PERCEPTIONS-OVERALL KNOWLEDGE, SKILLS AND VALUES

    Employers' Expecations

    Students' Perceptions

    0

    5

    Knowledge Skills Values

    Employers' Expecations Students' Perceptions

  • 24

    After conducting tests for inter-category item analysis, the researcher tried to make

    an overall analysis of the knowledge, skills and values expectation-perception differences

    in answer to research question 6 and to addressed the hypotheses, as shown in table 8. The

    results show that skills and values of the graduates are expected with very great extent by

    the employers but known to students as expected with great extent only while knowledge

    is expected with great extent and moderate extent, respectively. Furthermore, statistical

    data show that there is a significant difference between expectations and perceptions on the

    overall knowledge, skills and values as z < -1.96as confirmed by the fact that the P value

    is less than 0.05 thus rejecting the Ho and accepting Ha.

  • 25

    CHAPTER 5

    SUMMARY OF FINDINGS, CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS

    SUMMARY OF FINDINGS

    This study aimed to analyze employers expectations on the knowledge, skills and

    values of the BSA graduates and students perceptions on these expectations. To achieve

    this goal, a sample of 60 employers and 60 graduating students was invited to participate

    in the study on the period from January 2015 to March 2015. A three-page questionnaire

    was developed with different knowledge, skills and values based on the Core Competency

    Framework for Entry to the Philippine Accountancy Profession released by the

    government. Respondents were asked to rate on the extent to which those attributed are

    expected by the industry. Data gathered were analyzed using non parametric tests, Mann

    Whitney U test to compare the differences between the two groups. The result of the study

    show that on an overall basis, skills and values are expected with very great extent while

    different views can be found in the students perception which indicates that these are

    expected with great extent only. Values on the other hand were expected with great extent

    by the employers but moderate extent at the perception of the students perception. The

    study also suggests that overall, there is a statistically significant difference with z < -1.96

    and p < 0.05 in the knowledge, skills and values expectations of the two groups.

    CONCLUSIONS

    The study provides insights on the expectations of the employers and the perception

    of the graduating students on these expectations. The respondents feedbacks from the

    survey help identify differences of ideas from employers and students. According to the

    results, the researcher arrived at the following conclusions:

    a) In an overall analysis, there is significant difference between the level of

    expectation of employers on BSA graduates knowledge, skills and values and

    the perceptions of the BSA graduating students on these expectations.

    Employers expectations on the overall knowledge, skills and values are higher

    than what the graduating students perceived.

  • 26

    b) Except for values namely integrity, professional competence and due care

    and professional behavior, there is significant difference between the

    expectations and perceptions of employers and BSA graduating students,

    respectively on every knowledge, skills and values. Employers expectations

    on every attribute are greater than the perceptions of the BSA graduating

    students. This means that students are unaware of the high expectations.

    c) Students are aware that employers place more importance on the values and

    skills than knowledge of the BSA graduates. However, oblivious to the level of

    expectations on these attributes. Employers have a very great expectations on

    the values and skills which is perceived as expected with great extent by the

    BSA graduating students. Knowledge on the other hand is expected with great

    extent by the employers but believed by the students as moderately expected.

    d) Students are aware on the kinds of knowledge, skills and values expected

    by the employers for BSA graduates but unaware of the extent of expectations.

    They know that among the knowledge, accounting is most important to

    employers. They recognize also that all skills are expected equally by the

    employers but unaware that all values are expected with same extent as well by

    the employers.

    RECOMMENDATIONS

    From the perspective of the author of this paper, given the differences on the extent

    of expectations of the employers and the perceptions of students on these expectations, a

    much higher level of attention needs to be given to the knowledge, skills and values being

    prioritized and delivered in accounting programs if accounting graduates are to survive in

    todays global business environment. This study was limited to small sample, it would be

    highly recommended to have extension of this research that should include greater sample

    to facilitate the generalizations of the results. Further studies on the employers perception

    on the performance of the graduates already employed in industry and academics and

    professional bodies who play a huge and very important role in producing curriculum to

    help develop these skills in future accounting professionals.

  • 27

    References

    Bouyer, K. (2011) Firm panel: How are students transitioning?, Fourth Annual

    Conference on Teaching and Learning in Accounting (CTLA), American Accounting

    Association, Denver, USA, August.

    Bui, B., & Porter, B. (2010). The Expectation-Performance Gap in Accounting

    Education: An Exploratory Study. Accounting Education: An International Journal, 19(1-

    2), 23-50. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/09639280902875556

    Daff, L., de Lange, P. and Jackling, B. (2012) A comparison of generic skills and

    emotional intelligence of accounting education, Issues in Accounting Education, August.

    De Lange, P., Jackling, B. and Gut, A. (2006). Accounting graduates perceptions

    of skills emphasis in undergraduate courses: an investigation from two Victorian

    universities, Accounting and Finance, 46, 365-386

    Hancock, P., Howieson, B., Kavanagh, M., Kent, J., Tempone, I. and Segal, N.

    (2010) Accounting for the Future. In E. Evans, R. Burritt & J. Guthrie (eds.), Accounting

    Education at a Crossroad in 2010 (pp. 54-62). Sydney: The Institute of chartered

    Accountants in Australia.

    Howieson, B. (2003) Accounting practice in the new millennium: Is accounting

    education ready to meet the challenge? British Accounting Review, 35(2), 69-104.

    Jackling, B. and De Lange, P. (2009). Do accounting graduates' skills meet the

    expectations of employers? A matter of convergence or divergence. Accounting Education:

    an international journal, 18(4), 369-385.

    Jones, A. and S. Sin, 2003, Generic Skills in Accounting, competencies for students

    and graduates. Prentice Hall, Frenchs Forest (NSW).

    Rainsbury, E., Hodges, D., Burchell, N. and Lay, M. (2002). Ranking workplace

    competencies: Student and graduate perceptions. Asia-Pacific Journal of Cooperative

    Education, 3, 8-18.

    Stone, G. and Lightbody, M. (2012) The nature and significance of listening skills

    in accounting practice, Accounting Education: an international journal. 21(4)363-384

  • 28

    Velasco, M. S. 2012. More than just good grades: candidates perceptions about the

    skills and attributes employers seek in new graduates. Journal of Business Economics &

    Management, 13, 499-517.

    Watty, K. (2005). Quality in Accounting Education: What Say the Academics?

    Quality Assurance in Education, 13(2), 120-131.

  • 29

    APPENDIX A

    Imus Institute

    College of Accountancy

    Survey Questionnaire- Students

    Dear respondent,

    This questionnaire is designed to collect information on Knowledge, Skills and Values of

    Bachelor of Science in Accountancy Graduates: A Comparison of Employers'

    Expectations and Graduating Accountancy Students' Perceptions. The information

    provided is purely for academic purpose and will be treated with utmost confidentiality.

    In order to accomplish this study, you are kindly requested to complete this questionnaire.

    Your kind cooperation is highly appreciated.

    Please do not leave any item unanswered.

    Very truly yours,

    Hezell Leah B. Zaragosa

    Researcher

    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    PART A: Profile of the Respondent

    Age: __________________ Gender: (please check)

    o Male

    o Female

    PART B: Profile of the school

    Name of school:

    ________________________________________________________________________

  • 30

    PART C: Knowledge, Skills and Values Perceived by Students as Expected by

    Employers

    Direction: Below is the list of knowledge, skills and values. Please check ( / ) the number

    that corresponds to your rating on the extent to which the following knowledge, skills and

    values are expected by employers on accounting graduates. Use the following rating scale.

    Scale Interpretation

    5 Very great extent

    4 Great extent

    3 Moderate extent

    2 Slight extent

    1 No extent

    KNOWLEDGE Extent Perceived

    5 4 3 2 1

    General Knowledge

    Organizational and Business Knowledge

    Information Technology (IT) Knowledge

    Accounting and Finance Knowledge

    SKILLS Extent Perceived

    5 4 3 2 1

    Intellectual Skills - Analysis

    Intellectual Skills - Problem Solving

    Intellectual Skills - Strategic / Critical Thinking

    Interpersonal Skills

    Communication Skills

    VALUES Extent Perceived

    5 4 3 2 1

    Professional ethics

    Integrity

    Objectivity and independence

    Professional competence and due care

    Confidentiality

    Professional behavior

    Moral values

    Thank you for your time

  • 31

    APPENDIX B

    Imus Institute

    College of Accountancy

    Survey Questionnaire-Employers

    Dear respondent,

    This questionnaire is designed to collect information on Knowledge, Skills and Values of

    Bachelor of Science in Accountancy Graduates: A Comparison of Employers'

    Expectations and Graduating Accountancy Students' Perceptions. The information

    provided is purely for academic purpose and will be treated with utmost confidentiality.

    In order to accomplish this study, you are kindly requested to complete this questionnaire.

    Your kind cooperation is highly appreciated.

    Please do not leave any item unanswered.

    Very truly yours,

    Hezell Leah B. Zaragosa

    Researcher

    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    PART A: Profile of the Respondent

    Age: __________________ Level of Experience:

    o Less than 5 years

    o Between 5-10 years

    o More than 10 years

    PART B: Profile of the Company

    Name of company:

    ________________________________________________________________________

  • 32

    PART C: Knowledge, Skills and Values Perceived by Students as Expected by

    Employers

    Direction: Below is the list of knowledge, skills and values. Please check ( / ) the number

    that corresponds to your rating on the extent to which the following knowledge, skills and

    values are expected by employers on accounting graduates. Use the following rating scale.

    Scale Interpretation

    5 Very great extent

    4 Great extent

    3 Moderate extent

    2 Slight extent

    1 No extent

    KNOWLEDGE Extent Perceived

    5 4 3 2 1

    General Knowledge

    Organizational and Business Knowledge

    Information Technology (IT) Knowledge

    Accounting and Finance Knowledge

    SKILLS Extent Perceived

    5 4 3 2 1

    Intellectual Skills - Analysis

    Intellectual Skills - Problem Solving

    Intellectual Skills - Strategic / Critical Thinking

    Interpersonal Skills

    Communication Skills

    VALUES Extent Perceived

    5 4 3 2 1

    Professional ethics

    Integrity

    Objectivity and independence

    Professional competence and due care

    Confidentiality

    Professional behavior

    Moral values

    Thank you for your time

  • 33

    APPENDIX C

    ZARAGOSA, HEZELL LEAH B.

    Blk. 2 Lt 74 Palm Grove Village

    Brgy. Buhay na Tubig

    City of Imus, Cavite

    [email protected]

    (0936) 844 3715/ (046) 543-0292

    Objective: To enhance my working capacities, professional skills, business efficiencies

    and to serve my organization in best possible way with sheer determination and

    commitment.

    EDUCATIONAL BACKGROUND

    2011-present Imus Institute College Department

    Nueno Ave., City of Imus, Cavite

    Bachelor of Science in Accountancy

    Academic Scholar Full (S.Y. 2012-2013 1st Sem) GPA-1.2 Academic Scholar Full (S.Y. 2012-2013 2st Sem) GPA-1.20 Academic Scholar Full (S.Y. 2013-2014 1st Sem) GPA-1.20 Academic Scholar Partial (S.Y. 2013-2014 2nd Sem) GPA-1.3 Academic Scholar Partial (S.Y. 2013-2014 2nd Sem) GPA-1.3

    2006-2010 St. Anthonys Academy (SAA) Poblacion Norte, Carmen Bohol

    1st Honorable Mention

    2000-2006 Central East Elementary School

    Poblacion Sur, Carmen Bohol

    Valedictorian

    WORK EXPERIENCE/SPECIAL TRAININGS

    April 21-May 30, 2014Cavite Manufacturing Co., Inc. (CAMANCO, Inc.)

    Rosario, Cavite

    On-the-job Trainee

    Accounting

    SEMINARS ATTENDED

  • 34

    December 10,2014 ASEAN Integration 2015 Imus Institute City of Imus, Cavite

    December 03, 2014 Echo Seminar: CFA, 4th Accountancy Congress Imus Institute City of Imus, Cavite

    November 23, 2014 4th Accountancy Students Congress Enchanting Events Place, Enchanted Kingdom, Sta. Rosa City,

    Laguna

    March 12, 2014 How to Start a Business Imus Institute, City of Imus, Cavite

    February 2014 Cooperative Management Imus Institute, City of Imus, Cavite

    September 29, 2013 3RD Accountancy Student Congress Enchanting Events Place,Enchanted Kingdom, Sta. Rosa City,

    Laguna

    August 11, 2013 Integrity, Initiative and Involvement to Serve the Region and the Nation De La Salle University-Dasmarinas, Cavite

    March 7, 2013 Leadership for Student Leaders Imus Institute, City of Imus, Cavite

    February 25, 2012 Fiber to Home and Understanding WIFI Technology St. Jude College, City of Dasmarias, Cavite

    February 23, 2012 Revitalization of Imus Institute Core Values Imus Institute City of Imus, Cavite

    February 22, 2012 Equipping Students for Improving Behavior and Developing Skills Imus Institute City of Imus, Cavite

    January 12, 2012 What It Takes to be An Entrepreneur Imus Institute City of Imus, Cavite

    SELECTED ACHIEVEMENTS/AWARDS

    December 08, 2013 2nd Runner Up-Group Category

    3rd Sotero H. Laurel (SHL) Cup Accounting Quiz Bowl Level 2

    Lyceum of the Philippines, Laguna

    November 20, 2013 2nd Place

    4th Paulo Gala Macasaet (PGM) Cup Level

    San Pablo Colleges, Laguna

    December 6, 2012 5th Place

    2nd Sotero H. Laurel (SHL) Cup Accounting Quiz Bowl Level 1

    Lyceum of the Philippines, Laguna

    November 12, 2012 5th Place

    3rd Paulo Gala Macasaet (PGM) Cup Level I

    San Pablo Colleges, Laguna

    August 05, 2012 5th Place

    National Federation of Junior Philippine Institute of Accountants

    (NFJPIA) Accounting Quiz Bowl

  • 35

    Laguna

    August 02, 2012 1st Place

    3rd ASTRA Accounting Quiz Bee Level 1 The Elite

    First Asia Institute of Technology and Humanities, Batangas

    AFFILIATION

    2013-2014 Secretary, Junior Philippine Institute of Accountants (JPIA)

    Imus Institute

    2011-present Member, National Federation of Junior Philippine Institute of

    Accountants (NFJPIA)

    Member, Cavite Junior Philippine Institute of Accountants

    (CaJPIA)

    202-2013 1st Year Representative, Junior Philippine Institute of Accountants

    (JPIA)

    Imus Institute

    SKILLS

    Basic accounting

    General ledger and monthly journal entries and adjustments

    Annual and quarterly financial reports preparation

    Tax laws

    Cost accounting

    Microsoft Office/ Open Office

    GNU Cash Program

    Communication

    CHARACTER REFERENCES

    Mrs. Emelita C. Bunyi, C.P.A., M.B.A, Chairperson

    Imus Institute, Imus, Cavite

    (0916) 550 9814

    Mrs. Catherine Aquino, C.P.A., Faculty

    Imus Institute, Imus, Cavite

    (0917) 526 9942

    I hereby certify that the above information are true and correct according to my

    knowledge and belief.

    HEZELL LEAH B. ZARAGOS