Volume 18, 2021
Accounting Academics’ Views of Their Teaching of Ethics
Evidence from a South African University
This study investigated accounting academics’ perceptions of teaching ethics to students. The evidence is grouped under six themes of teaching of ethics; environmental considerations; consequences for wrongdoing; impact of professional bodies in ethics curriculum; nature of students; and student learning. This study found that accounting academics’ teaching has a weak conceptualisation of the curriculum and that social learning is ignored. It is also unstructured and varies within the same subject, from subject to subject, and from institution to institution. Lastly, accounting academics’ teaching focuses on pass marks and awareness and understanding of ethics knowledge rather than improving students’ beliefs, values, and behaviour. This study suggests that positive changes to students’ beliefs, values, and behaviour can be realised by extending learning outcomes and teaching practices, evaluating student behaviour regularly, including real-life examples of consequences for wrongdoing, and adding environmental and social factors to academics’ teaching of ethics.