AICPA names 2018 Effective Learning Strategies Awards winners

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The American Institute of CPAs announced the winners Thursday of its 2018 Effective Learning Strategies Awards, recognizing collegiate educators who have offered innovative learning tools for accounting education courses.

The AICPA's Pre-Certification Education Executive Committee’s Teaching Innovation Task Force determined the winners the American Accounting Association’s Effective Learning Strategies poster sessions in August 2018 in National Harbor, Maryland.

“The accounting profession relies on innovative educators to cultivate its next generation of leaders and problem-solvers,” stated Yvonne Hinson, academic in residence at the Association of International Certified Professional Accountants. “These awards recognize professors for finding new and creative ways to teach and inspire students.”

“The AICPA appreciates the AAA granting these educators a platform for presenting their exciting ideas," stated Steve Matzke, Association of International Certified Professional Accountants director of faculty and university initiatives. "The FSA and Grant Thornton also continue to help support the dissemination of innovative ideas about how to teach accounting students."

The winners of the 2018 Effective Learning Strategies Awards are:

  • Bea Sanders/AICPA Teaching Innovation Award: Markus Ahrens (St. Louis Community College) and Cathy Scott (Navarro College). The award highlights innovative teaching practices for first- and second-year studies. The duo’s submission, “The Teaching and Learning Toolbox,” is a free website, first developed in 2015, for sharing technological resources, including hardware, software and apps, among accounting educators. Honorable mention went to Wendy Tietz (Kent State University) and Tracie Miller Nobles (Austin Community College) for their submission, “Data Analytics in Introductory Accounting.”
  • George Krull/Grant Thornton Teaching Innovation Award: Lynnan Mocek and Veronica Paz, both of Indiana University of Pennsylvania. The George Krull/Grant Thornton Award recognizes educators at the junior to senior level of accounting education. Mocek and Paz won for their submission of “Show & Tell: Infographics to Keep and Sustain Engagement,” which offers infographics and infographic templates to be shared online at
  • Mark Chain/Federation of Schools of Accountancy Teaching Innovation Award: Brigitte Muehlmann, Virginia Soybel and Robert Turner of Babson College. Recognized for their work at the graduate level of accounting education, the group's submission, “Sustainability at Interface, Inc.: Applying the qualitative characteristics of useful financial information to environmental, social and governance (ESG) factor data,” saw students refinance a mock company in debt and answer the question of, “Should the company’s executive team refinance using a debt instrument with an interest rate that is linked to nine environmental, social and corporate governance (ESG) factors?”

Award recipients will have the chance to share their work at next year’s American Accounting Association meeting in San Francisco. Winners will also receive $5,000 and a plaque.

Submission materials from this year's winners will be posted to the AICPA Accounting Professors’ Curriculum Tool. For more information, head to the AICPA's site here.

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