Article (PDF Available)

An Exploration Of Values And Ethical Choices Of Accounting Students

International Business & Economics Research Journal Volume Number 02/2011; 1(5). DOI: 10.19030/iber.v1i5.3923

ABSTRACT

An individual's ethical and economic values impact his decision processes when faced with resolving certain dilemmas. The primary issue of this research is to examine the relationship between accounting students' ethical and economic values and their responses to business dilemmas. Additionally, this study attempted to see if senior accounting students responded with more ethical responses to the dilemmas than did lower-division accounting students. A measure of ethicality proposed by McCarthy (1997) was compared with subjects' ethical responses to the business dilemmas. No correlation between the students' measure of ethicality and the number of ethical responses to business dilemmas was found. Results did indicate that senior students exhibited a greater ethicality measure than lower-division accounting students. Additionally, senior-accounting students respond with marginally more ethical responses than lower-division accounting students. These findings indicate that, analogously to cognitive moral development, ethical value development arguably is occurring in accounting students. A contribution of this study is the use of the Rokeach value survey and eight business dilemmas to assess accounting student's ethical value development. The Rokeach measures the student's relative ranking of eighteen different values, including ethical and economic values. The business dilemmas measure the students' ethical and economic responses to situations they could face in their lives. These instruments could shed additional light on accounting students' ethical development.

Full-text (PDF)

Available from: John P Koeplin
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Interest in subjective values and decision responses are investigated empirically, including statistically testing the predictive relationships between subjective values, other independent variables such as level and area of executive responsibility, and decision responses.
    No preview · Article · Jun 1987 · Journal of Business Ethics
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: A study of 513 executives researched decisions involving ethics, relationships and results. Analyzing personal values, organization role and level, career stage, gender and sex role with decisions in ten scenarios produced conclusions about both the role of gender, subjective values, and the other study variables and about situational relativity, gender stereotypes, career stages, and future research opportunities.
    No preview · Article · Sep 1989 · Journal of Business Ethics
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Hypotheses regarding the effects of personal values and accountability on the resolution of ethical dilemmas in management were formulated and tested experimentally with a sample of 135 M.B.A. students. Personal values were found to be related to how subjects chose to resolve an ethical dilemma presented to them; but, as expected, this relationship did not hold when subjects were made to feel accountable to another for their choices. Accountability, unexpectedly, however, did not have a main effect on choices. This lack of an effect tentatively was attributed to the inexplicitness of the accountability manipulations. In a second and third experiment, support for the importance of explicitness in accountability research was obtained. The theoretical and practical implications of the findings from all three experiments were discussed.
    No preview · Article · Jul 2006 · Journal of Applied Social Psychology
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: This study was designed to examine the affecti ve meaning of the 36 values from the Rokeach Value Survey (RVS) by using the semantic differential procedure. Subjects were 106 tertiary students of whom half rated the 18 terminal values from the RVS on 9 bipolar adjective scales selected to sample evaluation, potency, and activity dimensions and half rated the 18 instrumental values from the RVS on the same scales. All subjects then completed Form G of the RVS. Factor analysis of the intercorrelations between the scales across subjects and values provided an evaluation factor and a potency/activity factor and enabled the construction of subscales corresponding to these two factors. The relative importance of values was positively related to scores on the evaluation subscale both within and across subjects but not to scores on the potency/activity subscale, though values differed on the latter dimension. These findings were related to theoretical analyses of the value concept and the meaning of importance.
    No preview · Article · Dec 1988 · Australian Journal of Psychology
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Hypotheses about relations between values, valences, and choice were tested in a study in which 239 university students completed the Schwartz Value Survey (S. H. Schwartz, 1992) and then responded to 10 hypothetical scenarios, each of which presented them with 2 alternative courses of action assumed to prime different value types from the Schwartz circular structure. For each scenario, participants rated the attractiveness or valence of each alternative and then indicated which one they would choose. Results showed that, as predicted, valences were related to value types, and choice of alternative was a function of both value types and valences. The pattern of relations was consistent with the assumption that values may induce valences on potential actions and outcomes and that value types may be organized into 2 bipolar dimensions, one of which contrasts openness to change with conservation and the other of which contrasts self-enhancement with self-transcendence. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
    No preview · Article · May 1995 · Journal of Personality and Social Psychology
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Public accounting in the United States is generally guided by the Code of Professional Conduct of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA). It has been suggested that education in understanding and accepting their ethical code would increase accountants' adherence and ethicality. This study was designed to examine the level of consensus to AICPA ethical standards by accounting students (ethical orientation). Situation ethics provided the theoretical rationale for this study. The data were gathered by contacting colleges in the New York Metropolitan Area who offered curriculums which were registered by the State Education Department of New York State for Certified Public Accountancy preparation. The final sampling units for this study consisted of 306 beginning accounting students and 294 advanced accounting students. Included in the secondary sampling units were both private and public colleges, secular and non-secular colleges, and American Assembly of Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) and non AACSB-accredited colleges. Three instruments were used to collect data for this study: a student demographic questionnaire; the Rokeach Value Survey (RVS); and a researcher-adapted questionnaire, the Index of Ethical Congruence (IEC) which measured the level of consensus to the AICPA Code of Conduct (ethical orientation). T-tests were used to compare the levels of consensus to the Code (IEC score) between beginning and advanced accounting students, and between accounting students who had, or had not, taken a course in ethics. No significant difference in scores were found for those students who had been exposed to the Code or who had taken a course in ethics. Significant differences in IEC scores were found for those students who had attended AACSB-accredited colleges and meaningful differences for those students who had attended public colleges as compared to private colleges. Multiple regression analyses were used to test the relationship between the ethical orientation score (IEC) and personal values measured by the RVS. No relationship between personal values measured by the RVS and ethical orientation was found by this study. This study does not support the influence of situation on ethical orientation. The results indicate that ethical orientation is not significantly improved through exposure to the AICPA Code of Conduct in collegiate courses in accounting.
    No preview · Article · Jan 1997 · Journal of Business Ethics
  • No preview · Article · Jan 1993 · Issues in Accounting Education
Show more