Student-led and teacher-led case presentations: further empirical evidence
Wynn-Williams, Kate; Whiting, Rosalind H; Adler, Ralph W
The use of business case studies has been frequently promoted as a method for developing accounting graduates who are active, interdependent, and independent learners. The debate continues over the best method for using the case study method; should case studies be student- or teacher-led? A recent study (Adler, Whiting and Wynn-Williams, 2004) used Kolb’s Learning-Style Inventory (adapted from Honey and Mumford (1986) and Kolb (1984)) to investigate the use of business case studies and student learning styles in an intermediate-level cost and management accounting course. The findings from that study suggest that it is how the case studies are used and the level of student involvement that is of vital importance. This paper extends the findings of Adler et al (2004) by repeating the survey but with the following potentially important changes: prior to the survey, students had completed an entire semester of intermediate-level courses, including two accounting courses, plus the surveys were administered at a later point in the particular management accounting paper. The results of the second survey confirm and extend those of the first (Adler et al, 2004), namely, that a lack of active involvement in cases results in less balanced learning styles. Further, even when students have experienced the benefits of active participation, a prolonged suspension of such involvement also leads to an exaggerated lack of balance. That is, not only is the how of case involvement important, so is the when. That the students in the current survey had exposure to both more intermediate courses and to more business cases, regardless of level of involvement, had no discernible effect.
Publisher: University of Otago
Series: Accountancy Working Paper Series
Research Type: Working Paper