About this paper:
Appears in: EDULEARN12 Proceedings
Publication year: 2012
Pages: 674-680
ISBN: 978-84-695-3491-5
ISSN: 2340-1117
Conference name: 4th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 2-4 July, 2012
Location: Barcelona, Spain
A survey was conducted among students of the Accounting and Administration undergraduate degree at ISCAP – IPP (School of Accounting and Administration of Polytechnic Institute of Porto) in order to understand their perceived value of their course Business Simulation (BS). This course is provided in a business environment where students can learn by doing through the management of a company as if they were in the real life, but risk-free. The learning tasks are provided in an action-oriented format to maximize the learning process. Students learn by doing a set of tasks every session and have also to produce reports and presentations during the course. BS is part of the undergraduate degree of Accounting and Administration at ISCAP – IPP since the beginning of 2003.

The questionnaire we used captured the students’ perception about general and specific skills and competencies considered important for managers and accountants in the real life, about the methodology used in the course, which is totally different from the traditional form, and also about the adequacy of the course included as part of the undergraduate degree.

The results showed that students’ perception is highly positive and almost all of them think they improve the skills needed for a job during the course. These results are consistent with Adler and Milne’s (1997) research in which the authors found that students agree with the use of action-oriented learning tasks in order to provide them the needed attitudes, skills, and knowledge. The improvement of group skills is the most important issue for students, which can be understandable as BS is the only course from the degree in Accounting and Administration they really have to work in groups.

Adler, R. W. and M. J. Milne (1997). "Improving the Quality of Accounting Students' Learning through Action-Oriented Learning Tasks." Accounting Education 6(3): 191-215.
Business simulation, learning by doing, action-oriented learning, work in groups, management skills.