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“Unpuzzled Accounting ” The easy way to learn finance

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“Unpuzzled Accounting!” - The easy way to learn finance

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									 “Unpuzzled Accounting!” - The easy way to learn finance
Summary of event details:

The Event/Course:

The “ UNPUZZLED ACCOUNTING! ” Training Course is the easy route to understanding
Finance using techniques not available in existing textbooks. Without doubt a better
understanding of Finance and the use of computerised business information.


The Workshop:

Workshop – “Unpuzzled Accounting!”

The workshop last for 3 hours with the aim to build a simple “picture” which provides a
precise understanding of modern Accounting Data.

1) The Why and How of Balance Sheets and Profit and Loss Statements
2) Computerised Accounting explained logically and arithmetically
3) This “Picture” is worth a Thousand Words
4) Communicating with Accountants in the language of Debits and Credits
5) Gauging the financial health of a prospective employer – analysis of published accounts
6) Using “Unpuzzled Accounting!” knowledge in job interviews
7) Opportunity for Questions and Discussion

The course offers the registered applicant to gain a certificate on completion of tutorial
questions, which have to be sent to the course provider for marking. This adds value to the
course and also provides recognition for ones development record. The tutorial is based on
a spreadsheet for self-completion, which will be e-mailed to all who attend, further re-
enforcing “Unpuzzled Accounting” Techniques.

The course was reviewed by the PE magazine (article attached); it clearly explains the
benefits and opportunities it can provide engineers from all backgrounds.

The new Theory allows significant advances in the effectiveness and efficiency of training in
a number of financial topics including:

     computerised accounting                 processing of double entries
     ODBC of financial software              cash flow forecasting
     key performance indicators              CPD courses for non-accountants




                                                           Request for Funding_Unpuzzled_Accounting
 “Unpuzzled Accounting!” - The easy way to learn finance
Detailed information:


The approach taken
Existing training methods were examined. These were found to be based on manual
accounting techniques as devised in the 15th century by Venetian traders. These techniques
are basically procedures for manually compiling Books of Account. These procedures rely
on the use of Absolute Numbers (numbers without the usual plus and minus signs).
Because of the absence of plus and minus signs, the mathematical relationships between the
Books of Account can only be determined by reference to lengthy word descriptions. The
effectiveness of mathematical logic is therefore very difficult to deploy.

A new approach was taken by using normal arithmetic and simple algebra, both of which
would be familiar to course participants.

The outcome was a new General Theory of Accounting, which introduces a new format of
the Accounting Equation called the Transactional Format. This format is the basis of double
entry accounting for all financial software and manual accounting. The new General Theory
plus the new Transactional Equation have proved to be highly effective in making it very easy
to understand the structure of balance sheets and profit and loss statements.


Practical use of the innovations – a short course in finance

The “ Unpuzzled Accounting!” training course is the easy route to understanding Finance
using techniques not available in existing textbooks.

The course provides non-accountants with a simple way of understanding what accounting is,
what accounts mean, and how to use their own and other companies’ accounting data for
decision-making. It provides the basic knowledge of financial procedures and reporting
needed in the modern computerised business world and has been running successfully at the
University of Strathclyde’s Hunter Centre for Entrepreneurship for the past two years.

The aim of this three hour training course is to build a simple “Picture” which provides a
precise understanding of modern accounting data:
  1) The Why and How of Balance Sheets and Profit and Loss Statements
  2) Computerised Accounting explained logically and arithmetically
  3) How to communicate with Accountants in the language of Debits and Credits

What are the benefits of taking this 3-hour course? Without doubt a better understanding of
Finance and the use of computerised business information.

Participants are given pre-reading material from Chapter 3 of the forth-coming book. This is
provided by e-mail two days before the course and takes about 30 minutes to read. During
the course the participants work through the rest of Chapter 3 under guidance from the
lecturer.

The course explains accounting principles in simple mathematical terms and a General
Theory of Accounting that are appropriate to modern computerised accounting. It also
explains the equivalent traditional manual accounting terminology and custom and practice in
these simple terms. It shows how this Theory, combined with common sense, can be used to
conduct accurate double entry recording of transactions. Participants practice double entry
recording using this method, including accounting for cash, credit and VAT transactions.
At this point participants are comfortable with balance sheet and profit and loss logic and
structure. There is sufficient time left within the 3 hours to conduct ratio analysis of published
accounts obtained directly from the Internet.

The techniques of “Unpuzzled Accounting!” do not replace existing accounting processes.
The new techniques explain accounting in a more rational way using normal arithmetic and
                                                              Request for Funding_Unpuzzled_Accounting
 “Unpuzzled Accounting!” - The easy way to learn finance
simple algebra. Those who have learned accounting by the traditional manual accounting
route find that their knowledge is greatly enhanced after reading the book.


Background and objectives/reasons for implementation

The objective in developing the new General Theory of Accounting was to reach the
important audiences of SME owner/managers, scientific and managerial staff of larger
companies, and science and other students still at University. These audiences have a
known need for financial training but are characterised by shortage of time and/or financial
resources to acquire accounting training by conventional methods.

The need was to design a training course for these non-accountants, which had to be short
enough to be presented in an evening, or a morning course. It was felt that only by providing
such a short course would these audiences commit the necessary time.

The training has to be complete and has to give a clear picture of modern computerised
accounting. It has to provide the theoretical and practical basis for moving on to learn other
topics including cash flow forecasting, key performance indicators and how to make the best
use of the Open Data Base Connectivity of modern financial software.

Obstacles overcome and how

A major obstacle to overcome is that any training course had to be short enough to be
presented in an evening or a morning. It was felt that only by providing such a short course
would the targeted audiences commit the necessary time.

Given the severe time constraint of around 3 hours, the course had to be comprehensively
tested. This was achieved during 2005 and 2006 in a series of lectures at the University of
Strathclyde’s Hunter Centre for Entrepreneurship. Participants included students, SME
owner/managers and managers from larger organisations. The wide-ranging backgrounds of
the participants included Engineering, Law, Physics, Marketing, Biochemistry, Accounting,
Pharmacy and many other disciplines. The lectures were extremely successful and
confirmed that a coherent and useful knowledge of Accounting could be gained in 3 hours
using the new techniques.



Specific evidence of the success of this innovative approach

The following is a statement from Dr. Jonathan Levie who is a Senior Lecturer at the
University of Strathclyde’s Hunter Centre for Entrepreneurship.

I can confirm that I have worked with Bill Jarvie during 2005/06, testing his material with both
undergraduate and postgraduate students from all faculties of the University of Strathclyde.
My most recent experience was with two groups, each of around 30 physics PhD students,
almost none of whom were aware what a Balance Sheet or a Profit and Loss Account were
when the 3 hour class started. By working through Bill's material with them, I was able to
derive the equation behind the Balance Sheet, show how the Profit and Loss Account is a
sub-report of the Balance Sheet, show them how to do double entry bookkeeping - and get
them happily doing this in class - and finally get them to analyse the accounts of two firms
that were currently looking to recruit physics graduates. They were able to conduct ratio
analysis to gauge the relative health of the two firms and come up with penetrating questions
to ask in the job interviews! The feedback from the students was excellent. They tried to
crack the method - for example, by dreaming up weird transactions that the equation-based
method might not be able to cope with. It coped perfectly. All this was achieved in less than
3 hours. The beauty of Bill’s approach is that it exposes the simple equation that lies behind
accounting, and renders what is usually rather incomprehensible accounting-speak and
confusing formatting readily understandable. I do not use this as a substitute course; rather I
                                                            Request for Funding_Unpuzzled_Accounting
 “Unpuzzled Accounting!” - The easy way to learn finance
use it as regular class so that students can conduct financial analysis and forecasting in new
venture creation or entrepreneurial finance courses. I have even used it remedially with MBA
students who have somehow slipped through the net and got close to the end of their studies
without understanding how accounts are constructed. A couple of sessions on Unpuzzled
Accounting! and they understand, for the first time.

I can also see it having value as a stand-alone CPD type course, perhaps alongside analysis
of company Management and Audited Accounts, and creation and measurement of key
performance indicators.


PRESENTERS’ PROFILE
Course presenters
       Bill Jarvie           BSc (Physics) MBA FCMA
                             Managing Director of Duncarra Limited
                             Honorary Senior Lecturer at the University of
                             Strathclyde’s Hunter Centre for Entrepreneurship

       Jonathan Levie        BSc MSc PhD
                             Senior Lecturer at the University of Strathclyde’s
                             Hunter Centre for Entrepreneurship

Presenters’ Experience
Mr. Jarvie is a business consultant with over 30 years experience in financial
management.

Dr. Levie has been teaching entrepreneurship for 25 years.

Mr. Jarvie and Dr. Levie have been presenting the “Unpuzzled Accounting!” course
for the past two academic years.




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