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Book review: Woodford, W.L. & Mills, A.D.Questions in Company Accounting (7th Ed) Butterworths: Australia (1998)

BY CHERYL LING

KPMG (VANUATU).

Title: Questions in Company Accounting (7th ed.)

Author: Woodford, W.L. & Mills, A.D.

Published by Butterworths: Australia (1998)

ISBN: 0-409-31298-3

pp: 687

 

The Seventh Edition of Questions in Company Accounting is quite literally a book of questions. It is a study aid for students wishing to test or practice topics already studied and / or for students making reference to other texts. It includes ...questions which are designed to meet the syllabus requirements of the following national Technical and Further Education ("TAFE") subjects :

Company Accounting and Financial Statements, and

Company Accounting Applications Advanced.

This text is indeed a thorough and comprehensive work with examples provided for almost every business scenario imaginable to challenge students of the above subjects.

 

Questions in Company Accounting is divided into two sections, each dealing with one of the above subjects. Chapters within each section, as you would expect, are concerned with key sub categories of the main topic such as Statements of Cashflows in Section 1 and Extractive Industries in Section 2.

The types of question included in the book fall into four distinct categories as follows:

(1) Type 1 - Typically short, simpler questions usually illustrating only one point - no solutions provided.

(2) Type 2 - Illustrative examples, being generally short questions usually illustrating only one point - solutions immediately follow the question.

(3) Type 3 - Larger, more complex self assessment questions of which there are on average two per chapter - solutions provided at the end of the book.

(4) Type 4 - Examination papers, four for each of Company Accounting and Financial Statements and for Company Accounting Applications Advanced - no solutions provided.

All questions (and solutions, where provided) are presented in a clear and concise manner; however there are a large volume of Type 1 questions ie. no solutions! This is extremely frustrating and a student could be forgiven for simply reviewing the illustrative examples and moving straight on to the self assessment questions.

As already noted, this book is essentially one of questions. However, there are small segments of narrative and illustrations at the beginning of most chapters to provide guidance as necessary. This guidance may be brief for some topics such as in Chapter 13, Consolidated Accounts - Outside Equity Interest or more extensive such as in Chapter 5, Statement of Cashflows. These sections are extremely helpful.

Also useful, are the occasional hints as regards the best way to set out working papers and preparing calculations.

Questions in Company Accounting would prove to be a helpful study aid for students wishing to practise areas of accounting and company law with which they are having difficulty. I would recommend this as a good book to "dip into" on a selective basis.

The book is of course concerned with generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP) in Australia however it is still useful for students of Law and Accounting in the South Pacific region as in the absence of specific local guidance in this field, reference is frequently made to Australian GAAP.


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