Ball State’s accounting department encourages all students to learn to manage their finances

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Ball State’s Department of Accounting has developed an accounting minor known as financial information, which is designed for non-business majors. The minor will consist of five courses and become available for students in the spring 2022 semester. 

“The whole goal with this minor is to give people the tools that they need to succeed in meeting their not only legal obligations, but also their goals for their business,” said Ben Angelo, assistant professor of accounting.

Angelo said via email  some of the key learning objectives of the minor include “develop[ing] an understanding of the U.S. income tax system” and “discover[ing] accounting information system applications for both small and large businesses.”

The Department of Accounting has never offered an accounting minor until a few professors came together and began creating two in January 2021, Angelo said. The first course offered in the accounting minor is ACC 201, which was designed using another accounting class.

“Procedurally, we had some things in the books that we were kind of able to merge together,” Angelo said. “We were able to take some of our additional existing resources and take some new courses and kind of combine those for the minor.” 

Required courses for the financial information minor

ACC 200-Introduction to Financial Accounting 

ACC 201-Principles of Accounting 1 

ACC 202-Principles of Accounting 2 

ACC 260-Accounting Fundamentals for Small Business 

Complete one of these required courses

ACC 305-Accounting Information Systems 

ACC 401-Introduction to taxation 

Complete one directed elective course

ACC 305-Accounting Information Systems, only if not used in the requirement above

ACC 401-Introduction to Taxation, only if not used in the requirement above

CIS 228-Advanced Microcomputer Applications for Business 

BA 205-Foundations of Business Analytics 

Anyone interested in pursuing the minor is encouraged to visit the Upper Division Advising Center in North Quad room 340.

Source: Financial Information web page

The new accounting minor is made up of three required courses and two electives for a total of 15 credit hours. One of the electives offered, ACC 260 — Fundamentals for Small Businesses, will cover important financial transactions for small businesses.

“The idea is that we’re going to give you this core knowledge of record keeping,” Angelo said. “Then, in these last two classes, teach you a little bit about the regulatory environment and how to plan for growth in your business.”

Angelo said he thinks many students become freelancers after college but are not prepared to handle their own finances because their major didn’t expand on managing money. 

“I actually talked with my children’s piano teacher about this,” he said. “She has her master’s degree in piano pedagogy from Ball State. She graduates and her degree teaches her how to teach music lessons, but she doesn’t know that much about running a business.” 

The minor is not open to most Miller College of Business majors, including business administration and analytics, finance, entrepreneurial management, marketing, economics and other programs.

Amy Moudy, assistant lecturer of accounting, was also involved with the creation of the minor. Moudy said she believes an accounting minor would benefit everyone, not just those who run their own businesses. 

“Any time you can be an educated shopper, you get a better deal,” she said. “You get to the point more quickly, and you get billed less.”

Moudy thinks “a lot of our students at Ball State are very entrepreneurial,” which is why an accounting minor would benefit students of all majors. 

“If you think about what your classmates want to do, there are a good number of them — whatever college they’re majoring in — they want to be their own boss someday,” she said.  

Moudy said studying accounting would be beneficial for students who want to work for a nonprofit because they have to track donations and report statistics and numbers for tax purposes.

“The thing about accounting is the program itself teaches you to identify that there’s an issue and sometimes that’s half of it,” Moudy said. “Just being cognizant of, ‘Hey, there’s something here I need to look into further.’”

The idea of college, Moudy said, is “that you are really figuring out who you are,” and students should take different classes to explore their interests. 

“There’s an opportunity at Ball State to take all kinds of classes and I did that,” she said. “I took piano to billiards, I took golf, I took accounting, I took Viking history.”

Moudy said she encourages students to look at college as “personal enrichment” and focus on what makes them happy — including pursuing new subjects that can supplement their future careers and lives.

Contact Mackenzie Rupp with comments at [email protected] or on Twitter @kenzieer18.

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