Archive for the ‘Academics’ Category

[Riverside, California]  Top Management Degrees, a website devoted to providing information about B-Schools, on November 13, 2013, released its list of “50 Most Beautiful Business Schools in the World.”

Many top universities from around the world have their B-Schools recognized.  Pretty much, it is a Who’s Who of the world’s top B-schools.

However, a newcomer in more ways than one has topped the list at #1:

Tom and Vi Zapara School of Business
La Sierra University
Riverside, California, USA

The Zapara School of Business at La Sierra University is my new school.  This school term is my first at ZSB.  I’ve seem some of the most beautiful B-school buildings from around the world.  In my opinion, though, none can compare to ZSB.

It is stunning in its beauty, both inside and out.  Once the landscaped plantings start to flourish, it will be even more attractive.  I have great affinity for the palm trees in the spacious atrium.  Classrooms are well designed and helpful to instruction. In addition, my office with it’s awesome view and faux leather couch inspires both my students and self.

The new building at the Tom & Vi Zapara School of Business at La Sierra University

The dawn of a building–Tom & Vi Zapara School of Business at La Sierra University

Sunset at the Zapara School of Business

Sunset at the Zapara School of Business

Lighting up the evening skies at the Tom & Vi Zapara School of Business

Lighting up the evening skies at the Tom & Vi Zapara School of Business

Debit & credit – – David Albrecht

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From the AICPA:

AICPA Honors Annette Nellen
with Arthur J. Dixon Memorial Award

Professor Annette Nellen, San Jose State University

Professor Annette Nellen, San Jose State University

Washington, D.C., Nov. 6, 2013 –Annette Nellen is the recipient of the 2013 Arthur J. Dixon Memorial Award, the highest honor bestowed by the accounting profession in the area of taxation.  The award, given by the Tax Division of the American Institute of CPAs (AICPA), was presented today at the AICPA’s Fall Tax Division Meeting in National Harbor, Md.

Click here to read the press release in its entirety.

Professor Annette Nellen, San Jose State University, surely deserves this honor. Her views on taxation are widely disseminated–via more than 250 articles, numerous testimonials before government panels, on multiple web sites, and her blog21st Century Taxation.

I applaud the AICPA for exercising good judgment in assigning the award to Professor Nellen.

I congratulate Professor Nellen for accomplishing so very much in her special career.

Debit and credit – – David Albrecht

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hetl_logoI am a member of the Higher Education Teaching & Learning (HETL) discussion group on LinkedIn.  It has nearly 30,000 members.  There is an associated formal academic group which supports two journals and a series of books.

The international membership of discussion group provides multiple perspectives to interesting topics.  I endorse it, and encourage all accounting professors to join both the discussion group and the organization.

Earlier tonight I received the following announcement from Patrick Blessinger:

Subject: HETL Selects New President for 2013-2104

Please join me in congratulating the new members of the HETL Board of Directors for 2013-2104. The new HETL President is Dr. John Anchan from Canadahttps://www.hetl.org/welcome-message/

Other new board members include Dr. Agata Stachowicz-Stanusch, Poland; Dr. Lesley Diack, UK; Dr. Dorothy Mpabanga, Botswana; Dr. Lorraine Stefani, New Zealand; and Dr. Evon Walters, USA. See https://www.hetl.org/leadership/

Our outgoing President, Dr. Charles Wankel, USA, implemented several new programs while serving as president during the 2012-2013 year. Under Dr. Wankel’s exemplary leadership, HETL created the Liaison group and added over 100 new liaisons from around the world; Dr. Wankel also served as the program co-chair for HETL’s inaugural conference, along with Melody Bowdon; and he co-edited several volumes on increasing student engagement and retentionhttps://www.hetl.org/hetl-books/

Posted By Patrick Blessinger

Congratulations to Charles Wankel for a job very well done as president of HETL. In one of his actions, I was appointed as HETL liaison to the accounting discipline.

Patrick Blessinger and Charles Wankel are true giants of the academic world. We are fortunate to benefit from their leadership in HETL.  I don’t know John Anchan, but I have every confidence he will grow HETL into an even more effective academic organization.

Debit and credit – – David Albrecht

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hetl_logoI am a member of Higher Education Teaching & Learning (HETL).  I review for one of its journals, and I’m active on the HETL LinkedIn discussion group.  The discussion group has quickly grown to 30,000 members from its start about four years ago.  I recommend this group for all professors (the only people allowed to join).


The International Higher Education Teaching and Learning Association (HETL) invites you to submit a proposal for a presentation at its 2014 International Conference, to be held in Anchorage, in partnership with the University of Alaska Anchorage, May 31 – June 2, 2014. Please submit your proposal for a presentation before the July 26, 2013 deadline – go to

The conference aims to review the impacts that digital, social and mobile media and networks are having on learning environments in higher education. Both scholarly and practice reports are invited. Participants will be from the gamut of academic disciplines across the arts, sciences, and professions, as well as from other administrative and staff functions delivering and supporting new technologies and approaches to learning.

It’s More Affordable than You May Think

The Anchorage area has many features that you will find interesting, including glaciers, majestic mountains, and a wide diversity of wildlife. The average June temperature is 16C/62F with sunny days. Airfare to Anchorage is more reasonably priced than we anticipated. For example, the conference organizers discovered by checking Kayak.com that roundtrip airfare from New York to Anchorage around the time of the conference might be about $350, from London $1000, and Tokyo $1100. The organizers anticipate that hundreds of rooms at the University of Alaska will be available for well under $100 as well as rooms at partnering hotels in Anchorage.

Debit and credit – – David Albrecht

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After decades of observing people in academia, I’ve come to a few conclusions.  Two of these conclusions are: professors are smart people, and the gap is very narrow between smart people and those who aren’t.

Plenty of professors have smart phones. So, shouldn’t professors (especially accounting professors) be smart about smart phones?  No, not really.

Laurie Essig is an associate professor of sociology and women’s and gender studies at Middlebury College.  She notes an interesting professorial practice in “Profs Fail iEtiquette 101,” (in Chronicle of Higher Education, may require daily subscription to read).  

[H]alf of those academics I heard from admitted they sometimes use the devices during meetings. When asked why, they said they used them to read materials related to the meeting, but they also checked e-mail and Facebook, texted, tweeted, and read Web sites unrelated to the meeting. …

The academics surveyed said they multitask only when the meeting is big enough that no one notices, only when it’s a mindless task like deleting e-mails, only when the agenda item doesn’t relate to them, only when the meeting is stupid and pointless, only when they need to check on kids, and only when they really “needed to.”

We who rely on people listening to us no longer believe we have to listen when someone else is speaking.

Yeah, so what else is new.  Twenty some years ago at my first department faculty meeting, I was surprised when two of my colleagues brought a stack of papers to grade during the meeting.  Over the years, I’ve seen faculty members read newspapers, journal articles, knit, sleep and snore.  Bringing a laptop, tablet or smartphone on which to do work now seems to be accepted practice.  I’ve done it myself.

textingOn the other hand, professors seem incensed when students use smart phones in class.  I’ve been monitoring a LinkedIn discussion (on The Teaching Professor) about cell phone policies.  Some professors claim to have confiscated phones, kicked students out of class, and lowered a student’s grade, all for a student caught texting during class.

It seems that smart phones and professors are two terms that don’t fit together, an oxymoron of sorts.  Professors have dysfunctional emotional outbursts when catching someone texting during class, yet routinely break the same rules when in someone else’s meeting.  At least in this matter, professors aren’t so smart after all.

Debit and credit – – David Albrecht

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Changing With The Times

[Spartanburg, SC]  I am sitting in a USC Upstate computer lab as I write this.  Why?

My students are taking a test.  Instead of forcing them work everything by hand with a calculator, I’m letting them work any part of the test on a MS Excel spreadsheet.  When done, they can e-mail their file, and turn in anything they wrote by hand on the original test copy.

One of the courses I’m teaching this semester is Intermediate Accounting 2.  The focus of this course is on the right side of the balance sheet.  The first topics are accounting for loans and bonds.  I emphasize amortization tables to aid in generating numbers for financial statements.  I also emphasize using spreadsheets and good techniques (i.e., a diamond organization and using the round function).   So when it came time for the test, some students asked if they could work appropriate parts on a spreadsheet.

Concordia College students asked for the same accommodation a year ago.  Everyone there was happy with the experience, so I’m trying it again.

This is the first accounting or finance class in which my students get to use Excel.  Wow!  Very unfortunate, IMHO.

Professors need to adjust to the times.  I’ve been using spreadsheets in class since 1984 at Andrews University.  Why not emphasize them so much students will need them as an essential tool to take an exam.

Oh, I also have a series of spreadsheet assignments for each upper level accounting course I teach.  I’m the only accounting prof at my school to do so.

Debit and credit – – David Albrecht

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Nearly a month ago I was informed that my contract is not to be renewed at USC Upstate.  This puts me back in the job market for accounting professors, but at a time when most schools already have made their hiring decisions for next year.

Why am I departing USC Upstate?  No reason was given, but a sudden change in deans has brought in a dean who does not want to proceed with a strategic move incorporating social media.

I am saddened by the prospect of leaving USC Upstate, as I have grown to love the students.

Ideally, I would get hired by a school which is interested in (1) strengthening its brand through use of various social media platforms, and (2) emphasizing professional use of social media to its students.  And yes, continue to teach undergraduate accounting students.  Accounting faculty recruiting committees, though, are interested in ability to teach accounting and generate academic publications.

I would love to end up at a school that wants a social media enabled accounting professor.  It can be a non-tenure track position.  If you can suggest a school to which I can apply, please send me an e-mail (albrecht@profalbrecht.com).

For my qualifications, please read my C.V.

Debit and credit –  – David Albrecht

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