Accounting professor takes novel approach to teaching

Accounting professor takes novel approach to teaching
Tuesday, April 26, 2022

A Belk College of Business accounting professor is using a novel approach to teach students about accounting, auditing and fraud. 

David Kerr, associate professor in the Turner School of Accountancy, recently co-authored the mystery suspense novel “Trap Doors and Trojan Horses: An Auditing Action Adventure.”  The work aims to go beyond being an entertaining read by helping students learn key concepts about auditing and forensic accounting. 

The novel mixes fraud, crime, politics, ethics, computer techniques, cybercrime, expert witnessing and auditing to enable students to learn the many aspects of auditing, investigations and accounting in a better, easier and more engaging way, Kerr said.

“I have taught auditing courses at both the undergraduate and graduate levels for over three decades, as well as CPA exam prep courses, so I have a pretty good idea of what students need to know about auditing prior to graduation and beginning a career in accounting,” Kerr said. “I was able to pull a lot of the information we cover in auditing and fraud courses into the novel.” 

Kerr used the novel last semester in Financial Statement Auditing (ACCT 6220), a graduate-level auditing course. Students were assigned to read the book outside of class. To help students learn the novel’s key concepts and material, he provided them with a study guide. On the final exam at the end of the semester, he included several questions similar to those in the study guide to assess how well students have learned the material. 

Kerr collaborated on the novel with D. Larry Crumbley and L. Murphy Smith, professors of accounting at Texas A&M University.