|dc.description.abstract||This dissertation examines the teaching of Accounting in
secondary schools under the auspices of the Natal
Education Department (NED) and the influence that
exposure to Accounting at high school then has on the
performance of students in the first year Accounting
course at the University of Natal (Durban).
Teaching and examining methods in Accounting in Natal
high schools have undergone notable revision since the
introduction of the current Standard 10 syllabus in 1987.
The nature of the revised methodology is assessed through
surveys of the opinions of those individuals with a
direct involvement in high school Accounting i.e. school
pupils, prospective university students, the NED Subject
Committee, school Accounting teachers, university
lecturers and accountants in public practice.
The major findings were that a significant majority of
university students believed that previous exposure to
the subject at high school level was a distinct advantage
in Accounting I, while a significant majority of students
who had not undertaken the subject up to matric level
believed, in retrospect, that they should have done so.
A number of universities are aware of the advantage
enjoyed by students with previous exposure to the subject
and have constructed their first year Accounting courses
accordingly. The University of Natal, however, continues
to treat its Accounting I group as a homogeneous unit,
the implications of which are covered in the study.
Data was collected over a three year period (1988 to
1990) in order to compare the performance of the two
groups of students in Accounting I i.e. those with matric
Accounting and those without. The statistical analysis
revealed that students without matric Accounting have:
* significantly higher drop-out rates (and drop-outs
from this group were of relatively high academic
* significantly lower pass rates
* significantly lower Accounting I marks, despite the
fact that there is no apparent difference in the
academic ability of the two groups of students.
Whilst the study has focused on the relevance of high
school Accounting towards further study at university,
the point is made that the high school Accounting course
needs to cater also for a majority of pupils who will
choose alternative career options.||en