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Learner Reviews & Feedback for Accounting Analytics by University of Pennsylvania

4.5
stars
2,615 ratings
479 reviews

About the Course

Accounting Analytics explores how financial statement data and non-financial metrics can be linked to financial performance.  In this course, taught by Wharton’s acclaimed accounting professors, you’ll learn how data is used to assess what drives financial performance and to forecast future financial scenarios. While many accounting and financial organizations deliver data, accounting analytics deploys that data to deliver insight, and this course will explore the many areas in which accounting data provides insight into other business areas including consumer behavior predictions, corporate strategy, risk management, optimization, and more. By the end of this course, you’ll understand how financial data and non-financial data interact to forecast events, optimize operations, and determine strategy. This course has been designed to help you make better business decisions about the emerging roles of accounting analytics, so that you can apply what you’ve learned to make your own business decisions and create strategy using financial data. ...

Top reviews

FA

Jun 12, 2018

One of the most practical courses I have taken in Coursera. Highly recommended for professionals in Business, Strategy, and Finance & Accounting departments, as well as stock market investors.

PB

Feb 05, 2016

The course makes accounting interesting and especially the examples are very illustrative. Virtual students bring some fun. The 4th week is however really integrated in the course structure.

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1 - 25 of 470 Reviews for Accounting Analytics

By Nick S

Apr 26, 2017

First of all, I really enjoyed Professor Ittner's presentations. Sadly, his presentation was only 25% of the course. Professor Ittner was very direct but also was very engaging in how he delivered his content. I had a good feeling that I could really understand the material he was teaching. If I could give a rating for just Professor Ittner, I would give a 5 star rating. Now, this is why I am giving this course a 1 star rating. But I do have to say, going into the depths of Accounting Analytics is not easy. You really need to have a good grasp of Accounting otherwise you will get lost. Professor Bushee did not make the first 3 weeks really easy to get through. While I enjoyed his examples & case studies, he simply did not do a great job of really explaining and illustrating the concepts he was teaching. And worst of all, he setup a digitally generated classroom where he had his computer generated students ask pointless questions, make pointless statements, or answer with pointless statements/answers. I really wish I had the time to analyze how much of the course time he spent doing this, I would estimate that it's around 10% but it could very well be higher. There are so many different examples to pick form, but I'll just pick a few here. "I didn't read the Iliad or Odyssey some I'm not going to ask you to" in reference why in regression there are Greek letter used for coefficients (it's a fair assumption that someone taking this class understands coefficients), a 30 second exchange where a PC generate student says that they're "stocked" to run some regression followed by Proffessor Bushee informing us that "we're going to run some narly regressions", Professor Bushee saying he doesn't know how to perform Earning Management Analysis on Mars but he certainly knows how to do it on Earth, and a joke why people don't like accountants. These segments add absolutely zero value. They lengthen the time of the course. To make maters worse, I'm sure Proffessor Bushee had to spend even more time creating this additional interaction together.

By Damaso P

Oct 07, 2018

Excellent course with a very good teachers. I am accountant with over 15 year of experience and the techniques here were very useful to improve knowledge and skills for financial anlaysis.

By Brent A

Aug 29, 2018

Prof Bushee is the accounting professor that we wish we all had in undergrad / postgrad! His accolades at the school were clearly well earned!!

Loss of 1 star on the course due to the Week 4 module. Could have used a lot more concrete examples / numbers, not just "here are the results!"

By Emad S

Feb 09, 2019

the worst instructor and the most of the lectures are not materials are not enough to get you through to pass the quiz!

By Carlos F P

Jul 30, 2020

Difficult course if you don't know financial accounting. It was really hard, but worth it.

By Rakib H C

May 26, 2019

Really, a practical course. It will help me to improve my decision making capacity based on critical analysis of any situation. Thanks Wharton, University of Pennsylvania and Coursera for making those critical thinks easy for us. Hope it will improve my capability to be a successful Manager.

By SRIDHAR K

May 11, 2020

An accounting course which helped me to learn too many interesting concepts. A very well presented course. The examples, scenarios and test cases presented were really interesting. Overall a very good course.

By Fares A

Jun 12, 2018

One of the most practical courses I have taken in Coursera. Highly recommended for professionals in Business, Strategy, and Finance & Accounting departments, as well as stock market investors.

By Adrian W C

Jul 29, 2020

I love the brilliant presentation by the professors and also the more than sufficient reading materials.

By Jan Z

Jan 05, 2016

This is my feedback as a Beta-Tester for the course:

Week 1

I thought that the videos were clear, well organized and flowed well from topic to topic. There was a clear logic as the professor developed the various ratios.

What was missing for me was some in-line quizzes. Not the “tell me what I just told you type” but rather ones that make you think. So, for example, in the final video for Week 1, the optional video, instead of just suggesting that the students “play” with the spreadsheet, I think it would be better to give them an actual task or two… “change the assumption about X to <this value>. What is the impact on the Y ratio? Why?” I liked that he showed what numbers needed to be changed to make the share valuation closer to $55. But rather than just telling us the answer, this would be another opportunity to have the students stop the video and go try it themselves. With a specific task, it is likely that more students will go and work with the spreadsheet. This is where the real learning takes place.

One of the things that I really liked about the design of prior courses by Professor Bushee was the fact that he had examples throughout the videos that had you apply the information right away. But, perhaps this is just me. I know that I learn a lot better by doing rather than just watching the videos and going “yeah… that makes sense. I understand…” I also recognize that some students, in past courses, have probably said they don’t find the in-line quizzes valuable. But, is that a reflection of the value of in-line quizzes as a whole or just in-line quizzes that simply require “parroting” something said in the video.

I’m sure that the professor can come up with lots of examples. In Week 1 Video 1 the in-line quiz might provide some numbers for De-levered Net Income, Sales, Average Total Assets and Average Shareholder’s Equity and asking for the results of each of the ratios in the Dupont Analysis. And maybe a “think about what this means” type question that is not necessarily “marked” but for which an answer is provided in the video. Alternatively, he could have the students change some specific things in the Woof Junction spreadsheet and indicate what impact that has on the ratios and why.

Week 1 Video 2 offers lots of similar opportunities with the Profitability and Turnover Ratios. Perhaps requiring the students to work backwards from a specific ratio to determine gross profit would be effective. Or, perhaps a question that relates strategy specifically to the ratios. For example, what would happen to the Gross Margin if Woof introduced a credit card and days receivable increased to 31.6 in 2015? Just something to engage people with the materials.

All of the videos offer similar opportunities and I think having specific problems or questions will enhance the learning experience rather than just suggesting that they “go look at the spreadsheet”. The audience for these courses tends to be quite a bit different from your average upper tier university student and probably needs a bit more “hand holding” and “direction” in order to be successful.

Also, if Professor Bushee expects students will watch the optional videos anyway, why make them optional? In the case of the Valuation Video, despite some of the mathematics being a little “scary” for some students, I think that the information there is really useful and helps to solidify an understanding of the spreadsheet.

I’m wondering if an in-quiz question would be helpful. Perhaps it might provide a new set of financials for Woof Junction and ask for ratio calculation and what that means in terms of their position in the marketplace or something similar. Just some practice questions to get people working with the information.

Same comments basically apply for the remainder of the weeks. I think that it would help the students to have some in-line quizzes – this not only breaks up the longer videos and helps to keep students focused but also provides a reinforcement of key concepts.

I really liked the quiz for Week 1 even though I struggled with the questions where there are multiple correct responses. The quiz effectively reinforces the information covered very well and requires one to think about what was covered in the lectures.

You may want to remind students that the questions may change from quiz to quiz. In many of these on-demand courses, the quiz questions do not change and students may be in the habit of not rereading the questions they have gotten correct on previous attempts.

Week 2 – Revenue After Cash Collection at 7:39 – talking about Days Unearned Revenue and mentions that an “increase means slower future recognition”. A bit more explanation around what that means would be useful.

Week 3 – no particular additional comments on the lectures other than some in-line questions might be good.. I found Benford’s Law really interesting.

Week 4. It would be really nice to have something to break up the lectures – some in-line quiz questions might help. This would also help to reinforce the material.

Week 4 quiz Question 9 -, the double negative wording of the question and the correct response may cause confusion for students – particularly for those for whom English is not their native language.

Overall Comments

I enjoyed the course and learned a lot. I was wondering whether it would be possible to provide a summary document with all the key information from each week related to the ratio calculations and the key things to look for related to those ratios. I know that the ratios are provided in the spreadsheet but it might be good to have a written summary with some supplemental information about how to use the ratios.

I think in-line quizzes or practice questions would be helpful for students – perhaps ones that asked students to do specific things in the spreadsheet and come back with an answer. They don’t need to be long or complicated – just something that gets people into the spreadsheets and working with them early. You may want to do something stronger to encourage them to “play” with the spreadsheet. Many will feel reluctant to change the numbers in the spreadsheet for fear of “messing” it up. Perhaps a reminder that they can change whatever they want because if they mess something up they can always download it again. Or they can save a copy and play in that leaving the original untouched.

It also might be a good idea to have a “playground” sheet where there is a simple set of Financial Statements and the students can try changing things in the financial statements and see the impact on the key ratios without having to move from one spreadsheet to another – so, a combination of the Original tab and the first two columns of the Ratios tab. You might even want to have two columns for the ratios – one for the ratios with the original numbers that does not change (fixed values) and one for the changed numbers, so students can see the effect of the changes easily.

In terms of the spreadsheets, I thought that the Original, the Ratios and the CommonSize tabs were fairly straight forward and relatively easy to understand. That may not be the case for people less familiar with MS-EXCEL but I don’t know what the target audience is for this course so the students may all be proficient with the tool. On the Valuation tab, I was wondering if the numbers in Row 41 should be highlighted in some way to emphasize that they are Years. That is not clear on first glance.

There are a lot of mistakes in the subtitles. I pointed out many of these by flagging the specific videos where they occurred.

Thank you for the opportunity to participate in the beta-test of this course. I hope that my comments are helpful and that I have not missed too much that causes students issues as the course goes live.

By Michael D

Jul 20, 2016

I have many hours of undergraduate accounting and finance course work under my belt and this class gives you a tremendous overview of financial statement analysis. The only disadvantage is that the professor creates the workbooks for you and you only have to answer conceptual questions. While this would be great for some, I was hoping for some more hands on work to practice.

By Krzysiek S

Feb 19, 2016

I loved the Accounting part of the course. It was quite hard for me (non-accounting person), however I really enjoyed the form of the lectures and the content itself (the earnings management + its revealing). Great materials Professor Bushee!

By Roopa N

May 16, 2020

Definitely an eye opener for me being a Accounting graduate, this course really helped me to understand the importance of regression analysis and its application in real.

By Marco B

Jan 30, 2019

useful in terms of how to dig into accounting statements

I would have appreciated other pratical applications examples apart from earnings management or frauds detection

By Santiago P

Apr 09, 2020

no me gustò casi este modulo. Me costò mucho trabajo concentrarme y enfocarme en èl Creo que podría ser mas dinámico

By Arash S N

Apr 29, 2020

The first three weeks didn't relate to the first three courses of this specialization and seemed more centred around forensic accounting. Business Analytics are almost exclusively outside of the financial forensic world whereby earning management and fraud topics are relevant. I found this course to be very valuable still and only question its relevance to the first three and the specialization. I personally expected topics around how to set up accounting analytics to improve the results similar to understanding customers, people, and operations.

By Dustin h

Jan 24, 2020

quizzes are inconsistent with the videos, and when I re took the quiz the quiz would change the questions entirely. So I did not learn anything from this class.I would give it zero stars I f I could.I don't know if the inconsistent quizzes are a glitch, It would be helpful if This gets l looked into.

By Kwek W C

Mar 11, 2018

Very poor service to response to my problem. I'm asked to pay to upgrade after completing the quiz when I'm already a paid subscriber. Nobody can tell me what's wrong and resolve it! I'm wasting my time waiting!!!

By Sam E

May 15, 2016

The first 3 weeks demonstrate how to analyze financial performance based on accounting data taken from a company's reported income and investment decisions (10-K for example). The material is presented in an interesting manner with extensive use of Excel spreadsheets to demonstrate the calculation and application of common performance metrics and ratios. The test are challenging and interesting. I retook test I had passed because the information cover was interesting and the test provided an excellent learning opportunity. The fourth week deals with liking non-financial measures to financial performance. Within a typical organization, these parameters are often the ones employees most affect and are often measured against. The concepts and methods of evaluating presented with examples to demonstrate some of the problems with linking non-financial measures to financial performance.

I will be able to use what I have learned from both of these classes in my current job. I evaluate current business strategies of my company against competitive business strategies. Since the competitive business strategies must be deduced from a combination of published information and reported financial performance, the first three weeks will be of greatest benefit in this aspect of my job. The last week will be of more benefit as I help business organization within my company develop their business strategies.

By aaron

Feb 06, 2016

First of all, I would like to express my gratefulness to Coursera who presenting this excellent platform for those who is interested in ongoing lifetime education and hardworking and contributions to bring all the greatest courses from top universities around the world.

Second, I thank you Prof Brian and Christopher for all your time, work especially your knowledge that you brought and shared within these videos. I truly appreciate and like the way you teaching and delivering the professional knowledge.

To me, as a student who's just started stepping in accounting field, I found that accounting classes is so much interesting done by you, and it is a pure enjoyment as I learnt all the key knowledge. On there other hand, the courses gave me a general clear picture of how important and critical the accounting is in daily business management.

I will continue study accounting as I pursue my professional goals and career path.

By Fitrie R

Jul 22, 2020

I found this course is highly weighted knowledge with hands on cases, not only on how we can evaluate business performance through financial outcome but also through linking the non financial metrics to company's strategy. Also Prof Bushee taught a lot upon how we can investigate is there any manipulation that might be done by company's management to meet earning target, though it's a bit hard (that hit my head a lot while learning this since I am having engineering background XD) but in the end I know this is very useful even for individual investor in the stock market. So that we can dependently evaluate by our own selves for each company we're interested in. Highly recommended to those who wants to dive deeper to the next level of ratios and earning management strategy.

By Antonia J L

Jan 14, 2017

This course is difficult for me since it requires extensive background of accounting studies while my background is in HR and Strategy. However, I grasped the opportunity to make up my finance and accounting related knowledge, and passed the course finally after several times of trial and error. The professors taught the course in a very interesting and fun way, which could have been a boring class with lots of difficult and hard numbers but turns out to be a class full of fun and laughters. I like the way the two professors are presenting the knowledge, as well as doing the analysis. Thanks for providing such a course! More courses like this should be organized to benefit more professionals or students in need!

By ARVIND K S

May 07, 2018

Well, I learnt a lot, to say the least. I pride myself on being a fast learner, but the scorching pace at which the course was taught really zapped me. As an ex-banker, I was very impressed by the fraud detection and earnings and expenses management prediction models. From my practical experience, I appreciated the importance given to non financial metrics as well. Everywhere, we work in silos, where our left hand does not know what the right hand is doing, or the 18th floor is completely oblivious to the goings on on the 17th floor. The presentations, too, were nicely done, with a lot of aesthetics and humour thrown in.

You earned your vacation, dude, although you made it one of the toughest courses to pass.

By ROGER C

Aug 09, 2019

As an accountant, I alerady knew the material in the first 2 weeks. For those without a finance background, it can be daunting but stick thru it and you will be rewarded. W3-W4 topics are brand new to me and both professors have provided a lot of interesting, practical examples. I saw on the discussion board some students would like to put these skills into real business practice, and question the material lacks step-by-step details. Honestly, these are very intense topics and the prof have probably spend years studying. One will also requires good grasp of statistic , regression, survey design etc. which is beyond the scope of an online course which merely span a couple weeks.

By María A S R

Apr 19, 2019

Even I don{s have any experience in Accounting (actually it is in Communications & Marketing) I really appreciate how Prof Bushee introduces all the concepts, and how he really try to make them less boring with resources like the "animated classroom", with different students and "personalities". It was also really interesting how you can connect performance measures like customer satisfaction to financial results, and for me, as a Marketing Manager in a telco company was important to admit that we just have to focus in improve some measures y some really, specific target. Not all costumers are the same, and unfortunatelly, not all are equally profitable.