Syllabus for FSA-712

FINANCIAL STATEMENT ANALYSIS


COURSE DESCRIPTION

Financial Statement Analysis provides a broad framework of knowledge and tools for evaluating a firm’s business operations and predicting its future condition. The course is designed to develop a critical, user’s perspective to analyze and interpret financial statements to gain further insights into firms’ performance. The course describes the details of financial statements and their use by investors, creditors, analysts, auditors, and other interested parties.  

Main topics include, but are not limited to, financial ratio and profitability analysis, pro forma forecasting, earnings analysis, risk analysis, quality of financial reporting, and evaluating firm’s financial health.

The course is targeted to a wide range of students, including those preparing for careers in general management as well as in investment banking, financial analysis, and consulting.

COURSE OBJECTIVES

After completing this course, you should be able to:

  1. Analyze information needs and the purpose of financial reporting. (CO 1)
  2. Explain the effects of accrual accounting on expense recognition. (CO 2)
  3. Explain the purpose of the Pro Forma Financial Statement. (CO 3)
  4. Apply sensitivity analysis to projected financial statements. (CO 4)
  5. Describe credit risk analysis techniques. (CO 5)
  6. Explain the fundamental analysis of equity valuation. (CO 6)
  7. Predict financial stress for companies listed in the stock market. (CO 7)

COURSE MATERIALS

You will need the following materials to do the work of the course. The required textbook is available from the College’s textbook supplier, MBS Direct.

Required Textbook

COURSE STRUCTURE

Financial Statement Analysis is a three-credit online course, consisting of five modules. Modules include an overview, topics, learning objectives, study materials, and assignments. Module titles are listed below.

ASSESSMENT METHODS

For your formal work in the course, you are required to participate in online discussion forums, complete written assignments, take a proctored midterm examination, and complete a final project. See below for details.

Consult the Course Calendar for assignment due dates.

Discussion Forums

You are required to participate in five Discussion Forums.

Synchronous Events

You are required to participate in two synchronous events in Edison Live!, our virtual meeting space. They will occur in Weeks 4 and 7. To access the event, click on the Edison Live! link in the top section of the course site a few minutes before the designated time. Use the following link for directions and helpful videos about how to use the Edison Live! tool in Moodle. Your mentor will work with the class to propose a time that works best and accommodates the majority. Students will prepare to discuss the topic given for that event. Topics will be determined by your mentor in discussion with the class.

*Mentors instructions for this activity are available in the instructor's resources area of the course Web site.

Written Assignments

You are required to complete five written assignments, one per module. These written assignments are on a variety of topics associated with the course modules.

Cumulative Midterm Assignment

During Week 4, you are required to complete a cumulative midterm assignment.

Final Project

For your final project, which is worth 30 percent of your total grade, you will write a research paper of 10-12 pages about measuring and predicting financial stress for business enterprises. The accounting literature includes several financial stress prediction models for business enterprises. The most common models are Altman Z-Score and Ohlson O-Score. These models are basically focusing on financial ratios, earnings measures, market values, and cash flow. The financial stress prediction models can be used as early warning tools to direct company’s management to take the necessary corrective action before the company goes into financial difficulties and bankruptcy phases.

Your paper should present comprehensive discussion and analysis of at least three financial stress prediction models. The paper should present an application of one of these models on two companies listed in the stock market. You should present valid conclusion and clear opinion on each company’s financial stress status.  The student should use the University’s Digital Resources and e-library to access the reading materials for this module.

GRADING AND EVALUATION

Your grade in the course will be determined as follows:

All activities will receive a numerical grade of 0–100. You will receive a score of 0 for any work not submitted. Your final grade in the course will be a letter grade. Letter grade equivalents for numerical grades are as follows:

A

=

93–100

B–

=

80–82

A–

=

90–92

C+

=

78–79

B+

=

88–89

C

=

73–77

B

=

83–87

F

=

Below 73

To receive credit for the course, you must earn a letter grade of C or higher on the weighted average of all assigned course work (e.g., assignments, discussion postings, projects, etc.). Graduate students must maintain a B average overall to remain in good academic standing.

STRATEGIES FOR SUCCESS

First Steps to Success

To succeed in this course, take the following first steps:

Study Tips

Consider the following study tips for success:

ACADEMIC INTEGRITY

Thomas Edison State College is committed to maintaining academic quality, excellence, and honesty. The College expects all members of its community to share the commitment to academic integrity, an essential component of a quality academic experience.

Students at Thomas Edison State College are expected to exhibit the highest level of academic citizenship. In particular, students are expected to read and follow all policies, procedures, and program information guidelines contained in publications; pursue their learning goals with honesty and integrity; demonstrate that they are progressing satisfactorily and in a timely fashion by meeting course deadlines and following outlined procedures; observe a code of mutual respect in dealing with mentors, staff, and other students; behave in a manner consistent with the standards and codes of the profession in which they are practicing; keep official records updated regarding changes in name, address, telephone number, or e-mail address; and meet financial obligations in a timely manner. Students not practicing good academic citizenship may be subject to disciplinary action including suspension, dismissal, or financial holds on records.

All members of the College community are responsible for reviewing the Academic Code of Conduct Policy in the College Catalog and online at www.tesc.edu.

Academic Dishonesty

Thomas Edison State College expects all of its students to approach their education with academic integrity—the pursuit of scholarly activity free from fraud and deception. All mentors and administrative staff members at the College insist on strict standards of academic honesty in all courses. Academic dishonesty undermines this objective. Academic dishonesty can take the following forms:

Plagiarism

Thomas Edison State College is committed to helping students understand the seriousness of plagiarism, which is defined as using the work and ideas of others without proper citation. The College takes a strong stance against plagiarism, and students found to be plagiarizing are subject to discipline under the academic code of conduct policy.

If you copy phrases, sentences, paragraphs, or whole documents word-for-word—or if you paraphrase by changing a word here and there—without identifying the author, or without identifying it as a direct quote, then you are plagiarizing. Please keep in mind that this type of identification applies to Internet sources as well as to print-based sources. Copying and pasting from the Internet, without using quotation marks and without acknowledging sources, constitutes plagiarism. (For information about how to cite Internet sources, see Online Student Handbook > Academic Standards > “Citing Sources.”)

Accidentally copying the words and ideas of another writer does not excuse the charge of plagiarism. It is easy to jot down notes and ideas from many sources and then write your own paper without knowing which words are your own and which are someone else’s. It is more difficult to keep track of each and every source. However, the conscientious writer who wishes to avoid plagiarizing never fails to keep careful track of sources.

Always be aware that if you write without acknowledging the sources of your ideas, you run the risk of being charged with plagiarism.

Clearly, plagiarism, no matter the degree of intent to deceive, defeats the purpose of education. If you plagiarize deliberately, you are not educating yourself, and you are wasting your time on courses meant to improve your skills. If you plagiarize through carelessness, you are deceiving yourself.

For examples of unintentional plagiarism, advice on when to quote and when to paraphrase, and information about writing assistance and originality report checking, click the links provided below.

Examples of Unintentional Plagiarism

When to Quote and When to Paraphrase

Writing Assistance at Smarthinking

Originality Report Checking at Turnitin

Disciplinary Process for Plagiarism

Acts of both intentional and unintentional plagiarism violate the Academic Code of Conduct.

If an incident of plagiarism is an isolated minor oversight or an obvious result of ignorance of proper citation requirements, the mentor may handle the matter as a learning exercise. Appropriate consequences may include the completion of tutorials, assignment rewrites, or any other reasonable learning tool in addition to a lower grade for the assignment or course. The mentor will notify the student and appropriate dean of the consequence by e-mail.

If the plagiarism appears intentional and/or is more than an isolated incident, the mentor will refer the matter to the appropriate dean, who will gather information about the violation(s) from the mentor and student, as necessary. The dean will review the matter and notify the student in writing of the specifics of the charge and the sanction to be imposed.

Possible sanctions include:

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