Accounting Information Systems BUS581-01

Spring 2016
Saturday Class
Dr. Chih-Yang Tsai
Office: VH 302
Phone: (845) 257-2934
Office Hours:
Monday & Thursday  9:15 - 10: 55 AM
Monday 12:15 - 12:55 PM
Saturday 9:00 - 9:30 PM (first half of the semester)
Other time by appointment

Course Description

Study of conceptual foundations of accounting information systems (AIS), and the relationship of AIS to business processes and internal controls. The use of software packages for processing accounting information.

Student Learning Objectives

         * Bloom's Classification of Cognitive Domain Skills: 1) Knowledge, 2) Comprehension, 3) Application, 4) Analysis, 5) Synthesis, 6) Evaluation.
    ** There will be a strong emphasis on how information technology affects the playing field of Accounting, Information Systems, and Internal Controls.

Program Goal(s) Supported

MBA Goal 1. Assess the Impact of Globalization on Business 2. Decision-Making Under Uncertainty 3. Integrating Knowledge Across Disciplines 4. Analyze Ethical Implications of Business Decisions 5. Analyze Elements of Leadership Behavior
Major V
Minor V


Required Text & Other Materials

  1. The ISBN number of the customized textboook is ISBN: 9781269781718, which is available through the campus bookstore.   This version contains selected chapters from Accounting Information Systems, Marshall B. Romney and Paul J. Steinbar [referred to as R&S hereater],  13th edition, Pearson, 2015, ISBN: 9780133428537.  Alternatively, you can acquire this complete book, which has all the chapters including those which I did not select.  

  2. Blackboard Server: All announcements, assignments, class materials will be posted on the blackboard server.  

Grading Policy

Term grade is determined based on two types of performance measures, individual and team efforts.
(1) Midterm Exam (15%): Midterm exam covers the materials from Chapters 1 and 2.
(2) Final Exam (25%): Final exam covers materials from Chapters 3 to 12
(3) Assigments (15%): Weekly assignments
(4) Participation (15%): participation in discussions both online and in class.
(5) Team Chapter Presentation (15%): Each team is responsible to present a topic area which may include one or more chapters from the textbook.  Specific requirements and additional resources for preparation will be available.  One of the teams not presenting that week will be charged with a major discussant role.
(6) Team project (15%):  Implement an information system on MS Access and address all potential internal control issues.  There might be other alternatives available.  We will discuss it during the first week of class.  The project is due on the final examination day, March 12.

A significant portion of discussions will be conducted online.  Please reserve at least a two-hour slot each week to fulfill this requirement.  If there is class cancelation due to inclement weather conditions, we will move more work online and try to run a condensed session the following week to catch up.  There will be five teams for team presentation and project.

Other policies:
Conversion Table:
Conversion between numerical scores and letter grades.
      95.00% and above : A
      90.00%-94.99% : A-
      86.67%-89.99%  : B+
      83.33%-86.66% : B
      80.00%-83.32% : B-
      76.67%-79.99% : C+
      73.33%-76.66% : C
      70%-72.32% : C-
      66.67%-69.99% : D+
      60%-66.96% : D

Dates to keep in mind


Treat this class as you would for your job:  prepare by reading the text and doing assigned homework.  Arrive promptly and remain in the classroom for the duration of the class period.  Please do not exit and reenter the room during class time, except in an emergency situation; turn off your cell phone during class.  Be proactive:  if you are having a problem with the material being covered, seek help right away.  [Office Hours: see the top of the page]

Policies  (applicable rules will be relaxed for students with documented health or personal problems)

Textbooks:  Not having textbooks or delay of purchasing the textbooks may significantly damange the chance of successful completion of the course.  It is student's responsiblity to obtain the textbooks in the first week of the semester.   The publisher offers a 14-day grace period. 

Make-up exams:  A student who is unable to take an examination at the scheduled time for a legitimate reason must contact the professor prior to the examination to make an alternative arrangement for completing it.  If there is an unexpected emergency situation, the student should contact the professor as soon as possible and provide documentation to justify the situation.

Absences and tardiness:  Students who are absent from class should check WileyPlus and Blackboard to study the course contents and work on homework assignments.   Absence beyond two class meetings or repeated tardiness will cost a student's attendance points.  Late arrival may be considered as absence.

Assignments submitted after the deadline:  Late submissions will suffer a hefty penalty (70% reduction).

Cheating and plagiarism:  students are expected to maintain the highest standards of honesty in their college work. Cheating, forgery, and plagiarism are serious offenses, and students that engage in any form of academic dishonesty will be subject to disciplinary action. The School of Business Ethics Statement and Policy Regarding Unethical or Dishonest Behavior are appended, and can be viewed online at: and

Tentative Schedule

I will cover the first two weeks.  Starting from Week 3, one team will take the lead covering the key concepts mentioned in the chapter(s) assigned and steering discussions of critical issues or cases studies.  I will provide a guideline specific to the topic(s) and additional resources to each team for its preparation.  Make sure you prepare your presention ahead of time so that I can help you improve your work for better performance.

Week 1: Chapter 1 - Systems Documentation Techniques [Business Processes] and Chapter 2 - Relational Databases [Information Systems]
Week 2: Chapter 12 - Database Design Using the REA Data Model, Chapter 13 - Implementing an REA Model in a Relational Database; Chapter 14 - Special Topics in REA Modeling;
Week 3: Fraud: Chapter 3 - Computer Fraud  & Chapter 4 - Computer Fraud and Abuse Techniques [Fraud]
Week 4: Chapter 5 - Control and Accounting Information Systems [Control frameworks]; Midterm Exam
Week 5: Chapter 6 - Controls for Information Security, : Chapter 7 - Confidentiality and Privacy Control (shorter chapter) ; 
Week 6: Chapter 8 - Processing Integrity and Availability Control; Chapter 9 - Auditing Computer-based information systems,
Week 7:  Chapter 10 - The Revenue Cycle: Sales to Cash Collections, & Chapter 11 - Expenditure Cycle: Purchasing to Cash Disbursements ;  Catch up, Patch up & Conclusion
Week 8: Final Examination
  * Chapter numbers refer to those appeared in the customized textbook of Romney & Steinbart.  If you have the original textbook, check the chapter title to match the corresponding chapters in your textbook.

SUNY New Paltz School of Business : Ethics Statement

School of Business students are expected to maintain the highest standards of honesty in their college work. Cheating, forgery, and plagiarism are serious offenses, and students that engage in any form of academic dishonesty will be subject to disciplinary action.  While we prefer to adhere to a code of honor in the School of Business, due to national trends in cheating, forgery, and plagiarism, we are instituting this policy within the school.  Any student found cheating, committing forgery, or plagiarizing may suffer serious consequences ranging from failing a specific piece of work to failing the course.  In some cases, a student may be expelled from the School of Business and the college.

Your business education includes learning ethics and values.  We trust that you have the basic foundation upon which we can build.  You will be judged by your character as well as by your knowledge and skills since the business world increasingly demands ethical behavior of its employees.  Honesty remains an admirable quality.

Cheating is defined as giving or obtaining information by improper means in meeting any academic requirements or in other aspects of your professional conducts. The use for academic credit of the same work in more than one course without knowledge or consent of the instructor(s) is a form of cheating and is a serious violation of academic integrity.

Forgery is defined as the alteration of forms, documents, or records, or the signing of such forms or documents by someone other than the proper designee.

Plagiarism is the representation, intentional or unintentional, of another’s words or ideas as one's own.  When using another person's words in a paper, students must place them within quotation marks or clearly set them off in the text with appropriate citation. When students use another’s ideas, they must clearly identify the source of the ideas. Plagiarism is a violation of the rights of the plagiarized author and of the implied assurance by the students that when they submit academic work it is their own work product.  If students have any issues with respect to the definition of plagiarism, it is their responsibility to clarify the matter by conferring with the instructor.

Cases requiring disciplinary and/or grade appeal action will be adjudicated in accordance with Procedures for Resolving Academic Integrity Cases, a copy of which is available in the office of the Vice President for Students Affairs, the office of the Provost for Academic Affairs, and in the academic Deans' offices.

We, the members of the SUNY New Paltz School of Business community, are committed to practicing the highest standards of ethical behavior and demonstrating integrity in all we do.  We practice these standards and expect them to be demonstrated by others not only in our business dealings, but in all our relationships.  Ours is a culture of integrity.   For us, ethical behavior means adhering to certain standards in both public and private.

School of Business : Policy Regarding Unethical or Dishonest Behavior

The school maintains a system (including software and web-based resources), by which students are well informed, educated and required to acknowledge by electronic signatures, the ethics, honesty and integrity standards of the School of Business, and the consequences of violating those standards.

Instructors who identify any violators should report the incident to the Dean’s office for disciplinary action. The following procedure is followed by the dean’s office for handling such incidents.

The involved students may request an appeal through Academic Appeal Committee (undergraduate) or Graduate Council (graduate students).

First time offenders receive a failing grade for the course, which can only be changed based on a favorable outcome of the appeals process, if applicable. The dean’s office keeps a list of first time offenders. The offenders are also required to recertify their understanding of our ethics, honesty and integrity standards.

A second time undergraduate offender will be referred for possible dismissal to the Office of Student Affairs. A second time graduate student offender will be dismissed from the Master's degree program in which he or she is matriculated, subject to review by the Graduate Council.

Note: Once a student completes the training program, he/she shall be treated equally regardless of their previous educational experience and cultural norms. Instructors are encouraged to remind students of our ethics, honesty and integrity standards at the beginning of each course.