International Financial Reporting Standards, IFRS, U.S. GAAP, SEC, undergraduate accounting curriculum, employer expectations
The globalization of business has led to the adoption of International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) around the world. Recently, the Securities and Exchange Commission issued a roadmap for IFRS implementation starting in 2014, with earlier adoption permitted. Yet according to recent surveys, few U.S. universities have a strategy in place to integrate IFRS into the undergraduate accounting curriculum. Using survey research, this paper explores the entry-level knowledge and skills employers expect of new hires in the near term and five years from now. Results indicate that employers already require accounting graduates to have some awareness of IFRS and its relationship to U.S. GAAP. By 2013 students should be able to apply IFRS in recording transactions, prepare IFRS-based financials, and reconcile IFRS to U.S. GAAP. The paper concludes with recommendations based on survey results for incorporating IFRS into the undergraduate accounting curriculum.