SHE Level 4
SCQF Credit Points 20.00
ECTS Credit Points 10.00
Module Code MHN320694
Module Leader Siobhan White
School Glasgow School for Business and Society
Subject Finance and Accounting
  • A (September start)

Pre-Requisite Knowledge

M3N406760 PUBLIC SECTOR ACCOUNTING, or equivalent.

Summary of Content

Rationale This module picks up on a number of the theoretical and practical issues introduced in earlier years and examines these in greater depth and in a more critical way. Extensive use is made of journal articles and current, emerging theories are critically reviewed Summary of content The module will examine the regulatory framework, which governs public sector financial reporting. It will review capital accounting in the public sector with particular reference to local authorities and the NHS. An examination of external financial statements will conclude with programme reporting and audit in the public sector. Current developments in the field will be reviewed in detail.


HISTORY & DEVELOPMENT - Public Sector Reform - Forces for Change and Reform Agenda GOVERNANCE & ACCOUNTABILITY - Models and Current Practice SUPREME AUDIT - Framework for Public Sector Audit - Public Audit Forum VALUE FOR MONEY & BEST VALUE - Legislation - Current Arrangements and Future Developments PERFORMANCE MANAGEMENT - Measurement & Management - Evaluating Indicators - Theoretical perspectives DEVELOPMENTS IN PUBLIC SECTOR ACCOUNTING - Resource Accounting & Budgeting - IFRS Implementation PUBLIC SECTOR FINANCIAL INNOVATIONS -PFI / PPP Conceptualisation & Development SCOTTISH FUTURES TRUST - Sources and Distribution of Finance PUBLIC SECTOR FUNDING & REFORM - Prudential Borrowing Framework -The Scottish Budget -Alternatives to local Taxation

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of the module, students should be able to:- critically evaluate the arrangements for financial reporting, accountability and performance reporting in the public sector- analyse and interpret the external financial statements of local authorities, the NHS and Central Government - demonstrate an understanding of the implications for financial reporting of methods of capital accounting and financing- conduct individual and group research into particular topics of the course- demonstrate developed communication skills by report writing and oral presentation

Teaching / Learning Strategy

The module will be delivered by lectures and case studies. Seminar sessions will be participative and student controlled. These will be mainly student led, where participants will present, either individually or in groups, the results of their research into selected topics. Feedback strategy A: Facilitating the development of self-assessment Students will be asked to identify strengths and weaknesses in their own work in relation to the criteria set out in the marking template before handing the work in for marking. B: Encouraging teacher and peer dialogue The lecturer will review feedback at the tutorials where coursework and other work done by students will be handed back. In reviewing personal transferable skills such as presentation skills individually and in small teams the lecturer will provide constructive instant feedback in discussion with the rest of the class. Students will also be encouraged to discuss the comments they have been given with their peers and suggest strategies to improve their performance next time. C: Clarifying good performance A marking template is available for all student course and exam work, which will be handed out in advance and discussed with students in a tutorial prior to completion of the assignment. Anonymous examples of good, bad and indifferent work from previous cohorts of students will be handed out, together with markers' comments. D: Providing opportunities to close the gap between current and desired performance In providing feedback, the lecturer will provide action points for students to follow to enable them to improve their performance.

Indicative Reading

Jones, R., Pendlebury, M. (2010) Public Sector Accounting, 6th Edition, Pitman Hall Coombs, H.M., Jenkins, D.E. (2002) Public Sector Financial Management 3rd Edition, Thomson Learning Mellet, H., Marriott, N. (1993) Financial Management in the NHS, Chapman Hall CIPFA (2009) Accounting Code of Practice for UK Local Authorities Wilson, J. (1998) Financial Management for the Public Services, Open University Press Extensive use will be made of recent journal articles and students should regularly consult relevant journals, such as Public Money and Management, Financial Accountability and Management amongst others.

Transferrable Skills

Report Writing Skills - reflected in the presentation of coursework Oral Communication Skills - reflected in individual presentations and contributions to group presentations. Participate in and lead group discussions - reflected in contributions to group presentations and seminar activities. Gathering, analysis interpretation and evaluation of ideas, concepts, qualitative and quantitative data - reflected in coursework and examination performance Critical understanding of established theories and concepts - reflected in individual and group presentations, examination and coursework performance.

Module Structure

Activity Total Hours
Lectures (FT) 24.00
Assessment (FT) 24.00
Seminars (FT) 12.00
Independent Learning (FT) 140.00

Assessment Methods

Component Duration Weighting Threshold Description
Coursework 2 n/a 30.00 n/a 3,000 word report on researh findings
Coursework 1 n/a 10.00 n/a Group Seminar Presentation
Exam (Exams Office) 3.00 60.00 n/a Exam (Exams Office)