AC102-Assurance, Governance and Ethics

Module Provider: Business Informatics, Systems and Accounting
Number of credits: 20 [10 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Spring term module
Non-modular pre-requisites:
Co-requisites: AC110 Introduction to Accounting or AC105A Introductory International Financial Accounting A or AC105B Introductory International Financial Accounting B
Modules excluded:
Current from: 2018/9

Module Convenor: Mrs Elaine Darby


Type of module:

Summary module description:

This module introduces students to the concepts of assurance, governance and ethics in the corporate environment and explores the role of management and auditors in this context. This module is delivered at University of Reading and Beijing Institute of Technology.


This module is targeted primarily at students who want to go on to become Chartered Accountants. It therefore has a practical and commercial focus. This module aims to provide students with an understanding of the assurance process, specifically in relation to the assessment of internal controls and gathering of evidence on an assurance engagement. The module also aims to introduce students to the basic concepts of corporate governance and professional ethics.

Assessable learning outcomes:

                                              Programme Level Learning Outcomes
Module Learning Outcomes Description Mastery of Discipline Skills in research and enquiry Personal effectiveness and self-awareness Global engagement and multi-cultural awareness Employability
1 Explain the concept of assurance, why assurance is required and the reasons for assurance engagements being carried out by appropriately qualified professionals. 1,2,3        
2 Explain the nature of internal controls and why they are important, document an organisation's internal controls and identify weaknesses in internal control systems 1,2,3        
3 Select sufficient and appropriate methods of obtaining assurance evidence and recognise when conclusions can be drawn from evidence obtained 1,2,3 2      
4 Explain the importance of ethical behaviour to a professional and identify issues relating to core ethical principles 1,2,3       1 (g)
5 Explain the basic concept of corporate governance and the roles and responsibilities of a variety of actors in relation to corporate governance 1,2,3        
6 Work in a structured and managed environment          
7 Summarise and present information, clearly and concisely in a prescribed fomat 4 1     1 (d)


Additional outcomes:
Structured activities are designed to develop independent learning, including reflective adaptive and collaborative learning.

Outline content:

  1.  Concept of and need for assurance and governance

  2. Obtaining and planning an engagement

  3. Evidence and sampling

  4. Internal control and internal audit

  5. Revenue. purchase and payroll systems

  6. Substantive procedures and audit documentation

  7. Written representations

  8. Professional Ethics

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:
The module is delivered through a combination of interactive lectures which will introduce students to topic areas and practical workshops where students will consolidate their understanding through guided question practice and discussion.

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Lectures 27
Seminars 8
Guided independent study 165
Total hours by term 200.00
Total hours for module 200.00

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Written exam 80
Class test administered by School 20

Summative assessment- Examinations:
One two hour unseen written exam in the Summer term.

Summative assessment- Coursework and in-class tests:

One multiple-choice question (MCQ) test in the first week of the summer term

Formative assessment methods:

A Question Bank of MCQ questions forms part of the core text for this module. In addition, exam style formative questions are provided for all main topic areas. Feedback in the form of answer plans, marking guides, assessment Q&As, mock MCQ tests, mock exams, and lecturer advice is also provided to assist students to reflect on and improve their performance.

Penalties for late submission:
The Module Convener will apply the following penalties for work submitted late:

  • where the piece of work is submitted after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): 10% of the total marks available for that piece of work will be deducted from the mark for each working day[1] (or part thereof) following the deadline up to a total of five working days;
  • where the piece of work is submitted more than five working days after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): a mark of zero will be recorded.

  • The University policy statement on penalties for late submission can be found at:
    You are strongly advised to ensure that coursework is submitted by the relevant deadline. You should note that it is advisable to submit work in an unfinished state rather than to fail to submit any work.

    Assessment requirements for a pass:
    A minimum mark of 40% is required for a University pass.

    This module contributes to the Assurance module of the ACA Professional stage knowledge level. In order to apply for ICAEW credit for prior learning, a minimum mark of 50% must be obtained on this module.

    Reassessment arrangements:
    Reassessment is by examination only in August / September of the same year.

    Additional Costs (specified where applicable):

    Required Text Books- £35

    Last updated: 27 September 2018


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