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: Students who have taken this module at Part 1 cannot take it again at Part 2.
Co-requisites: AC110 Introduction to Accounting
Modules excluded:
Current from: 2021/2

Module Convenor: Dr Lei Tao

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 planning a career in accounting, and has a practical and commercial focus. It 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 principles of professional ethics.

Assessable learning outcomes:

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, principles and codes.

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:

Lectures will be used for the exposition of the main concepts, principles and techniques associated with the discipline. Seminars will focus on formative question practice and discussion of examination style.

Contact hours:

Programme Level Learning Outcomes

Module Learning Outcomes


Mastery of Discipline

Skills in research and enquiry

Personal effectiveness and self-awareness

Global engagement and multi-cultural awareness



Explain the concept of assurance, why assurance is required and the reasons for assurance engagements being carried out by appropriately qualified professionals.






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Explain the nature of internal controls and why they are important, document an organisation's internal controls and identify weaknesses in internal control systems







Select sufficient and appropriate methods of obtaining assurance evidence and recognise when conclusions can be drawn from evidence obtained







Explain the importance of ethical behaviour to a professional and identify issues relating to core ethical principles





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1 (g)


Work in a structured and managed environment







Summarise and present information, clearly and concisely in a prescribed format





1 (d)

  Autumn Spring Summer
Lectures 20
Seminars 15
Guided independent study:      
    Wider reading (directed) 25
    Preparation for seminars 20
    Revision and preparation 50 60
    Reflection 10
Total hours by term 0 140 60
Total hours for module 200

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

Summative assessment- Examinations:

One closed book two-hour unseen examination

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 Support Centres 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 (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- £40

Calculator- £15 (Casio FX-83GTPLUS or Casio FX-85GTPLUS)

Last updated: 20 May 2021


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