Using the Securities and Exchange Commission’s Accounting and Auditing Enforcement Releases, this assignment builds critical thinking and ethical decision-making skills in a financial accounting setting. It requires students to analyze a real-world fraud from the perspective of an employee, manager, or executive (a “case participant”) involved in the accounting impropriety. The case features individual and group components that may be customized to fit the instructor’s needs. The individual component examines a case participant’s choices in committing accounting improprieties using an ethical decision-making framework. The group component includes an analysis of the accounting, the fraud triangle, possible preventative measures, and takeaways applicable to students’ future careers. By requiring students to step into the shoes of a case participant, this assignment increases student awareness of deliberate choices leading to financial reporting fraud and equips students with an ethical decision-making framework should they encounter a financial reporting ethical conflict in the workplace.

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