ACCOUNTG 591 - Managerial Accounting

Course Description

Managerial Accounting (ACCOUNTG 341) emphasizes the use of accounting information for internal purposes as opposed to the external disclosure focus of the financial accounting course.  The design of management accounting systems for planning and controlling operations and for motivating personnel is covered.  The course integrates accounting with ideas from microeconomics, data analysis, decision analysis, finance, and operations management.  There are no prerequisites for this course.

Managerial accounting information is directed to users internal to the firm, such as managers, auditors, and directors.  Financial accounting information, such as financial statements and other regulatory filings, is directed to external constituencies of the firm, such as regulatory bodies, securities analysts, and (current/potential) shareholders.  The primary differences between financial and managerial accounting are:


Financial accounting

Managerial accounting


Outside the firm

Inside the firm

Time period

Historical transactions

Future transactions





Auditable: comparable and precise

Useful: improved decision making


Macro: organization as a whole

Micro: level desired (product, unit)


Mandatory (GAAP)

Optional (Benefits must justify cost)


Publicly available


The Fuqua managerial accounting course is divided into two parts.  First, we examine firms' managerial accounting systems and their use in decision-making.  Second, we examine these accounting systems and their use in planning, control, and performance evaluation.  The course begins with a discussion of the basic vocabulary and mechanics of managerial accounting systems.  For the remainder of the course, students focus on identifying and extracting relevant information from managerial accounting systems as an input to decision making and performance evaluation.  The course objectives are reinforced through the lecture notes and course packet readings, assigned case write-ups, class and group discussions and problem-solving, and numerical problems.