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Formal Financial Accounting (Coursera)

This course builds upon what you learned in Financial Accounting: Foundations and Financial Accounting: Advanced Topics and introduces you to formal foundations of financial accounting. The main purpose of the course is to familiarize you with technical terms in financial accounting, such as debit, credit and T-account.

While knowledge on technical aspects of financial accounting is not necessary to understand and interpret financial statements, this knowledge is critical to be able to understand advanced topics in accounting. Formal Financial Accounting is a prerequisite course for the University of Illinois’ iMSA program and the terminology we will cover will be used throughout the courses in iMSA program.

Who is this class for: This class is designed for those of you who have basic knowledge about financial statements and main accounts. This class builds upon this initial background and introduces you to formal foundations of financial accounting. In addition, this class provides an in-depth exploration of formal relationships among accounts and how financial statements are constructed from accounts.



Course Orientation

In this module, you will become familiar with the course, your instructor, your classmates, and your learning environment. This orientation will also help you obtain the technical skills required to navigate and be successful in this course.

Module 1: Introduction to Financial Accounting Terminology

Accounting is the language of business. Managers communicate results of operations within a firm through accounting to various financial information users including investors and creditors. The main purpose of this module is to familiarize you with technical terms in financial accounting such as debit, credit, and T-account.

Graded: Module 1 Graded Quiz


Module 2: Formal Financial Accounting for Assets

One of the major components of a balance sheet is assets. Accounts receivables, inventories, and plant, property, and equipment constitute a major part of the assets. Understanding accounting for these accounts will help you uncover how these accounts change over time, their valuation, and their usefulness in managerial decision making.

Graded: Module 2 Graded Quiz


Module 3: Formal Financial Accounting for Liabilities and Shareholders’ Equity

The major sources of financing for many firms are liabilities and equity. Firms routinely finance their operations through various liabilities including accounts payables, bank loans, and bonds. They also raise funds from their investors through IPOs and SEOs. Finally, retained earnings (earnings earned but not distributed to investors) constitute a significant source of financing. Accounting for liabilities and shareholders’ equity will help you understand how formal financial accounting for liabilities and shareholders’ equity accounts are conducted.

Graded: Module 3 Graded Quiz


Module 4: Applications of Formal Financial Accounting

The accounting cycle starts with financial transactions, and continues with journalizing these transactions and posting the journal entries on the ledger. At the end of the year, the trial balance is prepared. The final step is to prepare financial statements from trial balance numbers. This module will go over a comprehensive exercise, which will track the accounting cycle of a firm from its establishment until its fiscal year-end financial statements.

Graded: Module 4 Graded Quiz