Not available in 2019/20
AC342      Half Unit
Accounting, Corporate Responsibility and Sustainability

This information is for the 2019/20 session.

Teacher responsible



This course is available on the BSc in Accounting and Finance. This course is available with permission as an outside option to students on other programmes where regulations permit and to General Course students.


Students must have completed Elements of Accounting and Finance (AC100) or Elements of Financial Accounting (AC102). Elements of Management Accounting, Financial Management and Financial Institutions (AC103) is recommended to complement AC102, but not required.

Course content

The course seeks to provide an introduction to the key issues that are emerging on the ‘extended’ role of accounting in society. AC342 considers the broader accountability framework of businesses, and related environmental and social accounting issues. Major concepts and practices relating to sustainability and societal responsibility such as the “triple-bottom-line” considerations of financial viability, environmental accountability and social responsibility, will be discussed and critically assessed. The course also examines the complexities that characterise the relationships between accounting, organisations and society, and between shareholders and a wide range of stakeholders. The course takes a broad approach to the role of accounting and provides students with valuable insights, aided by real-life examples and case studies, on the issues of organisational sustainability and (corporate) social responsibility.

The course aims to develop students’ knowledge of the relationships between accounting and society. Specifically, and crucially, it aims to provide students with critical awareness of the accountabilities and responsibilities of organisations and those involved in their viability and legitimacy, either as managers or investors, regulators or overseers, and the role of accounting in securing such accountability and responsibility.


22 hours of lectures and 10 hours of classes in the LT. 1 hour of lectures and 1 hour of classes in the ST.



Formative coursework


Indicative reading

No one book covers the entire syllabus. In addition to professional and academic journals, reading will cover the following: Henriques, A, Corporate Truth: The Limits to Transparency (Earthscan 2007). Students will also be provided with relevant examples of corporate and other reports and referred to relevant websites. Detailed course programmes and reading lists will be distributed at the first lecture of the course.


Exam (75%, duration: 2 hours, reading time: 15 minutes) in the summer exam period.
Coursework (25%) in the LT.

The exam duration is 2 hours and 15 minutes. The first 15 minutes will be reading time.

The details of the coursework will be made available on Moodle nearer the scheduled start time of the course.

Key facts

Department: Accounting

Total students 2018/19: Unavailable

Average class size 2018/19: Unavailable

Capped 2018/19: No

Value: Half Unit

Guidelines for interpreting course guide information

Personal development skills

  • Leadership
  • Self-management
  • Team working
  • Communication
  • Commercial awareness
  • Specialist skills