NYU Stern School of Business

Undergraduate College

ACCT-UB.0004.001 (C10.0004): Managerial Accounting

Spring 2013

Instructor Details

Tang, Michael


(212) 998-0087

Mondays 3:30-4:45pm

KMC 10-84


Course Meetings

MW, 11:00am to 12:15pm

KMC 4-80


Course Description and Learning Goals

This course introduces you to the principles of managerial accounting – the internal use of accounting information to manage modern firms, including planning, analysis, and decision-making. The primary objective of this course is to equip you with the knowledge and ability to prepare, understand, evaluate, and execute financial and non-financial reports used in modern businesses. The purpose of this course is to help you become a better manager, not to merely have you read problems and solutions.

Managers face numerous business decisions every day that require the use of financial and non-financial information about their firms’ products, processes, employees, suppliers, customers, competitors, resources, and constraints. These decisions range from evaluating profitability of investment projects (finance) to managing product-line portfolios and pricing (marketing), from supply chain and customer management (operations) to evaluating and motivating employees (human resources), and from making merger and acquisition decisions (strategy) to tax planning and management (regulation). Therefore, utilizing relevant information (financial and non-financial) to make informed decisions is vital to modern firms and is an important skill for a career in corporate management, business consulting, financial services, and so on. 

Unlike financial accounting, this course focuses on information generated by internal accounting information systems. These systems provide managers with reports that describe the reality – the business processes and environment at their firms. However, these reports may not fully reflect or reflect inaccurately the reality, leading managers to make incorrect decisions. In class, we will discuss a number of pitfalls that these inaccurate reports can induce and the incorrect decisions these reports can lead to. We will also discuss how companies can create value through making informed decisions based on reliable reports that truthfully and accurately reflect reality.  

Although you will need to be familiar with the mechanics of the many techniques used to prepare management reports, the emphasis in this course is on interpretation, evaluation, and decision-making.


Course Pre-Requisites

Microeconomics; Principles of Financial Accounting


Course Outline

CLASSSCHEDULE(*Subject to Change)

Note: C=Chapter; Ex=Exercise; P=Problem





Date of Class


Required Reading

Assigned Case

Self-Study Problem


1/28 Mon.

Introduction to the course

C1: 1-19





1/30 Wed.

Managerial information systems: theory and practice

C2: 24-34, 42-47


Ex: 2-1, 2-2, 2-3, 2-6; P: 2-16


2/4 Mon.

Normal absorption costing

C3: 83-108


Ex: 3-1, 3-3, 3-10, 3-12, 3-15; P: 3-26


2/6 Wed.

Cost estimation and process complexity


Seligram ETO



2/11 Mon.

Measuring and managing the costs of capacity (introduction)





2/13 Wed.

Measuring and managing the costs of capacity (conclusion)





2/18 Mon.






2/20 Wed.

Activity-based costing (introduction)

C7: 230-256[1]

Coffee Services

Ex: 7-1, 7-6, 7-12, 7-14


2/25 Mon.

Activity-based costing (conclusion)



Review problem on page 256-258[2]


2/27 Wed.

From activity-based costing to customer profitability analysis

Will be posted on Blackboard


Ex: 7-5, 7-9


3/4 Mon.

Estimating and managing customer profitability (introduction)

Will be posted on Blackboard

Infinity Bank



3/6 Wed.

Estimating and managing customer profitability (conclusion)





3/11 Mon.

Review for midterm





3/13 Wed.

Midterm Exam





3/18 Mon.






3/20 Wed.






3/25 Mon.

Wrap up of course Part 1





3/27 Wed.


C8: 293-317[3]


Ex: 8-1, 8-2, 8-3, 8-4, 8-5, 8-6, 8-7, 8-8


4/1 Mon.

Standard costs and variance analysis

C10: 376-399[4]


Ex: 10-2, 10-3, 10-4, 10-5; P: 10-13, 10-14


4/3 Wed.

Decentralization and performance evaluation

C11: 430-440[5]


Ex: 11-2, 11-7, 11-8, 11-12; P: 11-15


4/8 Mon.

Incentive effects of absorption costing

C6: 187-197[6]

Western Chipsets

Ex: 6-1, 6-2, 6-12; P: 6-22


4/10 Wed.

Introduction to business decisions: CVP analysis

C5: 141-161, 165-166[7]


Ex: 5-4, 5-5, 5-9, 5-11, 5-18(a); P 5-29


4/15 Mon.

Introduction to business decisions: CVP analysis (cont’d)





4/17 Wed.

Business decisions: Relevant costs and relevant revenues

C12: 485-511[8]


Ex: 12-3, 12-4, 12-5, 12-10, 12-12, 12-14, 12-16; P 12-25


4/22 Mon.

Business decisions: Relevant costs and relevant revenues (Cont’d)





4/24 Wed.

Analyzing business decisions


Falco Scooters (A)



4/29 Mon.

Business decisions: Asset-related costs and strategic issues


Falco Scooters (B)[9]



5/1 Wed.

Transfer pricing

C11: 465-471[10]


Ex: 11A-1, 11A-3; P: 11A-5, 11A-6


5/6 Mon.

Transfer pricing and decision analysis





5/8 Wed.

Course Takeaways – Final Review






Final Exam











[1]Based on the custom edition, or alternatively page 272-298 of the original text.

[2]Based on the custom edition, or alternatively page 298-300 of the original text.

[3]Based on the custom edition, or alternatively page 335-359 of the original text.

[4]Based on the custom edition, or alternatively page 418-441 of the original text.

[5]Based on the custom edition, or alternatively page 472-482 of the original text.

[6]Based on the custom edition, or alternatively page 229-239 of the original text.

[7]Based on the custom edition, or alternatively page 183-203, 207-208 of the original text.

[8]Based on the custom edition, or alternatively page 527-553of the original text. You can skip the Managing Constraints section on pages 546-548 of the original text (pages 504-506 of the custom text).

[9]Note: the discussion of residual income and EVA ® from Chapter 11 is useful for doing the Falco Scooters (B) case.

[10]Based on the custom edition, or alternatively page 507-513 of the original text.


Required Course Materials

Managerial Accounting, 14th ed. by Garrison, Noreen, and Brewer – Required

Note: There is a custom version that contains relevant chapters from the original textbook by Garrison, Noreen, and Brewer, and is also available at the NYU bookstore.

Two copyrighted cases: Seligram ETO and Infinity Bank (A).

Note: We will use these cases for class discussion and homework. These cases are available for purchase in an electronic coursepack from the NYU bookstore. 

I will also post reading materials not requiring copyrights and lecture notes on Blackboard. Please be sure to check Blackboard course site regularly, and make sure your email address on Blackboard is correct.


Assessment Components

Your grade for this course will consist of four components: class participation, written case preparation, one closed-book midterm, and one closed-book final examination:


           Total                                     100%




Usually when we start new lecture notes, I will give out a short quiz along with the new lecture notes at the beginning of the class. The quizzes will contain questions similar to the self-study problems or case study assigned for that class, and will be graded as pass/fail. As long as you have read the assigned course materials before class and make your best effort, you can expect to pass the quizzes. The purpose of the quizzes is to familiarize you with exam questions, and to prepare your mind for the class. The quizzes also motivate you to study regularly rather than just before the exams. Perhaps more so than other subjects, learning accounting requires hands-on practice and is difficult to learn by jamming.




The course syllabus lists eight (8) cases to prepare for the classes. Each student must submit five

(5) of the eight (8) case preparations during the course to receive the written homework credits (10%).[1] Although you may discuss the cases in small groups, the submitted case preparation must be your own individual work. No extra credit will be awarded for submitting additional case preparations. You are free to choose which five of the eight cases to hand in. I do not expect any “correct” answer in preparing for a case, only that you have made an intelligent and determined effort to address the issues emerging from the case. The written submissions will be graded as either an “S” or “S-”. An S- will be awarded if the case preparation is incomplete or if a “Best Effort” was not made on the case preparation. I expect that all students will come to class prepared to discuss the case listed on the course syllabus. Written case preparations are due at the beginning of class on the day the case is listed on the syllabus. Submissions received after class starts will be graded an S-. All case preparations must be submitted in hard copy form. Electronic and fax submissions will NOT be accepted. Problems on the syllabus denoted “Self Study Problems” will not be discussed in class or graded. You should work on these problems to enhance your analytical skills and to prepare for the exams.




Both exams are based on all material in the text, class, and problem assignments up to the date of the exam. The best way to prepare for the exam is to prepare carefully for each of the classes that precede it.


The midterm and final exams are both closed book and closed notes. You will need a small calculator for each exam. For the final exam (ONLY), you are allowed to bring one (double sided) page (8.5 x 11) of hand-written notes (not printed), to be handed in with the final exam.




The quality (rather than quantity) of your interaction and participation in class discussions will determine border-line grades. High quality comments are concise but to the point. You can contribute to the in-class case analysis by making comments to move the discussion toward a deeper understanding of the company and its issues. You can access additional exercises to enhance your learning by visiting the course Connect Plus site: http://connect.mcgraw-hill.com/class/m_tang_spring_2013_mw_11am.

[1]In case the class schedule changes and we cannot cover all eight cases. This requirement will change accordingly. For example, if we can only cover 7 cases, then you would only need to submit 4 preparations to get the 10% credits.



At NYU Stern we seek to teach challenging courses that allow students to demonstrate differential mastery of the subject matter. Assigning grades that reward excellence and reflect differences in performance is important to ensuring the integrity of our curriculum.

In core courses, our faculty have adopted a standard of rigor for teaching where:

Note that while we use these ranges as a guide, the actual distribution for this course and your own grade will depend upon how well each of you actually performs in this course.

Please see “Teaching and Grading at the NYU Stern Undergraduate College” for more



 Please note the following grading-related policies:



The process of assigning grades is intended to be one of unbiased evaluation. Students are encouraged to respect the integrity and authority of the professor’s grading system and are discouraged from pursuing arbitrary challenges to it.

If you believe an inadvertent error has been made in the grading of an individual assignment or in assessing an overall course grade, a request to have the grade re-evaluated may be submitted. You must submit such requests in writing to me within 7 days of receiving the grade, including a brief written statement of why you believe that an error in grading has been made.


Professional Responsibilities For This Course




In-class contribution is a significant part of your grade and an important part of our shared learning experience. Your active participation helps me to evaluate your overall performance.
You can excel in this area if you come to class on time and contribute to the course by:




Classroom Norms


Stern Policies

General Behavior
The School expects that students will conduct themselves with respect and professionalism toward faculty, students, and others present in class and will follow the rules laid down by the instructor for classroom behavior.  Students who fail to do so may be asked to leave the classroom. 


Collaboration on Graded Assignments
Students may not work together on graded assignment unless the instructor gives express permission. 


Course Evaluations
Course evaluations are important to us and to students who come after you.  Please complete them thoughtfully.


Academic Integrity

Integrity is critical to the learning process and to all that we do here at NYU Stern. As members of our community, all students agree to abide by the NYU Stern Student Code of Conduct, which includes a commitment to:

The entire Stern Student Code of Conduct applies to all students enrolled in Stern courses and can be found here:

Undergraduate College: http://www.stern.nyu.edu/uc/codeofconduct
Graduate Programs: http://w4.stern.nyu.edu/studentactivities/involved.cfm?doc_id=102505

To help ensure the integrity of our learning community, prose assignments you submit to Blackboard will be submitted to Turnitin.  Turnitin will compare your submission to a database of prior submissions to Turnitin, current and archived Web pages, periodicals, journals, and publications.  Additionally, your document will become part of the Turnitin database.


Recording of Classes

Your class may be recorded for educational purposes


Students with Disabilities

If you have a qualified disability and will require academic accommodation of any kind during this course, you must notify me at the beginning of the course and provide a letter from the Moses Center for Students with Disabilities (CSD, 998-4980, www.nyu.edu/csd) verifying your registration and outlining the accommodations they recommend.  If you will need to take an exam at the CSD, you must submit a completed Exam Accommodations Form to them at least one week prior to the scheduled exam time to be guaranteed accommodation.


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