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The business world we live and work in would not be able to operate without a reliable method for recording the effects of transactions. A systematic method of recording transactions is necessary if companies such as IBM and General Electric (and even local clothing stores and restaurants) are to generate information with which to make sound business decisions. This systematic method, termed the accounting cycle, has existed for centuries and still works well today. How does the system that captures and processes this information work and why do you need to know about it? This course addresses those questions.

Businesses buy and sell goods or services; borrow and invest money; pay wages to employees; purchase land, buildings, and equipment; distribute earnings to owners; and pay taxes to the government. These activities are referred to as “exchange transactions” because the entity is actually trading (exchanging) one thing for another.  To determine how well an entity is managing its resources, the results of transactions must be analyzed. The accounting cycle makes the analysis possible by recording and summarizing an entity’s transactions and preparing reports that present the summary results. 

In this course, the debit and credit technique of transaction analysis that has been used by accountants for over 500 years is explained. Although not necessary for an understanding of financial statements, debits and credits provide a useful shorthand for summarizing complex transactions. So get ready for a discussion of double-entry accounting, a system described by the German philosopher Goethe as “among the finest inventions of the human mind.”

Learning Objectives

  • Explore the process of transforming transaction data into useful accounting information. 
  • Explore how to analyze transactions and determine how those transactions affect the accounting equation 
  • Recognize how to record the effects of transactions using journal entries 
  • Explore how to summarize the resulting journal entries through posting and prepare a trial balance 
  • Identify how technology has affected the first three steps of the accounting cycle.
Last updated/reviewed: March 15, 2018

30 Reviews (123 ratings)Reviews

5
Member's Profile
great reminder and recap of key accounting concepts about debit and credits and journal entry preparation.
5
Member's Profile
Great refresher on basic accounting topics. The materials were easy to follow, and navigate.
5
Member's Profile
I'm a CPA but took this course to evaluate it for new staff coming into our organization who don't have an accounting degree (e.g. finance, economics, etc.). It's a great overview of the basics and refresher for those who may have had a few classes in college but haven't used the knowledge in awhile. The instructor is very engaging and clearly passionate about the subject.
4
Anonymous Author
The lectures are so much direct that anyone even not in accounting area can easily understand. So informative that you can use if you are about to start your own business. You can easily follow the instructions . I will highly recommend this course. You will learn in every minutes spend .
4
Member's Profile
Very basic but great for new accountants. The instructor explains the basic concepts in a very organized and fun manner. The examples helps bridge the educational knowledge with what the accountant can expect in their new accounting role.
5
Member's Profile
The professor did a great job of clearly explaining some basic concepts of accounting. I would definitely recommend this to people both new to accounting and people looking for a quick review of the first part of the accounting cycle.
4
Anonymous Author
By the end of the course I felt some of the professors words and scribblings were unnecessary but overall a very good course to explain the fundamentals of accounting and good examples.
5
Member's Profile
This course was very useful to review accounting principles. Any employee entering the finance/accounting field would find this survey useful to brush up on previous lessons.
5
Member's Profile
A comprehensive and detailed analytic presentation that should not be missed. Great refresher for us olds hands, lest we forget where we came from.
5
Anonymous Author
This course was very basic, a good overview for those getting started in the field. The instructor was very good and the slides were very helpful.
5
Member's Profile
Great overall review! very clear and concise. highly recommend to a new person or to someone who has been away from accounting for a while.
4
Member's Profile
This is a good review for accounting beginners. This course is at the entry level of accounting but provides good illustrations.
5
Member's Profile
I liked how the videos were broken up and none were over fifteen minutes. It made it easy to complete. Very clear explanations.
5
Member's Profile
Great overview of accounting and review of basics of Debits & Credits, Posting JE's, the GL, TB, F/S, etc.
4
Member's Profile
Good basic understanding of the accounting process, would be good to those new to the industry.
5
Member's Profile
A good basic refresher course. I recommend it for someone just coming back to the industry.
4
Member's Profile
Very basic introduction to accounting but thorough. Covers all of the important basics.
4
Member's Profile
Good refresh on the mechanics of accounting. Helpful for those needing a quick refresh.
5
Member's Profile
Well organized and clear. Anyone teaching principles of accounting would benefit.
3
Anonymous Author
Wish I had you as a professor in college! Very basic and easy to understand.
5
Member's Profile
The professor was very detailed and clear in his explanations of the concepts
5
Member's Profile
This course helped me to understand how to post journal entries properly
5
Anonymous Author
Quick and simple review for those in need of a basic refresher course
5
Anonymous Author
Brilliant course and tutor. Would like some more classes with him
5
Member's Profile
The course is a good overview of the basic theory of accounting.
5
Anonymous Author
Instructor is very animated - good basic overview/refresher.
4
Anonymous Author
The instructor really enjoys teaching this course. Thanks!
5
Member's Profile
Professor was very thorough and easy to understand.
5
Anonymous Author
Great course ! Incredible instructor, thanks !
4
Anonymous Author
Good instructor and good content

Prerequisites

Course Complexity: Foundational

No Advanced Preparation or Prerequisites are needed for this course. 

Education Provider Information

Company:
Illumeo, Inc., 75 East Santa Clara St., Suite 1215, San Jose, CA 95113
Contact:
For more information regarding this course, including complaint and cancellation policies, please contact our offices at (408) 400- 3993 or send an e-mail to .
Course Syllabus
INTRODUCTION AND OVERVIEW
The Mechanics of Accounting
  13:04Which Items Should Be Entered?
  11:39T Account
  11:22Rules of Debits and Credits
  12:18Buying Inventory, Services, and Selling Inventory
  8:05The Power of Cash
  9:37The Journal Entry Process
  12:26Account Balance and Chart of Accounts
  12:06Posting Transactions and The Accounting Equation
  14:34Trial Balance
CONCLUSION
  2:32What About Computers?
Continuous Play
  1:55:02The Mechanics of Accounting
SUPPORTING MATERIALS
  PDFSlides: The Mechanics of Accounting
  PDFThe Mechanics of Accounting Glossary/Index
REVIEW and TEST
  quizREVIEW QUESTIONS
 examFINAL EXAM