BAO 3309 Advanced Financial Accounting

| January 30, 2017


BAO 3309 Advanced Financial Accounting Semester 2 2012

Individual assignment

Assessment Weight: 20%

Due Date: (Week 9, 17 September 2012)

Research Essay: Corporate sustainability reporting

Word limit: 2500 words (excluding abstracts and references)


1. Provide a summary of the purpose of Corporate Sustainability Reporting by referring to the Global Reporting Initiative’s Sustainability Reporting Framework (G3.1) available at

2. Critique Stakeholder Theory and Legitimacy Theory that you have learnt in this subject (See Deegan, 2009, Financial Accounting Theory, pp. 318-378) and the literature about the empirical application of the two theories published in academic journals (see Referencing and Style Item 2.2 on page 2) in explaining the motivators for corporate voluntary sustainability reporting practice

3. Identify two multinational companies from the Global 500 in 2012 (available at and compare their reporting on economic, environmental and social aspects in their annual reports and standalone sustainability reports for the reporting year 2011

4. Discuss how legitimacy is managed through reporting by the two companies (in Item 3 above) from the perspectives of Stakeholder Theory and Legitimacy Theory


1. Global Reporting Initiative website

2. Global 500 companies in 2012

3. Deegan, C. Financial Accounting Theory, 3rd Ed, McGraw Hill 2009

4. VU library

See next page for further information2

The following matters should be given particular attention:

1. Submission of your assignment

1.1 Submission of this assignment by due date (17 September) is compulsory for successful completion of the subject. The electronic copy must be submitted through WebCT Turnitin by due date. The printed copy along with a Turnitin Similarity Report(less than 25% similarity required) can be submitted to your lecturer at the conclusion of the lecture you normally attend in Week 9. Students may also submit assignments through assignment drop box located in front of School of Accounting office G3.02on or before the due date.

1.2 The printed copy must be the identicalversion of the electronic copy submitted through Turnitin at Webct. Inconsistent version of the printed copy and the electronic copy will result in a Fail grade (Note: If you cannot submit your assignment through Turnitin due to a technical problem then email your assignment before the due date to your unit coordinators immediately. You cannot withdraw an assignment from Turnitin after the due date).

1.3 Late submission without extension approval from the Unit Coordinators and tutors will be penalised 2 (out of 20) marks per day. Do not submit any assessable task by slipping it under the door of your lecturer’s or tutor’s office.

1.4 No Extension will be granted unless supported by appropriate documentation prior to the due date. An application for an extension must be in writing and must use the appropriate form (available from Faculty Student Administration Office at Building A, Footscray Park Campus) with required evidence specified in the form. A completed written application must be submitted to Unit Coordinator(s) (e.g. by email) before the due date of the assignment.

1.5 Students are responsible to protect their work and save data by making necessary backup. Loss of data due to a computer or storage devices problems will not be considered a valid reason for an extension

2. Referencing and style

2.1 Assignment must be typed using Word document and double-spaced with a normal margin (i.e. 3cm)

2.2 Evidence of extensive research beyond the prescribed texts is required. Students should refer to journals such as Accounting Forum, Business Strategy & the Environment (John Wiley & Sons, Inc), The International Journal of Accounting, Journal of Business Ethicswhich are available on the electronic journals webpage of the VU library website at

2.3 The required referencing style is Harvard (Please visit VU library for examples of Harvard Referencing Style at Essays not using the required referencing style or not showing in-text and end of textreferences will be returned unmarked

2.4 Avoid Plagiarism

University and the School of Accounting and Finance views plagiarism as a serious breach of academic discipline. All students of the School should familiarize themselves with the content of this document.

Academic Honesty and Preventing Plagiarism Policy states plagiarism as

‘The practice that involves use of another person’s intellectual output and presenting it (without appropriate acknowledgement) as one’s own’. 3

Examples of Plagiarism:

• Word-for-word copying of sentences/paragraphs in an assignment without acknowledgement or with insufficient or improper acknowledgement;

• Downloading essays or assignments from the web and presenting these for assessment;

• Presenting another student’s work or research data as the student’s work;

• Copying out parts of any text without acknowledging the source(s). This may be written text, structures within texts, diagrams, formulae, sound files, still photographs, audio-visual material (sound and image files), graphics/animations/multimedia objects, other computer based material, mathematical proofs, art objects, products and others. This can be done as verbatim copying or paraphrasing.

• The use of someone else’s concepts, experimental results, experimental conclusions or conclusions drawn from analysing evidence or arguments without acknowledging the originator of the idea(s) or conclusion(s).

Students are responsible for:

• Understanding and respecting the University’s policies and procedures regarding plagiarism, collusion, and other forms of academic misconduct and as such should only submit work for correction or academic credit that is their own or that properly acknowledges the ideas, interpretations, words or creative works of others;

• Avoiding the lending or making accessible original work to others;

• Being clear about the appropriate referencing rules that are applicable to their field of study;

• Refusing to be a party to another student’s efforts to undermine the academic integrity of the University.

• Seeking assistance with their learning and assessment tasks if they are unsure of appropriate forms of acknowledgement.

(Should students need assistance in academic writing please contact Student Learning Support Unit at Building M Footscray Park Campus).4

Assignment Marking Sheet

Student Name………………………………………..Student No………………. Part 1

Total of 15 marks


Quality in summarising corporate sustainability reporting


Part 2

Total of 25 marks

Quantity of international publications identified


Quality in critique of Stakeholder Theory


Quality in critique of Legitimacy Theory


Level of discussion of empirical application of the Stakeholder Theory and Legitimacy Theory to investigating motivators for corporate sustainability reporting practice


Part 3

Total of 25 marks


Overview of each companies and an inclusion of website link to the annual report and sustainability report


Similarities and differences in level of detail provided (reporting content)


Discussion the similarities and differences way companies portray themselves (how company present themselves, e.g. positive, negative or neutral, objective image)


Part 4

Total of 25 marks


Level of detail in discussion of the concept of ‘legitimacy’ from Stakeholder Theory and Legitimacy Theory perspectives


Level of detail in discussion of each theory as an explanation for the way companies portray themselves



Total of 10 marks


• adoption of correct referencing style


• correct use of structure such as Abstract, introduction and conclusion, logical flow of assignment


Total marks



Total mark out of 100 reduced to a mark out of 20



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