Academy of Accounting Historians


The Innovation in Accounting History Education Award

The intent of the Innovation in Accounting History Education Award is to encourage innovations in accounting history education. The award (a plaque) will be presented to an individual(s) who has developed and implemented an innovative technique/method for incorporating accounting history topics into undergraduate or graduate accounting courses.


Examples of innovative techniques/methods include, but are not limited to:

  • Developing a case, video, audio or
  • Course syllabus, etc, that can be used to integrate accounting history topics into accounting courses or
  • Presenting a seminar or condensed course on an accounting history topic

To be eligible, the innovation must have been used in a course that the applicant has taught or is currently teaching. Electronic submissions only should include the following items (as applicable):

  • A description of the innovative technique/method;
  • Submission of the case, video, audio or other innovation, as appropriate, and teaching notes;
  • Identification and description of the course or seminar in which the innovation was used; and
  • An explanation of how the innovation has enriched the accounting course being taught.

Deadline for Nominations: June 1, 2015


Send nomiations to: Academy Executive Committee at


Congratulations to the 2014 Recipient!
   Stephan A. Fafatas (Washington and Lee University)

For his undergraduate course offering at Washington and Lee University titled, History through Accounting.

Highlights from Fafatas’ course coverage:

While we covered a broad range of material, the core topics of the class centered around two components.

First, a good portion of the class was devoted to the study of railroads and the industry’s impact on financial reporting and accounting as we know it today.  This portion of the class began with a history of railroads in the U.S. and, in particular, the impact of railroads on the economy of Virginia.  We examined historical annual reports from a variety of railroad companies and students worked through a case study on the Mobile and Ohio railroad following the Civil War (Samson, Flesher, and Previts, Issues in Accounting Education, 2003).  To complete coverage of the railroad industry we took a class trip to the Norfolk Southern Corporation headquarters.  This allowed students to hear first-hand reports about the economics of railroads and current risks and opportunities associated with the industry.

Second, following the instructional case of Bloom and Solotko (Accounting Educators’ Journal, 2001), the class examined historical account books housed in the university’s library.  Students worked on an independent research study using account books from local businesses as primary source documents.  This proved to be a worthwhile endeavor as the account books (most of which date from the mid- to late-1800’s) are a fascinating way to get a sense for how local businesses operated during specific periods of time.  Students worked on individual projects that incorporated account books from a variety of sources including general stores, the local golf club, and the university’s own financial records.  This project drew interest from not only other accounting and business faculty, but also local historians.

About Fafatas:

Stephan Fafatas is the Lawrence Term Associate Professor of Accounting at Washington and Lee University.  He began his career at Washington and Lee in 2006 after completing his Ph.D. at the University of Colorado, Boulder  His prior teaching experience includes introductory financial accounting, financial statement analysis, auditing and the recently developed four-week undergraduate accounting history class.  His current research interests include analyzing annual report contents of 19th century U.S. canal companies.


Past recipients of the Award:

 2013 Donald Ariail, Southern Polytechnic State University; Joseph Durden, Nova Southeastern University; Marilyn Leathart, Texas A&M University - Central Texas; Lynette Capman Vasill, Texas A&M University - San Antonio
 2012 No Award Presented
 2011 Bob van den Brand, Eddy Cardinaels, Gert Jan Luijten, Ivo van Amelsfoort and Edith Leung, Tilburg University
 2010 Thomas Tyson, St. John Fisher College
 2009 Jayne Bisman, Charles Sturt University and Ellen Uppman, Univerity of Portland
 2008 Robert Bloom, John Carroll University
 2006 No Award Presented
 2004 David Oldroyd, University of Newcastle
 2003 William Samson, University of Alabama
 2001 David S. Deines and David R. Vruwink, Kansas State University


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