• University of Padova

Introduction to Financial Accounting

Refresh your knowledge of basic accounting processes and learn key accounting methods to help track your company’s performance.

1,689 enrolled on this course

numbers, graphs and a calculator

Introduction to Financial Accounting

1,689 enrolled on this course

  • 4 weeks

  • 4 hours per week

  • Digital certificate when eligible

  • Introductory level

Find out more about how to join this course

Develop your pre-existing accounting skills

Financial accounting is key in understanding whether companies are profitable or not. It can also aid in decision-making and help predict if a company could face distress or bankruptcy.

On this four-week course, you’ll learn the foundations of accounting and discover how the decisions and operations of an organisation are translated into numbers.

This course features a range of conceptual and practical activities and is most suitable if you have some knowledge of financial accounting and need to refresh your understanding. You’ll explore the different purposes of accounting information, the financial reporting process, and learn how to read financial statements.

Explore the role of accrual accounting

You’ll learn how accounting information can help measure company performance and help firms make important decisions.

Delving into the role of accruals, you’ll explore more advanced processes such as tracking revenues that have been earned but not yet received, accounting for expenses that are yet to be paid, and recording end of year transactions.

Learn how to record transactions with double-entry bookkeeping

You’ll hone your accounting skills as you learn how to record transactions with double-entry bookkeeping.

You’ll also learn how to record assets and liabilities before exploring accounting adjustments and trial balance.

Understand financial reporting and statements

Finally, you’ll investigate the information role of financial statements. Within this, you’ll look at financial reporting and closing the books at the end of the year.

Learning from the experts at the University of Padova, you’ll finish the course with the knowledge and skills to develop in your accounting career or prepare yourself for more advanced study.

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Skip to 0 minutes and 13 seconds Many experts say that accounting is the connection between present and the past. The way we know accounting today was invented by Fra Luca Pacioli a Franciscan mathematician in late 15th century not far away from here, in Venice. Since then nothing much has changed in terms of how companies record the transactions. At least in the technical side of. Venetian merchants developed accounting to keep track of their purchases and sales the debits and credits with customers and suppliers. Accounting sparked not too far away from here.

Skip to 0 minutes and 48 seconds And nowadays high tech firms, banks, large conglomerates that shape our daily lives, still rely upon the accounting information to showcase what they do and how they perform to many parties that use this information to make important decisions. I am Anna Alexander and I am Amedeo Pugliese and in this course we will lay down the foundations of accounting the language of business financial statements our company’s business card when dealing with all their stakeholders and their interested parties. Financial statements cannot say everything. That’s that’s better you know them and get familiar with them The more you understand the nuances of the business world. Why some firms have a lot of cash but low profitability.

Skip to 1 minute and 35 seconds How can we tell whether firms are profitable or not. Can we predict whether companies would face distress or bankruptcy. How much should a manager earn and why do some firms pay dividends. With our help you will be able to answer all of these questions. The complex financial world will no longer be so intimidating. If you’re considering a career as a consultant auditor or you will launch your own business, then you will need financial accounting schemes and your journey starts here.


  • Week 1

    Financial accounting: from company transactions to numbers

    • Introduction to the course

      Let's get started

    • A view from the top: the financial reporting process

      Who is interested in financial statements and what are the rules and institutional features that support the financial reporting process? In this activity, we will take a closer look at these topics: the actors and rules.

    • Getting closer to businesses: from transactions to numbers

      Firms engage in many activities, but how do they translate them into numbers?

    • Reviewing what you have learned

      An overview of what we have learned so far.

  • Week 2

    Measuring company performance: the role of accrual accounting

    • Summarising all transactions

      Let's review how to take into account all transactions.

    • Did the company do well? Assessing performance at the end of the year

      Finally ... we are able to assess whether the company did well or not.

    • Introducing the accounting identity

      This activity will help us understand accounting rules.

  • Week 3

    The accounting method: double entry bookkeeping in action

    • Unveling the accounting method: double entry bookkeeping system

      This activity will guide us through the functioning of the double entry bookkeeping system

    • The double entry bookkeeping system in action

      This activity will help us move from a simple way of recording transactions to a more appropriate and rigorous approach.

    • Accounting adjustments with double entry bookkeeping

      This activity entails combining some conceptual aspects of accounting adjustments that occur at the end of the period with the technical side of the double entry system.

    • Reviewing what you have learned

      It is now time to bring everything together for our MediaMax enterprise: this activity is designed for you to review and consolidate all the knowledge and issues related to accounting language.

  • Week 4

    The information role of financial statements

    • Closing the books

      How companies reconcile and summarise thousands of transactions at the end of the year.

    • The financial reporting package

      In this activity we will consolidate knowledge about financial statements - the main piece of information companies must disclose to the public.

    • Valuation approaches in accounting

      Book value vs. Market value

    • Wrap Up, farewell & end of course test

      You have reached the end of the course! Complete the final test bringing together all that you have learned.

When would you like to start?

Start straight away and join a global classroom of learners. If the course hasn’t started yet you’ll see the future date listed below.

  • Available now

Learning on this course

On every step of the course you can meet other learners, share your ideas and join in with active discussions in the comments.

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you‘ll be able to...

  • Interpret companies’ transactions (e.g. financing, sale, acquisition of goods/services) through accounting numbers
  • Appreciate the difference between book value of equity and market value of equity
  • Assess the financial structure of a company and its implications on profitability
  • Apply the double-entry bookkeeping system to record/verify transactions
  • Discern between cash-based accounting and accrual-based income

Who is the course for?

This course is designed for those who already have some knowledge of financial accounting and would like to refresh your understanding.

It will suit those looking to take an intermediate or advanced financial accounting course in the future or who are junior professionals who want to familiarise themselves with recent changes in International Financial Reporting Standards.

It will also be helpful if you are launching your own business and need basic accounting knowledge.

What software or tools do you need?

A number of PDFs are available throughout the course for learners to download and use.

Who will you learn with?

I teach introduction to financial accounting courses since 2007 and I enjoy it thoroughly. Beyond teaching, my research interests span across company disclosure and corporate governance.

I teach financial accounting both at the introductory and more advanced level. Currently, my research interests revolve around different topics: from corporate tax avoidance to criminal firms.

I have been teaching Introduction to Financial Accounting courses since 2012. At present, my research focus encompasses government subsidies, earnings management, and corporate governance.

Who developed the course?

University of Padova

The University of Padova is one of Europe’s oldest and most prestigious seats of learning; it aims to provide its students with both professional training and a solid cultural background.

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Ways to learn

Choose the best way to learn for you!

Buy this course

$99/one-off payment

Fulfill your current learning need

  • Access to this course
  • Learn at your own pace
  • Discuss your learning in comments
  • Tests to boost your learning
  • Printed and digital certificate when you’re eligible

Subscribe & save

$349.99 for one year

Automatically renews

Develop skills to further your career

  • Access to this course
  • Access to 1,000+ courses
  • Learn at your own pace
  • Discuss your learning in comments
  • Tests to boost your learning
  • Digital certificate when you're eligible

Cancel for free anytime

Limited access


Sample the course materials

  • Access expires 17 Aug 2024

Find out more about certificates, Unlimited or buying a course (Upgrades)

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