Last Updated 27 Jan 2021

Whether The Discipline Of Accounting Can Be Classified As A Science Accounting Essay

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The issue at manus is to find whether the subject of accounting can be classified as a scientific discipline, or non. In order for me to organize an sentiment on the above stated affair, I would hold to take a closer expression at, foremost the term accounting, and secondly the construct of scientific discipline. Many good weather-beaten research workers have looked at constructs associating to my subject in recent history. I will take into consideration their ideas and findings in an effort to come to my ain decision.


The word scientific discipline comes from the Latin word `` scientia, '' intending cognition. How do we specify scientific discipline? Harmonizing to Webster 's New Collegiate Dictionary, the definition of scientific discipline is `` cognition attained through survey or pattern. '' What does that truly intend? Science refers to a system of geting cognition. This system uses observation and experimentation to depict and explicate natural phenomena. The term scientific discipline besides refers to the organized organic structure of cognition people have gained utilizing that system. Less officially, the word scientific discipline frequently describes any systematic field of survey or the cognition gained from it. What is the intent of scientific discipline? Possibly the most general description is that the intent of scientific discipline is to bring forth utile theoretical accounts of world.

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Science as defined above is sometimes called pure scientific discipline to distinguish it from applied scientific discipline, which is the application of research to human demands. William claude dukenfields of scientific discipline are normally classified along two major lines:

A A A - Natural scientific disciplines: The survey of the natural universe, and

A A A - Social scientific disciplines: The systematic survey of human behavior and society.

In modern times, the term scientific discipline is frequently treated as synonymous with 'natural and physical scientific discipline ' , and hence restricted to those subdivisions of survey that relate to the phenomena of the material existence and their Torahs. As clip progressed it became more common to mention to natural doctrine as `` natural scientific discipline '' . Over the class of the nineteenth century, the word `` scientific discipline '' became progressively associated with the disciplined survey of the natural universe including natural philosophies, chemical science, geology and biological science. This sometimes left the survey of human idea and society in a proficient quandary, which was resolved by sorting these countries of academic survey as societal scientific discipline. Similarly, several other major countries of disciplined survey and cognition exist today under the general term of `` scientific discipline '' , such as formal scientific discipline and applied scientific discipline.


Harmonizing to the book Investerwords, Accounting can be defined as the systematic recording, coverage, and analysis of fiscal minutess of a concern. The individual in charge of accounting is known as an comptroller, and this person is typically required to follow a set of regulations and ordinances, such as the International Financial Reporting Standards ( IFRS ) . Accounting allows a company to analyse the fiscal public presentation of the concern, and expression at statistics such as net net income.

Accounting is defined by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants ( AICPA ) as `` the art of recording, classifying, and sum uping in a important mode and in footings of money, minutess and events which are, in portion at least, of fiscal character, and construing the consequences thereof. ''

Accounting is 1000s of old ages old ; the earliest accounting records day of the month back more than 7,000 old ages. Early histories served chiefly to help the memory of the concern individual and the audience for the history was the owner or record keeper entirely. Cruder signifiers of accounting were unequal for the jobs created by a concern entity affecting multiple investors, so double-entry clerking foremost emerged in northern Italy in the fourteenth century, where trading ventures began to necessitate more capital than a individual person was able to put. The development of joint stock companies created wider audiences for histories, as investors without firsthand cognition of their operations relied on histories to supply the needed information. This development resulted in a split of accounting systems for internal ( i.e. direction accounting ) and external ( i.e. fiscal accounting ) purposes, and later besides in accounting and revelation ordinances and a turning demand for independent attestation of external histories by hearers.

Today, accounting is called `` the linguistic communication of concern '' because it is the vehicle for describing fiscal information about a concern entity to many different groups of people. Accounting that concentrates on describing to people inside the concern entity is called direction accounting and is used to supply information to employees, directors, owner-managers and hearers. Management accounting is concerned chiefly with supplying a footing for doing direction or operating determinations. Accounting that provides information to people outside the concern entity is called fiscal accounting and provides information to show and possible stockholders, creditors such as Bankss or sellers, fiscal analysts, economic experts, and authorities bureaus. Because these users have different demands, the presentation of fiscal histories is really structured and capable to many more regulations than direction accounting. The organic structure of regulations that governs fiscal accounting is called International Financial Reporting Standards ( IFRS ) .

What does other research workers say on the subject:

Over many old ages philosophers have been debating on what the standard of scientific discipline should be in hopes that this standards could be used for at least two intents: foremost, to separate scientific discipline from common sense cognition ( without claiming that the two are radically disjunctive. In some instances they may differ merely in grade, non in sort ) ; 2nd, to separate that which is scientific from that which is non-scientific or unscientific. Many philosophers have proposed different standards.

One of these philosophers is Herbert Feigl. In the book Introductory Readings in the Doctrine of Science by Klemke, Hollinger and Klein ( 1980 ) , Feigl 's 5 standards, which can be found throughout his Hagiographas and talks, is discussed and listed as follows:

Intersubjective testability. This refers to the possibility of being, in rule, capable of documentation or `` check-up '' by anyone ; hence, private intuition must be excluded.

Dependability. This refers to that which, when put to a trial, turns out to be true, or at least to be that which we can most moderately believe to be true. Testing is non plenty. Feigl wants theories which, when tested, are found to be true.

Definiteness and preciseness. This refers to the remotion of vagueness and ambiguity. We seek, for illustration, constructs which are definite and bounded. We are frequently helped here by measuring.

Coherence or systematic character. This refers to the organisational facet of a theory. A set of staccato statements is non every bit fruitful as one which has systematic character. It besides refers to the remotion of, or being free from, contradictoriness.

Comprehensiveness or range. This refers to our attempt to achieve a continual addition in the completeness of our cognition and besides to our seeking theories which have the maximal explanatory power. For illustration, to account for things which other theories do non account for.

Michael Power has written extensively on the subject of accounting as a scientific discipline. In his book From scientific discipline of histories to fiscal answerability of scientific discipline he writes that for many old ages fiscal accounting discourse had been concerned with the nature of economic measuring, in peculiar income acknowledgment and plus rating. He besides states that as academic accounting established itself, it was possibly inevitable that these inquiries should get an epistemic spirit. In his book, Power besides refers to another philosopher, Paul Miranti. Miranti explores the thought of `` scientific accounting '' in the early old ages of the American accounting profession. These early contemplations represent efforts to raise accounting and audit patterns beyond the position of trade cognition and to link them with comparatively established signifiers of scientific thought. Harmonizing to subsequently theoreticians such as Ray Chambers and Robert Sterling accounting pattern suffered and continues to endure from the permeant subjectiveness of its calculating operations. In their position, accounting pattern could go more scientific merely by refering itself with the nonsubjective economic measuring of the independent phenomena.

Ray Chambers had a womb-to-tomb aspiration to change over accounting into a pure scientific discipline. Unfortunately he became so captive with this political orientation that he failed to see accounting as an applied scientific discipline, one that will ne'er be able to mensurate up to criterions known from the pure and strict scientific disciplines.

Last, I want to mention to the early Hagiographas of Earl Saliers. In 1941 he wrote in The Accounting Review that accounting and economic sciences are by and large considered to be societal scientific disciplines. This indicates to me that the specific subject has been debated and written about for many decennaries.


After taking into history everything that I have read, I have to organize the sentiment that accounting decidedly classifies as a signifier of scientific discipline. When using the subject of accounting to Feigl 's standards it decidedly meets the demands. The accounting pattern is really dependable. It is a systematic application of certain rules which can be applied numerously with precisely the same result, doing the subject really definite and precise. Accounting besides requires a strong footing of cognition which is another indicant that it is in line with the definition of a scientific discipline.

In my sentiment nevertheless, it is really difficult to sort all facets of accounting as a pure scientific discipline. My concluding decision therefore has to be that accounting can be regarded as an applied scientific discipline, where cognition and systems are combined and applied in order to organize a subject which forms the nucleus of all concern traffics and record maintaining minutess.

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