Preparing Students for an International Career: The Case for Contextualizing and Integrating Ethics Education

  •  Sue Wright    
  •  Maria Cadiz Dyball    
  •  Philippa Byers    
  •  Renee Radich    


A key aim of IFAC (International Federation of Accountants)’s International Education Standard 4 (IES4) is to raise the ethical awareness of candidates preparing for careers as accounting professionals. This paper reports the results of a survey of undergraduate accounting students at an Australian university, and develops an approach for the implementation of IES4 in business schools with culturally diverse student populations. The survey asks students at different stages of their programs about the contribution of tertiary education to their ethical ideas, drawing conclusions based on their culture, year of study, career intentions, age and gender. It then suggests ways of teaching ethics that value and integrate students’ diverse experiences and cultural backgrounds, as well as their existing knowledge. Such initiatives could expand the horizons of students from all cultural backgrounds by increasing their cultural sensitivity and awareness of ethics as an issue of relevance to their professional careers.

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