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Empirical evidence shows a positive effect between body movement and learning

New research published by Emerald Group Publishing explores the association between movement and increased learning during undergraduate accounting courses

Bingley, United Kingdom, 5 August 2016 – According to researchers, the level of interest in business accounting courses has declined in countries like the US, Australia, New Zealand and Ireland, possibly owing to a perceived lack of job opportunities and negative portrayals of accountants.

In light of this, new research published by Emerald Group Publishing investigates the association of body movement as a teaching tool to enhance learning motivation and performance among students enrolled in a first year, undergraduate accounting course at a Japanese university.  

In the study ‘The effect of body movement teaching learning motivation and performance’ from the journal ‘Meditari Accountancy Research’, Sugahara et al, identify the need to examine ways in which student engagement and learning motivation in introductory accounting courses can be improved by focussing on the innovative teaching method known as ‘Accounting Exercise’ (AE).  This is a unique and creative teaching method using body movement and lyrics to present key concepts in accounting, to entry level students.

As part of the research methodology, a questionnaire was developed to understand if AE really does help students learn the basic accounting jargon and therefore obtain higher marks.  The mini quiz examined the extent of the student’s knowledge that was taught via this method. 

Sugahara et el explain: “The results of this research indicate that the AE intervention was significantly associated with the learning motivation among first year students enrolled in an accounting course.

“Even though the learning motivation as measured by Keller’s (2010) CIS did not show an improvement among participants in the AE groups, learning motivation was maintained compared to the participants in the non-AE groups who did not experience the AE intervention and whose learning motivation scores declined.”

While there may be a positive correlation between movement and learning, this research could spark a wider debate as this method of teaching may not be universally accepted.  However, as is discussed within the article, tertiary curriculum designers could use these findings and address the decline in students studying an accounting major while, at the same time, providing a higher quality and fun educational environment for our learners.

To celebrate the centennial year of the American Accounting Association Annual Meeting, which Emerald representatives will be attending, August 6 -10 , the research article ‘The Effect of Body-movement Teaching, Learning Motivation and Performance is free to access until 19 August 2016 here: 

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Nicolle Vare
PR Executive
Emerald Publishing Limited
Phone: +44 (0) 1274 785252