It's fitting Brigham Young University comes out with its rankings of college accounting research programs in the midst of tax season. USF's School of Accountancy placed highly in a number of categories, including first in the nation in the 'accounting information systems' field.
BYU's preliminary 2012 rankings also ranked the School of Accountancy 21st in audit research and 29th in tax research.
“The fact that we’re now ranked first validates our strength in accounting information systems and our focus on that area,” said Uday Murthy, interim director for the School of Accountancy. “We are also one of the few schools in the country that produce PhD students that specialize in accounting information systems.”
According to a release from USF News, accounting information systems "seeks to understand and improve all aspects of the processing and use of accounting information as enabled by information technology."
Research in AIS investigates optimal designs for computer systems used to process accounting transactions, configuration of internal controls that should be in place, how to audit information in such systems, and how best to use systems for both internal and external reporting. It is a particularly specialized area of accounting research because it requires knowledge in two separate fields.
“You really need a solid understanding of both accounting and information systems to teach and conduct research in AIS,” said Murthy, who is ranked third nationally as an individual researcher in the field and has been recognized for the practical relevance of his research and its influence on accounting practices. “You need to have a foot in both camps.”