Research Article Open Access

Social and Environmental Accounting Education and Sustainability: Educators' Perspective

Norhayah Zulkifli1
  • 1 ,
Journal of Social Sciences
Volume 7 No. 1, 2011, 76-89


Submitted On: 21 April 2005 Published On: 18 December 2010

How to Cite: Zulkifli, N. (2011). Social and Environmental Accounting Education and Sustainability: Educators' Perspective. Journal of Social Sciences, 7(1), 76-89.


Problem statement: It is asserted that any attempt to account for sustainability will need to reflect the tensions which exist between conventional accounting with its record of wealth accumulation and its focus on the pursuit of profit and the demands for a just and equitable society. Consequently, the argument that the current accounting education is deficient in promoting ethical awareness, of which social and environmental concerns are a part, has given rise to the advocating of the learning of Social and Environmental Accounting (SEA). This study intends to determine the perspectives of accounting educators in Malaysia towards the elements and roles of SEA and the relevance and importance of studying SEA. In addition it intends to determine the perceptions of accounting educators towards the orientation of the traditional approach of accounting education. Approach: 222 survey questionnaire respondents consisting of accounting educators from the public and private Institutions of Higher Learning (IHL) in Malaysia that offer accounting programs are involved. Results: This study recognises the positive reception by the accounting educators in Malaysia to the elements embodied by SEA which promotes the development of moral and ethical awareness of accounting students towards corporate behaviours, society and the environment. It advocates a formal approach of SEA education in the IHL as the appropriate means of enhancing social and environmental awareness and the inculcation of ethical values. Conclusion: The findings suggested the necessity to develop SEA education as an alternative approach to teaching accounting in the IHL in Malaysia.

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  • Social and environmental accounting
  • accounting education
  • Social and Environmental Accounting (SEA)
  • accounting educators