Overreliance on Mathematical Accuracy of Computer Output: An Issue for IT Educators
MetadataShow full item record
The role of information technology (IT) is critical in many applications, including accounting. However research into spread sheeting errors indicates financial data emanating from computer applications may contain errors. Auditors review financial data and report, among other things, as to its mathematical accuracy. This study evaluates the reliance trainee auditors place upon IT produced financial data and their application of the concept of mathematical accuracy. Data emanating from a supposedly reliable source was intentionally prepared with mathematical errors and given to participants for evaluation. Despite exposure to concepts such as computer error and audit scepticism, a significant proportion either erroneously concluded the data was accurate and/or failed to appropriately apply the concept of mathematical accuracy. The implications for educators are significant. Basic topics such as data integrity and over-reliance upon IT generated data may need further emphasis during training programs across many disciplines, especially accountancy.
Journal of Organizational and End User Computing
Auditing and Accountability