Online Class: Understanding Financial Statements

This course will provide learners with a solid understanding of financial statements. This financial knowledge is used by accountants, managers, and investors to make smart and strategic business decisions.

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  • 12
  • 14
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  • 754
    have taken this course
  • 7
    average time
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Course Description

Deciphering Business Through its Financial DNA: Mastering the Art of Accounting

In the dynamic world of business, accounting isn't just numbers and ledgers; it's the very DNA, revealing the health, vitality, and potential of a company. Yet, truly understanding this DNA means diving deep into its core – the financial statements and reporting systems. These aren't mere documents, but rather strategic communication channels that unravel the intricate tales of a company's financial trajectory and vitality.

Why This Course Is A Game-Changer:

  1. Comprehensive Insight: Navigate through the maze of business finance, from foundational accounting stages to intricate GAAP principles.
  2. Tools of Financial Revelation: Delve into essential financial statements like the balance sheet, income statement, and more, demystifying their roles in painting a comprehensive financial portrait of a company.
  3. Applied Analysis: Journey beyond basic understanding to applied financial statement analysis. Learn the dance of cash flow, its rhythmic movement, and profound impact on business health.
  4. Ratio Revelations: Unravel the power of financial ratio analysis, a critical compass guiding investors towards informed, insightful investment decisions.
  5. Detective Skills for the Modern Business World: Step into the intriguing realm of accounting fraud. Understand its mechanisms, identify red flags, and delve into the dark arts employed by those who distort financial realities for deceptive gains.

Course Highlights:

  • Building Blocks: Set your foundation with the fundamental principles of accounting and GAAP.
  • Financial Statement Mastery: Develop expertise in reading, interpreting, and analyzing balance sheets, income statements, and other pivotal financial documents.
  • Cash Flow Chronicles: Chart the journey of cash flow, understanding its ebbs and flows and the profound stories it tells about a company's health.
  • Investor's Insight: Harness financial ratio analysis, turning raw numbers into strategic insights that empower investment choices.
  • Guardians of Authenticity: Dive into the world of accounting fraud detection, equipping yourself with skills to safeguard businesses from deceptive practices and ensure financial integrity.

Empowering Decision-Makers:

Financial acumen transcends mere numbers; it's the bedrock upon which businesses are built, grown, and sustained. This course isn't just for aspiring accountants. It's for managers envisioning growth, investors seeking clarity, and any individual aiming to navigate the business world with confidence and competence.

Join us on this enlightening journey, where we transform the seemingly complex world of financial statements into a treasure trove of insights, strategies, and opportunities. Unlock the true language of business and equip yourself with the tools to interpret, analyze, and thrive in the financial landscape of tomorrow. Your voyage into mastering the financial DNA of business begins here.

Course Motivation

  • Completely Online
  • Self-Paced
  • 6 Months to Complete
  • 24/7 Availability
  • Start Anytime
  • PC & Mac Compatible
  • Android & iOS Friendly
  • Accredited CEUs
Universal Class is an IACET Accredited Provider

Course Lessons

Average Lesson Rating:
4.6 / 5 Stars (Average Rating)
"Extraordinarily Helpful"
(317 votes)

Lesson 1: Understanding GAAP and FASB

The best way to understand accounting is to think of it as a language. Accounting is the language of business and it allows people to communicate with the operations and transactions of a business, or even an entire industry. Additional lesson topics: The Four Basic Financial Statements: An Overview; General Accepted Accounting Principles or GAAP: What does it mean?; How to Read a Financial Report: Wringing Vital Signs Out of the Numbers; Understanding Financial Statements 12 Total Points
  • Lesson discussions: Reasons for Taking this Course
  • Complete Assignment: Motives for Taking this Course
  • Assessment: Exam 1

Lesson 2: The Financial Statements Included in an Organization's Financial Reporting Structure

In order to keep an accurate and efficient record of ongoing financial activities, every enterprise will prepare standardized documentation known as financial statements Additional lesson topics: The Four Basic Financial Statements: An Overview; Complete Guide to Corporate Finance 10 Total Points
  • Assessment: Exam 2

Lesson 3: How to Itemize and Interpret the Information Provided in the Income Statement

An income statement, also commonly called a profit and loss statement, reflects a businesss expenses and revenues over a specified period of time. Additional lesson topics: Income Statement Format Example; Mastering the Income Statement Even If You Hate Accounting ; Understanding The Income Statement 9 Total Points
  • Assessment: Exam 3

Lesson 4: The Balance Sheet

The simplest way to understand a balance sheet is to think of it as a snapshot of a company's financial position at a particular point in time. Additional lesson topics: Breaking Down The Balance Sheet; What balance sheet formats are available? 10 Total Points
  • Assessment: Exam 4

Lesson 5: The Statement of Stockholders' Equity

The statement of stockholders' equity can help investors, managers, and accountants get a clear picture of a business's ownership profile. Additional lesson topics: Financial Statements; Format and Example of Statement of Stockholders Equity 10 Total Points
  • Assessment: Exam 5

Lesson 6: The Statement of Cash Flows

The main goal of the statement of cash flows is to provide information regarding how a business generates cash, the cash receipts, and cash payments of the business during a given time. Additional lesson topics: What are cash flows from investing activities?; What is cash from operating activities?; Cash Flow Statement- Explanation 10 Total Points
  • Assessment: Exam 6

Lesson 7: The Impact of Working Capital and Business Activities on Cash Flow

Cash is generally regarded as the most liquid of all assets that a business can own, so many managers and business owners have a particular interest in exactly how much cash is available to their business at any given time. Additional lesson topics: How do changes in working capital affect a company's cash flow?; Understanding Cash Flow Analysis 10 Total Points
  • Assessment: Exam 7

Lesson 8: Financial Ratio Analysis and Its Objectives and Limitations

The term financial analysis refers to collecting the financial data for a business, and then making comparisons among different variables in either the same financial statement, across multiple financial statements, or across the business, as a whole. Additional lesson topics: Ratio Analysis: Using Financial Ratios; Four Basic Types of Financial Ratios Used to Measure a Company's Performance 10 Total Points
  • Assessment: Exam 8

Lesson 9: The Different Types and Categories of Financial Ratios

Financial ratios are a type of quantitative analysis for financial statements. Additional lesson topics: Financial Ratio Tutorial 10 Total Points
  • Assessment: Exam 9

Lesson 10: Performing Calculations Using Financial Ratios

Financial ratios are used to measure a company's productivity in terms of how well it is using assets, profits generated from each unit of sale, rate of inventory turnover, etc. The ratios are indicators for current financial health, as well as a company's potential. Additional lesson topics: Financial Ratios Based on the Income Statement; Trend Analysis; Several Financial Ratios for Analyzing a Company's Strengths and Weaknesses 10 Total Points
  • Assessment: Exam 10

Lesson 11: Financial Statement Fraud, Reasoning, and Consequences

As technology increases and the world becomes more reliant on financial data for global interaction, there is a greater risk for financial fraud to occur. Additional lesson topics: Detecting Financial Statement Fraud 10 Total Points
  • Assessment: Exam 11

Lesson 12: What Does Cooking the Books Mean?

This lesson is designed to show you methods of cooking the books -- not to facilitate you in preparing fraudulent financial reports, but rather to help you spot signs of fraud in a business and its financial reports. 68 Total Points
  • Lesson discussions: Course Completion Poll: Your Thoughts; Course Comments; Program Evaluation Follow-up Survey (End of Course)
  • Assessment: Exam 12
  • Assessment: Final Exam
Total Course Points

Learning Outcomes

By successfully completing this course, students will be able to:
  • Define understanding GAAP and FASB.
  • Summarize the financial statements included in an organization's financial reporting structure.
  • Describe how to itemize and interpret the information provided in the income statement.
  • Recognize The Balance Sheet.
  • Identify The Statement of Stockholders' Equity
  • Summarize The Statement of Cash Flows.
  • Describe the impact of working capital and business activities on cash flow.
  • Describe financial ratio analysis and its objectives and limitations.
  • Describe the different types and categories of financial ratios.
  • Summarize performing calculations using financial ratios.
  • Summarize financial statement fraud, reasoning, and consequences.
  • Define what cooking the books means.
  • Demonstrate mastery of lesson content at levels of 70% or higher.

Additional Course Information

Online CEU Certificate
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Document Your CEUs on Your Resume
Course Title: Understanding Financial Statements
Course Number: 8900343
Lessons Rating: 4.6 / 5 Stars (317 votes)
Languages: English - United States, Canada and other English speaking countries
Availability: This course is online and available in all 50 states including: California, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, New York, Pennsylvania, Ohio, and Texas.
Last Updated: April 2024
Course Type: Self-Paced, Online Class
CEU Value: 0.7 IACET CEUs (Continuing Education Units)
CE Accreditation: Universal Class, Inc. has been accredited as an Authorized Provider by the International Association for Continuing Education and Training (IACET).
Grading Policy: Earn a final grade of 70% or higher to receive an online/downloadable CEU Certification documenting CEUs earned.
Assessment Method: Lesson assignments and review exams
Syllabus: View Syllabus
Course Fee: $120.00 U.S. dollars

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Student Testimonials

  • "The course was very informative and helpful as a personal investor. I appreciated the lessons' content and format. Equally, the written content is easy to follow and reader friendly. Also, quick feedback on exams are insightful." -- Larry J.
  • "It was very helpful - particularly the SOX discussion and the financial ratios." -- Mike B.
  • "It was very helpful for someone of my limited knowledge on the subject." -- Christopher G.

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