The research in this paper has two objectives. Beginning with an examination of the historical development of how financial reporting standards are set in the United States and around the world, the Financial Accounting Standards Board and the International Accounting Standards Board will be studied. Setting financial reporting standards in the United States is currently a responsibility of the Financial Accounting Standards Board, while many countries abroad utilize International Financial Reporting Standards, maintained by the International Accounting Standards Board. After detailing the historical development of each of the two boards and the sets of standards they maintain, the paper continues with an analysis of some of the difficulties that could be faced by the United States if the transition proposed by the Securities and Exchange Commission to International Financial Reporting Standards takes place. General differences between the standards are examined along with the differences relating to the specific area of the treatment of long-term and intangible assets. The second objective of this research was to use the information obtained to develop a case study that was used in an intermediate accounting class at Bryant University. Student responses to the case and the corresponding survey are consistent with the idea that the differences between US Generally Accepted Accounting Principles and International Financial Reporting Standards need to be studied to a much greater extent in the classroom in order to ensure that accounting students are prepared for such a transition upon entering the workforce.
Recommended CitationLagasse, Allyson, "A Tale of Two Standards: An Exploration of US GAAP and IFRS" (2010). Honors Projects in Accounting. Paper 4.