Saturday, November 28, 2009

3 College Credits + 1 High School Credit= Professor in a Box Accounting Course!

In the interest of multitasking (in which I have a Masters Degree), there’s nothing like taking a high school course that can also give you college credit! This is a popular concept among homeschoolers these days and I’d love to introduce you to another course that you can add to your repertoire: one that may not have crossed your radar but is yet so practical!

Let me introduce you to Financial Accounting by Michael P. Licata, Ph. D. (aka: Professor in a Box). An accounting course is a practical life application of math skills that all high schoolers can benefit from exploring. This particular course is created especially for homeschoolers by a homeschooling dad that is also a college professor.

Dr. Licata has created a very user-friendly experience with Financial Accounting that does not involve big, bulky text books. All course materials are on four CD’s comprised of 12 chapters. Each chapter has a narrated lecture, printable lecture slides, key concepts and terms, homework problems/solutions, quizzes and Microsoft Excel templates for use with all problems. There is also an Instructor’s CD that gives course syllabus, detailed lesson plans and more.

Students have the option of taking Financial Accounting by Professor in a Box in a one semester sitting, which is how it would be taught in college (finishing two lessons per week for 14 weeks), or spreading the course out over the school year (I’ll let you do the math on that one). Basic algebra is the only level of math needed to get through the material so even the math-reluctant should be ready to take this class by their senior year. When finished with the course the student will be ready to take the CLEP Financial Accounting exam and earn 3 college level credits! Hurrah!

For each chapter students watch the narrated lecture on the computer, work the homework problems, check the solutions and take the exam. Simple, straightforward and easy to digest: what’s not to like? I watched many different lessons on each of the CD’s and was impressed with the conversational style that Dr. Licata uses with the students. He has an easy-going manner and uses real-life applications making the situations seem relevant; offering small enough portions of new information so that the student is not overwhelmed. I really got a lot out of the lessons and I have absolutely no math persona…if there could be such a thing. I truly look forward to using this course next year for my soon-to-be Sophmore. She will benefit from understanding the business application that math has in the real world while also familiarizing herself with QuickBooks and Microsoft Excel spreadsheets.

A quick note on a previously mentioned pet-peeve of mine: cheesiness. If you have read any of my reviews on other DVD’s/CD’s this subject inevitably will come up. I am happy to report that this entire course can be enjoyed sans cheesiness! Even the short video on the Instructor’s CD, though obviously no-frills, doesn’t come across as a lame attempt to be funny or drama savvy. Being rather low-budget, it does come across sounding like Dr. Licata (the Professor) is talking from a box…but I thought that was only fitting since Professor in a Box is the name of his company (though that was likely coincidental).

I should mention that my Instructor’s CD had some elements that would not function for me. Some of the learning objectives and lesson plans wouldn’t open and gave me an “error” message. Unfortunately, with all of the busyness during this time of year, I haven’t had a chance to contact Professor in a Box to get things ironed out. However, it has always been my experience with mom-and-pop curriculum companies to find outstanding “what-can-we-do-to-fix-this?” attitudes. I am sure it will be resolved but felt the need to mention it in case you run into the same issue.

In order to check out Financial Accounting for yourself, please go to the Professor in a Box website by clicking here. You can invest in your child’s business future and college career by purchasing this course for $134.99 and get free USPS Priority Mail delivery.

1 comment:

evision said...

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At the Intersection of Creation and Evolution: A Dream

The alliterating story below is based on a dream I had several years ago. Please contact me for permission to reproduce.

Darkness devours me.

I am enveloped in emptiness.

Are my eyes open or are they closed? I strain against this shroud of night and still see nothing.

What is this place?

An image illuminates in front of me. A large, leafy tree streaks past and vanishes.

It deserts me to the darkness again.

In a moment, more images appear. A rapid succession of snapshots and thoughts clamor before my eyes and mingle in my mind.

I see seedlings. Several supple shoots have emerged before me and then swiftly stream away.

“The first trees on earth were not seedlings”, my mind observes. “They were not created as small insignificant saplings.”

That thought is rapidly replaced with a vision of a man.

He’s maybe 30; he is muscular and needs to shave.

He fades away.

In his place I see an infant.

A tiny bundle of pink skin upon a soft blanket flickers briefly in my brain.

“Man was created with age,” is the next statement I hear. “Adam did not begin his life as a baby, he began as a grown man.”

The voice seems like my own.

The thoughts do not.

Reeling before me now is a blur of rivers, forests, mountains and even layers of the earth. It is like a movie rushing rapidly before my retina.

The soundtrack of this epic is proclaiming a peculiarly plain concept:

“The earth was created with age. Creation and evolution are not in total opposition. There is a reason that science finds the earth to be quite old: it was made that way.”

Thoughts continue to tumble through my mind; pictures parade before me. I listen in amazement to what seems to be puzzlingly profound and yet rather apparent all at once.

“Adam was created as an adult. Trees and plants were made fully grown.”

I suddenly feel quite certain that, if I were to chop down some of the trees that had been spoken into existence, I would find a range of rings running through their trunks.

“The earth was brought to life with age built into it… just like Adam. He did not begin life as an infant. The earth came into being with what it would need to sustain the life that was created. It was old when it was young. The world was
made with maturity; it was also produced with purpose.”

These thoughts are thrilling. Why had I not seen this before? It seems so simple. Obtusely obvious. Had others not observed this correlation? If they had, why wasn’t it being candidly conveyed?

In the span of thirty seconds I have been ravaged by a radical revelation. I feel the weight of its worth resting on me; it is tantamount to tangible.

I am neither a theologian nor am I a scientist. I don’t claim that the ethics of evolution are completely compatible with the Bible’s account of creation. But certainly Science can come concurrent to creation and affirm our faith with facts.

Of course, the Omnipotent Originator of the Universe is exceedingly elusive to what our mind could ever envision. Above what science could ever extensively elucidate.

Accordingly, creation is confounding too. Each diverse discovery deems it more marvelous to grasp. Many scientists have reluctantly relented to the theory of Intelligent Design.

That’s why, alongside those facts, we also need faith.

Lying inexplicably at the intersection of those two essential elements is an exceptional endowment: the intermittent insight of our dreams.