Wednesday, April 2, 2014

NYP-ACCA Accounting Challenge 2014 – It All Adds Up

I am happy at Nanyang Polytechnic (NYP). We have a convenience store for snacks, a bookstore for stationery, a fine dining restaurant for connoisseurs, and a plethora of fitness facilities. In fact, this is only a bite of the pie. NYP offers numerous amenities and services, and will soon have more, once renovations are completed by the end of this year. Which student will not be satisfied with all of this?

Being from the Diploma of Accounting & Finance, it is only natural to want to share what I enjoy about being in NYP with my potential juniors. I was given that opportunity on March 27 2014, the day of NYP-ACCA Accounting Challenge. I was the student host for Yio Chu Kang Secondary School (YCKSS) students, and managed to take them all around the campus!

Me and my YCKSS students at NYP's L’Rez
The Accounting Challenge is a joint endeavor between NYP and the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA). The Challenge introduces secondary school students to accounting concepts taught by NYP’s lecturers from the School of Business Management in an interesting way.

To engage the younger secondary school students, the Accounting Challenge is part-game show, part-tour! It acquaints students with accounting knowledge as well as basic information about NYP’s educational pedagogy, its facilities and services.

The first part of the accounting challenge is a featured game show that took place inside NYP’s Theatre of the Arts. Teams of three from the different schools are given “clickers” that they can use to answer various Multiple Choice Questions.

There were about 222 students from 28 secondary schools taking part. The clickers allow every team to select their answer of choice. The only caveat is, all teams will need to answer each question within 30 or 60 seconds, depending on the complexity of the question.

As a number of the questions require calculations, and several teams, including my guest-YCKSS team, were stumped at certain points. Even after two semesters of studying in Accountancy & Finance, I still found myself pondering over how to answer some of the questions. The game show was tough and certainly gave us all an intensive crash course into the world of accounts. It covered different areas of accounting, such as financial accounting, management accounting, audit, tax and business environment.

Fortunately, after that, all participants were asked to partake in a lunch buffet outside the theatre, while the organisers tabulated the results of the game show.


The menu included siew mai, chocolate éclairs, pizza bread, fried noodles, and some barley water to wash it all down. Exactly what we needed to boost our energy levels.

Soon afterwards, I took the YCKSS students on a tour around NYP. We strolled into the stadium where I showed them the stadium itself, the adjacent swimming pool, the spacious gym and indoor badminton court. The guys were absolutely thrilled to hear about the gym.

Following that, we stepped into the L’Rez, a restaurant run by Food & Beverage Business students, and a representative gave an overview of the restaurant to my group of students. The students had a lot of fun as they toured the restaurant and took in the new sights.

Next, we progressed to the shopping arcade, comprising of MSC studio, Cheers, and Booklink, all of which are run by NYP students.  The secondary school students were certainly interested to see all our facilities.

Finally, our circuit concluded with a look into NYP’s library where the students were introduced to the library’s L’Café and an interactive tabletop at the lifestyle hub. The students had fun playing games on the interactive tabletop. They also explored the interactive library guide which features a search function and the capability to display exactly where a book is located and directions to get there. Even I did not know that!

After the tour, we went back to our seats in the Theatre of the Arts. Before the finalists were announced, a representative from ACCA gave a short presentation and gave out powerbanks to those who answered his questions correctly. Many students wanted the powerbanks, attractive prizes considering that many of our mobile devices run on batteries!

The ACCA presentation

The coveted powerbank prize
After that, two emcees took to the stage and gave the audience a pop quiz on NYP’s facilities. Students who answered correctly were rewarded with free shirts.

From the teams which took part in the preliminary rounds, five teams emerged as finalists.  The teams were from Clementi Town, St. Hilda’s, Orchid Park, Yishun Secondary and Presbyterian High I was rooting for my team from YCKSS and wished they were one of the finalists.

The game show featuring the two emcees and the top five finalists.
During the final round, non-finalist students were also given the chance to win some prizes by using their clickers to answer the same questions as the finalists.

As for the top five teams in the finals, they had another round of tough competition The winning team was Clementi Town Secondary School (Team B). The team won S$800 and a trophy.

Accounting Challenge Champions from Clementi Town Secondary!
To say that it was quite an experience would be an understatement. I had a great time getting to know the YCKSS students I was hosting and even learned a few useful facts about NYP I wasn’t privy to before.

The NYP-ACCA Accounting Challenge was meant to ignite interest in accounting for secondary school students. The event was definitely a success, and its part-game show, part-tour formula is a perfect marriage that will hopefully whet secondary school students’ interest in Accounting as a subject, as well as NYP’s Diploma in Accountancy & Finance.

By Shawn Dabi, Year 2, Diploma in Accountancy & Finance.

Photo Credit: Wayne Koh of AF1302

With his passion for writing, Shawn composes various sorts of literature, from short stories to the article that you have just read, in an attempt to balance his poly life. Just because he’s studying accountancy doesn’t mean that he is good at only number crunching. In fact, his spare time is spent on whatever novel he gets his hands on. He aspires to be a best-selling novelist one day and, of course, a successful accountant.

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