Module delivery information

Location Term Level1 Credits (ECTS)2 Current Convenor3 2021 to 2022
Combined Autumn and Spring Terms 6 30 (15) David Godsell checkmark-circle


This module will cover the following topics:
• The historical development of auditing
• The nature, importance, objectives and underlying theory of auditing
• The philosophy, concepts and basic postulates of auditing
• The regulatory and socio-economic environment within which auditing process takes place
• Auditing implications of agency theories of the firm
• Auditing implications of the efficient markets hypothesis
• The statutory and contractual bases of auditing, including auditing regulation and auditors' legal duties and liabilities
• Truth and fairness in financial reporting
• Materiality and audit judgement
• Audit independence
• The nature and causes of the audit expectation gap
• Auditors' professional ethics and standards
• Audit quality control, planning, programming, performance, supervision and review
• The nature and types of audit evidence
• Principles of internal control
• Systems based auditing and the nature and relationship of compliance and substantive testing
• The audit risk model and statistical sampling
• Audit procedures for major classes of assets, liabilities, income and expenditure
• Audit reporting.


Contact hours

Total contact hours: 65
Private study hours: 235
Total study hours: 300

Method of assessment

Main assessment methods:
Exam, 3 hours (70%)
Essay 1 (2000 words) (15%)
Essay 2 (2000 words) (15%)

Reassessment method:
100% Examination

Indicative reading

Cosserat, G.W., (2015) Modern auditing, 4th ed, Chichester: John Wiley & Sons

Flint, D. (1988) Philosophy and principles of auditing: an introduction, Basingstoke: Macmillan Education

Godsell, D. (1991) Auditors' legal duties and liabilities, London: Longman

Gray, I. (2015) The audit process: principles, practice and cases, 6th ed, London: Cengage Learning

Porter, B. (2014) Principles of external auditing, 4th ed, Chichester: John Wiley

Sherer, M. & Turley, S., (1997) Current issues in auditing, 3rd ed, London: Sage Publications

See the library reading list for this module (Canterbury)

Learning outcomes

The intended subject specific learning outcomes.
On successfully completing the module students will be able to:
- critically appraise the regulatory, legal, professional and socio-economic environments within which company audits are performed;
- critically review the underlying auditing theory, including Flint's concepts and postulates of auditing and the inherent constraints and limitations of auditing, and the nature and causes of the audit expectation gap;
- critically examine the technical language and practices employed in the audit of company financial statements;
- critically evaluate the role and significance of auditing in the context of widely researched capital market and behavioural models including the efficient markets hypotheses and agency theories of the firm;
- critically evaluate the nature, role and development of a profession and professional bodies, professional duties and ethics, professional independence, professional negligence and legal liability.

The intended generic learning outcomes.
On successfully completing the module students will be able to:
- critically evaluate arguments and evidence;
- analyse conceptual problems;
- assimilate concepts from research literature;
- use library resources to assimilate materials from research literature;
- exercise effective written and oral communication;
- exercise independent, self-managed study of research materials


  1. Credit level 6. Higher level module usually taken in Stage 3 of an undergraduate degree.
  2. ECTS credits are recognised throughout the EU and allow you to transfer credit easily from one university to another.
  3. The named convenor is the convenor for the current academic session.
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