Digital Course Solution Improves Student Success and Increases Instructor Efficiency

Published July 8, 2023

Digital Product in Use:

Connect® Accounting

Course Name:

Financial Accounting

Course Type:

Hybrid (4 credit hours of in-class lecture and online learning tools)

Credit Hours:


Textbook in Use:

Financial Accounting: Information for Decisions by Wild, 5e

Instructor Name:

Dave Welch


75/year (instructor total)

1,050/year (university total)

Case Study Term:

Fall 2010

Professor Dave Welch and his colleagues were spending so much class time giving tests and going over homework that they struggled to get through the required course content. In addition, students wanted the ability to work through assignments multiple times for practice. In 2008, as the course developer, Professor Welch implemented McGraw-Hill’s Homework Manager across all sections of Financial Accounting, and then transitioned to Connect Accounting as soon as it became available in 2010. Through algorithmically generated homework assignments that are automatically graded, students can have access to unlimited practice with immediate feedback. By giving tests through Connect Accounting, Professor Welch has also freed up the equivalent of two weeks’ lecture time.

Institution Profile

Franklin University serves 11,000 students annually at its main campus in downtown Columbus, Ohio, and at four other campuses located throughout the state. The University offers 28 associate’s and baccalaureate degree programs and five master’s degree programs.


Course Description:

Financial Accounting is an introduction to the subject and how it plays an integral role in today’s information age. Students learn about the art and science of accounting by analyzing, classifying, recording and interpreting business transactions and financial statements. Balance sheet, income statement, statement of retained earnings, and statement of cash flow components are thoroughly covered as to their compilation and ultimate significance for financial statement users.

Course Grade:

  • 30% of the final grade based on four exams within Connect Accounting
  • 28.5% of the final grade based on post-lecture problems within Connect Accounting
  • 18.5% of the final grade based on pre-lecture exercise sets within Connect Accounting
  • 13% of the final grade based on two written assignments
  • 10% of the final grade based on pre-lecture quizzes within Connect Accounting

Implementation of McGraw-Hill Connect

Professor Welch uses Connect Accounting to assign, on average, 3-4 assignments each week, using the filter feature to select exercises and problems that specifically match the departmental learning outcomes. Prior to each lecture, he assigns practice exercises which count towards a significant portion of the grade – almost 20% – and gives students the ability to work the exercises multiple times. This requires them to read the material first in order to successfully complete the exercises, and puts them in a better position to ask relevant questions in class, enhancing the learning process. Professor Welch then assigns a timed 20 minute quiz which is due before each lecture.

After the lectures, he continues the learning process by assigning problems which are due on the Sunday following each week’s class session. He first teaches the concept during his lectures and prepares students by demonstrating the weekly problem assignment using a static version of the algorithmic version assigned in Connect Accounting. Lastly, he posts his exams online with a 75-minute time limit. To allow students time to become familiar using Connect at the beginning of the term, he also assigns 0 points to the Week 1 exercise set and quiz.

Results Achieved