At some point of learning Accounting or in your career as an accountant, we all faced a common but intriguing question;
Is accounting is an art or a science?
And opinions are divided, some accountants believe it is a science and some say it is an art. I think that accounting is both art and science.
Let’s find out whether accounting is an art and/or a science.
Accounting is a science
Accounting is the science of recording and presenting the financial data of an economic entity by observing, detecting, investigating, and identifying the economic events via established collecting, testing, analyzing and presenting methods.
Accounting; like science follows a systematic and organized path to understanding the economic status of the entity.
Science is obtaining knowledge about by a systematic pattern including observation, study, practice, experiments, and investigation. Like Science; Accounting requires gaining knowledge about the economic status of an entity by systematic study.
For a scientist; to reach an acceptable conclusive result on a particular matter or topic requires identifying recording, measuring, researching it.
An accountant finalizes the economic results by identifying, analyzing, classifying using the method of the double-entry bookkeeping accounting system.
So, Accounting is a science that includes comprises of rules, principles, concepts, conventions, and standards in science.
Accounting is an art
The term “Art” means a diverse range of human activities and study of these activities but most often misused or misunderstood to refer to painting, film, photography, sculpture, and other visual media.
Art is using the skills or techniques of any field.
We can say that art is the study of the implementation of techniques and methods. Accounting is an art because it presents the financial findings by following and implementing a universally accepted method (GAAP).
Art is the study of implying scientific method to practical use.
And Accounting is an art as the established rules and principles of accounting is applied in the bookkeeping process of an economic entity.
Views and thoughts about whether accounting is an art or science differ from accountant to accountant. Processes and methods used in accounting can be underlined as scientific, and the decisions and estimation making can be classified as an art.
The rules and principles are the science part of the “accounting” and choosing the way to use them are considered as the art.