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Peer Review

Depreciation and Amortization

by Sal Kahn


Overall Numeric Rating:

4.5 stars
Content Quality: 3.75 stars
Effectiveness: 4.75 stars
Ease of Use: 4.5 stars
Reviewed: Feb 02, 2014 by Business Editorial Board
Overview: This module consists of 4 short videos: 1) Expensing a Truck Leads to Inconsistent Performance (3:32); 2) Depreciating the Truck (3:49); 3) Depreciation in Cash Flow (4:01); and 4) Amortication and Depreciation (3:48).
Type of Material: Presentation
Recommended Uses: Individual review.
Technical Requirements: Video capability
Identify Major Learning Goals:
  • To understand why a long-lived asset is capitalized instead of being expensed when acquired.
  • To demonstrate how to calculate depreciation expense as well as the impact on cash flow.
  • To understand how to amortize an intangible asset.
  • Target Student Population: Introductory high school or college level principles of accounting course.
    Prerequisite Knowledge or Skills: Understanding of basic accounting concepts typically covered in Chapters 1-4 of a principles of financial accounting text.

    Evaluation and Observation

    Content Quality

    Rating: 3.75 stars
    Strengths: The module is clear and concise providing current and relevant information. The author makes the content easy to understand. The opening discussion provides a good illustration as to why long-lived assets are capitalized initially instead of being expensed.
    Concerns: In its present form, several technical mistakes have been made in terms of accuracy which might make the videos more confusing than helpful. Depreciation needs to be explained as a cost allocation and the truck should be shown as an asset on the Balance Sheet.

    Potential Effectiveness as a Teaching Tool

    Rating: 4.75 stars
    Strengths: The videos provide a very efficient discussion of the topics. Learning objectives are identified. Concepts are introduced progressivly building on prior concept. The module is very efficient in terms of assisting student learning.
    Concerns: The concept of depreciation and asset capitalization processes should be better explained and demonstrated. Prerequisite knowledge is not specified.

    Ease of Use for Both Students and Faculty

    Rating: 4.5 stars
    Strengths: The videos make use of text on a blackboard. Different colors are used to enchance the information displayed. The pace of each discussion is good and users can pause, rewind, and repeat segments as necessary. The screens are esay to read. Writing on the board as the presentation progresses adds an element of engagement.
    Concerns: Visual appeal is average at best. The presentation would be enhanced by including graphics. The presentations also lack interactivity.