The subject of this presentation is charitable contributions as they affect personal Federal income tax. This mini-course consists of 27 audio enhanced slides in which Tax Agent, Coach, answers questions about charitable contributions posed by Vernon, a charitable volunteer, and Emma, an employee who handles fund raising for a nonprofit entity. The presentation offers specific guidance about IRS forms and publications, as well as, specific examples to illustrate points. The presentation may be used as part of a classroom session, as a professional development piece, or as part of tax preparation education.
Type of Material:
In-class, Homework, Team project, Professional development, Lecture.
Internet Explorer or Chrome. The presentation is published in Adobe Captivate and is also available in an alternate PDF format.
Identify Major Learning Goals:
The purpose of this presentation is to learn about qualified charitable contributions as defined by the IRS and as they apply to personal Federal income tax. Specific guidance is offered about nondeductible contributions and connects each example to the IRS definition of charitable contributions. Guidance about the responsibility of charitable organizations to donors is outlined. Explicit rules about the donation of vehicles to charitable organizations are covered. Record keeping and deduction limit requirements are covered as well.
Target Student Population:
Associate’s or Bachelor’s level, Income tax course, Community presentation, Income tax seminar, Tax preparation education.
Prerequisite Knowledge or Skills:
Federal personal income tax, fair market value, long-term assets, Internet navigation, record keeping.
The information provided is very clear, and the examples presented allow the viewer to apply learning to different contexts. The presentation is clear and provides a good demonstration of the different facets of charitable contributions as they apply to the most common scenarios. The IRS forms and publications referenced in the presentation are in current use as described. The length of the presentation is approximately 20 minutes, and the amount of information presented is ample. Concepts included are integrated and summarized well.
The module does not include enough material to provide a complete demonstation of the concepts mentioned. Since the variety of charitable contribution scenarios is extensive, the presenter has chosen to highlight the most common and offered references to locate others. Overall, it mentions five IRS publications that cover information not available in the mini-course. Three IRS forms are also noted for additional information. Depictions of some of the IRS publications are obsolete (i.e., from 2007). Some of the terms used in the presentation are not common terms, so some background knowledge is needed, especially as it pertains to fair market value and disposal of long-term assets.
Potential Effectiveness as a Teaching Tool
The mini-course presents relevant information in an easy to comprehend manner. It fills in missing content by citing IRS forms and publications that contain the additional information that may be desired by the site user. The presentation introduces concepts progressively building on some of the prior concepts and demonstating relationshiops between some of them. A significant amount of information is contained in this presentation to teach users the basic nature of charitable contributions in a short time.
Learning objectives are not explicitly stated, and prerequisite knowledge is assumed. The material presented builds to an extent on prior concepts, but some of the prior concepts referred to in the content are not contained in this presentation. A large amount of information is presented in a very short time, but due to the complexity of the material, the amount of information presented may be overwhelming for some viewers. While the site presents a great deal of useful information, given it is not fully self-contained limits effectiveness of use. The site user is not told about this limitation at the start of the presentation.
Ease of Use for Both Students and Faculty
The presentation is easy to access and launch. The instructions to use the presentation are very simple and the method of presentation is highly engaging. The audio is excellent. Using a dialogue format adds interest. Instructions are also clear as to where to find additional information that users may require.
The presentation lacks visual appeal. All elements are presented on the same background with little difference in font size for points that should be emphasized. The design quality is moderate, and it appears that this presentation was generated using clip-art for any graphics aside from the actual IRS forms.
Other Issues and Comments:
Closed-captioning text is very small and difficult to read; however, the alternate PDF version has the same text in an accessible format.
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