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Chair holder Prof. Dr. Guido Förster at a chair event in 2019

BB02: Fundamentals of Financial Accounting – Esp. for International Students

Starting with the summer semester 2021, a module especially for International Students – such as Erasmus Incoming Students – will be offered: "BB02 – Fundamentals of Financial Accounting". 

The module is composed of two courses, which will be offered in Englisch as of summer semester 2021. The written exam, which can be completed at the end of the lecture period of the summer semester, will also be offered in English for International Stundents. 

Note for domestic students (Students enrolled as regular students at HHU):

Regular national students can also take and attend the english language courses (as of examination regulations 2022 as part of the module BB07). The exam is also offered and can be optionally solved in English by national students. However, the exam for the module BB02/BB08: Internal Accounting is only offered and must be solved in German language.  

Course objective and prerequisites

The objective of the course is to develop the fundamentals of annual financial statements (balance sheet, profit and loss account). Students will learn why and how financial statements are prepared and how they can be used. This provides the basis for more in-depth courses. 

The course deals with annual financial statements under German commercial law and tax law which is known as a rigorous and comprehensive reporting standard. However, the general accounting principles underlying the preparation of financial statements are widely accepted in many jurisdictions despite some differences in detail due to diverging objectives of financial statements and varying institutional structures across countries. Understanding the concepts and methods introduced in this course is useful in most accounting environments.

Course structure

Two courses are offered within the framework of the module BB02 – Fundamentals of Financial Accounting: 

Course 1: Lecture: Financial Statements in Commercial and Tax Law

Course 2: Tutorial: Financial Statements in Commercial and Tax Law

The contents of course 1 are teached by chair holder Prof. Dr. Guido Förster via online videos, which are uploaded in the HHU media library. After regstiration for course 1 in HIS-LSF you will get access to the corresponding ILIAS-folder containing the links to the lecture videos. 

Course 2 takes place as a tutorial/group event which is held by a student assistant online via Webex Meetings. A special English-language event is offered for the tutorial, which is accordingly marked in HIS-LSF. After registration for the tutorial, you will receive access to the exercise documents and the information for the Webex Meetings in ILIAS.


The contents of course 1: "Financial Statements in Commercial and Tax Law" (lecture) include:

  • Overview about key elements and instruments of financial reporting
  • Uses and purpose of financial statements and tax balance sheets
  • Commercial basics of financial statements and tax balance sheets
  • Accounting Principles
  • Balance sheet items in detail in financial statements and tax balance sheets (fixed and current assets, equity, provisions, liabilities, prepaid expenses and deferred income)
  • Perspectives of consolidated financial statements and international financial reporting

Course 2 (tutorial) is designed to provide practical application of the knowledge acquired in course 1 by means of case studies and exercises.

The module finale exam is written at the end of the lecture period of the summer semester in electronic form (90 minutes). 

The written exam will be passed if the grade is at least „sufficient“ (4,0). After successful completion of the final module examination, 8 ECTS/credits will be awarded.

Here you can access the BB02 online learning module in ILIAS, which is also available in English after changing system language to English.

A summary and non-official module description for "BB02 – Fundamentals of Accounting" for international students can be found here.