Archive for February, 2010

Accountancy Profession “Dominated by ‘Toff’ Elite” Report Finds

February 13, 2010

A special government panel has been set up to improve social mobility into the professions after commissioned surveys showed that ex-public school pupils dominate professions such as accountancy whence 48% of trainees are derived.

In PQ Magazine March 2010 the major accountancy bodies, AAT, CIMA, CIPFA, ACCA, and ICAE&W defend their position by pointing out that there are open routes to entry into the accounting profession, without having to go through a degree course.

The problem appears to lie in the employers, with many chartered accountancy practices, the traditional route for ACA trainees in auditing preferring to take on traditional “red brick” university graduates with 2:1 degrees, who are more likely to have gone through the public schools.

From the Cabinet Strategy Unit Web Page (extract)

The Panel on Fair Access to the professions has published its final report. Lead by the Rt Hon. Alan Milburn its 18 panel members examined the barriers and pathways to reaching professions for all people – regardless of their background.

The report was commissioned by the Prime Minister following the New Opportunities White Paper which examined the issue of social mobility and its importance for the economy and social justice, ensuring everyone has the chance to fulfil their potential and secure the jobs of the future.


New Term, New Course Modules

February 13, 2010

I reckon the best way to tackle a new topic is when you get a new text book:

1. First flick through it very quickly. If you see anything interesting stop and read it, as you would any non-fiction book read for leisure. Why force yourself to read turgid stuff that makes your eyelids heavy?

2. Then, look down the contents page. If you see something interesting (who knows, “Internal Audit” might be of interest) then read that chapter first.

3. Next, instead of starting at Chapter 1 and boring yourself rigid by Chapter 3, start at chapter four, which will take you straight into the relevant part of the course. Chapters 1 to 3 are often mere “introduction” or “recap of assumed knowledge”. Easy to get bogged down at the start and wasting time on them so skip it until later, when you come to revise.

4. Have a quick read of the last chapter for an idea of the more obscure “higher marks”.

5. For an overview, best read the passnotes quickly first, before the textbook, to put the topic into context, then put away in a drawer until the exams as they are not much use.

BUT…I have just been looking at the new Kaplan cards and they are absolutely gorgeous: I have already spread them about in front of me on my desk at work. They are in “mind map” flash card style in different colours.

Anything that makes studying is more of a pleasure, has to be good.

“Astrobiology” Scientist Claims Human Life Came From Another Planet.

February 7, 2010
Birch Forest Toadstool

From outer space?

“Astrobiology” Scientist Claims Human Life Came From Another Planet.

This gentleman’s theory is not so different from what some sci-fi writers have always maintained, e.g., Ron Hubbard – indeed, Scientologists to this day believe they are “Thetans” or whatever, the Ancient Egyptians believed that when a soul dies (albeit the soul of a king!) it went back to the stars it came from (Sirius and the Dog Star are the New Age theories).   I myself am attracted to this idea as we live in a world of dual nature. Earth itself could be the inner space of an outer space. Our “soul” if you like is non-material but our bodily form is organic.

There is a view that psychoactive fungus came from spores from outer space, perhaps via comets or meteors hitting the earth. Once ingested, it imparted “the Holy Spirit” to developing homosapiens, and that most religions are actually founded on ingestion of hallucinogenic substances, e.g., the Ancient Roman rite of Elusysian (the Mystery Rites) may have involved psychotropic mead giving rise to religious ecstasy. Certainly we know that Native Americans used peyote – a succulent cacti native to the Americas – as part of their religious rites, as did the Incas and Aztecs.

Why would naturally growing plants and fungus impart this experience – could it be they are products of an alien life form only accessible by imbibing?

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