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Graduate Course Proposal Form Submission Detail - TAX6940
Tracking Number - 4985

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Current Status: Approved by SCNS - 2014-11-01
Campus: St Petersburg
Submission Type: New
Course Change Information (for course changes only):
Comments: Approved by USFSP. To USF Sys 8/14/14. To SCNS after 8/21. #6147 apprd as 6940 eff 11/1/14

Detail Information

  1. Date & Time Submitted: 2014-03-05
  2. Department: School of Accountancy
  3. College: BP
  4. Budget Account Number: 140100
  5. Contact Person: James Fellows
  6. Phone: 34587
  7. Email:
  8. Prefix: TAX
  9. Number: 6940
  11. Credit Hours: 3
  12. Section Type: I - Internships (Including Practicum)
  13. Is the course title variable?: N
  14. Is a permit required for registration?: Y
  15. Are the credit hours variable?: N
  16. Is this course repeatable?: N
  17. If repeatable, how many times?: 0
  18. Abbreviated Title (30 characters maximum): IRS VITA TAX PRACTICUM
  19. Course Online?: B - Face-to-face and online (separate sections)
  20. Percentage Online: 50
  21. Grading Option: R - Regular
  22. Prerequisites: Admission to Graduate School and completion of TAX 4001 (or its equivalent)
  23. Corequisites: None
  24. Course Description: A course providing an opportunity for students to gain valuable experience in preparing tax returns and tax counseling and to apply their knowledge of classroom learning. Permit Required.

  25. Please briefly explain why it is necessary and/or desirable to add this course: Replacing Selected Topics with Permanent number; already listed in program
  26. What is the need or demand for this course? (Indicate if this course is part of a required sequence in the major.) What other programs would this course service? Students in the MBA program and newly proposed M.Acc for USFSP are in strong need of practical applications of their classroom tax education. The IRS Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program offers this opportunity. Students will complete online certification exams from the IRS, and after undergoing one live all-day training session, are then eligible to prepare tax returns for low and moderate-income taxpayers at various IRS-approved sites.

    The course also provides a strong civic engagement component, as many of the taxpayers serviced are low-income individuals and families.

    This course would serve no other programs other than the ones mentioned.

  27. Has this course been offered as Selected Topics/Experimental Topics course? If yes, how many times? Yes, 3 or more times
  28. What qualifications for training and/or experience are necessary to teach this course? (List minimum qualifications for the instructor.) Terminal Degree only
  29. Objectives: 1. To acquire greater knowledge of the field of tax law through both course work and field experience.

    2. To apply this tax knowledge acquired education in a practical environment.

    3. To increase the student's ability to work directly with clients

    4. To create a sense of awareness about community issues and needs.

    5. To provide an understanding of potential tax fraud

    6. To create an understanding and awareness of ethical issues for tax professionals.

  30. Learning Outcomes: At the end of this course the student should be able to:

    1. Distinguish between refundable and non-refundable credits

    2. Determine what income is taxable and what income is not

    3. Analyze differences in taxation between employees and independent contractors

    4. Determine the correct filing status of taxpayers

    5. Determine the taxpayer's eligible dependents

    6. Communicate clearly their tax conclusions to taxpayers

    7. Identify potential tax fraud issues

  31. Major Topics: 1. Tax Deductions and Tax Credits

    2. Gross Income and Taxable Income

    3. Capital Gains Taxation

    4. Cancellation of Debt Income

    5. Taxation of Foreign Residents in the U.S.

    6. Health Savings Accounts

    7. Taxation of Retirement Income

    8. Filing Status

    9. Dependents

    10. Self-employment tax

  32. Textbooks: 1. IRS Publication 4012: VITA Tax Resource Guide (principal text)

    2. IRS Publication 17: Individual Taxes

    3. Numerous other IRS publications, as the situation requires while in the field

  33. Course Readings, Online Resources, and Other Purchases: IRS online certification courses at Students will be required to pass six certification exams in the following areas:

    1. Basic Taxation

    2. Advanced Taxation

    3. Cancellation of Debt

    4. Health Savings Accounts

    5. Military Income

    6. International Taxation

    Each of these courses is a series of modules with an end of course certification exam.

  34. Student Expectations/Requirements and Grading Policy: There are 275 total points that can be obtained in the course, as outlined below. The points shown for the tutorials are derived from the maximum points for each online exam.

    Standards of Conduct 10

    Tax-Wise Software Training 10

    Basic Tutorial and Exam 30

    Advanced Tutorial and Exam 40

    Health Savings Account Exam 16] 15

    Cancellation of Debt Tutorial and Exam 20

    Military Income and Other Tax Issues 15

    International Tutorial and Exam 15

    Completion of 75 hours of on-site tax preparation 75

    Term Project 25

    Experience Paper 20

    Total points 275


    Final course grades are allocated as follows:

    A+ 266-275

    A 251-265

    A- 246-250

    B+ 241-245

    B 225-240

    B- 220-224

    C+ 210-219

    C 190-209

    D Below 190

  35. Assignments, Exams and Tests: Dates shown are for Spring 2015:

    Standards of Conduct:[must be completed before Tax-Wise training

    Basic Tutorial and Exam [must be completed before computer training]

    Tax-Wise Software Training (January 10 or 17)

    Advanced Tutorial and Exam [must be completed by January 26]

    Health Savings Account Exam [must be completed by February 16]

    Cancellation of Debt Tutorial and Exam [must be completed by March 2]

    Military Income and Other Tax Issues [must be completed by March 16]

    International Tutorial and Exam [must be completed by March 23]

    Completion of 75 hours of on-site tax preparation

    Term Project [must be completed by April 20]

    Experience Pater [must be completed by April 27

  36. Attendance Policy: Students are expected to attend one of the tax software training days in January. This is the mandatory first class attendance. Students cannot proceed with the practicum without this mandatory training.

    Students are expected to complete at least 75 hours at the VITA tax sites as part of their course completion. Site scheduling is determined between student and the site supervisor. If you cannot attend for any reason, you must contact the site supervisor via telephone and email (copy me on the email)to inform them along with determining a day to make-up the hours. All tax preparation work is done in Pinellas County VITA sites.

    Attendance Policy for the Observance of Religious Days by Students: In accordance with Sections 1006.53 and 1001.74(10)(g) Florida Statutes and Board of Governors Regulation 6C-6.0115, the University of South Florida (University/USF) has established the following policy regarding religious observances: (

    Please let the instructor know if you need to an assigned duty at a VITA site for observance of a religious holiday. Reasonable accommodations will be made.

    Please let the instructor know if you have any disabilities that need to be considered. All reasonable accommodations will be made for the tax software training as well as working at the VITA sites. The student must have verification of the disability, which requires a written statement of the disability from the Office of Disabled Student Services.

    In the event of an emergency, it may be necessary for USF to suspend normal operations. During this time, USF may opt to continue delivery of instruction through methods that include but are not limited to: Canvas, Skype, and email messaging and/or an alternate schedule. It’s the responsibility of the student to monitor the Canvas site for each class for course specific communication, and the main USF, College, and department websites, emails, and MoBull messages for important general information.

  37. Policy on Make-up Work: Students who cannot meet the published deadline for finishing each IRS certification exam should contact the instructor to determine if the late complettion of the exam is justified. The instructor reserves the right to assess penalties for late completion of the online exams.

    The University’s policy on academic dishonesty and disruption of the academic process is clearly set forth in the USFSP catalogue. This policy will be strictly enforced. Please be advised that punishment for academic dishonesty may result in an automatic “F” in the course, maybe even an “FF,” or action taken that may result in suspension or expulsion from the university. University policy on academic honesty and the definitions of plagiarism, cheating and student disruption of the academic process are explained in detail in the Graduate Catalog (see

  38. Program This Course Supports: USFSP MBA Program
  39. Course Concurrence Information: Proposed Master of Accountancy at USFSP

- if you have questions about any of these fields, please contact or