Computerized Accounting with QuickBooks Online - 2019 Update

Publishing Soon!

by Williams, Johnson

| ISBN: 978-1-61853-325-8 | Copyright 2020

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Welcome to Computerized Accounting with QuickBooks Online!

This book gives students an introduction to QuickBooks Online (QBO) that focuses not only on the software mechanics, but also on the basic accounting concepts that underlie all accounting systems. This book is not meant to be a user manual. Students will come away from this book with an understanding that it is their knowledge of the principles of accounting, not their data-entry skills, that is needed to be successful in business.

This 2019 update features the latest updates to QuickBooks Online.

Target Audience

This book is primarily intended for use in undergraduate accounting programs, although it could be used in business or computer information programs as well. It is expected that students taking this course have already successfully completed a course in financial accounting and have a firm understanding of the basic principles of accounting.

Access to QuickBooks Online Plus

Each new copy of this book includes a full year of access to QuickBooks Online Plus. Students should refer to the insert at the front of the book, which contains instructions on accessing the complimentary cloud-based software.

With QuickBooks Online, students use their Internet browser to use the software—no installation required—and it can be used on any device with Internet access. (A high-speed Internet connection is recommended, such as DSL or cable modem. For more information go to and type in System Requirements in the search field.)

Outstanding Features of This Book


The book is designed in such a way that the accounting concepts, as well as the software mechanics, get more complex with each section. Other books focus primarily on software data entry. This book allows the students to see why events are recorded the way they are in a computerized accounting system while refreshing students’ knowledge of accounting concepts and reinforcing the accounting and journal entries behind transactions.

• Section One—Introduction

■ The first chapter introduces students to the basic structure of QuickBooks Online Plus (QBO).

  • Moving around in QBO
  • QBO organization
  • Reporting using QBO

■ In the second chapter, the process of creating new company files is covered.

  • Customizing settings
  • Importing data into QBO

• Section Two—Service Companies

■ The next three chapters (Chapters 3, 4, and 5) cover the sales, purchase, and end-of month cycles in a service company.

■ Students are introduced to accounting for basic transactions in a computerized environment.

  • Sales on account and cash sales
  • Purchases on account and cash purchases
  • Customer collections and vendor payments
  • Bank reconciliations
  • Standard end-of-month adjusting entries
  • Financial statement reporting

• Section Three—Merchandising Companies

■ The section introduction includes a description of internal controls in QBO.

■ Chapters 6, 7, and 8 cover the sales, purchase, and end-of-month cycles in a merchandising company.

■ Students are introduced to accounting for more complex transactions in a computerized environment.

  • Purchase and sale of inventory
  • Sales tax
  • Sales and purchase discounts
  • Inventory tracking, adjustment, and valuation
  • Bad debts and bounced checks

• Section Four—Beyond the Basics

■ Chapter 9 covers billing for time and expenses.

  • Tracking projects
  • Billing for time and expenses
  • Tracking and reporting profitability by project

• Section Five—Paying Employees

■ Chapter 10 covers budgeting and segment reporting.

  • Creating budgets and budget variance reports
  • Using location and class tracking to report on business segments

■ Chapter 11 covers a number of special tools in QBO.

  • Saving customized reports
  • Customizing forms
  • Managing attachments
  • Exporting reports to Excel
  • Creating recurring transactions
  • Creating reversing entries

■ Chapter 12 covers basic payroll functions that would be used in all types of companies (service, merchandising, and manufacturing).

  • Setting up payroll policies
  • Managing employees
  • Processing payroll

Clear Writing

The book is written clearly to aid student understanding of difficult concepts. Clear explanations of why certain procedures are used in QuickBooks Online (QBO) are supported by relevant examples and relatable end-of-chapter assignments, serving to bridge the gap between computerized accounting concepts and real-world application.

Real-World Scenarios

Most computerized accounting textbooks on the market approach the teaching of QuickBooks in a prescriptive manner, going through the procedures of the software while overlooking how an accountant would actually utilize the software in the real world. The book takes a practical approach and shows the student how the software is used in a business environment. In addition to the standard financial reports, students are exposed to job, segment, and variance reports.

Unique Pedagogy

The book’s four-color format facilitates student understanding and draws attention to the key concepts and pedagogy. Ample screenshots provide students realistic snapshots of what they will see when working in the software. A host of pedagogical elements serve as helpful illustrations, providing additional context and further concept reinforcement.

HINT Boxes

HINT boxes appear throughout to provide helpful quick tips and tricks for working more efficiently in QBO.


WARNING boxes highlight common technical pitfalls to avoid.


BEHIND THE SCENES boxes provide additional context in support of the accounting that is going on inside the computer.


When students are learning accounting application software, it’s natural for them to focus on the software mechanics and forget that they’re taking an accounting course. To help put some of their focus back on accounting, students are periodically asked a question related to material covered in the chapter. The questions are intended to remind them, either directly or indirectly, of underlying accounting concepts. The answers are included at the end of each chapter.

Key Terms

Appearing in red, bold font in the first instance, key terms are defined for the student in the margins of the text for a quick refresher. A comprehensive glossary is included in the back of the book.

Practice Exercises

Practice Exercises are included at the end of every section in the first ten chapters. The exercises provide students an immediate opportunity to practice the material they just learned and prepare them for completing the chapter assignments. The exercises use the QBO test drive company, a fictional company called Craig’s Landscaping and Design set up by Intuit.

The Practice Exercises can be done in class, with the instructor, or can be done by the students, on their own, as part of the lab component of a face-to-face course or in online courses. Check figures are included with the exercises to reassure students that they are recording the transactions accurately.

End-of-Chapter Material

End-of-chapter review material includes:

• Chapter shortcuts.

• Chapter review with matching of terms to definitions and multiple choice questions that are a combination of accounting concepts and QuickBooks application questions.

• A choice of two end-of-chapter assignments featuring fictional companies that move from selling service exclusively in the early chapters to selling both services and products in the later chapters.

The assignments include check numbers for students. This allows them to focus on the process and reduces student frustration.


There are a number of additional topics that are helpful to students as they master QBO, and these have been included as end-of-chapter and end-of-book appendices. Instructors may wish to cover these topics in class or have students go over them on their own time.

Students often have a difficult time seeing any similarities between computerized accounting systems and the more manual systems they saw in their introductory financial accounting classes (the journal entries, T-accounts, and general ledgers). To help students connect the two, Appendix A (Is Computerized Accounting Really the Same as Manual Accounting?) is an accounting refresher that compares manual and computerized accounting and provides examples of how journal entries, journals, T-accounts, and trial balances show up in QBO. It also covers cash versus accrual accounting.


The book has been mapped to the 10 domains that comprise the exam objectives for the QuickBooks Certified User Exam.

What Is the QuickBooks Certified User Exam?

The Intuit® QuickBooks Certification exam is an online exam that is proctored at Certiport Authorized Testing Centers. The certification program validates QuickBooks accounting skills while providing students with credentials that demonstrate real-world abilities to prospective employers. Once passed, test takers receive an official digital certificate representing their skills in QuickBooks. A map correlating the chapter content to the Certiport domains is available to students so they can streamline their exam preparation.


  • Math Revealed! homework company has been updated with new transaction amounts
  • Payroll chapter has been moved to the end of the book. Students will now be able to use the 30-day free payroll trial in their homework company
  • Homework for Salish Software and Math Revealed! has been updated
  • Added a new appendix, Fixing Reconciliation Errors, to the End-of-Period Activity (Service Company) chapter
  • Additional eLecture videos have been developed demonstrating common sales, purchase, and payroll transactions


For Instructors:

  • Solutions Manual files contain solutions to all the assignment material.
  • PowerPoint presentations illustrate chapter concepts and outline key elements with corresponding screenshots for each chapter.
  • Test Bank questions include true/false, dropdown selection, drag and drop, matching, and multiple choice questions for each chapter.
  • Chapter Outlines with student and instructor versions. Teaching notes are included on the instruction version.
  • Extra credit project suggestions including solutions. One business memo project and two financial analysis projects (one for each homework company)
  • A Midterm and Final Exam are provided with solution files. The exams are designed to test students’ understanding of the fundamentals of accounting and the mechanics of QBO. The exams can be completed in a two-hour class session using the Test Drive company available in QBO.
  • myBusinessCourse, our web-based learning and assessment program includes (see separate tab on full features):
    • Question banks comprised of:
      • Practice exercises
      • Test Bank questions
      • Assignment questions related to the end of chapter content that can be automatically graded.
    • eLecture videos created and narrated by the authors.

For Students:

  • Access to QuickBooks Online software with purchase of a new copy of the book.
  • myBusinessCourse, our web-based learning and assessment program. Includes homework, quizzes, and test material and access to eLecture videos created and narrated by the authors.
  • eLecture presentations created and narrated by the authors are available in myBusinessCourse covering essential topics and procedures in QBO:
    • Accessing Tools
    • Adding, Editing, and Deleting Accounts
    • Customizing QBO 
    • Setting Up Company Files
    • Managing customers
    • Recording sales transactions (multiple)
    • Managing sales taxes
    • Managing vendors
    • Recording purchase transactions (multiple)
    • Managing employees
    • Recording payroll transactions
    • Tracking and billing for time in QBO (multiple)
    • Managing items (one for service, one for product)
    • Reconciling bank and credit card accounts
    • Making adjusting journal entries
    • Customizing reports
    • Setting up budgets
    • Creating custom forms
    • Exporting reports to Excel
    • Hints for finding errors
  • Check Figures are included for assignments, allowing students to focus on the procedures and reduce frustration.

Introducing myBusinessCourse

myBusinessCourse is a complete, secure, web-based training and e-Learning solution. There is nothing to download or install; it is accessible through any modern web browser and most mobile devices.

eLecture Videos

  • Created by the authors of the textbook
  • Consistent with the textbook's explanations and approach
  • Cover learning objectives and concepts from each chapter
  • Ideal for remediation
  • Ideal for online and hybrid classrooms            

Guided Example Videos

  • Created by the authors of the textbook
  • Provide problem solving strategies as well as solutions
  • Offer clear, step-by-step demonstrations of how to solve select problems from the textbook

Auto-graded assignments

Auto-graded Assignments

  • Provides immediate feedback
  • Create assignments using problems from the textbook
  • Additional randomized versions of assignments provide extra practice
  • Ideal for remediation
  • Include select questions from test banks

Detailed Reporting Tools

Detailed Reporting Tools

  • Quickly review the performance of individual students
  • Quickly review the performance of entire class
  • Use reports on student performance to customize your lectures to fit student needs

Enhanced eBook

  • Save money
  • Includes myBusinessCourse
  • Integrates eLecture and demonstration videos
  • Bookmarking
  • Note taking
  • Highlighting

Third Party Integrations

Third Party Integrations

  • Single sign-on
  • Link to assignments in myBusinessCourse from your third party course
  • Automatically sync gradebooks each night

Support and Training

Support and Training

  • Technical support for students and faculty available daily
  • Faculty training conducted daily
Gayle Williams

Gayle Williams

Adjunct Professor of Accounting, Sacramento City College

Gayle Williams is an Adjunct Professor of Accounting at Sacramento City College, where she teaches computerized accounting. She received a BA in Comparative Literature and an MBA with a concentration in Accounting from the University of Washington. Professor Williams holds a CPA certification from the states of Washington and California and has worked in public accounting, with Voldal Wartelle & Co, P.S. and Moss Adams LLP, and in private industry.

She has books available for both QuickBooks Desktop and QuickBooks Online.

Jennifer Johnson

Jennifer Johnson

Senior Lecturer, the University of Texas at Dallas

Jennifer Johnson is a Senior Lecturer at the University of Texas at Dallas where she teaches accounting information systems courses and related software courses, cost accounting, and seminars in Excel. She is a CPA licensed in the state of Texas. In 2017 she was named as an Outstanding Accounting Educator by the Texas Society of CPAs. Prior to joining UT Dallas in 2009, Professor Johnson spent time in both public accounting and industry as an auditor with PwC, an Assistant Controller at a regional financial services firm, and a Finance Manager at Dr Pepper Snapple Group. Professor Johnson holds both a BBA and MS in Accounting from Texas A&M University. Jennifer is a Certified QuickBooks User and is on the Board of Directors for the Dallas CPA Society and the Texas Society of CPAs. Professor Johnson has a passion for using systems and accounting to communicate the language of business.