Ed O'Donnell | Faculty | Accountancy | College of Business

Southern Illinois University



Ed O'Donnell

Emerson Groennert Professor of Accountancy

Ed ODonnell

Rehn Hall, 228A
Office: 618 | 453-1497
Dept: 618 | 453-2289
Fax: 618 | 453-1411

Ed O'Donnell didn't know what to expect when he came to the Southern Illinois University College of Business, but he was quickly impressed with the students he encountered, "When presented with a new problem, our students' first reaction is to attack the challenge and try to conquer the problem rather than resist an unfamiliar challenge and complain that nobody had shown them how to deal with this kind of problem." This exemplifies O'Donnell's ability to recognize the qualities in his students.

O'Donnell joined the School of Accountancy faculty at the SIU College of Business in the Fall of 2009. He teaches courses in financial statement auditing, information systems assurance, auditor risk assessment, and experimental accounting research methods. O'Donnell's area of expertise also includes enterprise risk management, accounting information systems, and information technology governance.

O'Donnell's research examines how people use accounting information to make decisions. His basic research uses theories from cognitive psychology as a framework for examining how characteristics of the decision maker and variables in the decision environment influence professional judgment and diagnostic reasoning in accounting contexts. O'Donnell's applied research examines ways to improve auditing decisions and develop more effective frameworks for more enterprise risk management and information technology governance.

O'Donnell was awarded a PhD in accounting from the University of North Texas in 1995. He spent five years on the faculty at Mississippi State University, six years on the faculty of Arizona State University, one year as a visiting professor at the University of Connecticut, and three years on the faculty at the University of Kansas prior to joining the faculty at SIU. O'Donnell was a practicing accountant for 14 years before he entered the doctoral program. He started his career as auditor for an international accounting firm, served as controller for a diversified food service and retailing company, then practiced public accounting as a sole proprietor.

Continuing to praise College of Business students, O'Donnell is pleased with what he has seen, "SIU students seem to have more grit and determination than students at other widely-recognized Universities."Discussing the students further, O'Donnell added, "They tend to think on their feet and push back when they face uncertainty. I like that a lot."


  • Risk management
  • Auditor judgment


O'Donnell, E. and J. Perkins. 2011. Assessing risk with analytical procedures: Do systems-thinking tools help auditors focus on diagnostic patterns? Auditing: A Journal of Practice and Theory (forthcoming).

Gramling, A., E. O'Donnell, and S. Vandervelde. 2010. Audit partner evaluation of compensating controls: A focus on design effectiveness and extent of auditor testing. Auditing: A Journal of Practice and Theory 29.2 (November): 175-87.

O'Donnell, E. and J. Prather-Kinsey. 2010. Nationality and differences in auditor risk assessment: A research note with experimental evidence. Accounting, Organizations and Society 35.5 (July): 558-64.

Schultz, J., J. Bierstaker, and E. O'Donnell. 2010. Integrating business risk into auditor judgment about the risk of material misstatement: The influence of a strategic-systems-audit approach. Accounting, Organizations and Society 35.2 (February): 238-51.

Kaplan, S., E. O'Donnell, and B. Arel. 2008. The influence of auditor experience on the persuasiveness of information provided by management. Auditing: A Journal of Practice and Theory 27.1 (May): 67-84.

O'Donnell, E. and J. Schultz. 2005. The halo effect in business risk audits: Can strategic risk assessment bias auditor judgment about accounting details? The Accounting Review 80.3 (July): 921-38.

Kopp, L. and E. O'Donnell. 2005. The influence of a process focus on category knowledge and internal control evaluation. Accounting, Organizations and Society 30.5 (July): 423-34.

O'Donnell, E., B. Koch, and J. Boone. 2005. The influence of domain knowledge and task complexity on tax professionals' compliance recommendations. Accounting, Organizations and Society 30.2 (February): 145-65.

O'Donnell, E. 2004. The use of forward versus backward reasoning during audit analytical procedures: Evidence from a computerized-process-tracing field study. Accounting and Finance 44.1 (March): 75-95.