J.M. Tull School’s Tina Carpenter wins UGA’s highest teaching award

Carpenter's interactive teaching style has earned her a 2024 Josiah Meigs Distinguished Teaching Professorship

From her creation of games to teach students about fraud investigation to incorporating new analytics technologies in classes on auditing, Tina Carpenter has helped prepare a generation of students for accounting careers.

This spring, the University of Georgia’s Provost Office recognized the impact Carpenter’s innovative and inspirational approach has had on students, awarding her with UGA’s highest teaching honor, the Josiah Meigs Distinguished Teaching Professorship.

Carpenter, who serves as EY Faculty Fellow and Professor in the J.M. Tull School of Accounting, was one of six faculty members recognized in 2024. She is the first Terry College of Business faculty member since 2018 to win the award.

“This year’s Meigs Professors demonstrate exceptional creativity and a deep and sustained commitment to students at the University of Georgia,” said S. Jack Hu, senior vice president for academic affairs and provost. “Their innovative instruction and inspiring mentorship are among the many reasons UGA is recognized as one of the nation’s best public universities.”

Carpenter joined the Terry College in 2004 after graduating with her Ph.D. in accounting from Florida State University. She began her career as an auditor with Arthur Andersen Assurance Services, leaving as a senior auditor in 1999.

Throughout her academic career, Carpenter has been recognized as someone who brings an infectious enthusiasm and energy to the classroom. In 2023, Carpenter received national recognition for her innovative instruction, winning the EY Academic Resource Center Curriculum Innovation Award. At UGA, she has been a Lilly Teaching Fellow, a Teaching Academy Fellow, a Senior Teaching Fellow and is a 2021 UGA Creative Teaching Award recipient.

She is recognized as a global expert and leading researcher in auditing and fraud identification and published multiple papers about the incorporation of modern data analytics into audit practices.

In the classroom, Carpenter has transformed the study of accounting into memorable, hands-on learning experiences for her students.

“Not only is Dr. Carpenter an extraordinary teacher when it comes to explaining difficult concepts, sparking interest in the course material, and connecting classroom content to practice, but she also fosters a kind and collaborative learning environment that reflects how much she cares for her students,” said Shannon Chen, a former student now serving as an assistant professor of accounting at the University of Arizona.

In one course, Carpenter engages students through a fraud simulation exercise framed as a whodunit involving a baseball organization. Working in teams, students experience what it’s like to be forensic accountants by using documents and other evidence to uncover the source of fraud. Carpenter built on the success of this team-based exercise by creating a fraud simulation that combines evidence-based instructional practices with cutting-edge technology including artificial intelligence. Students navigate the investigation by conducting “live” interviews with avatars, collecting evidence, analyzing data and building data analytics. Launched in fall 2022, the fraud simulation has been adopted by several other universities