Special Topics in Taxation

Special Topics in Taxation


Summer 2011
05/23/2011 - 08/08/2011

Course Information

Section 001
Distance Learning
Tracie Miller

Office Hours

  • M
    3:00 pm - 5:30 pm
    Round Rock 2232.20
    Or by Appointment

Student Learning Outcomes/Learning Objectives

For a more detailed syllabus, please review the syllabus posted in the Blackboard course. This syllabus is intended to be a brief overview of the course and is subject to change. The final syllabus will be posted in the blackboard course.

Course Description: A course in development of effective and efficient, 'hands-on' tax research skills, using the CCH Tax Database and/or RIA Tax Database.  The course is a continuation of the fundamentals of Federal income tax law.  Objectives include identifying tax issues and locating, understanding, analyzing, and evaluating authoritative and nonauthoritative tax sources and communicating the results in an efficient and understandable manner.


Course Objectives:

  1. Understand the tax research environment,
  2. Become familiar with the primary sources of federal tax law,
  3. Understand the various research tools, and
  4. Know how to implement the research tools.


Required Textbook/Materials:

1.Contemporary Tax Practice: Research, Planning, and Strategies, 2nd edition, John O. Everett, Cherie Henning, and Nancy Nichols, Publisher: CCH, ISBN: 978-0-8080-2379-1.

Course Requirements

Introduction to Tax Research & Writing

Tax Research – The Foundation Every Tax Professional Builds On Dbrief (H)

Effective Writing – What, When, and How to Say It Electronically Dbrief (H)

M. Tx. Writing Web Site (H)


Introduction to Library Resources

Know How Research Skills: Plagiarism & Citing Skills (H)

Know How Research Skills:

Finding Periodical Articles (H)

Scholarly Journal Paper (W)


UNIT 2 – Tax Research

Chapter 4: Tax Research – Locating and Assessing Tax Authority


Review Questions for Chapter 4

Scavenger Hunt (H)

Primary vs. Secondary Source (H)

The Tax Legislative Process – A Little Knowledge Goes a Long Way Dbrief (H)

Chapter 4 Quiz (Q)


Chapter 1: Legislative Sources of Authority

Review Questions for Chapter 1

Types of Tax Authority (H)

Codification (H)

Chapter 1 Quiz (Q)

Assign Deloitte Case Study – See dues dates below


Chapter 2: Administrative Sources of Authority

Review Questions for Chapter 2

Locating Revenue Procedure, TAM, & PLR (H)

Authority & Locating

of IRS Publications (H)

Chapter 2 Quiz (Q)


Chapter 3: Judicial Sources of Authority

Review Questions for Chapter 3

Citations (H)

Case Brief (W)

Chapter 3 Quiz (Q)


Exam – Chapters 1 – 4 (E)


Deloitte Case Study – Continuing Problem (W)




UNIT 3 – Tax Practice

Chapter 9: Tax Practice – Procedures, Administration and Sanctions

Review Questions for Chapter 9

Violations of Circular 230 (H)


Chpt 9 Quiz (Q)


Chapter 10: Tax Communications Between the Client, Tax Preparer and the IRS

Review Questions for Chapter 10

Memo to File (W)

Chpt 10 Quiz (Q)


Exam – Chapters 9 – 10 (E)



UNIT 4 – Tax Planning

Chapter 11: Tax Planning for Individuals

Review Questions for Chapter 11

Alternative Minimum Tax – The Least Understood Issue in Individual Taxation Today Dbrief (H)

Letter to Sophisticated Client (W)

Chpt 11 Quiz (Q)


Chapter 15: Business Planning – Choice of Entity

Review Questions for Chapter 15

The Art and Science of Entity Choices Dbrief (H)

Chpt 15 Quiz (Q)


Deloitte Case Study – Continuing Problem (W)





30 %


20 %

Major Writing Assignments

Deloitte Case Study

Scholarly Journals Review

Case Brief

Memo to File

Letter to Client

30 %


20 %


100 %


GRADING SCALE:                                             90% - 100%         A

                                                                                                80% -  89%           B       

                                                                                                70% -  79%           C       

                                                                                                60% -  69%           D

                                                                                                Below 60%          F

Course Subjects

See Course Requirements