Journal Entry Essay Format

Sample Journal Writing

 

Each administrativecertification candidate will be required to complete a minimum of six completeField Journal entries during the first semester.  A minimum of 10 additional entries will be completed during thesecond semester for a total of at least 16 journal entries.  Journal entries must describe, analyze,and interpret administrative activities that candidates observe and/or in whichthey participate.  Thoughtfulreflection and objective appraisal of actions and events should characterizeeach entry.  Relevant documents andartifacts to support and illustrate the journal contents should accompany eachentry.  Candidates should expect tomake additions or changes in journal entries as recommended by the FacultySupervisor.  In addition toperiodic reviews of journal work in progress, the Faculty Supervisor willperform a complete formative evaluation of each journal at the end of the firstsemester.

 

JournalWriting Expectations

Expectationsfor preparing each journal entry include the following:

·       Description:  Describe settings, activities, and people in enough detailto allow the reader to form a clear mental picture of the situations,procedures, or events presented in the journal.  Include identities and roles of people, location, size, andtype of setting, and descriptions of governance structures and functions asappropriate.  Documents attached tojournal entries should be particularly useful in supporting suchdescription.   Note:  Once the backgroundinformation on a school or other site has been presented in the journal, itneed not be repeated in subsequent entries.

 

·       Analysis: Analyze the activities, events, and behaviors reported in terms of rolesand responsibilities, as well as opportunities and constraints.  Focus particularly on administrativeduties and tasks, noting the perspective and motivation of the administratorsinvolved.   Note:  In-depth analysis may require inquiryand discussion with the Site Supervisor and with other participants inactivities and events reported.

 

·       Interpretation:  Complete each entry with an objective appraisal of thevalues, goals, and accomplishments of the people and situation reported.  Assess the outcome of events in termsof purpose and achievement. Consider alternatives to the behaviors observed and offer insights intoalternative actions.  Note:  It is helpful to consider alternativeviewpoints in attempting to evaluate outcomes in most situations.

 

Candidates shouldstrive to make journal entries reader-friendly by using a logical, consistentformat.  As entries may oftenreport complicated procedures and events, it is best to use conventionalparagraphing to arrange entries in a manner that the reader can easilyfollow.  Terms that are used out ofcontext or that have a special meaning in the setting described should beexplained.  Candidates are expectedto proofread each entry for syntax, word choice, and punctuation. 

 

 

 

Sample Journal Entry #1: Thissample is not intended to be a positive example, but to demonstrate the generalformat and nature of a journal entry. Note:  This entry is based on a first journal entry by a candidatewho has not yet mastered the format or content necessary for a successful FieldJournal entry.  The readershould examine this entry with a critical eye.

 

Journal Entry NumberOne:

 

Description

Administrators canreally make it tough on teachers. I’ve had numerous conferences with her about what’s going onin this school, but she doesn’t seem to want to hear it.  We had a very rough time when westarted this year.  Students whocan work by themselves do okay, but the others continue to fail.  Since my time to work individually withthem has been cut in half, they don’t stand much of a chance.   The problem is how the studentsare distributed among the classrooms. We had this meeting and the principal asked me to take notes on whathappened and what was decided.  Iwas supposed to watch her to see how she handled a difficult situation.  Needless to say, it didn’t govery well.

 

She listened to whateverybody had to say, but she seemed to get defensive when one teacherdescribed her classroom as a “dumping ground” for all the problemstudents.  I don’t think anadministrator should say that she wants to listen to people’s concernsand then cut them off when they say things she doesn’t want to hear.  It took a long time to get to the realproblem.  We have so many studentsmoving in and out and being tested for different programs that we justdon’t have any stability. The racial and socioeconomic levels vary greatly among our students, andshe seems to want to ignore this completely.  After about an hour, she said she had another meeting andthat we would have to meet again to discuss this further.

 

Analysis

It wasn’t likethis last year.  Our old principalspent a lot of time trying to place students in classes with a lot of attentionto their individual needs, and he listened to what the teachers had to say.   Another thing that the teachersbrought up was the way the office does not follow through on disciplineprocedures.  Like everybody else, Ihave had some problem controlling my class on some occasions this year, and Ithink it has a lot to do with the way the principal “sets the tone”for student behavior.  Some of thethings I learned from observing this meeting are that administrators need tolisten to their faculties.  Theyneed to consider all of the issues involved in a problem.  And most importantly, they need to tryto work out some sort of solution that improves the situation and thateverybody can live with. 

 

Interpretation

After this first“mentoring” experience, I am not so sure that I want to be anadministrator.  For example, when Ibrought up the problem of discipline, she looked at me like I wasn’tsupposed to say anything.  Then shesaid I should look at the handbook to be sure that the proper procedures hadbeen followed.  It was veryfrustrating.  I don’t have aclue about what is going on with her. The meeting just sort of ended when she got up and said she had to go tothe district office for a special education meeting.  So far, she hasn’t set a date for another meeting, andthings just go along as they did before.

 


Sample Journal Entry 2:  This sampleis intended to demonstrate the general format and nature of a journal entry.  Note:  This entry is based on a second journalentry by a candidate who was making reasonably good progress in mastering theformat and content necessary for a successful Field Journal entry.  The  reader should critically examine this entry for itsinformative value.

 

Journal Entry No. 2

 

Description

           SmithvilleMiddle School is a relative new school, located on the edge of a small, rapidlygrowing community in West Central Illinois.  Our population is a mix of white, African-American, someHispanic and a small number of Asian students.  The problem is that our enrollment has grown from about 450last year to nearly 500 this year. This has put a considerable strain on the building, the faculty, and theadministration.  When I first spoketo our principal, Mr. Davies, about being my site supervisor for this year, hesaid, “Well, you’ll have a lot to observe right from thebeginning.  Our first facultymeeting should be interesting.” Mr. Davies is an energetic man in his late forties.  He has been a principal for elevenyears, and although he is usually pretty cheerful, he was not looking forwardto the opening of school this year. We are going to be short on classrooms, and class size will have to goup. 

 

           Themeeting was scheduled for 8:30 on the first morning back after summervacation.  It was held in thelibrary where the faculty gathered for coffee and doughnuts before the meetingstarted.  Mr. Davies usually standsat a podium set up at one end of the room. The teachers sit at tables aroundthe room and tend to laugh and talk a lot until the meeting gets started.  They got quiet when Mr. Davies calledthe meeting to order.  He wentthrough the usual announcements and information items we have on the openingday of school, and then we got bad news. He explained the situation in a very matter-of-fact way, outlined someof the steps he saw that the school could take to deal with it, and theninvited people to comment.  Nobodysaid much at first, then a few of the older teachers began to complain abouthow the school board needed to hire more teachers and the superintendent shouldput a lot more money into the school. Mr. Davies listened, but did not comment.  Other teachers started to ask questions about the classschedule and how teachers would have to share space and other questions aboutbooks and the curriculum, especially the science rooms.  Mr. Davies explained how some questionswere answered in the handouts that teachers had received in their mailboxesthat morning.  He took notes onother things they asked and said he would attempt to answer as many questionsas he could at the next meeting. It took a long time to hear everyone, and by the time the meeting was over,nobody was looking very happy. 

 

Analysis

           Eventhough he tried to keep things upbeat by interspersing his explanations withhumor and not dwelling on the negative side, Mr. Davies did not really get theschool year off to a very good start. There are going to be a lot of changes in the school this year to makeroom for the increased number of students and all the problems that go withmore students.  Some teachersseemed pretty angry.  Mr. Daviestried to put the best face on it that he could.  He didn’t try to sugarcoat anything.  He just gave it to us straightout.  I think he expected thecomplaints that he got from people who wanted to place blame.  He didn’t let them botherhim.  He just listened, let thepeople know that he heard them, and then moved on.  He also didn’t just read from the packet ofinformation to the teachers when what they wanted to know was given there.  He just told them where to look foranswers.  It was a difficult kindof meeting to have.

 

Interpretation

           I triedto think about ways in which I would have conducted the meeting if I had beenthe principal.  I’m not sureI could have done any better.  Ithink that I somehow expected more of Mr. Davies.  I guess I expected him to cheer everyone up, even though weare facing a difficult year.  Wetend to expect too much of administrators sometimes.  We want them to solve all our problems and just hand us theanswers.  He let us know that he istrying to deal with the situation, like writing down the questions hecouldn’t answer and saying he’d get back to people on them.  He cares about people’s concerns,but he also let us know that we all have to work together to solve our problemsand that he’s not able to wave a magic wand and make everythingokay.  I asked him the next morninghow he thought the meeting went. He said he thought the teachers took the bad news better than he hadexpected and that he was glad that people had not gotten really upset.  As I was leaving his office, he said,“It’s going to be a long year.”


Sample Journal Entry 3:  Thissample is intended to demonstrate the general format and nature of a journalentry.  Note  This entry is based ona third  journal entry by acandidate  who is making  progress in developing the“Description” portion of the entry, but needs to work on developing the “Analysis”and “Interpretation” necessary for a successful Field Journalentry.  The reader shouldcritically examine this entry for it reflective value.

 

Journal Entry NumberThree.

 

Description

           AsI’ve described it in my first journal entry, Rushmore is a small,friendly kind of elementary school. We try to be open and welcoming toeverybody, but we’ve had to draw the line recently because of increasedsecurity concerns.  We are locatedin a part of town that is not a very nice neighborhood.  An incident early last week has madeeveryone nervous and a lot more concerned about who is in the building. 

 

           Iaccompany the principal each day during some of his building supervision.  As the principal and I were making therounds just after the lunch period began, we saw a tall man in a raincoat enterthe building through the parking lot entrance.  That door is kept locked and the man only got in because astudent on the way to the cafeteria saw him at the door and let him in.  As soon as he saw us, the man movedquickly down the hall away from us. We followed him, and he continued acting suspiciously, looking over hisshoulder, and hurrying away.  Theprincipal kept him in sight, while I went back to the office and called thepolice.  The man was out of thebuilding by the time the police arrived. They checked the neighborhood but didn’t find anyone matching thedescription. 

 

           About ayear ago the principal decided to limit access to our building by keeping alldoors locked except for the main entrance door right in front of the his officewhere the office staff can easily monitor who comes and goes.  Our building is a big rectangle, with acenter courtyard.  We haveentrances at all four corners.  Thecorner farthest from the principal’s office leads to the parking lot atthe rear of the building.  Theproblem is that we have many parents who like to come into the building fromthe back parking lot where they park because there is usually no place on thestreet in front as the teachers and secretaries get these parking places early in the morning.  So, the parents knock on the door thereuntil someone hears them and opens it. Teachers do this as well as students.  It has become routine for students to hear someone knock andthen run and open the door for them. I pointed out to the principal that this defeats the purpose of lockingthe doors.  He agreed that it was aproblem, but he didn’t seem too interested in doing something aboutit.  When I continued to talk aboutit, he gave me the responsibility of figuring out how to deal with it.

 

           Ithought about the problem, and the next day I suggested a number of things wecould do.  We already have signsthat say all visitors must register in the office.  I suggested that we put up signs on all the doors sayingthat visitors may only enter through the main front entrance.  I realize that parents will see this asa hardship because they will have to walk all the way around the building fromthe parking lot to get in.  But ifwe explained it to them in the weekly newsletter, I think they would understandthe safety issue and be able to deal with the inconvenience.        Ialso suggested that we have all the teachers and secretaries park in the backlot, leaving the street parking in front available to parents and othervisitors.  My final suggestion wasthat we make sure that our students understand that they should no longer letpeople in the building through any of the doors.

 

           Theprincipal was not very enthusiastic about my ideas, but he let me present themat the faculty meeting after school that day.  I outlined my suggestions and tried to emphasize the needfor school safety and how we need to limit access to our building.  Everything was fine until I made thesuggestion that teachers should park at the back of the school.  That caused a very heateddiscussion.  Some of the teachersflatly refused to park in the back lot. One teacher said, “I have parked along the street for over 20years, and I sure am not going to change it now when I am about toretire!”  Another teachertold how her new car got dented when she parked in the back lot.  Another teacher said, “Wedon’t have that many parents who even bother to visit the school, so wereally don’t need to reserve parking spaces just for them.”  While a few teachers did agree to startusing the back lot, most said nothing when I suggested that this could be avoluntary thing.

 

           Inoticed that the principal said nothing at all.  He just went on to another item on the agenda.  I stayed after the meeting and wentback to the office to ask what he was thinking and what he planned to do aboutthe lack of faculty support for solving the problem.  He said there wasn’t much we could do, and that“we have to simply see if teachers will park in the back lotvoluntarily.”  He would alsonot agree to put up signs restricting parents to enter only by the maindoor.  He said that he “didnot want teachers or parents “upset at this time.” 

 

Analysis

           It ishard to be objective in analyzing this situation.  Needless to say, I was very frustrated by his response.  I have noted before that my principaldoes not like dissension.  He tendsto back down on issues when confronted with opposition.  How can we solve building problems whenhe won’t make a policy because he is afraid of offending people or makingthem angry?   When the greatergood of the whole building is at issue, how can you let the objections andwhining of a few stop changes for the better? 

 

Interpretation

           The wayI see it, there is a time for assertive leadership by administrators and thisis one of those times.  Thebuilding principal is charged with having the greater good of the students,staff, and community at heart when making decisions.  Part of being a leader is taking a stand and not backingdown just because some people object to being inconvenienced or to changing theway they do things.  Leadershipmeans thinking always about the welfare of the entire group. 

 

          

 


Sample Journal Entry 4:  Thissample is intended to demonstrate the general format and nature of a journalentry.  Note:  This entryis based on a fourth journal entry by a candidate  who is making progress in developing the”Analysis” and “Interpretation” portions of  the entry.  The reader should examine this entry forits interpretative value.

 

 

Journal Entry Four.

 

Description

           Dr.Miller has been a high school principal for 16 years, with 12 years here atStanford High School.  I am luckyto have her for my site supervisor because she is willing to talk to me abouther work and what she thinks of it. I really enjoy our discussions of what roles a principal has to playevery day on the job.  This week,we got into a discussion about how much influence an administrator really hasover what teachers do in their classrooms.  She pointed out a number of things that I hadn’treally thought about before.

 

           One ofthe things that Dr. Miller said that impressed me was how time consuming it canbe to help teachers with disciplinary problems, especially when parents becomeactively involved.  As she put it,“Things can get nasty, and you have to be a kind of politician to keepthem under control.”  Shefelt that as a result of many societal influences, such as the decline of theimportance of religion and government institutions and the increasinglynegative attitudes toward authority, some parents have a very negative reactiontoward attempts by teachers and schools to discipline their children.  Too often, she said, they areantagonistic and make the situation worse.  They say things like, “Why are you picking on mykid?” and “It’s the school’s fault, not his!”  And, maybe worse, they just refuse totake an interest in what their children are doing in school.  Administrators can play an importantpart in helping teachers deal with difficult behavior problems, or they cansort of step back and say, “Let the teachers deal with it.” 

 

           Now, Dr.Miller is a staunch supporter of her teachers.  She starts with the assumption that her teachers areprofessionals and have reasons for the actions they take—especially inconfrontations with students. However, the attitude of many parents forces her to put teachers throughwhat may seem to them to be “the third degree.”  She does this to ensure that she knowswhat actually did happen and what did not happen.  When dealing with aggressive parents, Dr. Miller says shehas to know that what teachers do is appropriate and defensible.  This is absolutely necessary because ofincreasing legal considerations. She is afraid, however, that her close questioning of teachers may beseen as a lack of confidence in them.   “Communication is the most important part ofhandling these situations,” she said.  “You have to make things very clear toeverybody.” 

 

Analysis

           I findit ironic that steps taken by administrators to support the efforts anddecisions of teachers may be perceived by them as a challenge to theirjudgment.  I also think that mostteachers may not understand or appreciate the personal, logistical, and legalcomplexity of dealing with volatile situations.  People are willing to sue over just about anything nowdays.  Principals have to know whatthe law has to say about the liability of the school and the teachers.   And, they have to be very carefulin supporting their staff in the most constructive way.  Every situation has to be takenseriously.  You can’t justassume anything.

 

           Anotheraspect of her job that Dr. Miller talked about is how little time she has to visitclasses and talk to teachers about instruction.  She said that she likes to sit in on classes and onteachers’ discussions about teaching, but other than classroom visits tomeet teacher evaluation requirements, she doesn’t have enough time to dothat.  Dr. Miller stressed thatstudent academic success is of primary importance, and there are a lot ofcurriculum issues that need to be addressed.  But she knows that she cannot be an expert in math, science,English, P.E. and all the other subjects, yet people, especially in thecommunity, expect her to be able to answer any question about what is taught inthe school.  Dr. Miller believesthat the teachers, much more than the principal, are the “front line”people of the school, and have the biggest impact on the school culture and theacademic performance of the students.   As she put it, “Good teachers can only make theprincipal look better.  You have tohire the best.”

 

Interpretation

           I stillsee administrators as managers for the most part.  They have to see that the school is up and running each dayand that everything goes smoothly. On the other hand, they also have to be willing to let others take theinitiative, even encourage teachers to be creative and to handle problems ontheir own.  At the same time,however, if a principal does encourage teachers to act as professionals, shemust be willing to accept their approaches, methods, and philosophies, even ifthey are different from hers.  Idon’t think you can have it both ways.  I think that above all, administrators have to be tolerant,not only because people disagree and society’s values change, but becausethey have to be open to new ideas and new ways of doing things.  You can’t just sit in your officeand do things “by the book” if you want to be a school leader.

 

           Dr.Miller told this story from her first job as principal of a small rural highschool in Southern Illinois.  Thebuilding had a very old heating system with a boiler that was cantankerous andliving on borrowed time.  It seemsthe principal before her had some mechanical ability and was able to keep thesystem running.  Dr. Miller had torely on others to coax the thing to work when the weather got cold.  As a result, everyone blamed her whenit stopped working.  Thecommunity’s estimate of her job as principal became linked to whether ornot the boiler worked.  As far asthe public was concerned, if she couldn’t do that, how could she beexpected to run a school?  Itdidn’t matter how many other things she did well, if the school was cold,she was not doing her job. 

 


Sample Journal Entry 5:  Thissample is intended to demonstrate the general format and nature of a journalentry.  Note:  This entry is based on a fifth journalentry by a candidate who is making progress but needs to work more indeveloping a balanced presentation in all three portions of the journal entry.  The reader should examine this entry forits overall descriptive, analytical, and interpretative value.

 

Journal Entry 5.

 

Description

           OnFriday, I attended a conference on effective school change featuring Dr.Michael Fullan, the famous author on school change.  My site supervisor asked me to attend with him.  Effective school change is one of thegoals of our school, so I attended along with a group of administrators fromour district.  One of thoseattending was an assistant superintendent.

 

           Theconference was held at the conference center of a local hotel.  Upon arrival name tags were issued, seatswere assigned, and I found that all the people from my district and threeadministrators from another district were assigned to the one table.  When the introductions began, the roomwas packed with more than 200 people from around the state.  Dr. Fullan used humor to keep theattention of his audience.  Atlunchtime, our group decided to go out for lunch.  We had an enjoyable time with conversation about the morning’sevents that comfortably included everyone.  In the afternoon session, Dr. Fullan outlined his work witha district in Canada and made a good impression on the people at my table.  The day closed with questions from theaudience and final remarks from Dr. Fullan.  None of the administrators from my district asked anyquestions.  As we left, theadministrators talked about returning to their buildings to see what hadhappened during their absence.  Idon’t know if they did that or not.

 

           Beforethe conference began, several administrators and I talked about how much weenjoyed reading Fullan. We discussed the ideas we had gotten from his readingsand which of his books we had read. During the morning speech, Fullan presented the ideas we had read about,but the live delivery and his sense of humor made it worth while.  However, my principal apologized to mefor taking an entire day to listen to material we already knew about.  I noticed that the assistantsuperintendent took many notes and appeared to be keeping track of how theother administrators from our district responded to the speaker.  I was not sure why he was doingthat.  At lunch he seemed mostly tolisten while the other administrators talked.  During the lunch, the assistant superintendent made it clearthat he would be charging the lunch to the district.  The others made no comment, and made no particular effort toinclude him in their discussion. They did make a conscious effort to include me, however, and I did notfeel like an “outsider,” although I was careful to remain somewhatdetached and try not to act like I was barging in on them.

 

Analysis.

           Theadministrators generally seemed to be in a very good mood, apparently glad tobe away from their buildings for a day. It was evidently a calm day in the district, as no one received anymessages, but then no one called to check on their buildings, either.  I noticed that the administratorsseemed very respectful of the speaker and did not talk among themselves whilehe was making his presentations.  I am used to teachers being much ruder at conferences, talking,knitting, and even grading papers throughout a presentation.

 

           It wasinteresting to me that during lunch, nobody even suggested not going back forthe afternoon session.  If I hadbeen with a group of teachers, I know someone would have said that we werewasting our time and should skip the afternoon.  Looking at it from an administrator’s perspective, Ifelt like they saw themselves as fulfilling a professional developmentrequirement of some sort.  I wasimpressed that they took it so seriously. Maybe some of them really hadn’t read Fullan and didn’t wantto admit it to the others.  Atleast they all came away with some good jokes for their own faculty and PTAmeetings.

 

Interpretation

           Isuppose that I had my expectations set too high for the day.  I consider it a privilege to hearauthors I have read and whom I respect. I felt that my time was not wasted, even though I recognized most ofwhat Fullan said from two graduate courses I have taken at the University ofIllinois.  The opportunity toobserve a group of administrators made it an interesting day.  I was very interested in how theyinteracted with each other, what they talked about, and their obvious feelingof camaraderie. 

 

Alot of what they said had to do with what was going on in the district, but Inoticed that they were kind of careful not to say anything that was critical ofthe district or the school board or its policies.  I think the presence of the assistant superintendent keptthem from being very open and candid in their discussion.  Of course, I have to remember that mybeing there also had an effect. They seemed to accept me, some went out of their way to befriendly.  They all knew why I wasthere, but nobody mentioned it or asked me about how I was doing in theclinical experience course.  I didn’tfeel like an outsider, but maybe I really was.  I guess I was more of a guest from their perspective, onewho should see them at their best behavior. 

 

Maybeadministrators have to be careful always to have people see them at their bestbehavior as a part of their public image as a professional educator.  Maybe it takes some acting ability tobe a successful administrator.  Iwonder how they would have acted at lunch if the assistant superintendent and Ihad not been there.

 

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Ael revised 2/15/02

 

What is a Journal Entry?

Journal entries are the first step in the accounting cycle and are used to record all business transactions and events in the accounting system. As business events occur throughout the accounting period, journal entries are recorded in the general journal to show how the event changed in the accounting equation. For example, when the company spends cash to purchase a new vehicle, the cash account is decreased or credited and the vehicle account is increased or debited.


How to Make a Journal Entry

Here are the steps to making an accounting journal entry.

1. Identify Transactions

There are generally three steps to making a journal entry. First, the business transaction has to be identified. Obviously, if you don’t know a transaction occurred, you can’t record one. Using our vehicle example above, you must identify what transaction took place. In this case, the company purchased a vehicle. This means a new asset must be added to the accounting equation.


2. Analyze Transactions

After an event is identified to have an economic impact on the accounting equation, the business event must be analyzed to see how the transaction changed the accounting equation. When the company purchased the vehicle, it spent cash and received a vehicle. Both of these accounts are asset accounts, so the overall accounting equation didn’t change. Total assets increased and decreased by the same amount, but an economic transaction still took place because the cash was essentially transferred into a vehicle.


3. Journalizing Transactions

After the business event is identified and analyzed, it can be recorded. Journal entries use debits and credits to record the changes of the accounting equation in the general journal. Traditional journal entry format dictates that debited accounts are listed before credited accounts. Each journal entry is also accompanied by the transaction date, title, and description of the event. Here is an example of how the vehicle purchase would be recorded.

Since there are so many different types of business transactions, accountants usually categorize them and record them in separate journal to help keep track of business events. For instance, cash was used to purchase this vehicle, so this transaction would most likely be recorded in the cash disbursements journal. There are numerous other journals like the sales journal, purchases journal, and accounts receivable journal.


Example

We are following Paul around for the first year as he starts his guitar store called Paul’s Guitar Shop, Inc. Here are the events that take place.

Entry #1 — Paul forms the corporation by purchasing 10,000 shares of $1 par stock.

Entry #2 — Paul finds a nice retail storefront in the local mall and signs a lease for $500 a month.

Entry #3 — PGS takes out a bank loan to renovate the new store location for $100,000 and agrees to pay $1,000 a month. He spends all of the money on improving and updating the store’s fixtures and looks.

Entry #4 — PGS purchases $50,000 worth of inventory to sell to customers on account with its vendors. He agrees to pay $1,000 a month.

Entry #5 — PGS’s first rent payment is due.

Entry #6 — PGS has a grand opening and makes it first sale. It sells a guitar for $500 that cost $100.

Entry #7 — PGS sells another guitar to a customer on account for $300. The cost of this guitar was $100.

Entry #8 — PGS pays electric bill for $200.

Entry #9 — PGS purchases supplies to use around the store.

Entry #10 — Paul is getting so busy that he decides to hire an employee for $500 a week. Pay makes his first payroll payment.

Entry #11 — PGS’s first vendor inventory payment is due of $1,000.

Entry #12 — Paul starts giving guitar lessons and receives $2,000 in lesson income.

Entry #13 — PGS’s first bank loan payment is due.

Entry #14 — PGS has more cash sales of $25,000 with cost of goods of $10,000.

Entry #15 — In lieu of paying himself, Paul decides to declare a $1,000 dividend for the year.

Now that these transactions are recorded in their journals, they must be posted to the T-accounts or ledger accounts in the next step of the accounting cycle.

Here is an additional list of the most common business transactions and the journal entry examples to go with them.


Common Journal Entry Questions

What is a manual Journal Entry? 

Manual journal entries were used before modern, computerized accounting systems were invented. The entries above would be manually written in a journal throughout the year as business transactions occurred. These entries would then be totaled at the end of the period and transferred to the ledger. Today, accounting systems do this automatically with computer systems.

What is a general journal entry in accounting?

An accounting journal entry is the written record of a business transaction in a double entry accounting system. Every entry contains an equal debit and credit along with the names of the accounts, description of the transaction, and date of the business event.

What is the purpose of a journal and ledger?

The purpose of an accounting journal is record business transactions and keep a record of all the company’s financial events that take place during the year. An accounting ledger, on the other hand, is a listing of all accounts in the accounting system along with their balances.

What is the purpose of a journal entry?

A journal entry records financial transactions that a business engages in throughout the accounting period. These entries are initially used to create ledgers and trial balances. Eventually, they are used to create a full set of financial statements of the company.


 

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