Dr. Rebecca Files

Assistant Professor of Accounting

Sydney Smith Hicks Faculty Fellow

Files, the first Sydney Smith Hicks Faculty Fellow, began her university teaching career at UT Dallas in 2009. Her research efforts focus on financial misconduct within firms and how decision-making has a significant impact on external parties and their responses to misconduct.

Files teaches introductory and intermediate accounting in the Naveen Jindal School of Management. She received a Regent’s Outstanding Teaching Award in 2014 and a President’s Teaching Excellence Award in 2013.

“My hope is that each and every student will walk away from my class with an appreciation for the importance of accounting to our economy,” Files said. “And, more than that, I hope that they are excited about being a part of this profession when they graduate.”

Files earned her PhD in accounting from Mays Business School at Texas A&M University, where she worked as a teaching assistant and researcher, focusing on voluntary disclosures and earnings restatements. During school, Files worked as an intern at two of the Big Four accounting firms: Deloitte and KPMG. She also earned a bachelor’s degree in accounting and a master’s degree in finance from Mays Business School, both in 2004.

At Texas A&M, Files achieved academic and athletic honors as a volleyball player. She was named the Bill Erwin Female Scholar-Athlete of the Year in 2003 and earned the Big XII Conference Postgraduate Scholarship in 2004. Later, she was awarded the Mays Business School Regent’s Fellowship and Ernst & Young Doctoral Fellowship.

Files has served as a reviewer for Journal of Accounting and Economics (2014), Contemporary Accounting Research (2013, 2014), The Accounting Review (2009, 2011, 2013, 2014), Accounting Horizons (2012, 2014), and the Financial Accounting and Reporting Section Conference (2009-2012).

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Dr. Rebecca Files

Naveen Jindal School of Management


In 2014, Dr. Sydney Smith Hicks established the faculty fellowship to recognize early career, outstanding assistant professors in the Naveen Jindal School of Management. Files filled the position in September 2014.


Files’ work has been published in top accounting journals. In 2011, she received the Glen McLaughlin Prize for Research in Accounting Ethics for her article, “SEC Enforcement: Does Forthright Disclosure and Cooperation Really Matter?”, which examined the costs and benefits of self-disclosure of corporate fraud.


“I feel very honored and appreciate that (Dr. Hicks) is willing to acknowledge people at our school earlier in their career. I see it as a signal that I’m heading in the right direction. It’s one more example of the tremendous support I’ve felt from the school.”