CPA exam changes are under evaluation

AICPA Board of Examiners is supporting increased testing of higher-order skills.

After considering public comment, the AICPA Board of Examiners is reviewing plans to have the Uniform CPA Examination increase the assessment of higher-order skills.

A report on feedback from an invitation to comment on the CPA exam's future has been published on the AICPA website. The AICPA is updating the exam to ensure that it continues to reflect the skills that newly licensed CPAs need to protect the public interest. The next version of the exam is scheduled to be launched in 2017.

After receiving feedback from 310 respondents and considering data and information gathered from meetings with members of the profession, the Board of Examiners is supporting the idea of increased testing of higher-order skills such as critical thinking, problem-solving, analytical ability, and professional skepticism. With the help of key committees and the Board of Examiners, the AICPA exams staff is developing an exposure draft to be released in September that will serve as the final proposal for the next version of the CPA exam.

A majority of respondents generally supported the current structure of the exam, which is divided into four parts—Auditing and Attestation (AUD), Financial ­Accounting and Reporting (FAR), Regulation (REG), and Business Environment and Concepts (BEC).

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