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State Board Report

November 2015

In response to the Board of Examiners’ Exposure Draft on the next version of the Uniform CPA Examination, the CBT Administration Committee, working with other NASBA Committees, developed a comment letter. While generally supportive of the overall proposal, the NASBA letter includes concerns regarding the diminished emphasis onaccounting and review services, as well as attestation engagements in the proposed next version of the Examination. It also mentions concern about the deletion of a separate not-for-profit accounting and reporting topic area in FAR, and requests the BOE reconsider the times allocated for covering business law and standard setting. Suggested additions include coverage of the Board of Accountancy’s licensing and regulation of CPAs, and data analytics and data mining. The comment deadline on the Exposure Draft is November 30, 2015. Speaking at the Annual Meeting, CBT Administration Committee Chair Richard N. Reisig (MT) encouraged all State Boards to consider responding with their own comments to the Exposure Draft. Comments received on the Exposure Draft will be posted on the AICPA’s Website.

The Uniform CPA Examination has assessed a candidate’s content knowledge well, but the practice analysis told the Board of Examiners that, due to the evolving practice requirements of newly licensed CPAs, the next version of the Examination needs to do more to assess higher order skills, AICPA Vice President-Examinations Michael A. Decker reported at NASBA’s Annual Meeting.

"The testing of critical thinking skills underlies a lot of the changes proposed for the CPA Examination," Board of Examiners Chair 2013-2015 Frederick Niswander commented. It is recommended in the Exposure Draft that simulations be added to BEC, and the number of simulations be increased across all parts of the Examination. At
he same time, the number of multiple-choice questions would be reduced. Also new question types could be used. For example, a document review simulation was introduced in the Exposure Draft, to demonstrate the candidate knows how to pull pertinent information from documents and properly apply it. The AICPA is recommending lengthening the Examination from 14 to 16 hours by making both the BEC and REG sections four hours. This would make all four sections each four hours long. "We want you to help us prepare for the future," Dr. Niswander said. "We are thinking of the next exam – and the next exam. We need to be continually innovative."

Michael T. Daggett (AZ), NASBA Chair 2010-2011, will be the 2015-2017 Board of Examiners Chair.

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