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Significant Standards Changes Include Addition of Two Delivery Methods: Nano Learning and Blended Learning

NASHVILLE and NEW YORK (AUGUST 16, 2016) — The National Association of State Boards of Accountancy (NASBA) and the American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) approved the proposed revisions to the Statement on Standards for Continuing Professional Education (CPE) Programs (Standards) as well as the NASBA Fields of Study document, during their respective July and August 2016 Board of Directors meetings.

Published jointly by NASBA and the AICPA, the CPE Standardsprovide a foundation for the development, presentation, measurement and reporting of CPE programs. The Standards reference the NASBA Fields of Study document, which was also reviewed and evaluated for currency and relevancy.

"These newly approved revisions to the Standards represent the collective efforts of the CPE Committee, the CPE Standards Working Group and the various individuals and organizations that participated in the exposure draft process," said Maria Caldwell, Esq., NASBA’s chief legal officer and director of compliance services. "Boards of Accountancy, CPAs and CPE providers have recognized the need for CPE to continue to evolve to keep pace with current learning models and the addition of nano learning and blended learning delivery methods is representative of that effort."

Among the most significant changes to the Standards is the addition of two new instructional delivery methods: nano learning and blended learning. The 2016 Standards now require that an element of participant engagement be included in group live programs for each CPE credit. The updated Standards will provide for one-fifth (0.2) of CPE credit for nano learning, and the ability to award one-fifth (0.2) CPE credit for programs using other delivery methods after a minimum amount of credit has been awarded. Additionally, the 2016 Standards revise the definitions of group live and group Internet-based programs to focus the definitions from how the content is delivered by the instructor to how the content is received by the participants.

"The addition of blended learning and nano learning meets the marketplace demand for greater flexibility and increased CPE options. These modernizations to the Standards are in line with what we heard from our Future of Learning Task Force and reflect the current dynamic business environment CPAs operate in," said Clar Rosso, AICPA vice president of member learning and competency. "On behalf of the AICPA, I’d like to thank all of our stakeholders for their valuable input into this process."

The changes to the Fields of Study document focus on providing categories and descriptions that are more current and relevant than the previous version. The most significant change includes the revisions to the Specialized Knowledge field of study by separating computer science applications and information technology into their own categories, and allowing Specialized Knowledge to consist of topics that are particular to specialized industries or services.

The Standards are effective September 1, 2016, and CPE sponsors will have until December 31, 2016 to comply with the Standards for programs currently under development. The Standards must be implemented at the next CPE program review or revision date for all other programs. For the NASBA Fields of Study document, the effective date is September 1, 2016, but sponsors have until December 31, 2017 to fully implement the revisions.

Interested parties are encouraged to download the Standards and the Fields of Study documents, which can be found on this page.

For more information about the Standards, visit:

Celebrating more than 100 years of service, the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy (NASBA) serves as a forum for the nation’s Boards of Accountancy, which administer the Uniform CPA Examination, regulate more than 650,000 certified public accountants and oversee the practice of public accountancy in the United States.

NASBA’s mission is to enhance the effectiveness and advance the common interests of the Boards of Accountancy in meeting their regulatory responsibilities. The Association promotes the exchange of information among accountancy boards, serving the needs of the 55 U.S. jurisdictions.

NASBA headquarters is located in Nashville, TN, with satellite offices in New York, NY, and San Juan, PR, and an International Computer Testing and Call Center in Guam.

About the AICPA
The American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) is the world’s largest member association representing the accounting profession, with more than 412,000 members in 144 countries, and a history of serving the public interest since 1887. AICPA members represent many areas of practice, including business and industry, public practice, government, education and consulting.

The AICPA sets ethical standards for the profession and U.S. auditing standards for private companies, nonprofit organizations, federal, state and local governments. It develops and grades the Uniform CPA Examination, and offers specialty credentials for CPAs who concentrate on personal financial planning; forensic accounting; business valuation; and information management and technology assurance. Through a joint venture with the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA), it has established the Chartered Global Management Accountant (CGMA) designation which sets a new standard for global recognition of management accounting.

The AICPA maintains offices in New York, Washington, DC, Durham, NC, and Ewing, NJ.

Media representatives are invited to visit the AICPA Press Center

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NASBA and AICPA Announce Revisions to CPE Provider Standards, Effective September 1, 2016


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