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Thursday, May 6, 2010

What the 2011 Changes Mean for You

We've been keeping everyone updated on the changes to the CPA Exam that are taking effect Jan 1st 2011, but we thought it would be helpful to put together a guide on what all the changes mean for those who are still in process of taking the Exam. Below is a list of the most frequently asked questions and our answers:


How will the CPA Exam be different in 2011?

In 2011 the CPA Exam will be changing in two ways--the entire exam will be formatted differently and new content on International Standards will be introduced to different sections of the Exam. We've outlined all the details here.


How will IFRS be tested on the CPA Exam?

IFRS is going to be incorporated into FAR, AUD, and BEC. Below is a list of the possible questions types that will be in each section from our previous blog post.

    FAR
  1. The differences between financial statements that are prepared using GAAP standards vs. those that are prepared using IFRS.
  2. How the first-time integration of IFRS standards will affect financial reporting, presentation, and disclosures.

    BEC
  1. The effects of globalization on the business environment.
  2. Candidates may be asked to explain the underlying economic substance of transactions.

    AUD
  1. The role of the International Auditing and Assurance Board (IAASB) in establishing International Standards on Auditing (ISAs).
  2. The differences between ISAs and U.S. Auditing Standards.
  3. The role of International Ethics Standards Board for Accountants (IESBA) in establishing requirements for the Code of Ethics for Professional Accountants of the International Federation of Accountants (IFAC).
  4. An understanding of AICPA Codification of Statements on Auditing Standards, AU Appendix B, Analysis of International Standards on Auditing.

Will the changes make the Exam more difficult?

The Exam will not be "more difficult" per se, but will require an understanding of International Standards and the differences between IFRS and GAAP. For more information on the details of the changes, go here.


Why is the CPA Exam changing?

The AICPA is responsible for ensuring that the content on the CPA Exam is consistent with the knowledge and skills required of entry level CPAs. The AICPA conducted a survey of CPAs with varying levels of experience and determined that entry level CPAs must have some knowledge of IFRS in addition to GAAP. IFRS is already being used by major companies in the U.S.


Which exams should I take in 2010 vs 2011?

If you are not able to sit for and pass all 4 sections of the Exam before Jan 2011, there are a few tips and tricks to consider when you are scheduling your exams:

  1. BEC currently does not have a written component, but in 2011 BEC will contain three Written Communication tasks. If you struggle with written communication, take BEC before 2011.
  2. REG is the only section that will not have IFRS introduced in 2011. If you're trying to avoid some IFRS, take REG in 2011.
  3. AUD will be 1/2 hour shorter in 2011. If time is a serious factor for you, take AUD in 2011.

If I need to sit for sections of the Exam in 2011, will my 2010 scores count?

Any sections you passed in 2010 will still count as long as you are still within your 18 month window from passing the first section.


If I pass three sections in 2010 and have one section left to take in 2011, can I take that part using the old exam format?

No. Even if you only need to pass one more section, or sat for a section in 2010 and did not pass, you will need to retake the section in the new format.


How will Roger prepare students for the changes? What if I'm already enrolled in Roger's course?

Roger CPA Review is one of the only providers ensuring that their students receive free options for updates for the 2011 changes. We will be providing students with all the appropriate materials for studying and passing the exam in 2011, this includes students who are already enrolled in our course and have not passed all four sections in 2010. No gimmicks, tricks, or fine print. More details on how we will administer updates for students who are already enrolled in our course will be released soon. Stay tuned for these updates.


If you have a question about what the changes mean for you that wasn't addressed in this article. Please contact us.

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

Do you mean take the Audit part in 2010?

Sarah Mills said...

We meant that if time is a considerable factor for you, you may want to take it in 2011 as it will be 1/2 shorter.

Anonymous said...

I'm considering purchasing all 4 parts of Roger CPA review now (2010) so I can get started on studying BEC and take the exam before the end of 2010.

However, I want to know how will I get the updated written materials to prepare for the rest of the exam in 2011 (FAR, AUD, REG). Any news on the updated exam review materials?

Sarah Mills said...

Great question, we have a blog post on how we're providing updates, it has the latest information available at this time: http://blog.rogercpareview.com/2010/07/roger-cpa-review-assurance-plan.html