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American Accounting Association

Update on CPA exam computerization: A correction to the Wall Street Journal article

AICPAJuly 26, 2002—The AICPA is sharing correct information to address the frustrations of faculty who saw errors relating to the revised CPA Examination printed in the WSJ on July 16, 2002.

The article, by Diya Gullapalli, made a couple of very incorrect statements. According to Gregory Johnson, AICPA, Director of CPA Examination, the first error stated that this past spring the AICPA "distributed free computer disks with new practice questions to nearly 900 U.S. schools with accounting programs". The AICPA has NOT distributed any practice questions for the computer-based CPA Examination. An introductory tutorial and other familiarization material, which will introduce the format of the computer-based CPA exam, are currently under development. The materials will likely be both web-based and on CD-ROM. However, distribution is not expected until November or December 2002. At that time, the tutorial will be made widely available to all accounting programs.

Second, the computer-based CPA Examination will NOT be open book, as reported in the article. Candidates will have access to resource material for some of the case studies (called simulations) included in the exam, but they will not be able to use those resources for the multiple choice questions portion of the test.

The AICPA will continue its work to keep faculty informed about the progress of the computer-based Uniform CPA Examination, and will notify all educators when the exam familiarization materials are available.

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