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A Note of Caution: The International CPA Designation

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Document pages: 6 pages

Abstract: The National Association of State Boards of Accountancy (NASBA) is pursuing initiatives to make the U.S. Uniform CPA Examination more accessible to candidates outside of the United States. At the heart of their plan is a desire to ensure that the U.S.-CPA retains its position as a gold standard in the world of professional accountancy. Over the last 15 years, the author has been involved with programs directed at Japanese candidates for the U.S. CPA exam. This paper suggests that the international initiative of NABSA needs to be reconsidered from the perspective of an Asian candidate for the U.S. Uniform CPA Examination. That perspective reveals some unintended consequences for the U.S. CPA designation. This paper explores those consequences in order to draw attention to them. Any policy initiative should maintain the successful balance of education, experience, and technical examination that has created the great value and respect afforded to those with a U.S. CPA license.

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