Starting July 1, 2021, the Auditing and Attestation (AUD) and Business Environments and Concepts (BEC) sections of the CPA Exam will see extensive changes. Our experts highly recommend CPA candidates take the AUD and/or BEC exam sections in order to avoid these complex changes altogether.
But time is ticking! The last day to take the current AUD or BEC exams is June 30th which is right around the corner. While the goal may seem lofty, passing at least one of these sections in this amount of time is achievable. In fact, if you follow the UWorld Roger CPA Review study planners, you could prepare for BEC as quickly as 2 weeks or AUD in as quickly as 3 weeks.
This includes watching lectures, studying materials, and going through practice questions and practice exams. Yes, it’s tight, but we know you can do it! And we highly recommend our students take advantage of our customizable Study Planners to stay on track.
There is no time like the present to start your CPA Exam journey and reach your career goals faster.
Should I Sit for AUD or BEC First?
If you have not sat for any of the exams yet and you are trying to navigate around the changes, start with BEC as it is the least time-intensive. From there, if you are still ahead of the July 1 changes, move onto AUD and then finish with FAR and REG (in that order!). Note that these are special circumstances that stray from our general recommended exam order.
How Can I Quickly Pass AUD or BEC Before July 1st?
It is time to start thinking differently about how you approach the CPA Exam, especially since you need to pass a CPA Exam section before July 1st. Do not waste your time with a CPA Review provider who charges top dollar for insufficient materials. Ineffective learning models and a lackluster program simply will not help you pass the CPA Exam before the changes.
The good news is that UWorld Roger CPA Review has truly changed how students prepare and SUCCEED on the CPA Exam. We have designed a course experience focused on an Active-Learning Methodology so that our students learn by truly understanding the information being presented both within our questions, but also within our Roger Philipp CPA CGMA lectures. Students in our course approach the CPA Exam with greater confidence because they truly understand the concepts they are studying, eliminating the need for cramming/memorization, and leading to greater retention on exam day.
Why is the CPA Exam Changing?
The exam is changing to reflect the ever-evolving requirements of newly licensed CPAs, including the use of complex technologies to do their jobs effectively. As a result of these changes, the exam must shift to properly test new skill sets. New technologies such as big data, cloud computing, and artificial intelligence, have greatly impacted the accounting field, especially in three main areas.
- Business processes: Business processes have become more automated, so CPAs need to understand the business including its operations, information systems, data flows, risks, and related internal controls. The automation of business processes makes it important for CPAs to have greater IT knowledge.
- Digital mindset and data analytics: Data analytics has allowed accountants to use new techniques and new data sources to do their jobs more effectively. Given the explosion of big data, it is important that CPAs understand where and how data can be accessed and how data can be used.
- Increased reliance on System and Organization Controls for Service Organizations: Internal controls over financial reporting are frequently located in complex IT systems. Also, many organizations continue to outsource their IT to third parties and store more data in the cloud. These factors make it important for CPAs to understand the impact of technology on internal controls at service organizations on a deeper level.
What Changes Are Happening on the AUD Exam?
The AUD exam has the newest material being added to the July 1, 2021, CPA Exam with a heavy focus on data analytics. Data analytics is not a new concept within the accounting profession and is already tested on the CPA Exam. Almost every university now has at least one data analytics course and a few even have Master of Accountancy in data analytics programs. Data analytics will be greatly emphasized on the AUD exam with more in-depth questions in this area. Testing Data analytics more heavily is important because:
- The way the client manages their data is extremely important to Auditors.
- The advancements in IT systems have led to an explosion of corporate data—big data and software that enables the auditor to mine the data to expose new insights. This explosion has resulted in the ability to not just use traditional data sources, such as corporate relational databases and spreadsheets, but also to use new sources of data, such as data from online sources. All this data can, for example, be used in risk assessment procedures or in a test of details.
- If the auditor is to rely on such data in their procedures, they must know a thing or two about IT controls and data flows to know whether the data they are using is complete and accurate.
The AUD Exam is changing in three main areas on the July 1, 2021, CPA Exam:
- Data analytics and automation. More in-depth focus on data analytics and automation within the audit.
- Internal controls. Greater focus on understanding the effect of key controls on the reliability of data and internal control documentation.
- Impact of IT. The impact of IT on financial reporting and using the work of an IT auditor.
What Changes Are Happening on the BEC Exam?
Changes happening to the BEC Exam reflect the impact that digital transformation is having in the accounting profession. There are 3 areas where content has been added to the BEC Exam. The first is a combination of data-driven mindset, the SOC reports, and Business Process. The 2nd change is focused on elements of SOC Reporting. The third focuses primarily on data management and relationships.
So, what are you waiting for?
The time is now! UWorld Roger CPA Review has everything you need to jump-start the study process and conquer AUD or BEC now. You will be so glad you got a leg up on your CPA Exam journey, and one step closer to reaching your goal.