IAESB Publishes Revised Information Paper on Development and Management of Written Examinations

Feb 12, 2014 | New York, New York | English

The International Accounting Education Standards Board (IAESB) has released an International Education Information Paper to help professional organizations conduct written examinations of aspiring accountants seeking qualification.

This information paper is intended to help professional accountancy organizations implement the revised International Education Standard (IES) 6, Initial Professional Development, Assessment of Professional Competence, issued in November 2012, and covers the many policies and procedures to develop, administer, and grade written examinations. It is especially useful to still-developing organizations that need to make decisions on assessment practices for their education programs.

The paper provides an overview of the policies concerned with the development and administration of examinations, including “high stakes” examinations that lead to qualification as a member of a professional organization. It also includes examples of the processes and procedures that member bodies use to deliver reliable and valid assessments, including appropriate elements of quality control.

“IFAC member bodies have a public interest obligation to ensure that aspiring accountants are able to demonstrate competence upon entry to membership,” said IAESB Chair Peter Wolnizer. “There are various methods used to assess aspiring accountants throughout the education process; however, written examinations continue to be an important assessment method. This information paper is intended to help member bodies evaluate their current approach and follow good practices that suit their environment and circumstances.”

“We expect professional organizations outside accounting may also be interested in this paper,” Prof. Wolnizer added. “Many of the objectives and challenges of developing and administering a final written examination exist in other professions, both regulated and unregulated.”

As part of its initiative to improve the clarity of its standards, the IAESB has redrafted and revised IESs 1-6 to prescribe the requirements for Initial Professional Development. In addition, IES 7, Continuing Professional Development, has been redrafted in accordance with the IAESB’s new drafting conventions. IES 8, the remaining standard in the suite of eight IESs, is expected to be redrafted and revised by the fourth quarter of 2014.

About the IAESB
The IAESB develops education standards, guidance, and information papers for use by IFAC member bodies under a shared standard-setting process involving the Public Interest Oversight Board, which oversees the activities of the IAESB, and the IAESB Consultative Advisory Group, which provides public interest input into the development of the standards and guidance. The structures and processes that support the operations of the IAESB are facilitated by IFAC.

About IFAC
IFAC is the global organization for the accountancy profession dedicated to serving the public interest by strengthening the profession and contributing to the development of strong international economies. It is comprised of 179 members and associates in 130 countries and jurisdictions, representing approximately 2.5 million accountants in public practice, education, government service, industry, and commerce.


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