The AICPA and the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy recently proposed changes in the methods used for educating CPAs to the Statement on Standards for Continuing Professional Education (CPE). Among the methods, nano-learning and blended learning were mentioned.

Implementing these two emerging methods would align the standards with recommendations of the AICPA Future of Learning Task Force, which has suggested evolving CPA standards for a better understanding of real work situations.

What are nano-learning and blended learning?

Nano-learning is information delivered in 10-minute increments, often covering task-specific topics. An example would be short videos that CPAs can access to help master certain tasks they encounter in their jobs.

Blended learning mixes different methods that include online learning and delivery of content through face-to-face instruction.

Clar Rosso, vice president of the Member Learning & Competency at the American Institute of CPAs, said that the proposed revisions to the CPE standards will continue to expand and enhance the opportunities available to CPAs.

The proposal states that CPE credit would be given for both nano-learning and blended learning. This change would make it easier for CPAs to choose the learning method that is most effective for them.

Even though traditional teaching methods have worked so far, it is important for the industry to keep up with newer and more personalized methods that will generate better professionals in the future.

Comments on the draft are encouraged in order to review the benefits that these new methods could bring. Following the comment period a final decision will be made by both AICPA and NASBA board members in November, with the revisions taking effect Jan. 1, 2016.

Download the draft here.

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