Behavioral Considerations for CPAs

Study Level:  Basic
Delivery Method:  Online self-study
Provider of Record: WebCE
Number of CE Hours:  4
Field of Study: Behavioral Ethics
Prerequisites:  N/A

Course Description:

In recognition of the effect that their actions or inactions may have on other people, professionals in many different fields are required to regularly complete continuing education on the subject of ethics as it applies to their particular field of endeavor. This requirement is intended to serve as a regular reminder to lawyers, accountants, doctors and other individuals who are placed in positions of responsibility that they have an obligation to honor the trust that is placed in them by those whom they serve.

Many of the collegial organizations who support these different professions have created and adopted a Code of Ethics to serve as a guide to the behavior and responses that are expected of their members. In the case of CPAs, the American Institute of CPAs has developed and adopted a Code of Professional Conduct to provide guidance and rules to all members—those in public practice, industry, government and education—in the performance of their professional responsibilities.

This course is based on the AICPA Code of Professional Conduct and begins with a discussion on ethics in general, and the importance of ethics throughout our lives in governing both our professional and personal behavior. The principles of the Code of Professional Conduct are discussed along with several of the rules that apply to daily practice by CPAs. Numerous thought-provoking case studies are included throughout the text to encourage the student to plan how to best apply the information presented.

Learning Objectives:

After completing this course students will be able to:
  • identify reasons that practicing CPAs should continue to study ethics;
  • identify the two main actions that together comprise moral behavior;
  • identify the three core values of the accounting profession;
  • identify the four basic responsibilities outlined as General Standards of the Profession.
  • given a series of different scenarios, correctly recognize situations in which a CPA may depart from the generally accepted accounting principles when preparing a client’s financial statements; and 
  • identify circumstances in which a CPA may disclose confidential client information without contravening the rules of the AICPA Code of Professional Conduct.
Last Reviewed: June 2016
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