NASBA Seeks Proposals for Accounting Education Research Grants Program

By Frank Byrt

The National Association of State Boards of Accountancy (NASBA) has announced a call for proposals for its Accounting Education Research Grants Program, which is aimed at advancing research on educational issues impacting CPAs, the public accounting profession, and boards of accountancy and their obligation to protect the public.  
This year, NASBA will award a maximum of three grants totaling up to $25,000 for the one-year research projects. The grants are competitive.
Faculty and postdoctoral researchers at US institutions of higher learning are encouraged to submit proposals for consideration, NASBA said in a February 11 press release.
Proposals may be submitted in electronic format to through 11:59 p.m. central time, April 9, 2013. Grant recipients will be announced May 10, 2013.
Alfonzo D. Alexander, NASBA's chief relationship officer, told AccountingWEB in an interview that the number of applicants to the program, now in its third year, has grown steadily, from ten the first year to twenty-five last year, and between thirty and forty are expected this year. He said doctoral candidate researchers' applications also will be considered.
Research interests of NASBA include but are not limited to:
  • Characteristics of successful CPA candidates.
  • Ideal or model curricula for successful CPA candidates.
  • Inclusion of IFRS within the accounting curriculum and on the CPA exam.
  • Effective sections or rules of code of professional conduct to protect the public.
  • Characteristics of the best work experience requirements for licensure.
  • Ways to increase the diversity within the profession.
  • Effective online accounting education.
"NASBA's accounting education research grants are a win-win-win opportunity," said Karen Turner, NASBA's Education Committee Chair, in the press release. "Boards of accountancy win because they receive valuable information that helps with their decision making. Academics win when they receive funding necessary to complete research important to their careers. And finally, the profession as a whole wins through a closer relationship between practitioners and academics."
Alexander said, "The final report typically looks like a white paper. The shortest [submission] has been about fifteen pages and the longest about forty-five pages; and some of [those pages were] tables and research data."
The winners have up to a year to complete the report, and Alexander said that finalists likely are able to fit the research and writing it takes into their workday. "Most do research and teach, so this seems to fit pretty well."

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He said that one of the goals of the program is to help the winners get their work published in professional journals.

"Funding will be provided only for expenses directly related to the project, and grant funds will not provide for institutional indirect costs or overhead," said NASBA. 
"Although somewhat flexible, the awards will be distributed based on quarterly progress reports submitted by the researcher(s)," said NASBA, adding that researchers may be asked to present their findings to NASBA's board of directors or at its national meeting.
For additional information, visit the NASBA website.

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