The Ohio Society of CPAs Introduces Micro CPE Courses

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The Ohio Society of CPAs has launched a series of micro learning courses for certified public accountants that provide timely knowledge packaged in 10-minute modules. Called Quick Byte, these courses are the first micro learning resources developed by a state CPA association, and the first programs under one hour to qualify for CPA continuing education in Ohio after a landmark rule change last year.

In 2014, The Ohio Society of CPAs worked closely with the Accountancy Board of Ohio to adopt new rules making Ohio the first state where CPAs can earn credit for micro CPE beginning in 10-minute increments. Last week, Maryland followed suit by adopting new CPE regulations for the shorter format the Maryland Association of CPAs has dubbed "nano learning."

Quick Byte consists of 42 courses that are 10-minutes each and can be accessed on laptops, tablets and other mobile devices. CPAs can earn .2 hours of credit for each Quick Byte course available now.

The new learning resources are responsive to the changing dynamics of today’s business environment. CPAs operate in a complex world of rapid-flow information and technology. Time is at a premium, yet they need quality learning resources they can quickly absorb and immediately apply to real-life business challenges.

“The nature of professional education is changing,” said Scott D. Wiley, CAE, president & CEO. “Studies show micro learning can provide the quick, focused education that CPAs need to stay current in the market place.”

The shorter video format is convenient and ideal for an increasingly digital audience to digest. That can mean higher retention rates since topics are pared down and targeted specifically on concepts the learner needs to know right now.

Wiley, who also served on the 2013 American Institute of CPAs’ Future of Learning Task Force, a profession-wide initiative to advance the CPE model, said micro learning is highly flexible. It can be used as a quick update to a longer program, or as a niche component in a broader learning curriculum.

The Quick Byte series is grouped into three topic areas. Tax and accounting and auditing cover recent technical updates while the specialized knowledge courses offer essential skills and management topics CPAs increasingly need as they advance in their careers.

To make tracking continuing education easier, The Ohio Society of CPAs also has synchronized its CPE transcript tool with the Accountancy Board of Ohio’s online reporting system. Credit for courses taken through The Ohio Society of CPAs is automatically uploaded into the ABO reporting system in real time. This is a valuable benefit for Ohio CPAs who must report continuing education credit every three years.

“We’re providing important peace of mind to CPAs by removing the administrative work of reporting their CPE,” Wiley said. “It’s one more way that we are reducing the compliance focus of CPE and putting it squarely back on learning to increase knowledge and competency.”

The Ohio Society of CPAs has been an important innovator in CPE education over the years. It was the first state CPA association to develop on-demand courses designed specifically for an online learning market. It also webcasts a robust schedule of live learning events each year from an in-house training studio.

Wiley noted these are strategic investments The Ohio Society of CPAs is making to move CPA learning to a higher level and provided valuable resources CPAs need to prepare for challenges on the horizon.

The Ohio Society of CPAs represents more than 20,000 CPAs and accounting professionals and drives proactive advocacy and education programs that strengthen Ohio’s business climate. The Ohio Society’s members meet statutory and regulatory requirements as CPAs and embrace the highest standards of professional and ethical performance. This is achieved through ongoing professional education, comprehensive quality review and compliance with a strict Code of Professional Conduct.

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