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What is the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy?

The National Association of State Boards of Accountancy (NASBA) was founded in 1908 to enhance the efficacy of the 55 individual state boards of accountancy in the United States. Regulations regarding the certification of public accounting professionals are governed on the state level, so state boards are responsible for forming and enforcing their own laws. However, NASBA still plays an important role as a unifying force that empowers individual state boards and allows them to collaborate to create more effective laws regarding the accounting profession.

Primary Mission and Objectives

The National Association of State Boards of Accountancy‘s stated mission is to enhance and advance the interests of the various Boards of Accountancy throughout the nation. This includes several general objectives, including: forging relationships between influential bodies throughout the profession, providing education opportunities, and offering regulatory and legal support to members. The organization also takes an interest in emerging issues and works with local boards to find solutions to new challenges as they evolve.

Forum of Communication

The association serves as a forum of discussion and debate between representatives of state boards, encouraging the spread of standardized regulations between local jurisdictions. It advocates for the adoption of accounting standards to establish a more uniform code across state lines. As a national organization, it is also a key center of public relations efforts between the accounting profession and the public. The NASBA Center for the Public Trust (CPT) is dedicated to developing a positive ethical environment to maintain the trustworthiness of the profession as a whole.

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Role in CPA Examination Process

While state boards are in control of many decisions regarding certification of accountants, the association does help administer the Uniform Certified Public Accountant Examination. However, the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) is responsible for creating and grading the test. NASBA is responsible for overseeing the National Candidate Database, so they track candidate scores and other information reported from various states to create a unified national database.

Products and Services

The National Association of State Boards of Accountancy offers a wide range of additional products and services suitable for accounting professionals, businesses and students. In addition to the National Candidate Database, the association also maintains a licensing library that tracks all changes in laws and rules regarding certified public accountants (CPAs). NASBA’s various licensing and credential verification services allow users to confirm the credentials and practicing status of accounting professionals. Public users also have the benefit of free and open access to CPAverify, a searchable national database of licensed CPAs and firms that includes information regarding prior disciplinary action.

As a national body that represents many different local boards, NASBA serves as a center for advancement and leadership in the accounting industry. Members also enjoy many different benefits, including access to specialized services and opportunities for professional growth. The National Association of State Boards of Accountancy is also a participant on the international stage as a member organization of the International Federation of Accountants.