Pardon the headline but that’s an actual (and not at all unreasonable) question posed to us from a Floridian CPA exam candidate who shall remain nameless, lest I be accused of trolling again.
While we love the idea of barely legal chicks holed up in an AICPA bunker sweating out CPA exam questions, unfortunately we’ve got to piss in this particular candidate’s Cheerios and point out that questions are created using a complicated process that relies on volunteer contributions from the industry:
The content of the Uniform CPA Examination is developed in an extensive and integrated process. At each step in the process expertise in various disciplines is applied to ensure that the test materials are accurate and appropriate for use on the CPA Exam.
The process incorporates expertise in a number of key areas.
The first key area of expertise is in accounting. Individuals who draft, review, and finalize test materials are experienced CPAs.
A second area of expertise is in the science of testing, called psychometrics. At each stage in the test development process, psychometricians are involved in the design, development, and implementation of test materials. These include test specifications, test questions, and data analysis.
A third area of expertise is in test development. Experts in the design and development of test questions are involved in the process.
Well, we’ve met some inexperienced 19-year-old CPA candidates but can’t say we know any that are experienced enough to draft complicated CPA exam questions per the AICPA’s outline above so, sorry, but this question is debunked.
We also feel compelled to point out, by way of the New York Times, that the word sketch actually appeared as an adjective in 1975, which would be right around the time most of the OG’s of the industry were passing the CPA exam, earning their PhDs in accounting and getting their second or third promotion.
A list of slang compiled from students at the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, published in the journal American Speech in 1975, included sketch as an adjective meaning “dangerous, risky” (“I think we’re in a sketch situation”). By 1996, one of [Professor Connie] Eble’s U.N.C. students offered sketch as a noun meaning “someone who is hard to figure out.” The variations sketchball, sketcher and sketchmaster followed thereafter, all sharing an air of suspicion and possible danger or at least discomfort.
We’re dying to know the context of this CPA exam question. Obviously discussing it is not allowed but based on the word itself, we’re guessing this was in AUD, no? As in “The client is totally sketchy, how do you verify his equally sketchy bank recs?”