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How Does NASBA Count Bizarro College Situations In Its Candidate Performance Book?

Three weeks ago, an "old guy who wants to keep busy" commented on a post I'd done about California CPA exam stats asking how his very particular case might be classified for purposes of inclusion in the NASBA Candidate Performance book:

Graduated from State U in midwest in mid 1970s in Econ. Took lots of online accounting and miscellaneous on campus accounting circa 2007-2009 and prior from various community colleges and passed each exam the first try in 2009-2010? (high 80s low 90s) My primary CPA review were Wiley books and Wiley CD. Never lived in California.

I reached out to NASBA for an answer and received the following almost immediately from Director of Training, Analytics and Quality James Suh:

Great question.  Because many states have their own application process there is no perfect way to report performance of candidates from a particular school, although we are very close.  In general, a typical application allows the exam applicant to enter information on 2 schools, a primary and secondary school.  The assumption is that the applicant entered the most relevant education information in the primary school field and any other education in the secondary education fields.  In this case, I imagine the applicant put his/her primary degree as Economics so the school getting “credit” for this candidate’s performance would be the Midwest school despite the student having earned the degree there almost 40 years ago.  Statistically, these cases are not the norm and a vast majority of candidates take the exam within a few years of graduation.

We are still in the process of investigating the Wake Forest data and hope that Wake Forest will take us up on our offer to weigh in on the data. You guys know where to find me when you're ready to talk.