NASBA is the acronym for the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy. Started in 1908, NASBA is an association founded to promote, oversee, and enhance the efficacy of the United States’ 50 state accountancy boards. NASBA maintains a platform where those in the accounting industry – both regulators as well as practitioners – can discuss and find a resolution to issues affecting the reliability, practical functioning, and profitability of the accounting profession.
NASBA is also well known for the vast selection of products and services it provides to help keep the accounting industry and those working within it effective, enabling them to work to protect the financial interests of the public.
NASBA is built around a core set of values, which leads the way the organization functions. Among many of the values the association adheres to and prides itself on are the following:
Working always to preserve public trust by effectively and meticulously regulating the accounting profession in general, as well as working one-on-one with specific regulatory bodies and practitioners
Being fair and respectful in its treatment of every member, as well as its business partners and stakeholders
Upholding a working environment that is creative, diverse, and encourages teamwork as well as accountability
Working to ensure a fair, orderly, and thorough discussion and resolution process for all issues addressed
NASBA, AICPA, and State Accounting Boards
The Certified Public Accountant (CPA) designation is granted at the state level after candidates receive a proper education, submit an application, and pass the required exams. Most of the individuals who receive their CPA certification join the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) because it works to represent each agent as an individual, while NASBA works as a forum for the accounting boards of each state.
State boards are required to assess each candidate’s ability for examination, as well as being the authority that communicates scores on exams to candidates. The AICPA is the party responsible for scoring each examination and sending the scores to NASBA. It is the latter group’s responsibility to maintain the National Candidate Database, matching scores from the AICPA to the candidate.
NASBA and the AICPA work together to coordinate mutual recognition agreements with accounting firms in other countries. The countries with existing agreements with both agencies include Canada, Ireland, Mexico, Hong Kong, New Zealand, and Scotland. Accountants from the abovementioned countries that meet certain criteria are often allowed to sit for an alternative exam – the International Qualification Examination (IQEX) – in lieu of the standard CPA exam, in order to be certified to practice within the U.S.
NASBA serves a number of highly important functions for the accounting profession, helping the state accounting boards, regulators, and practicing accountants to work together to solve issues within the community, and promoting the reliability and efficacy of accounting practices throughout the country.