National Registry of CPE Sponsors Passes Major Milestones

January 2014

In the late ‘80s, NASBA executives Charles Taylor, Thomas Iino and Albert Derbes came up with an idea to help state boards who were short on resources to evaluate continuing professional education (CPE) providers.

They proposed that NASBA create a registry of CPE providers that, in part, would establish a basis for uniform acceptance of CPE credits among states and provide licensees with a dependable and comprehensive basis for selecting CPE sponsors.

Their idea to serve the boards in this regard was the foundation of what would eventually become the National Registry of CPE Sponsors, which launched in March 1990.

National Registry Timeline
1987 NASBA Task Force on National CPE Sponsor Registry and Quality Assurance Program asks state boards to consider Registry proposal
1988 NASBA Board approves concept of National Registry
1990 National Registry of CPE Sponsors introduced
1995 California becomes Registry's first state society member
1996 NASBA hosts first CPE Conference in New Orleans, LA
1998 Quality Assurance Service established
2001 NASBA launches to unite those seeking quality CPE with the sponsors who provide it
2006 Registry reaches 1,300 sponsors
2010 NASBA rebrands CPE website into when Registry moves to online processes
2011 NASBA and National Registry approved as a qualified accrediting organization by the IRS as part of the IRS Registered Tax Return Preparer program
Jan. 2012

Revised Statement on Standards for CPE Programs released

June 2012 NASBA releases "Confirm Registry Sponsor" online tool
Sept. 2012 CPE Conference changes to "National Registry Summit"
2014 Registry grows to over 2,000 sponsors

The Registry, which recognizes CPE program sponsors who provide CPE programs in accordance with nationally recognized standards, has grown steadily since its inception. By 2006, about 1,300 organizations had been approved as registered sponsors. Today, 50 Boards of Accountancy accept the CPE credits earned through Registry sponsors, and recently, the Registry celebrated a major milestone by surpassing 2,000 sponsors.

Jessica Luttrull, National Registry Manager, said going from zero sponsors to 2,000 in 23 years is a great accomplishment that represents a critical mass in the CPE provider community.

“I think it speaks to the role and responsibility of the Registry, which is to acknowledge those organizations that are providing CPE to CPAs that is of high quality and compliant with the Standards,” said Luttrull. “It also speaks to the confidence of the Boards of Accountancy in the process we have established for considering applicants to the Registry.”

Luttrull also said the Registry is the bridge between CPE providers who are exploring innovative ideas in continuing education based on the demand of the CPA population and the Boards of Accountancy who establish and implement the rules and regulations for continuing education in maintaining CPA licensure.

“The Registry is the perfect advocate for change in CPE, whether it be technology trends, innovative instructional delivery methods, etc.,” she said. “The Registry can ‘test’ the innovative ideas of CPE providers to see if they comply with the current Standards or if changes/modifications to the Standards would be required. The Registry can then promote the ideas/changes with the boards.”

Over 600,000 CPAs are required by their boards to take CPE courses annually to renew their licenses. NASBA is proud of the growth of the National Registry of CPE Sponsors and the quality CPE courses those providers offer to meet the needs of CPAs everywhere.


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