July 16, 2017
Though the majority of CPA Exam questions consist of CPA Exam multiple-choice questions and Task-Based Simulations, candidates must master one other question type in order to pass the CPA Exam: the Written Communication Task. Written Communication Tasks (WCs) only appear on the BEC CPA Exam section, and they only contribute to 15% of your BEC score. However, BEC Written Communication Tasks are such a unique question type that failure to properly prepare for them could leave you with a sizable hole in your BEC score. Conversely, ample practice with BEC Written Communication Tasks can earn you an easy advantage on BEC. Give yourself one less thing to worry about and that much more confidence for CPA Exam success by developing your WC skills, and begin by learning the basics of BEC Written Communication Tasks.
A Written Communication Task is similar to the Task-Based Simulations (TBSs) in that it provides you with scenarios to which you must respond, but the way you respond is what differentiates WCs from TBSs. To answer BEC Written Communication Tasks, you must write your response in the form of a business memo rather than choose your answer from a list of possible options. The purpose of the business memo is to address the needs and concerns of the party designated in the scenario provided, who may be someone like an executive or an auditor. The memo you generate must mimic what a CPA in the field would actually write. For example, you might be asked to recommend a given risk management strategy to executive management or to explain currency exchange rates to a client considering an endeavor into foreign markets.
The topics of a BEC Written Communication Task can venture outside the range of the BEC CSO; they may touch on topics from AUD, FAR, or REG as well. Therefore, sufficient preparation for BEC Written Communication Tasks includes familiarity with all the topics on all the different exam sections.
On the CPA Exam, the BEC section contains three WCs in one testlet. The structure of the BEC CPA Exam section involves five testlets: two MCQ testlets, two TBS testlets, and one WC testlet. The MCQs account for 50% of your grade, the TBSs provide 35%, and the WCs contribute the remaining 15%.
While computers grade all the different types of CPA Exam questions, human scorers may review and regrade your responses to the BEC Written Communication Tasks if your exam score is hovering around 75%. If your WC answers do necessitate human assessment, your BEC CPA Exam score release may be delayed by about a week.
The AICPA reports that your BEC Written Communication responses will be evaluated according to three general writing criteria: organization, development, and expression.
The AICPA defines organization as the structure of the document, the order of the ideas, and the linking of the ideas. The overview or thesis statement; the unity of the topic sentence and supporting sentences within the paragraphs; and the transitions and connectives between the paragraphs are all included in this category.
The development of your response is the supporting evidence used to clarify and verify your thesis. Details, definitions, examples, and rephrasing should all be employed to progress the development of your writing.
Your expression entails your adherence to the conventional standards of business English. The AICPA groups grammar, punctuation, word usage, capitalization, and spelling under the heading of expression.
A good score on a BEC Written Communication Task calls for a clear thesis delineating your position and plenty of relevant evidence backing it up. Your BEC Written Communication Task response should be systematic, logical, and on topic. You will earn no credit for a response that strays away from the direction of the scenario or that offers illegal advice.
The best way to brace yourself for BEC Written Communication Tasks is to use these BEC Written Communication tips for studying and these CPA BEC Written Communication tips for testing. You will also need to get in plenty of practice with Written Communication simulations. Only a CPA review system that thoroughly discusses the testable content and contains the largest test bank of MCQs, TBSs, and WCs available can satisfy all your BEC Written Communication needs, and only Gleim CPA Review qualifies as that review system. See how simple it can be to prepare for BEC Written Communication Tasks with Gleim CPA by trying our free CPA demo today.