fb

Big 4 Students Cheat in Ethics Exam

Big 4 Students Cheat in Ethics Exam

Albert Einstein famously said that “relativity applies to physics, not ethics.”

The point here being that morality is a concept that applies to everyone, and there are no exceptions that make it OK for a person to lie, steal, … or cheat. This seems like a fairly intuitive observation, but as a recent news story suggests, it’s clear that not everyone abides by the rules of ethics.

A group of audit professionals working for Ernst and Young in America made national headlines back in June when they were revealed to have cheated in, of all things, an ethics exam. You’d think these students would be well versed in the difference between right and wrong, but as this ironic transgression shows, the wise words of Einstein and other moral philosophers had made little impact.

According to the results of an investigation by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), 49 EY audit professionals cheated on exams over multiple years in order to acquire and maintain their Certified Public Accountant licences. They succeeded by using answer keys and sharing these amongst their colleagues. In addition to the 49 main offenders, there were several other staff members who did not cheat, but still violated the firm’s code of conduct by knowing about the offence and failing to report it.

Ernst and Young agreed to pay a record $100 million fine to US investigators, and released a statement in response to the wrongdoing:

“Nothing is more important than our integrity and our ethics,” the statement read. “We are confident that the outcomes of the undertakings will reinforce steps we have already taken in the years since these situations occurred. “Sharing answers on any assessment or exam is a violation of our Code of Conduct and is not tolerated at EY. Our response to this unacceptable past behaviour has been thorough, extensive, and effective.”

So what lessons can we learn from this story?

In short, if you’re studying for your ACCA exams, avoid any sort of misconduct at all costs, ironic or not. Here are a few tips to get you through this stressful time without resorting to cheating.

– Study: It sounds obvious but the only way to get through your exams is to study hard. Given we’re an ACCA Platinum provider of courses we’d strongly recommend one of our ACCA eLearning courses and you can register for a free ACCA demo course here.

– Be prepared: Preparation is key to exam success, so don’t leave everything to the last minute. Our courses include a unique study plan tailored for you which uses elements of Artificial Intelligence. This sets out recommended dates for studying based on your study style but the key thing is not to leave it to the last minute!

– Stay calm: Exams can be stressful, so it’s important to keep calm and not let your nerves overwhelm you. Get plenty of sleep the night before your exam, and take a moment to think about each question before you rush into an answer.

Good luck!

Share this entry

Related articles

View All Articles

Recent articles

View All Articles
Big 4 under the spotlight…
May 22, 2024
Title
Big 4 under the spotlight…
Excerpt

Recent findings have shown that Britain’s audit firms did not raise alarms for three-quarters of the major companies […]

Better than the professionals?
May 13, 2024
Title
Better than the professionals?
Excerpt

The landscape of investing is evolving, with the rise of retail, or “do-it-yourself” (DIY) investors who are achieving […]

Don’t get angry over anger management
May 07, 2024
Title
Don’t get angry over anger management
Excerpt

Have you ever been angry at work? If you have then you are not alone. The latest Global […]

Cows or dogs in your portfolio?
May 01, 2024
Title
Cows or dogs in your portfolio?
Excerpt

As well as being included in ACCA, CIMA and CMA (USA) exam questions over the years, the Boston […]

KPMG unlocks previously locked up talent.
Apr 30, 2024
Title
KPMG unlocks previously locked up talent.
Excerpt

KPMG, one of the Big Four accounting firms, has recently announced its commitment to expanding its hiring of […]

Taxing times…
Apr 24, 2024
Title
Taxing times…
Excerpt

Understanding the various forms of taxation is essential for business students worldwide. Taxes serve not only as a […]

From Coins to Codes: A Budgeting Timeline
Apr 22, 2024
Title
From Coins to Codes: A Budgeting Timeline
Excerpt

The concept of budgeting, a cornerstone in both personal finance and corporate management, has a rich history that […]

Italian but not Italian…
Apr 17, 2024
Title
Italian but not Italian…
Excerpt

In the complex landscape of global business, the names of products and brands hold significant power. They convey […]