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Achieving Better Audit Results through Critical Thinking

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Date(s): May 10, 2022
Time: 12:30PM - 4:30PM
Registration Fee: $129.00
Cancellation Date: May 03, 2022
Location: Online

Course Description

Providing quality analysis of control environments and operations is where Internal Audit can prove themselves as trusted business advisors to executive management. Critical thinking is the key that will transform initial audit findings into fully developed audit recommendations that, upon implementation, will improve the business. In this course, we will explain how to utilize critical thinking throughout the audit process to improve analytical and problem-solving skills and identify meaningful audit recommendations. Additionally, we will discuss common methods of root cause analysis that can help discover the true cause of audit findings.

Potential CPE Credits: 4.0
Govt Hours: This class meets 4.0 hours of the 24-hour requirement for governmental CPE under Government Auditing Standards (yellow book), in most cases.
Technical Hours: This class meets 4.0 CPE credits of technical training in compliance with Texas Admin. Code Rule 523.102.

Instruction Type: Live
Experience Level: ALL
Category: Auditing

Course Objectives

Upon completion of this course, participants will be able to:

  • Explain the definitions and characteristics of critical thinking

  • Discuss how to apply critical thinking to the audit process

  • Discuss obstacles to critical thinking and how to best overcome them

  • Identify and utilize root cause analysis methods

Detailed Course Outline

I. What is critical thinking?

a. Definitions of critical thinking

b. Critical thinking imperative for auditors

c. Benefits of critical thinking for auditors

II. What Does Critical Thinking Look Like?

a. Characteristics of critical thinkers

b. Steps to critical thinking

c. Critical Thinking in the Audit Process

III. Obstacles to Critical Thinking

a. Identification of obstacles

b. Preventing obstacles from interfering

IV. Development of Audit Findings

a. Elements of an audit finding

b. Importance of critical thinking to crafting an audit finding

V. Overview of Root Cause Analysis

VI. Root Cause Analysis Methodologies

a. Fishbone Diagram

b. Five Why's

VII. Development of Audit Recommendations

a. Measurable results

b. Value creation


No prerequisites required.

YellowBook Government hours granted per 4.23 (q).


Chrissy McKeown

Chrissy McKeown is the Senior Manager of Audit Quality with Stinnett & Associates. She has over 20 years of experience with internal controls. In this role, she is responsible for developing and maintaining standards for both internal audit and Sarbanes-Oxley compliance projects. Additionally, Chrissy manages Stinnett's internal quality assessment program, ensuring the internal audit services provided to our clients are compliant with professional and internal standards. Chrissy has completed training through the Institute of Internal Auditors (IIA) and is qualified to complete external Quality Assessment Reviews (QAR). She volunteers through the Tulsa chapter of the IIA to perform QARs for local companies. Chrissy has a Bachelor of Business Administration degree and a Master of Science degree in Accounting from Texas A&M University. She is a Certified Public Accountant, a Certified Internal Auditor, and a member of the Institute of Internal Auditors.

Additional Information

TAC Rule 523.142(g) requires the CPE Sponsor to monitor individual attendance and assign the correct number of CPE credits. Participants will be asked to document their time of arrival and departure in compliance with this Rule. Additionally, attendance will be monitored throughout the day and CPE certificates will reflect actual attendance of each participant.

To see answers to our Frequently Asked Questions, visit

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