Deciding what kind of course to take: Factors that influence modality selection in accounting continuing professional development
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This study used a cross sectional sample created by self-selection from a researchers' email invitation to accountants in Canada to determine which modalities accountants preferred when selecting Continuing Professional Development (CPD), and the selection factors they used in making those choices. The survey contacted 32,000 accountants in Canada and a total of 428 accountants from across Canada completed the online survey. Live seminars and live webinars were the highest ranked and accountants preferred synchronous over asynchronous courses. The factors most important to accountants are content, cost and CPD hour requirements. The ranking of selection factors for synchronous courses in general did not differ from those for asynchronous courses with the exception of self-paced courses where the selection factors of “pace” and “time away from work” were ranked higher than for other courses. The results of the study indicate a continuing need for providers to ensure that courses are relevant and accessible to accountants. Further research is suggested into the differences noted between genders as well as other categorical differences. Work-life balance was a recurring theme that should also be explored further. Pedagogical use in the design of modalities is a further avenue for future research.