Forensic Auditing Courses and Certification Programs

Forensic auditing courses teach individuals how to investigate businesses and individuals for fraud, corruption or other crimes. This article summarizes the most common types of forensic auditing courses and programs. It also provides information on courses for professional certification exam preparation.

Essential Information

Forensic auditing courses can often be found as part of business, forensic accounting or general accounting bachelor's and master's degree programs. Some master's degree programs also offer forensic systems as a concentration in a computer science major. Graduate certificate programs also offer studies in forensic auditing. Students interested in individual courses in fraud and forensic accounting may be able to find them through college continuing education departments.

Some forensic auditing and accounting college programs may offer preparation for the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners' (ACFE) certification exam. Individuals with a bachelor's degree and at least two years of relevant experience may pursue certification through this organization by applying for membership and passing the exam. The ACFE also offers a certification prep course for individuals interested in earning the Certified Fraud Examiner credential.

Here are a few common concepts in forensic auditing courses:

  • Accounting data
  • Fraud detection
  • Types of fraud
  • Rules and regulations
  • Criminal investigations

List of Common Courses

Auditing Course

This introductory course teaches students how to evaluate financial and accounting data against supporting calculations to determine if there are any discrepancies or irregularities. Individuals learn about risk assessment, audit evidence, materiality and documentation. Audit reporting responsibilities are discussed. Other topics include audit sampling and internal control.

Forensic Accounting Course

This course provides an understanding of a forensic accountant's non-traditional role in assisting with the discovery of accounting information for regulatory or litigation purposes. Students learn investigative techniques, fraud prevention and detection, asset recovery and the uses of technological tools. Individuals learn how forensic accounting is used for criminal and civil litigation.

Fraud Investigation Techniques Course

Students discuss the skills and tools needed to conduct a basic fraud examination. This course explains topics such as evidence gathering, interviewing techniques, information sources, tracing illegal transactions, covert operations and reporting procedures. Individuals review occupational abuse and fraud, which also covers fraudulent statements, asset misuse and corruption. Students review actual schemes used by business executives and officials to commit fraud against their companies.

Law, Ethics and Fraud Course

This course introduces the professional standards used in forensic accounting. Students learn about the legal ramifications of financial crimes such as bank fraud, consumer and credit card fraud, financial statement fraud and stock market manipulation. This course discusses federal criminal and civil regulations and procedures, basic rules of evidence and expert witness testimony. Also explored are the ethical considerations related to the liability of auditors and forensic accountants.

Computer Forensics Course

Participants discuss the use of digital forensics in the creation, recovery and analysis of financial and accounting data. This course teaches students how to perform investigations involving data systems, mobile devices, networks, e-mail and the Internet. Students learn how to collect, handle, examine and document digital evidence. They learn how to participate in criminal investigations and in subsequent litigation.

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