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Ethics FAQs

Below are questions and answers related to creating and obtaining a VBOA-approved ethics course for 2021. If you have any further questions, please contact boa@boa.virginia.gov.

Q: How does the application process work?

A: There are two steps to the application process.

  1. First, you will complete the VBOA-approved ethics course provider application and agreement and include all required files/attachments. Once submitted, the VBOA will review your application and ask any additional questions, if needed. Once approved, the VBOA will email you to indicate your first-round approval. This means you will be sent the VBOA Segment, the written script and a helpful reference guide. The VBOA Segment must be integrated into the beginning of your ethics course.
  2. Second, to make sure the VBOA Segment is integrated into the beginning of your course properly, you will need to send the VBOA the entire course in the format you will present it to course participants. The VBOA will quickly review the entire course to verify the VBOA Segment is correctly placed at the beginning of the course. This is the second-round confirmation.

After the second-round confirmation, the VBOA will send notification via email that you are officially approved as a provider for the 2021 VBOA-approved ethics course and course and contact information will be posted on the VBOA website. Please check the website to make sure course information is represented accurately.


Q: How do we obtain the VBOA Segment to integrate into our supplemental ethics course?

A: When you apply to become an approved provider, you will include an outline and detailed description of your entire course as well as the actual course material (e.g., the entire on-demand video, self-study booklet or video, etc.).

Once the VBOA approves your first-round application, we will send you the VBOA Segment, the written script and a reference guide. You will then integrate the VBOA Segment into your course, and send us the completed course to review and confirm. You will certify not to share the VBOA Segment video with any other providers.


Q: Does it cost anything to obtain the VBOA Segment?

A: No, it does not.


Q: I know we need to include the VBOA Segment at the beginning of the course. What do we do with the written script and reference guide?

A: You can simply provide the written script and reference guide, if needed, to course participants.


Q: When can I submit my provider application?

A: The initial application window will open November 16, 2020, and end on January 29, 2021. During this time period, VBOA staff will prioritize the review of applications.


Q: If I apply after the initial application window, will my course still be considered?

A: Yes, you can apply at any point after the initial application window. However, there is no guarantee on how quickly VBOA staff will be able to review and approve your course after the initial window ends.

Q: When will the listing of approved courses be complete?

A: The listing of courses is ever changing. Courses will continue to be approved and posted on the VBOA website throughout 2021.


Q: We intend on offering the course in more than one format – for example, an on-demand webcast and an online self-study. Do we need to submit an application for each proposed format?

A: No, you only need to submit one application. However, you must include the detailed description, outline, and entire course in each format in your single application. Each proposed course will receive individual approval. 


Q: Will written/self-study courses be considered for approval in 2021?

A: Yes. If you become an approved ethics provider for the 2021 calendar year, the VBOA will provide the VBOA Segment (video is approximately 12 minutes), entire written script of the Segment, and a reference guide, which includes helpful information. 

As a provider, you would be required to develop any slides, freeze frames, etc. from the VBOA Segment video. This developed written/visual material must be included in the second-round confirmation of your course.


Q: My course has officially been approved by the VBOA and posted to the website. What now?

A: You must collect all course evaluations from participants and send them (in batches, not individual evaluations) to boa@boa.virginia.gov within 60 days of receipt.


Q: Can we use our own course evaluation template and questions to give to course participants, or do we have to use an evaluation form provided by the VBOA, like in 2020?

A: For course evaluations, you may use your own template and questions, but you must also include a link to the VBOA-approved ethics course 2021 evaluation in your course.


Q: What is the VBOA-approved ethics course 2021 evaluation?

A: The VBOA-approved ethics course 2021 evaluation is a brief survey directly from the VBOA. It includes two questions regarding the VBOA Segment and the 2021 ethics change, which places no limit on the number of providers that can offer a VBOA-approved ethics course.


Q: If my provider application and completed course is approved, can I sell the course to other groups for use?

A: Yes. Once your course is officially approved by the VBOA and posted on the website, you may sell the course to other groups for use.


Q: What am I responsible for if I sell my approved course to other groups for use?

A: If you sell the approved course, you are responsible for providing the certificate template to the purchaser to ensure that all participants receive the appropriate documentation. As the seller, you are also responsible for collecting all course evaluations from your purchasers to forward to the VBOA.


Q: Do ethics course instructors have to be Active Virginia licensed CPAs?

A: No, they do not.