Date of Completion

Spring 5-2-2014

Thesis Advisor(s)

Stanley Biggs

Honors Major



Since the implementation of Sarbanes Oxley and the establishment of the PCAOB in 2002, more procedures have been set in place to ensure auditors and accounting firms are adhering to rules and regulations to avoid scandals or misuses of reporting that occurred during the Enron, World Com and Arthur Andersen era. Although these regulations were set in place to ensure auditors perform with utmost care and responsibility, there is still uncertainty in regards to the level of professional skepticism auditors’-use when gathering evidence and evaluating client financial statements. This paper will begin by giving a general overview of professional skepticism and how it is defined in current accounting regulations. I will also discuss what critics may call the root causes that lead to a lack of professional skepticism. I will then analyze the responses from a questionnaire distributed to professionals and suggest further areas of research.