Auditor skills, traits and knowledge evidence from Tunisia


  • Imen Thabet Faculty of Economics and Management - University of Sfax - Tunisia





Business Risk Assessment, Cognitive Skills, External Audit, Technical Skills.


Several researches have sought an understanding of personal and psychological characteristics contributing to auditor expertise in decision making. The motivation for this study is issued from the need to improve understanding of auditor skills and characteristics in the step of the expression of professional judgment.

This paper aims to looking for and to understand auditors’ skills, traits and knowledge contributing to business risk assessment ability. A survey questionnaire is used as a stimulus to gather data from practicing auditors listed on the Roll of the Tunisian Chartered Ac-countants Order (in 2012). Firstly, survey participants are asked to cite skills and abilities that they consider as important in the step of risk assessment and next to rate the importance of 20 skills using the Likert-type scale.

The results reveal two groups of skills, traits and knowledge which are classified as the most important. The first group gathers three technical skills: Subspecialty Knowledge, Academic Training and World Knowledge. The second group clusters four cognitive skills: Ability to know what is relevant, Decision making ability, Problem solving ability and Assuming responsibility.

This study may be a benchmark for future researches which attempt to increase the understanding of the composition of skills, traits and knowledge associated with technical, behavioral and cognitive attributes which are necessary to assess auditee business risk.


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