ISA 315 (Revised)


The objectives of the project are to:

(a)   Propose revisions to ISA 315 (Revised), establishing more robust requirements and appropriately detailed guidance to drive auditors to perform appropriate risk assessment procedures in a manner commensurate with the size and nature of  he entity. It is anticipated that these revisions will focus on enhancing the auditor’s approach to understanding the entity, its environment (including its internal control) and risk assessment activities in light of the changing environment.

(b)   Determine whether and how ISA 315 (Revised), in its organization and structure, can be modified to promote a more effective risk assessment.

(c)   Propose consequential amendments to other standards that may be necessary as a result of revisions to ISA 315 (Revised) (such as ISA 220, ISA 240, ISA 330 ISA 540 and ISA 600).

(d)   Determine what non-authoritative guidance and support tools should be developed by the IAASB, or others, to supplement revisions to ISA 315 (Revised) thereby aiding its effective implementation. Non-authoritative guidance and support tools may include International Auditing Practice Notes (IAPNs), Staff publications, project updates, or illustrations / examples to provide assistance on how ISA 315 (Revised) could be applied, in particular to address concerns by auditors of SMEs.

Project Stages




The Board discussed a full version of the standard reflecting the new drafting approach that was broadly supported with the Board at its March 2019 meeting. The Board broadly supported specific aspects of this approach, in particular the enhanced flow and understandability of the requirements, as well as the separate presentation or signposting of examples and scalability paragraphs in the application material.

Notwithstanding broad support for the overall approach, concern was expressed about the change to move certain material (primarily criteria or terms previously included in requirements relating to the understanding of the system of internal control) to definitions. It was also highlighted that this could cause challenges in navigating the standard. The Board was presented with a revised approach to drafting the requirements for the understanding the system of internal control, which reconnected the definitions, and the Board broadly supported moving forward.

Specific other areas discussed and agreed include revisions to the definitions of significant risk and the inherent risk factors, specifically in relation to how fraud is presented within the inherent risk factors.


Thank you for your interest in our publications. These valuable works are the product of substantial time, effort and resources, which you acknowledge by accepting the following terms of use. You may not reproduce, store, transmit in any form or by any means, with the exception of non-commercial use (e.g., professional and personal reference and research work), translate, modify or create derivative works or adaptations based on such publications, or any part thereof, without the prior written permission of IFAC.

Our reproduction and translation policies, as well as our online permission request and inquiry system, are accessible on the Permissions Information web page.

For additional information, please read our website Terms of Use. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.