An investigation of multidimensional knowledge structure and computer auditor performance

Mary B. Curtis, Ralph E. Viator

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


This study assesses the internal control knowledge structure dimensions and antecedents, as well as the relationship between structure and performance, for a set of computer auditors. The study extends prior research in two ways. First, in an effort to investigate the impact of multiple knowledge structures on auditor performance, a multidimensional model is employed through the use of multidimensional scaling (MDS). An added benefit of this methodology is that it facilitates the evaluation of the extent of auditor knowledge structure. Second, a more complete understanding of the influence of experience and education on auditor performance is gained through investigating the role of knowledge structure as a mediator. Results suggest that computer auditors employ both control objective and transaction flow structural dimensions simultaneously, as well as a third dimension not previously identified, which represents the degree of computerization of a particular procedure. Transaction flow was identified as the dominant structural dimension for most computer auditors. Computer auditor knowledge structures were found to be associated with college education and prior computer information systems (CIS) work experience. The extent (weight) of auditors' control objective and transaction flow dimensions was related to their performance on an internal control review task. However, no significant interactions were found.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)82-103
Number of pages22
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2000


  • Computer auditor
  • Internal control
  • Knowledge structure
  • Multidimensional scaling
  • Performance


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