One of the most difficult things after taking the CPA exam is simply waiting for your testing results to come back from the AICPA. It seems like it takes an eternity for hear back from them on whether you passed, failed, or just had something wrong with your exam. Every CPA candidate goes through the same thing after he or she takes the test. They wonder what the possibilities are that they failed the exam because of a simulation or because they didn’t remember the difference between accrual accounting and cash basis accounting. Ok well let’s not go that far, but you get the point. Waiting for your CPA exam score release dates can be a killer. There’s no way around it. You just need to not think about it.
Probably the best way to not worry about if you passed or failed your last CPA exam section is to start studying for the next one. Go back to your review materials and start working on your next exam section. There’s no better way to be productive than to keep knocking out one exam section at a time.
The review course by gleim cpa gives a comprehensive plan for preparing for any section of the test. They even offer a guide on how to get the most out of their course and how to study in general. Believe it or not learning how to actually study is one of the most important parts of actually passing the CPA exam on your first try. It’s all about being able to understand what the AICPA is going to ask and interpret what they are looking for in an answer. If you can do that, you will be able to pass without a problem.
Remember, don’t go crazy waiting for your test scores to be published. Keep your head down and stay working and you won’t have a problem passing all of the sections one right after the next.
Many people don’t end up passing the certified public accounting exam because they just don’t put in enough effort. They think because they have a college degree they know everything there is to know about accounting and don’t have to work in order to pass the exam. This idea simply isn’t true. Even if you did learn a lot in college and actually retained most of it, you will still need to prepare for the exam. There is no doubt about that. Once candidates finally realize that they need to put in the time and effort into studying for the exam, they usually fall into two main pitfalls.
The first main study problem that people typically fall into is lack of focus. They might try to study for hours at a time but are completely unfocused and not really paying attention to anything they are doing. This can not only hurt your score, it will take up about 50 times more of your time than if you just focused and got the studying out of the way. I have found one good solution for this problem. Get an interesting review course. The Yaeger CPA review prep courses have in-depth lectures and other activities that keep you engaged and focused on what you are supposed to be studying. This helps you get through the material faster.
The second main problem I see with most candidates’ study patterns is they don’t set a schedule. As simple as this sounds, a study schedule can make the difference between passing the CPA exam with flying colors and failing it by a few points. You can always try to create your own schedule and stick to it, but I think it’s easier when you are accountable to someone for the amount of time you put in. The 2015 becker cpa review prep course does a great job of creating a schedule with their in class lectures and teaching style.
Do yourself a favor and test out these two resources. They could make the difference between falling ill to the biggest study problems I see and actually passing the exam.
For anyone who is currently studying for the CPA exam or looking to take it in the future, you know how difficult the exam can be. The national average pass rate is only in the 50 percentile. That means that more than half of the candidates will fail the exam every single quarter. Some people have argued that having an exam this difficult it too restrictive and doesn’t allow average accountants to become certified public accountants. Others think that these strict requirements actually help the profession because it only allows the best of the best into the industry.
Both of these arguments have merit. On one hand, the exam needs to be difficult in order to restrict the people who shouldn’t be certified in the first place. This barrier to entry weeds out the runts and people who aren’t disciplined enough to take on the exam. On the other hand, does the exam need to be this difficult. Do we as a profession really need to fail half of the candidates?
The answer is yes. The test does need to be that difficult because it teaches candidates the skills of discipline and control. Will everyone remember everything they learned while they were studying? No. But they will remember how they got there. They will remember the drive, determination, and discipline that it took to sit down and study for 3 hours a night. This skill can only be taught through experience and it gives the profession a better reputation and standing in the community.
In short, the exam is tough. Man up and do what it takes to pass. Once you have, you will feel the sense of accomplishment that all of us CPAs have after we passed. Good luck!