There are several tips and methods available that will teach you various ways for passing the CPA Exam. While some of these are beneficial, there is no way to pass the CPA Exam without studying. One method that is the most tried and proven technique to secure your success: studying! So, our tip on how to ace the CPA exam is to study hard. While this may appear to be a straightforward task, it may be difficult to do. This is especially true if you’re a busy student, or a working professional with other obligations.
As a result, it’s critical to keep in mind that arranging your study schedule is as vital as taking the Exam. Here are some things you can do to ensure that you create a solid study plan and, more importantly, stick to it.
Recognize the Time Commitment Required
To pass the CPA Exam, the AICPA advises that applicants spend 300-400 hours overall. This usually translates to 2-3 hours of study time for every hour of teaching time. These 2-3 hours will be spent reading the content, but also looking through actual AICPA-released questions/solutions. These practice exercises include multiple-choice questions (MCQs) and task-based simulations (TBSs). This time also includes working through the subject until you fully grasp and feel comfortable with the idea.
Please keep in mind that this time pace is an estimate. Depending on your educational and professional experience, you may take less or more time to complete certain topics than others.
You Only Have 18 Months to Pass
For many applicants, this may seem like a long time. However, those months may go by quickly. This is especially true if life events get in the way or if you fail key aspects.
Other candidates have reported losing credit for one, two, or even three portions of the Exam. They then have to retake those parts. Allowing this to happen to you is not a good idea. The CPA Exam is a significant time and energy commitment. Make the most of it.
Make a Study Schedule and Stick to It
One of the other ways on how to ace the CPA exam is by making a study schedule. Set a reasonable time period for yourself to pass the CPA Exam. Is it going to be three, six, nine, or twelve months? Look at what’s going on in your life to figure this out, and plan appropriately. It’s time to get down to business now that you’ve established a deadline.
Use our study tools to break down the full CPA Exam into a timetable that works for you. It informs you what to study each day and, if necessary, includes days for breaks. They’re also adaptable to your lifestyle, so you can see what daily, weekly, and monthly objectives you should be achieving.
Remember not to be excessively ambitious. You may set yourself up for failure and a downward spiral of feeling unmotivated if you do. Instead, give some wiggle space in your study schedule. This will be helpful to account for unforeseen life occurrences or something as basic as needing an additional day to completely absorb stuff you haven’t seen before. Maybe you are getting burnt out and just need a mental break – that is ok too!
What Works For You?
You should keep in mind that everyone learns and studies differently. The sooner you discover out what works best for you, the better. Find out when is the best time for you to study. Also, determine how long you can be totally productive before the material starts to blur.
Figure out which method works best for you: answering practice questions after viewing the lecture or studying the material before practicing. Use all of the resources accessible to you to gain a deeper knowledge of a topic if you’re having trouble with it. Finding out which study strategies are best for your learning curve can help you succeed since the course and your study habits will work together to support one another.
Stick to it!
The best piece of advice we can give when it comes to how to ace the CPA exam is to stick to your study plan. It’s all well and good to make a study plan, but it’s useless if you don’t keep to it.
Do whatever it takes to keep on track on a daily basis. Allowing family/friends to know not to interrupt you during specific times of the day, removing distractions, organizing your home/study area, or conducting weekly meal prep to save time are all examples of this.
You may also create a reward system for yourself if you meet specific areas of your academic objectives. All of these factors might encourage you to keep going until you finish your last portion at the Prometric Center. “If you study, you will pass,” Roger Philipp, CPA famously asserts.
This saying holds true if you stick to your study schedule and don’t procrastinate or deviate. In summary, the only way to pass the CPA Exam is to study yourself until you understand everything or invest in a reliable CPA prep course for full-on assistance and guidance.
Acing the CPA Exam – Summary
There are many tricks and tips out there answer the question of how to ace the CPA exam. The three broad topics discussed here will surely help you along your way. Remember, if you are wondering how to ace the CPA exam, be sure to first understand the time commitment. Once you do this, and realize you only have 18 months to pass until you start losing credit, then it is time to create you actual study plan. Creating a study plan will only help you pass the CPA exam if you stick to it!
For more CPA exam related tips and study materials, be sure to check out the CPA prep section of the site.