June 12, 2020
It used to be that only the best students passed the CPA exam. In fact, past CPA pass rates have been as low as 30 to 35 percent. Today, however, with all of the study resources available, pass rates are as high as 46 to 60 percent, which should be good news for anyone currently studying for the exam. With all of the study guides, practice exams, video lectures, and other tools, just about anyone can prepare to successfully pass the CPA exam. There are certain steps you can take to maximize your chances of passing the exam, which is what this article is all about.
Attitude is Everything
Attitude really is the primary key to passing the CPA exam. Think that you can pass the exam successfully and the chances are good that you will. This is where taking a good CPA preparation exam such as the MDS CPA review course comes in. From beginning to end, a good preparation course will give you not only the knowledge but the attitudinal skills to take the exam.
Plan the Work and Work Your Plan
Preparing yourself to pass the CPA exam is much like losing weight. Knowing what you need to know is common knowledge, but the secret is making a plan to make sure you know what you need to know and following a plan. You might encounter obstacles along the way, but it’s how you meet and overcome those obstacles that determines your eventual success.
Set Goals and Strive to Meet Them
Passing the CPA exam is much like the old joke about eating an elephant. How do you do it? One bite at a time. By its very nature, the CPA exam is already broken down into more manageable pieces with its four “legs”: auditing and attestation, business environment and concepts, financial accounting and reporting, and regulation. You can make studying for these modules even easier by breaking them down into daily, weekly, and monthly goals. For example:
Daily goal: read for 30 minutes and watch 30 minutes of video lectures. Answer 50 sample test questions.
Weekly goal: read for 5 hours and watch two hours of video lectures. Answer 150 sample test questions.
Monthly goal: read half of the exam textbook. Attain a score of 85 percent or higher on practice quizzes and watch eight hours of video lectures. Answer 400 sample test questions. Prepare to take the CPA practice exam within 60 days.
Be Convinced You Can and Will Pass
What is the difference between those who pass and those who don’t? Simply stated, those who pass not only think they can, but they work themselves into the white heat that they will pass the exam. Passing the CPA exam is more than just possessing knowledge. Instead, passing the CPA exam is a matter of wanting to earn as good a score on that exam as you are able to. When you play sports, how do you do it? Whether you are playing chess, darts, soccer, baseball, or any other sport, you are playing to win, not just to show up. To pass the CPA exam, you must prepare to win, not just to take an exam.
Before you finally take the CPA exam, reward yourself. That’s right. Even before you take the exam, take in a nice dinner and a movie or some other entertainment you and a friend or loved one enjoy. After all, you have done the work and you are prepared to win.