Message Font: Serif | Sans-Serif
 
No. of Recommendations: 0
Hello,

I am in the midst of taking my CPA exams. 3 weeks ago, I sat for the FAR section. I found it very challenging, and unfortunately I ran out of time on the last segment. Consequently I do not know whether I passed. Today, I sat for the BEC section which was comparatively easy, and I am confident I passed.

Could any of you offer judgements as to the relative difficulty of the four sections. I have heard that FAR is the hardest, and Auditing being the easiest.

Thanks!

JBN2007
Print the post Back To Top
No. of Recommendations: 1

Hello,

I am in the midst of taking my CPA exams. 3 weeks ago, I sat for the FAR section. I found it very challenging, and unfortunately I ran out of time on the last segment. Consequently I do not know whether I passed. Today, I sat for the BEC section which was comparatively easy, and I am confident I passed.

Could any of you offer judgements as to the relative difficulty of the four sections. I have heard that FAR is the hardest, and Auditing being the easiest.

Thanks!

JBN2007


I think a lot of that will depend on your background. I started taking the exam after a year at Deloitte, in Audit. So, Audit was the easiest for me, followed by BEC, FAR, and then Reg. I would imagine though, that Reg might be consider pretty easy if someone was in Tax.

Everyone in Audit at my level generally thought Audit was the easiest and BEC followed. But the next two could vary depending on the person....
Print the post Back To Top
No. of Recommendations: 0
Could any of you offer judgements as to the relative difficulty of the four sections. I have heard that FAR is the hardest, and Auditing being the easiest.

I would agree that it depends largely on your background. I took the exam in July 2004, fresh out of college, and (mostly) before I started at KPMG*. My background was in banking, so I already knew a fair amount about economics and the American financial system. For me, then, BEC was by far the easiest. On the other hand, I was never a big fan of taxes, so I expected REG to be the hardest.

As for test day, I think it comes down to preparation. Since I'd already pored over every molecule of my study prep materials, and I'd answered over 2,000 questions, I was the zen master of accountancy.

As for my opinion of easiest and hardest sections...
Hardest -> REG, FAR, AUD, BEC <- Easiest
My scores, however, reflected both my interest in the subject, and the time I had invested in each section:
AUD 97 / FAR 93 / REG 87 / BEC 86

--
Raven, CPA
* I took my last section during my first week on the job. So for all intents and purposes, I had no experience.
Print the post Back To Top
No. of Recommendations: 0
And if it helps any, there's evidence to suggest that the less-competent tend to overestimate their performance, and that the highly skilled tend to doubt themselves more.

http://www.damninteresting.com/?p=406
http://www.apa.org/journals/features/psp7761121.pdf

--
Raven
Print the post Back To Top
No. of Recommendations: 0
Thanks for the feedback. I am fairly new to accounting, so I don't have any deep experience in any one area that might make one section a cakewalk. Right now I'm diving into the Regulation study materials.

Contract law, shudder...

JBN2007
Print the post Back To Top
No. of Recommendations: 0
I think we've mentioned it on this board before, but if there's one thing I'd advise, it's answering questions. It's certainly wise to read through your textbooks and your study materials, but you also need to learn how to read and dissect the questions, lest you get caught up in the terminology. Most study guides feature questions taken from old exams, or written by people who used to write exam questions, so they're pretty similar in form and focus to the actual questions you might encounter.

--
Raven
Break a leg!
Print the post Back To Top
No. of Recommendations: 0
I would echo Raven's comment by use of a software. I took the exam a couple of changes ago, but from my 'green' staff members I hear the approach appears to be the same. Buy Gleim or Micromash computer programs and answer questions until you're blue in the face. (Or some other comparable program.) While some people I know today try to study essay type questions, etc, I know my experience and that of two of my current staff who recently passed realized that answering the MC questions enabled them to learn enough to answer the essays without 'studying' how to write. Best of luck!!!
Print the post Back To Top
No. of Recommendations: 0
I would echo Raven's comment by use of a software. I took the exam a couple of changes ago, but from my 'green' staff members I hear the approach appears to be the same. Buy Gleim or Micromash computer programs and answer questions until you're blue in the face. (Or some other comparable program.)

I had access to MicroMash, but I didn't really like it. Over the course of my studies, I sent four or five corrections for incorrect references, improperly applied or outdated rules, etc. My budget required a lower-tech approach:

http://tinyurl.com/2o2zox

I took those books to the library, or to the Barnes & Noble Cafe, and answered questions until I thought my brain would melt. Then I got a cup of coffee, took a break, and jumped right back in.

Any good software or books will have simulation questions as well; it's not a bad idea to try those out, to get a feel for how they're structured, but I think that the knowledge transfer between "write an unqualified audit opinion" and "explain the independence requirements for retiring partners" simulation* is pretty limited.

--
Raven
* Again, these are just off of the top of my head. I barely remember what my actual simulations were. And even if I did, I couldn't tell you.
Print the post Back To Top
Advertisement