Joe is a NINJA CPA Blogger.
As I began my CPA journey, I was inspired and ready to take on FAR. The original plan was to take the exam around April 1st. I began studying in the beginning of January.
Many people told me that this was too much time to take to study for the exam, and in retrospect, I would tend to agree. I burned out too quickly, started putting off studying and fell back into my old ways. I never applied for an NTS, which was another reason I began studying casually, and not seriously.
I gave myself an open deadline. I found that this is not the way to prepare for the exam.
There was however some method behind my madness. Sometimes life does get in the way. As important as it is to get your CPA, always make sure that you are doing your absolute best job at work, and not neglecting your responsibilities.
I have a high level accounting position in my organization reporting directly to the CEO and CFO. In the past few months, our organization merged with a sister branch and all departments consolidated. I took on much more responsibility and my hours steadily have increased.
I was completely and very exhausted for the past month as my workload has doubled and management pressure has increased. I am actually very glad that I did not schedule my exam.
It was however not a total loss. I did in these past few months watch all of my accounting lectures and took notes. I read and re-wrote my NINJA Notes. I have been doing some Wiley MCQs. (Has anyone tried the new Wiley 2014 Test Bank for the IPAD? AMAZING!)
I have been able to reacquaint myself with Governmental and Non-for Profit Accounting as well as some other areas I have not seen in a very long time.
I am now hoping that the workload at work will decrease enough to where I can put some more effort on studying. I have a plan now. When I feel like I have my window, I am going to take the following steps:
1.) Get my NTS.
2.) Join the FAR test forum to hold myself accountable and get moral support.
3.) Set up a 6-7 week game plan to study and review all materials.
4.) Begin a routine that will force me to study.
5.) Listen to NINJA Audio, do a ton of MCQs and Read NINJA Notes.
6.) Pass this exam!
I will let you all know when I schedule my exam and when my clock starts ticking. Wish me luck!
Cassandra is a NINJA CPA Blogger.
I began studying for REG with great apprehension. I perceive it to be the hardest exam for me personally, and for some terrible reason, I saved it for last. However, things are going swimmingly well so far!
I have made it through my entire review book, taking detailed notes on each chapter. This is the foundation of my study process. Now, I’m devoting an entire day to each chapter.
Yesterday and today, I’ve been working on the two chapters that deal with individual taxation. Fortunately, I had a great tax professor, so he really prepared me well for this portion of the exam. Although it’s been almost three years since his class, I still remember his tips and tricks.
Like I said, I’m devoting one day to each chapter. I plan to do the following for each chapter: read my detailed notes, complete all MCQs and Sims, and review flashcards. Of course, as I go through the MCQs, I take notes on the questions I miss or jot down important “fact nuggets” I come across.
I also incorporate NINJA Notes and Audio into my daily study regimen. So far so good!
At the beginning of my studying, I was upset because my software license for my review course expired. (My friend, who is taking the exam along with me, also experienced this in our studying for REG.) I worried, trying to figure out my options. If you are in this situation, or might be soon, listen up!
I finally called my review course company. They were very helpful and agreed to extend my license until my REG exam, since it is a minimal amount of time. I advised my friend to do the same. This is the important part: we use two completely separate review courses, but both companies were willing to work with us.
If you’re down to the wire, call your review course company! We might forget it as we shell out our hard-earned money to them, but they are actually here to help us!
Less than a month until I sit for REG. I plan to get through all the MCQs and Sims, then plan to review for 2 weeks. I’ll give an update at review time. In the meantime, good luck with studying, especially those who are anxiously awaiting their scores!
Ben is a NINJA CPA Blogger.
Hello again my fellow CPA NINJA assassins! That’s right, I said assassins. I ran across an article last week that enlightened me a bit.
When you see a ninja today they are traditionally garbed in a close fitting black costume. (And when I say “today” I am of course referring to Halloween. Please do not go dressed up as a ninja to your test. Even if you are a true ninja I am pretty sure they would call the cops as you started wielding your blade. This would also mean you definitely would not be testing! Just a thought.)
Anyways, apparently ninja’s used to dress in blue. It seems that it was better for blending into the dark background. Fact or fiction? I am not sure, but good to know when I go on the prowl in the future. You say you have never seen me on the prowl? That’s right … I am a real ninja!
Ok, all funny stuff aside. I took audit this last week. What a test! (But I say about the same thing after every test.) If you have been reading my past articles you should know that I had a little less time getting ready for this exam that I would have liked. I still went in feeling pretty ready.
The first set of MCQs were pretty good. I marked about 4 of them I was unsure of. I moved onto the next set of MCQs and noticed an increase in difficulty. I think I marked around 7-9 of those. On the third set I marked around 7, and that was when I stopped marking questions.
Either this means I was grossly unprepared or I got some really tough ones!
I felt pretty good going into my sims. I felt like I did really well on my MCQs and I was confident in my ability to tackle some sims. When I got to the sims I started looking through them for something I felt I could tackle first. After scanning them all, I realized I was screwed.
I knew the material, but not in the minute detail they were asking. I thought to myself “Are you kidding me???” I either wanted to bawl like a little baby or throw my monitor across the room. The longer I worked on the sims the more I wanted to throw the monitor. I thought I knew this stuff better!
Well, I was able to tackle the research pretty quick and I did my best with the information I was given. I think on this exam that there is a lot less calculation than memorization, as opposed to other sections like FAR and REG.
I did my best to select answers that matched the questions and I can only hope I did well enough on the MCQs to make up for my difficulty on the sims. But in all reality, who leaves their test thinking “Man, I nailed that test!”?
I have decided to wait for my score this time. I have been pushing pretty hard lately. I had to sit for AUD or my NTS would expire. Now I play the waiting game. If I pass I will move onto my last section, BEC. If not I will study again, as the information is still fresh, for my re-match with AUD.
Well, it is time to go. Good luck my fellow ninja assassins! Never give up and never surrender!
Tori is a NINJA CPA Blogger.
I hope everyone’s end of the testing window is going well.
Today is the day I sit for AUD for the second time, and I hope to pass it two times in a row. I lost credit for audit in November and today is the day I hope to get it back.
Audit prep has been a bit hasty, not much different than the first time I took this section. I literally had 17 days to prepare for audit and fortunately I feel reasonably comfortable about the work I have put in as I get ready to sit for the section.
To recap, I took the last week off from work and have literally been a NINJA Note rewriting, re-reading, MCQ answering maniac. I have answered 1729 multiple choice questions and re-written the NINJA notes several time ( I lost count).
Last night, I set a goal for myself that I would make the progress bars in my Wiley test bank all turn green before I stopped for the night. Well I can safely say I met the goal I set for myself. Also, I haven’t had a practice session score below 80 since 2/25 and over the last 2 days most scores have actually been 90, 95, or 100.
Hopefully my methodology of drill and kill on the multiple choice questions pays off. I think that answering multiple choice questions en mass in the days leading up to an exam is crucial to success and is highly beneficial if, for every question, you think about what rule the correct response is related to, instead of just answering the answer you have memorized.
Sure you have to memorize the rules, but don’t fall into the trap of memorizing the answers to the practice questions and expect the same questions on the exam. That can mess you up.
So what else is left. Oh FAR, I took FAR on the tenth of February, but have not checked my score yet. I plan to check this afternoon after I finish AUD. So more on that to come next week I suppose.
Well, best of luck to all of you NINJAs as we push through the final days in the testing window, and into wave 3 score release.
Finally, you may have seen on the news, and since I am a resident, I can confirm—It is raining here in southern California. This doesn’t happen very often and to be honest it is nice once in a while to clean up the roads and such. I know folks in other parts of the country have that dirty white stuff on the ground. Although we don’t really know what that is here in So Cal.
Nonetheless, happy studies and score release. Catch you next week.