DONE: I Passed the CPA Exam!

27 Sep 2011

NINJA Hall of Fame

I can now officially say that I am done taking the CPA exam! I found out last week that I passed REG and FAR!

I began my journey with the CPA in November of 2008, so this has been a long time coming. I have taken each test at least twice, and I took FAR 4 times, so I definitely know the struggles. I am here to tell you that if I can pass, so can each one of you still on your journey.

I thought I would take a second and share some of the tips I have picked up along the way.

• Don’t give up!!!! Believe me, there have been many, many times when I just wanted to throw in the towel and give up on becoming a CPA. Every time I got 74 after 74 on my tests I felt like crying (and sometimes did), but I picked myself back up because I figured that if I was investing so much of my life and money in this, I wasn’t just going to quit.

• Give yourself enough time to study for each test. Follow the NINJA Study Plan (free). It is set out very well and if you stay on track you will have plenty of time to study. I was notorious for scheduling back to back exams so I would have taken two tests each testing window.

I don’t recommend this. I never gave myself quite enough time to study how I wanted to study. It happened to work this time but maybe if I had spread them out (at least REG and FAR) I would have passed them sooner.

• If your study materials aren’'t working for you, drop them and get new ones. Don’t just stick with a study material because you paid all this money for it, the truth is, you may end up spending even more in extra testing fees and still end up switching.

• Before each test, do something that relaxes you, whether that is working out, going out with friends, etc. For me I went and got a massage the day before each test which helped relieve some of my anxiety.

So congratulations to all of you who passed during this last window and good luck for those of you who still have tests left! I know you can do it. Feel free to leave me any questions on what worked for me or didn’'t work for me for studying. I would be happy to help or even if you need some encouragement!!

Leave a Reply


JoMarie 13 years ago


Jeff - 13 years ago

Well done, Valerie!

Allyson 13 years ago

After 3 years, can you even imagine what to do now?? You have your life back!!

Vik 13 years ago

Hello VAlerie, I am struggling with REG too... I am using CPAexcel now. What do you recommend for REG? thanks,

Neil 13 years ago

Were you studying while working? What time of the day did you study morning or evening?

Angie 13 years ago

Congrats!! I know I've felt like quitting at times, but I know deep down I'd regret it one day. I can't wait to be able to say, I'm done.

Cynthia Velazquez 13 years ago

Congratulations Valerie! I'm taking FAR on Oct 21st. How many hours did you study a week? How did you prepare for the FAR exam? Any suggestions/advice would be great!!

Valerie 13 years ago

Vik- I used Becker and Yaeger for REG. I had no luck with Becker, I used them twice and didn't really come close to passing. Then I switched to Yaeger and got a 74 the first time and got a 76 this time. I really like the Wiley books (which is what Yaeger uses) but after studying with Roger for FAR his teaching style was really straight forward and easy to undersand and he uses Wiley too. Hope that helps!! Good luck!!!

Valerie 13 years ago

Neil- Yes I was working the entire time I was studying for the CPA exam. Which was defintley hard to do! I would wake up about an hour early and study some in the AM and then I would come home from work and try to study at least 2 hours a night. Then on the weekends I would try to get in 6 hours a night. Not fun. I also just had a husband and 2 dogs which still was tough but I think it would have been much tougher if I had kids. I totally give props to those out there who work and have a family!!

Valerie 13 years ago

Angie- I tried to get in around 25 hours per week of studying. Some times this proved difficult with working full time and trying to have at least one night completley off from studying (so I didn't go crazy!) FAR was my Mt. Everest, I passed on my 4th try with my last two attempts coming it at 74 both times! With FAR the one thing that helped me pass this last time is I took a full week to concentrate on the sections where I struggled. I re-listened to lectures an re-read my notes because I figured that those were the sections that was keeping me from geting that one extra point. I really really like Roger for FAR he explained things in a way that just made sense to me that I hadn't gotten with Becker or Yaeger before. Don't give up! Good luck on your test!!!

Valerie 13 years ago

Sorry Angie, the comment above was for Cynthia. But good luck on your upcoming tests :)