how much harder is FAR compared to AUD

CPA Exam Forum FAR FAR Review how much harder is FAR compared to AUD

This topic contains 18 replies, has 16 voices, and was last updated by  LittleMoe 5 years, 5 months ago.

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    just give a multiplier based on your own judgment if you can, for example FAR is 2.5X harder than AUD

    and provide an explanation if you'd like stating the amount of study time, which chapters, etc to support your multiplier. i just want to get a general consensus as to what to expect from FAR after finishing this AUD exam, and these seem to generally be the most difficult and easiest of the exams thanks guys



    It's hard to just say “it's 10x harder”, or “5x harder”. Bottom line is that it's significantly harder for most people.

    It's not that the concepts are overly difficult, but because there are just so many topics to remember compared to AUD. The amount to study/remember is just insane for FAR.

    I took FAR before AUD, and by the time I did take AUD, I had accumulated 1 year of really good audit experience at my firm, thus it helped make the AUD exam much easier. Strangely enough though, I got 1 point higher on FAR than I did AUD.

    But if I were to just put a multiplier on it…I'd say it's between 5x-10x harder than AUD.



    Most people who have experienced at least studying for FAR and AUD will probably say FAR is more difficult. Then again, there are others who cannot pass AUD. Everyone ranks degrees of difficulty differently. However, based on the sheer amount of information in FAR, it can be a bear. Then again, AUD is mostly about remembering rules and which rules apply to which type of Attestation/auditing engagement. FAR is based much more in calculations, and for many of us accountant type minds, remembering formulas is easier.

    But let me give you the best advice…it doesn't matter which one is harder because you do not get to pick and choose between which parts you want to pass. To be a CPA, you've got to pass all four parts within an 18month window, plain and simple. The real strategy is how long do you want to study and which parts should you take first. I suggest really thinking back to college, and study how you studied then. Do not lie to yourself if you are a procrastinator and say you will study 2 hours a day for 3 months. For me, I need to schedule an exam and put the pressure of knowing a test is upcoming and then I can force myself to sit down and learn in a much more compacted schedule of about 4 weeks.

    Of course, if you're trying to judge how hard each part will be to you, think about how you did in your college courses. If you aced auditing and struggled a bit through intermediate/advanced accounting…then far will probably be much more difficult. For that reason, you may want to take it first and hope to get it out of the way, or you may wait until last so you can tell yourself its the last part and give yourself more confidence.



    I should add that pass/fail rates of all four parts are very close to each other. So one may think FAR is much more difficult compared to AUD, but in true test situations its only a few percentages off for FAR being more difficult.



    For me, FAR was easier than audit. I passed FAR first time and it took me five times to pass audit. But, when I had passed far it was before IFRS. I did lose credit for it so I have to start over with it.

    yes there is a lot more material for FAR, but for me it was easier.



    AUD goes a lot quicker than FAR because there are very few, if any, calculation problems. Some people are better with theory type questions (i.e. me!) and others are better at grinding out computations. I studied FAR for 4 months and still didn't feel ready on exam day, yet I studied AUD for 2 months and was ready to take the exam after a little over a month. Everyone's brain works differently and they're better at certain subjects. AUD came pretty easily for me, but BEC on the other hand is very difficult. In fact, I think it's 10x harder than FAR. While I don't feel the material on FAR is that much harder than AUD, it takes a whole lot longer to study because of the calculations and the sheer volume of material. Good luck!



    AUD was my worst test. FAR was easier compared to AUD in my personal experience.

    That is why you can't base it off of others experience.

    A good example is that I see people struggling with REG on here a lot. REG was my easiest exam (highest grade with least amount of prep), then BEC, then FAR an then AUD.

    I am a tax accountant though. So someone who is an auditor might find AUD to be their easiest. It just depends.




    AUD is theory……..memorization will work.

    FAR has more calculations…… all depends on how good you are with financial accounting.

    For all the exams, repetition is the key. Watch the lectures, take notes, read the book and work lots of MCQ's. How long do you spend studying for each exam depends on your familiarity with the material and how comfortable you feel with it.

    Good Luck!!!



    I've never taking Audit, but in my opinion, Audit is about 20x harder then FAR. I mean come on, you gotta know FAR and AUD for FAR.



    for AUD*



    AUD doesn't even compare to FAR. The amount of information in far is just crazy. I'd be willing to take AUD any day over FAR.


    1911 CPA

    I found AUD to be much easier than FAR! AUD really only requires the understanding/internalization of maybe 10 pieces of logic and a handful of memorized lists (ie, elements of a QC system). Prior to sitting for the exam, I had only taken a single intro-to-Audit course. After about a week of struggling to gain an understanding of the logic behind AUD questions, everything clicked, and I found the material pretty easy (walked away with a 97).

    In contrast, I studied quite a LOT for FAR. The amount of material to cover is substantially larger, and there are way fewer logic based questions than found on AUD.



    If you can pass FAR, you're pretty much a CPA already.



    3x more frustrating (I hate calculations) and prep time. I found audit the easiest. I never had a ‘wtf' moment when I didn't understand something. I'm not an auditor either.



    I've only taken FAR and AUD and I got the same score on both of them. I don't know what that means, but I DO know that studying for audit was 2X more annoying than studying for FAR.

    I may just have been burnt out from studying for FAR, but I had a hard time concentrating on audit topics. I was all over the place. So personally, I think they are exactly the same in difficulty, but FAR will require a lot more hours of study time.


    Both FAR and AUD have their easy and hard topics, FAR is more difficult because its volumn is almost as twice as AUD's. Even the difficulty of the topics are similar in average, the volumn of FAR just makes it harder to stuye. In addition, the newly added IFRS doesn't help either. When I studied the traditional GAAP, my mind was set and programmed to process in a GAAP way…the IFRS just twists my little mind.



    thanks guys this has been helpful, after i pass AUD on 5/31, i'll have just over a year to complete FAR and REG so i'm just going to pace myself and absorb the material rather than taking those exams with uncertainty. i feel like those two are beast and may give me the most difficulty and are most valuable content-wise so i don't want to rush.

    by the way, some might ask why i took BEC and AUD first if i consider them the easiest, because i started the exam during busy season and wanted to get them out the way and have the pleasure of saying i passed a section lol. plus it looks good on the resume passing any section if you are job searching. but i'm a pretty focused person and good test taker as well so i'm not too concerned with FAR and REG being too much difficulty, just have to put the time in.



    I took AUD first because I thought it would be my hardest, I had an awful professor for this course. I spent about 6 weeks studying. I felt well prepared for the exam. With it being my first I had nothing to compare it to and walked out of the testing center feeling awful, only to find out I had gotten an 85. I expected FAR to be a similar experience – HA! Pushed my exam date back 3x, spent almost 11 weeks studying. I don't think there was a way for me to feel prepared going into FAR. Personally I am so glad I didn't try FAR first, at least passing AUD made me a little more confident. There is just so much to retain, and when they add IFRS on top…my memory is just not that good. I think FAR was about 10x harder to study for, I was very discouraged and hated to study (not that way for AUD). As for the exam itself, I don't think the difficulty was much different. (let's hope my grade will reflect the same)



    My experience has been similar to lynsey's. I spent about 6 weeks studying AUD and passed. Started the FAR material and was completely overwhelmed and discouraged. Now that I am about a month into FAR, the pieces are starting to fall together. I am glad that I took AUD first because I don't know how well I would have done getting overwhelmed with the FAR material from the start. I have found FAR to be a lot harder than AUD and am putting in a LOT more hours every week to try to tame this beast on 5/29.

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