NASBA says no more paper and pencil for CPA Exam

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    Did you guys get the e-mail from NASBA that they’re getting rid of scratch paper and pencils for the exam?

    “Effective January 1, 2013, in lieu of scratch paper and pencils, candidates will be provided with two double sided, laminated, colored sheets called “noteboards,” as well as a fine point marker for making notations.”

    Hmm. What are your guys’ thoughs?



    I just saw that!! What is this?!



    My thoughts good for trees bad for CPA candidates.



    I think it’s pretty terrible….screw the trees, I want my paper and pencil!

    I am testing the first week in January, so I’m curious as to how this will go, especially since I’m taking BEC and am expecting a lot of calculations (which I like to write a lot for)



    I just got the email too. I personally think it is ridiculous, wouldn’t it cost more to use those “noteboards” instead of recycled paper and pencil. Also, the likely hood of getting a marker that runs out of ink is higher then breaking a pencil point.

    They should also have announced this now and start this new process during the middle of 2013 or in 2014.

    I am just extremely bitter about this new change since now I got to purchase some noteboards and practice with them during my practice exams…



    So you make your notes with marker instead of a pencil, so what. Why did NASBA even take the time to send an email out on this?



    Wow this is ridiculous!


    I’m assuming its the kind where you can wipe off the marker to clear space?



    This is awesome. All I ask for are a few different colored markers (so I can draw pretty pictures when I have a brain freeze). Black and white is so 1970.



    If you think changes like this are for your benefit. You are mistaken. My guess is there is much less space to write. Markers will dry out. This equals time away from the actual exam. I don’t see the problem with the paper and pencil currently in use. A fine tip marker? For the first few users. Then it will be like taking a test with a crayon.

    If the pass rates are too high just lower the number that pass. These stupid changes benefit no one and just piss people off.



    Makes no difference to me. The only exam where I even touched the paper was BEC.



    Having used the whiteboard on my GMAT, I can say with certainty this is terrible. Whiteboards and formulas don’t go well together. This makes the exam unnecessarily more difficult, and that’s not an exaggeration.



    Does anyone know why they’re doing this? Another security measure?



    Will I be given fine point markers or fat highlighter type of markers? How the hell am I going to draw a small t account with a highlighter? This is ridiculous



    I hope they give us tissues or something to clean the laminate off when we run out of space.



    Part of the reason I don’t like this is because I was using the front page of my scratch paper booklet as a sheet where I would write down all my formulas and mnemonics, etc. I highly doubt there will be room for that now 🙁



    just got the email. wtf man. did you guys read the part where it says, “colored” laminate noteboards? At my last exam, I had pink scratch paper and i was struggling to see what the hell I was writing. I gave a feedback for them to use white paper instead and now I get this stupid laminate shiet. ugh…so annoyed. I wouldnt wear white that day or any light clothing because you’ll end up with markers all on your cuffs. They really should ask the test takers their opinions before implementing. really doesnt make sense.



    Sounds to me like they are trying to eliminate the ability to write formulas down and mnemonics before the test, by giving us less space to write on. They are only giving two “noteboards” and marker. And in order to get more you have to turn in the original two issued, doesn’t sound like we will be able to erase anything before turning them in to the testing center. I use a lot of paper and space when writing, so this is a problem for me. Audit won’t be so bad, but REG is coming up too.



    Wait and see what this is actually like before freaking out. Likely not even a big deal. If you can wipe them off yourself it will eliminate the need to ask for more paper.


    Sandra’s back … everyone mind your Ps and Qs. 🙂



    Phil Yaeger is probably laughing even harder about his whiteboard joke right about now.



    I’m concerned about limited space to have your “brain dump” before you start the exam


    Mr. Happy

    Just got this too. Don’t like it. Have they actually caught people sneaking notes out? Given all the cameras, I don’t see how that would be possible. Anybody trying that would have to be a moron.

    What if the Prometric people don’t erase the noteboards properly. I don’t want to see any left over markings that might influence me on even a subconscious level. If the Prometric staff isn’t checking for missing paper when people check out, I wouldn’t trust them with whiteboard erasing either. Just seems dumb.

    I asked “Why” on Twitter. I wonder if I will even get a response. It seems everything in accounting is about transparency except when it comes to the CPA exams. They never explain why they are making changes, just that they are making them.

    So what is next? We have to take our exams in the nude?



    Does this mean I can now claim that I took the exams in “The paper and pencil days…….” 😉



    @mla lol


    Back when I took the exam…we had to write written communications for THREE exams…had to use paper and pencil instead of nifty little wipe boards…AND…the forum didn’t exist. 🙂


    I took an exam on Dec 8, and they were using these for other people’s test (non CPA-ers)….I thought it was just their specific test needed them but if I remember correctly it was graph paper and they said they don’t erase. If you ran out of room, you had to come get more from them….

    But…this could have just been for that specific exam…seemed like a bunch of engineers or construction people



    Can’t wait to use the allotted break opportunities for a quick marker huffing session to pick me up.


    Mr. Happy

    @jeff @mla @jmenard LOL

    I don’t want people to be able to cheat, but there comes a point where the security measures do more harm than good to the honest people. People are going to try and cheat no matter what you do. Why punish the good guys?



    Frankly, When it comes to ridiculous security practices, I’m more bothered by the fingerprinting. That is quite an invasion of privacy if you think about it. It’s not as if we are being given top secret government clearance, joining the military, or going to prison. Why would they need to document our fingerprints? It doesn’t even proove our identity as they have no database to compare it against (unless you’ve been arrested).

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