While there’s really no free, full course lunch with all the trimmings when it comes to no-charge uniform CPA examination review materials, you will be able to find one pretty good bite out of the apple and some tantalizing appetizers.
Bloggers on popular CPA exam forums say that www.cpareviewforfree.com offers a good supplement to expensive test prep courses. While CPA Review for Free gives you 2,500 multiple choice questions for practice free of charge, there are some limitations with these freebies. CPA Review for Free tells you only the percentage of the answers you get correct. The website does not give you a diagnostic report or tell you which questions you missed so that you can pinpoint problem areas.
If your missed percentage underscores that you need help in clarifying accounting concepts, you’ll have to find additional support elsewhere. Also, the website does not offer software that simulates the actual exam-taking experience as most test prep courses do.
Paid Review Courses Offer Free Demos
But you do get access to 2,500 multiple choice questions at no charge at CPA Review For Free. The questions are not the AICP-released questions you’ll find offered by paid review courses; they’re longer and tougher. Many CPA exam candidates find them a refreshing change-up from their immersion in AICPA-released questions.
You may find recent AICPA-released questions helpful. While the questions are free, you will have to go to paid test prep courses for answers and explanations. CPA exam review providers offer these in their practice question databases. An internet search using key words “AICPA released questions” will find a number of these sources.
There’s more free help available. Conducting an online search “CPA review free download” brings up a number of paid review courses offering free demos for limited periods, and these can provide valuable practice. You’ll also find several offerings for free study guides and free review materials. Some of these are from the biggest and most recognized companies offering test prep courses.
AICPA Provides Chance to Get Acquainted
The American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) gives you a free tutorial on the CPA exam and a free sample test. These are valuable ways to get acquainted with the mechanics of taking the test, but they do not provide review material.
AICPA warns that their tutorial does not address exam content and advises the tutorial is no substitute for review material. With the historical pass rate averaging about 45 percent to 50 percent per section, you’re going to want to explore more extensive review opportunities.
The AICPA sample test is a multiple choice testlet and a simulation testlet for each of the four sections of the test. The multiple choice testlet for each section includes five test questions. The simulation testlet for Auditing and Attestation (AUD), Financial Accounting and Reporting (FAR), and Regulation (REG), includes four sample tasks. For the Business Environment and Concepts (BEC) section, the simulation testlet includes two sample tasks.
Also available from AICPA at CPA Examination Content are Content and Skill Specification Outlines (CSOs/SSOs) of the content covered in all four sections of the examination. While these are not review materials per se, the documents offer a detailed outline of the subject matter on the exam. Use them in tandem with review materials and practice questions.