CPA Review Courses: 7 Things You MUST Know
CPA Review courses are a huge investment (outside of NINJA, of course). 😀
Here are seven things to know before you purchase a CPA Review course.
1: The Cost of CPA Review Courses range from $67/month to $3,499
Self-Study? Online? Subscription? Lump-Sum? There is a wide range of choices, features, and costs with CPA Review courses.
CPA Review Course ComparisonDisclosure: This site owns NINJA CPA Review and has affiliate/promotional partnerships with the courses on this page. No course "ranking" implied.
|✅ AICPA Course||✅ AICPA Course||✅ AICPA Course||✅ AICPA Course||✅ AICPA Course||✅ AICPA Course|
|✅ Course Videos||✅ Course Videos||✅ Course Videos||✅ Course Videos||✅ Course Videos||✅ Course Videos|
|✅ Cram Videos||✅ Cram Videos||✅ Cram Videos||🚫 Cram Videos||🚫 Cram Videos||✅ Cram Videos|
|✅ Testbank||✅ Testbank||✅ Testbank||✅ Testbank||✅ Testbank||✅ Testbank|
|✅ Simulations||✅ Simulations||✅ Simulations||✅ Simulations||✅ Simulations||✅ Simulations|
|✅ Adaptive||✅ Adaptive||✅ Adaptive||✅ Adaptive||✅ Adaptive||✅ Adaptive|
|✅ Course Book||✅ Course Book||✅ Course Book||✅ Course Book||✅ Course Book||✅ Course Book|
|✅ Study Notes||✅ Study Notes||🚫 Study Notes||✅ Study Notes||✅ Study Notes||✅ Study Notes|
|✅ Audio Course||🚫 Audio Course||✅ Audio Course||✅ Audio Course||✅ Audio Course||🚫 Audio Course|
|✅ Month to Month||✅ Unlimited||✅ Unlimited||✅ Until You Pass||✅ Unlimited||✅ Unlimited|
|✅ 30-Day Returns||🚫 30-Day Returns||🚫 30-Day Returns||✅ 30-Day Returns||🚫 30-Day Returns||🚫 30-Day Returns|
|✅ Live Tutoring||✅ Live Tutoring||🚫 Live Tutoring||🚫 Live Tutoring||🚫 Live Tutoring||✅ Live Tutoring|
|➡️ $67||➡️ $2,499*||➡️ $2,999*||➡️ $1,999*||➡️ $2,999*||➡️ $3,499*|
2. The Cheapest CPA Review Course is NINJA
The cheapest CPA prep course is our company, NINJA CPA Review. It's a complete course that gives you everything you need to pass the CPA Exam:
- Textbook to learn the CPA Exam concepts
- Review videos to reinforce the concepts and hit trouble spots
- Adaptive Learning Testbank that knows what you know (and what you don't)
- Study Notes for review
- Audio Course so you can study on the go
- Live Tutoring 4x a week
- AICPA-Licensed content
Since NINJA switched to the subscription model, numerous companies have come out with a kind-sorta-not-really product like NINJA.
They advertise a low monthly fee (like NINJA), but they make you stay until you've paid thousands of dollars (unlike NINJA).
NINJA Monthly is not financing and there's no commitment.
It's a subscription – like Netflix.
You can start…cancel if you want…start again…cancel again, etc.
NINJA is the only CPA Review company that will start and stop as you wish, with no penalty.
Don't just take our word for it:
Investopedia published an unbiased review of the various CPA study courses and listed NINJA as a top-rated CPA Review course and named us a Top-5 Prep course and 🏆 Best Price.
“Why We Chose It: Ninja CPA Review works nicely as an inexpensive supplement to an online course. This is an efficient studying tool that can be used as your main course but serves best as an auxiliary study aid with an excellent online support community.”
– Investopedia: The 5 Best CPA Prep Courses of 2021
3. The Best CPA Study Courses for 2021 depends on you
Which CPA Review courses are the best? Easy. There is no “best course.” The real question is: “which review course is best – for me“. It really comes down to:
- Budget (will you still be paying for this course 15 years from now?)
- Learning Style (talking head? powerpoint? self-study?)
- 5 a.m. Test (will you want to study with this course at 5 a.m. or does the instructor annoy you so bad, you want to stay in bed?)
4. Ignore Advertised CPA Exam Pass Rates
There are high CPA Exam pass rates out there advertised by some CPA Review courses. The first time pass rate for the CPA Exam is around 30-ish%. The pass rate for any given CPA Exam section is around 50%. You will see some review courses advertise a rate nearly double that of the AICPA, and I'm not privy to their data, so I don't know how they've arrived at those numbers.
Nearly all – if not all, CPA candidates use more than one study source for the CPA Exam. If you visit the another71 Forum and get help on a homework question, technically, you've used more than one study source. I don't know how anyone can know what their exact pass rate would be. Another curveball is that CPA candidates are more likely to tell you they passed than they failed. When you pass – you shout it from the rooftops.
When you fail, you lock yourself in your spare bedroom and eat 5 gallons of ice cream and don't talk to anyone for three days.
That's a long-winded way of saying – don't factor advertised pass rates into your buying decision.
5. Check for CPA Review Discounts
In CPA Review land, the price is rarely “the price”.
Most review courses run discounts and sales throughout the year and you can usually find a coupon code floating around.
6. Add a Second CPA Testbank? Good Idea.
While all AICPA-Licensed CPA Review courses get their MCQ from the AICPA, the differences among courses is notable.
Adding a second CPA test bank is a good idea. Here are five reasons why:
- The AICPA doesn't provide answer explanations, so each course writes its own answer rationales.
- When accounting or tax standards change, each course makes editorial changes to those base AICPA MCQ, adding further differentiation. For example, when the Revenue Recognition and Lease standards changed dramatically for FAR, the questions underwent a material change.
- Most CPA review companies also have their own homegrown, instructor-written questions – particularly over topics lightly covered in the AICPA-released questions. A good example of this are QBI tax questions from REG when TCJA became testable. The review courses had to write their own QBI questions.
- Course software and analytics are not created equal. People love the NINJA MCQ adaptive learning and RECON feature 🙂
- You will likely start memorizing your course's questions – particularly if you're studying for a retake. This is bad. You're headed for another 71. It's time for a fresh look at the questions.
7. Free Trials Tell the Real Story
Considering a course? Check out their Free Trial. Be sure to also use the search function in your favorite online CPA study groups and forums and get the good, the bad, and sometimes, the ugly.
NINJA Free Trial
Can I send you NINJA CPA Review Materials that will help you…
- Find The Time To Study
- Know What To Study
- Spend More Time with Friends & Family
- Retain & Recall Information Better
- Get Higher Scores
- 4-Week NINJA Study Planner
- 7-Week NINJA Study Planner
- E.L.L. Method™ Planner
- N.I.N.J.A. Study Framework
- NINJA Notes & Audio Downloads
- NINJA MCQ Free Trial
Incredibly useful study tools. I spent 90% of my study time using NINJA materials.
“Thank you Jeff!! It definitely would've not happened without your MCQs… Thank you!! NINJA MCQ – A must! Solving through all of the MCQ, understanding solutions, and adding new information nuggets to your notes — absolutely critical.
With the NINJA Notes, I printed out the notes and used them as a knowledge check closer to the exam. Information is high-level, so you can quickly run through and get a comfort level on what you should go back to review in detail.
NINJA Audio is nice to use during the commute or if you are an auditory learner. The Audio MCQ is nice to keep you engaged.”
– Olga Timirgalieva, Elijah Watt Sells Award Winner (and NINJA)
“After taking three exams I was in reach of the EWS award. I knew that I needed a high score on my last exam to get it, so I decided to use NINJA MCQ and practice tests to supplement my Becker Materials.
The questions and practice tests were extremely useful, they helped me find some weak spots I didn’t even know I had and gave me the extra practice I needed to get my best score of any of the exams.”
I thought it was set up really well and had a different approach which definitely helped.”
– Brian Wright, Elijah Watt Sells Award Winner (and NINJA)
PS – Check out our Free Downloads