This is it: I Passed the CPA Exam

11 Jun 2014

NINJA CPA Review, NINJA Hall of Fame

Tori is a NINJA CPA Blogger.

It has been approximately a month since my last post. I can honestly say that a lot has happened in the last 25 days.

To briefly recap, I sat for FAR on 5/5, the day after my husband had a cycling accident and broke his femur, which required emergency orthopedic surgery to repair. Then exactly 14 days later, I sat for AUD, on 5/19.

I received news that I passed FAR in the wave 2 score release in May. These were the last two sections that I needed to pass in order to not lose credit for BEC, which I passed in Q3 of 2012.

There you have it, you are all caught up.

Just kidding. This weekend at 7:00AM on Saturday (I’m in an indie state- CA), I rolled over, grabbed my laptop, which I strategically laid next to the bed the night before, re-logged into the state board website and the most amazing thing happened.

First, I had a mini heart attack because the score was an advisory score, (we have to scroll down to the bottom to see this in CA). When I rubbed the sleep out of my eyes and squinted (glasses not on yet) it became clear.


I jumped out of bed, found my husband who was already up and just showed him the screen. I couldn’t speak, I was already in tears—tears of joy. I couldn’t believe what was happening.

My husband, knowing something good must be going on just asked, “Did you pass?” All I could get out was a nod and a sigh. I’m welling up with tears as I write this post 2 days later.

Still in shock I snapped a quick pic and sent it to my best friend from college and asked for a reality check. Granted it is literally now 7:03 in the morning on a Saturday, he quickly responded that it is true, I passed AUD and I am done with the CPA exam.

I literally sat in bed for a good 30 minutes more just staring at the screen in shock. I even refreshed the page a number of times to ensure that nothing would change.

This is it. I have defeated the beast, the CPA exam can be beat. Like many other candidates, I’m sure, I felt this day would never come. I am still in shock right now.

So what now?

Well, I have been asking myself this question since I finished my exam on 5/19.

You may have guessed based on your past experience, this is my last post as a CPA candidate/blogger for Another71. There are a number of topics I could address in this post and I really think one statement will best serve all candidates going through the exam process—> “Stick with it and give it your all”.

That’s right. If I have learned one thing in my journey to pass the CPA exam it is that perseverance and hard work will pay off.

You may remember from previous posts that I have felt every possible emotion that comes with failing a section and while I am still to high on success to even bother to relive those negative emotions, I can simply say that those emotions are okay.

Just do not give up. When you receive a sub 75 score, take an honest inventory of your knowledge of the material.

Were you afraid or intimidated by the dang AMT? Were you shying away from learning the recognition and disclosure rules for bonds and other long term debt? Maybe you just couldn’t wrap your head around what makes an opinion modified/adverse and/or when you are supposed to disclaim or not even accept the engagement.

Some of my colleagues ask me what they should focus on as they prep for the exams. When attempting to tailor my response without divulging specific exam materials, I always end up summarizing that they need to know the material that is in the CSO, plain and simple.

There are no short cuts.

It is like learning the alphabet or the multiplication tables from grammar school, you need to know the dang rules and how and under what circumstance to apply the rules.

What happens if you do not know the rules? You do not get above 75 on the exams. Now I know that I certainly felt like there were times it seemed to be a lottery and every exam attempt was just a $250 ticket that I lost on every time I failed.

Maybe, to an extent, I still feel the same way. Maybe this is me rationalizing my failures; looking back, it sure made me feel better at the time.

I guess the moral of the story here is to work hard. Say no to the fun things your friends and family are doing (it’s only temporary). Get rest when you need it. If you are lucky like I am, you will have the support of your employer and this is very important, DO NOT GIVE UP.

With hard work and perseverance, you can make it through the CPA exam. Will you get practice questions wrong? Yes, everyone does. There will come a time in your exam prep where you get more right than you get wrong, this is a sign that you are getting better.

When you are at the point that you get angry when you get one question out of 20 wrong, you are doing great, strive for that level of proficiency and you really cannot go wrong.

Now, get off this site and get back to studying. You can do this. Just keep working hard.


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Leave a Reply


Tiphaine Justice 10 years ago

I really needed this right now! I'm struggling with the FAR section. I'm a terrible test taker (anxiety)so recalling and applying what I've learned while not throwing up are my biggest hurdles on exam day. I was contemplating whether or not to continue until I read your post. I'm glad to know I'm not alone in my struggles. I will continue and pray for the shock you encountered. Thank you so much for sharing!

Mike 10 years ago

Any advice to us that are studying for the AUD section?

Tori 10 years ago

Hey Mike, Do tons of MCQ and practice the SIMS, more specifically practice using the authoritative literature to find the answers to your SIMS. If this is not your first time, focus on your weaker areas first and really nail down that material. The rest will be easier and boost your confidence as you get closer to exam day.

Melantha 10 years ago

Congrats Tori!!! I just passed audit and your post is giving me life as I prepare for REG. For those taking audit do MCQ till it hurts. Focus on the ones you get wrong and KNOW the theory like the back of your hand. Practice simulations because they really test your knowledge. Good luck to everyone!! We can do ir