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Learn More For CPA Exam Pass Rates

CPA exam pass rates can almost be considered an Urban Legend. We’ve all heard the story…”My friend took the exam 8 times and NEVER PASSED!!”

Friends, family members and co-workers have probably told you they “heard” that CPA exam pass rates are below 10% or that the CPA exam is the hardest licensed exam in the country.

Instead of listening to all the hear say, here are some facts:

Less than 20% of all test takers pass all four parts of the CPA exam the first time.

Pass rates by subject:

Business Environment and Concepts 45%
Audit and Attestation 43%
Financial Accounting and Reporting 42%
Regulation 41%

* source: AICPA website

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The good news is that pass rates have risen since the computer based testing was implemented. The AICPA speculates that this is because students find it easier to study one part at a time and they are waiting to take the test until they are more prepared since testing is offered on a regular basis.

I realize that after reading the less than stellar pass rates for the CPA exam, you may feel defeated before you even start. My advice…ignore them! This is a hard test to pass, but with a dedication to studying and motivation to conquer most people WILL be able to pass this exam. Also realize that the career rewards are much greater because it does take effort to pass! If everyone could pass it, every accountant would be a CPA.

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I was definitely intimidated by the low pass rates and all the horror stories my co-workers told me about taking the exam. When I look back on it now, I realize that the intimidation factor did wonders for my score performance. I studied more than I would have otherwise and ended up with an average score of 87%!

Use the pass rates to motivate yourself to work harder than the 80% of people who do not pass the first time. You can do it!