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    I came across this site not too long ago and thought it was a great idea. Thanks Jeff for creating a great site.

    Now to my issue, I have never taken any section of the test before. I am just out of college and have started at a medium sized accounting firm. No one in the office has taken the CPA exam recently and has not offered much guidance. My first question is how cold you possibly take so many sections in 18 months? I see some people on the site taking upwards to 12 tests… I just cannot imagine, I am trying to make a schedule, but it seems worthless. Any advice on where to start, what exam first, etc…

    Thanks in advance!!

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  • #206514

    your best bet will be to buy Jeff's book about what you need to know about the CPA exam. check the teaser out at


    Thanks Swiss I was just about to do that actually! I hadn't noticed it before.


    I just graduated in May as well, and am starting work in November. I thought the same thing.. 18 months seems hard. But then, the company I'm with encourages us to finish withing 8 months of graduation (which is January). Haha now 18 months sounds great to me.

    Everyone has a different technique that works for them, and everyone has different restraints on their schedules so I think this answer is different for everyone.

    Anyways, in my opinionm I would say to schedule FAR & REG (they have the most material to study) for the first month of a testing window (october, january, april, or july) because you get the whole month before it to study because there are no exams. Then schedule BEC & AUD for the second month of a window (november, february, may, august).. This way, if you pass them all, you finished in 6 months. If not, there is plenty of time from the first test you passed. I'm scheduling them at the end of the month so I get the most time out of the month

    So it'd be like: (example)

    End of July – REG – study all june and until your test in july. (7-8 weeks)

    End of Aug – AUD – study whats left of july, and until your test in august (4-5 weeks)

    End of Oct – FAR – study all september, until your test in october. (7-8 weeks)

    End of Nov – BEC – study whats left of october, and until your test in november. (4-5)

    -Then, say you pass your first test in July, then you have until January of the next year, which gives you like at least 7 more windows to re-take any exams you failed, and plenty of time to re-focus.

    That is similar to my plan.. not the order of the exams.. but the concept of it. I'm just trying to take them as close as possible but with enough room to study for that particular exam, and then if I fail any (which i did.. BEC), there is plenty of time before any expire. Some people say they can take two different exams in the same month.. but this seems to make the most sense for me. I'm sure people will agree or disagree with me, but everyone is different. Figure out a study pattern that works the best for you.

    Sorry for writing a book. haha


    Well, not 7 more windows, lol I mean about 7 more open months.


    Here ya go…

    AUD - 79
    BEC - 80
    FAR - 76
    REG - 92
    Jeff Elliott, CPA (KS)
    NINJA CPA Review

    Thanks KT That actually makes sense. I didnt think I would have enough time to take one at the beginning of a window and then study and take another at the end of that window. But 4-5 weeks should be plenty. I noticed you are trying to not take ay during tax season either… Well good luck! glad to know that there arepeople in the same spot!

    And thanks Jeff!


    Yeah, everyone says that generally 4-5 weeks is good for BEC & AUD, and a few more for FAR & REG. It'll be hard to get enough hours in while working, its just a matter of commitment. Work- then straight to the library! With 100% commitment it is definitely possible. Good luck once you start!


    I did it in 6 months, it's totally possible. This was my schedule (roughly):

    March 1 – April 20: Study for FAR

    April 20: FAR Exam

    April 21 – May 30: Study for AUD

    May 31: AUD Exam

    June 1 – July 20: Study for REG

    July 20: REG Exam

    July 21 – Aug 30: Study for BEC

    Aug 31: BEC Exam

    AUD and BEC take considerably less study time than FAR and REG. So you can do 2 per window. I am not saying that this is easy, but it's doable, I am proof! 🙂


    I would start with FAR or REG since they seem to be the most difficult. Remember it is only 4 sections…doable in 18 months if you concentrate on that. I am not sure about how it will be while working for an accounting firm. It's a lot of work to study for these exams, but if you are determined you can do it!!!

    I took the exams numerous times also. I was so close so many times.

    FAR: 69, 69, 75

    BEC: 69, 73, 79

    AUD: 71, 83

    REG: 73, 85

    A lot does depend on the study material you are using. I passed BEC & REG with Becker, but I couldn't pass FAR & AUD. So I took Jeff's advice on here and bought Yaeger's AUD & FAR. The instructors for Yaeger are excellent and it doesn't expire after 12 months. So that's a plus. My Becker did expire and I did end up getting an extension on AUD & FAR, but I decided to use Yaeger instead. I was very impressed with Yaeger and highly recommend them.

    Good luck to all of you! DON'T GIVE UP!!! You can do it, just need the material that will work for you. It feels awesome once you pass!

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