Squashing CPA Exam Rumors – October 19, 2017

On October 19 from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. CDT, Eletta, Exam Security Specialist, and Penny, Manager, Candidate Care, NASBA, answered questions during a Facebook Chat about the dos and don’ts of CPA Exam testing and processes. Below, you will find questions from Facebook Chat participants and the answers Eletta and Penny provided. For any additional questions, please email NASBA at [email protected] or [email protected].

Is it true that the testing site and/or date effect your score?

Your testing site and the date you take your CPA Exam has no bearing on score result.

So taking it during busy season when less people are taking it wouldn’t matter?

No. Taking the Exam during the “busy season” will not affect your score. It will be easier to find a seat though!

Why did the test center move away from paper to a white board?

It was for security reasons.

Could you elaborate? What’s the security concern with paper?

It’s easier for someone to leave the test center with paper than with a noteboard.

Do you know if there’s any plan to release BEC TBS/simulation questions to help CPA candidates practice & prepare for this part?

Please contact the AICPA at [email protected] for this question.

Can we bring snacks/water? Do we bring our own pencil & paper or is that provided at the testing center?

You can bring snacks/water, but you must leave them in your locker. You may not bring your own paper/pencil.

I just took a beta version of the 2018 CPA exam with the new format. Do you know when the AICPA plans to officially release this in 2018?

The new software for the Uniform CPA Examination is currently projected to be launched on April 1, 2018.

Can you tell us what was different/new about the 2018 format? What changes can we expect?

From what we know from AICPA, the Exam will have a modernized format with new functionality and integration of Microsoft Excel.

Is there a way to get familiar with a new software that is going to be used from 2018 when testing site is not available in the state where I live?

We would suggest emailing [email protected] to find out when sample tests may be released or contact the AICPA.

How are TBS scored?

All the scoring is done by the AICPA. Please contact the AICPA for more information: [email protected]

Why does each center seem to have their own policy of handheld basic calculator? Some centers will provide one if candidate request upon arrival, some centers have never heard about providing basic handheld calculators. Should it be a uniform rule among all centers nationwide?

The policy is uniform across the board with all test sites and they should all provide calculators when asked. You can ask the staff to look at the client manual for instruction.

Are the testing windows for 2018 released?

The AICPA releases this information and will hopefully post it soon!

Are there any mock exams posted by AICPA? Any other resources to ease my preparation please?

Yes! You will find them here: http://www.aicpa.org/…/TutorialandSa…/Pages/default.aspx

You mentioned the presence of a locker! Do we have to register for one?

Registration is not required. You will be provided a locker once you arrive.

If you aren’t graded in comparison with your peers and it is computerized, why don’t you receive your score immediately?

We advise you to check out this page about CPA Exam scoring: http://www.aicpa.org/…/Psychometrics…/Pages/default.aspx

The computer can’t compute the weighted average on the spot given which questions have which values?

That is correct.

Will the testing windows eventually block out the entire months of March, June, September, and December again (as opposed to the last 20-21 days)?

As of now, we have not heard from the AICPA about any changes.

How big is the test bank that the AICPA selects from to put on the exam and how often are MCQs updated/ changed / or discontinued? Thanks.

That information is generally not disclosed.

Are there are comprehensive regulation practice exams provided by NASBA or the AICPA that are a similar size and format as the actual exam?

The AICPA has tutorial and sample tests available: http://www.aicpa.org/…/TutorialandSa…/Pages/default.aspx

Have China and India been approved for testing yet?

To our knowledge, they have not yet been approved.

Do you know why some Prometric testing center provides an actual 10-key calculator and other Prometric location does not? My preference is the actual 10-key on hand vs. calculator feature on the exam screen.

Across the board, all test centers are required to provide a hand-held calculator upon request. If they don’t, ask them to refer to their client manual.

Is there any truth to the rumors that the NASBA/AICPA is considering extending the 18-month window and/or allowing test takers to retake the same exam within one testing window?

That’s not true. Only the state board of accountancy has the authority to extend the 18-month window.