Chapter 4: Taking the Examination

This chapter is concerned with developing an examination strategy (e.g., how to cope with the environment at the test center, time management, etc.).


Your performance during the examination is final and not subject to revision. While you may sit for the examination again if you are unsuccessful, the majority of your preparation will have to be repeated, requiring substantial, additional amounts of time. Thus, examination strategies (discussed in this chapter) that maximize your exam-taking efficiency are very important.

Getting “Psyched Up”

The CPA exam is quite challenging and worthy of your best effort. Explicitly develop your own psychological strategy to get yourself “up” for the exam. Pace your study program such that you will be able to operate at peak performance when you are actually taking the exam. A significant advantage of the computerized exam is that if you have scheduled early in a testing window and do not feel well, you can reschedule your sitting. However, once you start the exam, you cannot retake it in the same testing window, so do not leave the exam early. Do the best you can.

Lodging, Meals, Exercise

If you must travel to the test center, make advance reservations for comfortable lodging convenient to the test center. Do not stay with friends, relatives, etc. Both uninterrupted sleep and total concentration on the exam are a must. Consider the following in making your lodging plans:

1. Proximity to ...

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