According to individuals who have taken the CPA exams, the Financial Accounting and Reporting (FAR) test demands the greatest time management. The FAR exam is the second longest CPA test with a length of four hours. But, the amount of information seems to present a challenge for test takers despite the available time.
FAR consists of three testlets, which are groups of 24 to 30 multiple-choice questions (MCQs). In addition, the FAR exam has two simulations following the MCQs. The passing rate for the FAR exam is only 48.5 percent. This is the second lowest among the four sections of the Uniform CPA Exam. The FAR exam is an especially troubling part of CPA testing because individuals fail to properly manage their time during both study for the exam and taking the exam.
CPA candidates that report passing scores on the FAR exam have emphasized their study strategy. First, they devoted six to eight weeks for the lessons in online study review. Then, they spent at least another month working on sample questions. Confidence is gradually generated from multiple sessions over several weeks with a practice CPA exam.
Interestingly, individuals that passed the FAR exam report the test as not particularly detailed. Because of the extensive volume of information, the questions seldom entail much depth. For this reason, taking plenty of time to completely review CPA study material assures that that no factors are overlooked. The right study course is therefore an essential ingredient to passing the FAR exam on the first attempt.
The largest challenge for individuals taking the FAR exam is reportedly managing time during the test itself. Too many candidates struggle to complete FAR. This explains the low passing rate, particularly for first-timers. Allocating time between the testlets and the simulations is vital. The testlets have several calculations that should come naturally for those who are well prepared with practice exercises.
Completing each testlet in about 30 to 35 minutes is optimal. That leaves about two hours for the simulations – or a little less. Rushing through the MCQs is not necessary. The questions are sometimes very wordy. Reading carefully assures that calculations are approached correctly and smoothly. Devoting approximately 50 minutes to each simulation renders sufficient time to provide full responses under each tab.
However, this is only a guideline. The most important element to passing the FAR exam is avoiding panic with time constraints. A CPA review course is aimed at delivering that confidence. The key process is repetition, especially with sample questions. An important step is completing an entire practice exam in one sitting. This causes an understanding of individual strengths plus measurement of distinctive personal timing for completing each FAR exam component.
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