The arrival of your first taking CPA exam day eventually sneaks up on you following a period of intense study. You learned all the information and practiced relentlessly with sample questions. Now, you’re almost ready for an examination.
Preparation for the CPA exam requires more than completion of CPA exam review. It also demands developing an ability to function under pressure. The best way to avoid stress is adding some awareness of what to expect at the testing center. Exact experiences tend to vary among locations. Prometric has some specific rules that are applicable at all the testing centers it operates.
The first rule to follow during the CPA test is that you are only allowed to have a government-issued photo ID. You must empty your pockets of anything else. Keeping the photo ID with you is vital because Prometric scans it at arrival and each time you exit or re-enter the testing room.
You initially arrive in the waiting room of the testing center and check-in with a test center administrator. That person gives you a locker key. You’re required to store all personal items – wallet, mobile phone, purse, car keys, and anything other than your ID. Don’t bring a pencil or scratch paper because you’re not allowed to take these items into the testing room.
Most testing centers call you from the waiting room into a separate screening room. This is where you present your ID to a test center administrator who takes your photo and obtains your signature in a logbook. That facilitator then asks you to empty all your pockets to assure you are not hiding anything. You’re then given pencil and paper.
Before a test center administrator escorts anyone into the testing room, he or she explains the Prometric regulations as well as any specific rules that apply to exams taken by each person. The most obvious standard regarding CPA testing is that it is not open book. Anyone else in the room using a book is taking a different exam.
Making sure that you know the neighborhood of the Prometric center is a good idea. This helps you anticipate parking issues. If you have never driven in the area where the testing center is located, a test drive several days in advance is recommended. In addition, remember that traffic patterns vary. Arrange to arrive early at the testing center. You need plenty of time to catch your breath and check-in before the scheduled exam time.
A few helpful hints about exam day involve clothing. Wear solid colors to avoid any possible violation of Prometric writing policy. Don’t remove clothing during the exam. Leave a heavy coat in your locker. Only wear into the testing room the clothes that keep you comfortable. When you have a question or need permission to leave the testing room during your CPA exams, raise your hand for assistance from a test center administrator.
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