Accounting students and graduates searching for a career in their field have many options, but if you’re looking for a qualification that opens the door to several different paths, consider becoming a Certified Public Accountant (CPA). There are four key steps to becoming a CPA: the proper education credits, a minimum of six months of residency in your state, passing the CPA exam, and continued education after licensing. Passing the exam might seem like a daunting task but finding the right CPA review for you is the first step in preparation.
Choose a CPA Career Path
The first step in starting your CPA journey is to find the right career path. Prioritize your goals and ask yourself what it is that you value most in your career. There is no wrong answer. For example, you may choose to work for a non-profit. Non-profit organizations allow you to use your expertise to work for a cause that gives back to the community. Maybe you are looking for something more traditional. Corporate accounting provides consistency and stability; it is often the more lucrative choice as well.
Whether you decide to step into the public or private sector, you’ll have to consider certification. Working for a private company would classify you as a private accountant. As such, you do not need CPA certification, but having it on your resume increases your professional credibility. In the public sector, you’ll work with a range of clients with varying needs, and a CPA credential will serve you and your salary well.
Start Preparing for Your CPA Exam
By the time you have qualified for the CPA exam, you have completed between 120 and 150 post-secondary credits. You may even be on your way to a master’s degree. At this point, you should already be very familiar with your best study practices and what works for you.
Apply that understanding to choosing the right CPA review for your learning style. If you are a visual learner, search for a course that uses illustrations or photographs to complement answers. You might enjoy innovative study tools such as digital flashcards. Auditory learners would benefit most from listening to engaging lectures by instructors that capture your attention and hold it. Nearly everyone retains information more easily through repetition. Find a course that provides repetition technology as well.
Consider the Benefits of Using a CPA Review Course
You may be wondering if a CPA review course is even necessary. Choosing one is a major investment of both your time and money, but it’s also an investment into your professional future. Half of the applicants that take the exam after self-study pass every section on the first try; that means that the other half fail at least one. Some CPA review courses can nearly double your chance of passing, making your first try a near-guaranteed success. On average, it costs close to $1000 to take the exam, with the cost of each section varying by state, a failure would be disappointing and costly. If you’re looking to better your chances of passing and avoid paying to take the entire test, or just parts of it, again, finding a CPA review course would be the right step for you.
Becoming a CPA requires a significant investment of time and money. The education requirements alone carry you beyond a bachelor’s degree and expand your field of study to more than just accounting. After four or five years of schooling, you have an 18-month window to complete 16 hours of testing for the four sections of the CPA exam. If you are willing to invest years of your life in this career preparation, CPA review courses are just another step in the right direction.
To find the right courses to prepare you for the CPA exam and increase your chances of passing on the first try, check out UWorld Roger CPA Review.