To give CPA candidates a preview of the CPA Exam, the AICPA has assembled sample tests for each CPA Exam section. The Sample Tests replicate the appearance and functionality of the CPA Exam as candidates would experience it within a Prometric test center. By accessing the Sample Tests and corresponding tutorial via the AICPA’s website, candidates can become familiar with the format of the actual CPA Exam. Though the AICPA Sample Test cannot replace a CPA review course, candidates sitting for a section of the current or next version of the CPA Exam (or both) can take advantage of this tool to aid their CPA Exam preparation.
AICPA Sample Test for Current CPA Exam Version Candidates
If you plan to sit for the CPA Exam in the final testing window of 2016 or the first testing window of 2017, you should review the AICPA Sample Test to acquaint yourself with the CPA Exam Multiple-Choice Questions, Task-Based Simulations, Document Review Simulations, and Written Communication Tasks. Whether you have accessed the AICPA Sample Test before or are coming to it for the first time, you now have to choose both which tutorial you would like to view and which Sample Test you would like to take. Versions of these resources for both the current and next CPA Exam are now available, so read the tutorial pop-up and Sample Test app selection screen carefully to ensure you’re working with the right one.
The AICPA Sample Test update you may appreciate most is the beta version of the Sample Tests. This innovation spares you from having to install anything on your computer, allows you to use web browsers other than Internet Explorer, and retains the true-to-life encounter with the test.
AICPA Sample Test for Next CPA Exam Version Candidates
If you are taking at least one section of the CPA Exam during or after April 2017, you also can add the AICPA Sample Test to your CPA Exam studies. The latest upgrade to this CPA Exam tool includes a tutorial and Sample Test tailored to the next version of the CPA Exam, so you can get a feel for the coming changes before the new exam officially launches.
If you are sitting for a section of both the current and next CPA Exam and therefore utilizing both editions of the tutorial and AICPA Sample Test, you will observe variances between the two editions. However, most of the sections of the Sample Tests, as designated by the tutorial, remain the same. The sections that have not been adjusted from one exam version to the next are
- Exam Clock
- Submit Testlet button
- Reminder Flags
- MCQ Items
- Numeric Entry
- Document Review
Consequentially, the tutorial and Sample Tests reflect changes to the following features of the CPA Exam:
On the current version of the CPA Exam, the toolbar consists of the calculator, the spreadsheet tool, the Submit Testlet button, and split screen buttons. On the next version of the CPA Exam, the toolbar will also hold the Authoritative Literature button.
According to the tutorial for the next version of the CPA Exam, the research tasks have also undergone some improvements. These improvements include a new interface style for selecting titles and entering your responses in the answer fields as well as new directions to accompany this interface. When entering your responses for AUD research questions, you must choose the title of the appropriate Authoritative Literature by clicking on the title field. In the current exam version, you must do this for FAR and REG as well, but in the next exam version, the tutorial indicates that the title will be provided for you in the FAR and REG sections. Other noticeable modifications are a new list of title options for the answer fields and new indications for incomplete answers, invalid answer formatting, and correct answer formatting.
- Authoritative Literature
Currently, you can access the Authoritative Literature from a tab within a Task-Based Simulation. After April 2017, you will find it in the main toolbar at the top of the screen. When you click the Authoritative Literature button, the Authoritative Literature will appear as a pop-up. The pop-up contains tabs for three different subject areas, and you can refer to the entire body of Authoritative Literature available from within the Task-Based Simulations in all of the exam sections. As you are using the Table of Contents within the Authoritative Literature, you can also see alterations to the formatting. Instead of ordering the contents of the Authoritative Literature numerically, the new CPA Exam lists FASB codification headers in the menu.
- Written Communication
According to the introduction to the AICPA Sample Test for the next version of the CPA Exam, the editor used to create your responses to BEC Written Communication Tasks has been revamped. Moving through the tutorial reveals that the style, functionality, and options list for the spellcheck box have all been altered.
- Spreadsheet Tool
The Sample Test introduction also reveals that the display of values in the spreadsheet tool has been adjusted to make viewing larger figures easier.
- New Section Information Screen
When you are working through the introduction screens on the new CPA Exam, you will see a screen providing you with information about the section you are about to begin. This screen has been updated to display via graphics the total testing time, the contents of each testlet, and the break structure of the section.
- New Break Screens
The next version of the CPA Exam will include a standardized 15-minute break at the midpoint of each exam section. In the “Navigating the Examination” section of the representative AICPA Sample Test, you will see several different screens demonstrating the process of taking this break during the exam. Additional screens within the “Navigating the Examination” section reveal that
- You will be given the option to take the standardized 15-minute break during which testing time will pause after the first TBS testlet.
- A timer will count down the amount of time remaining in the standardized 15-minute break.
- When you have two minutes left in the standardized 15-minute break, the timer will turn red.
- You will be informed when your standardized 15-minute break time has expired and testing time has resumed.
To confirm previous information provided about the next version of the CPA Exam, the AICPA Sample Test also opens with an overview of the exam section, information about the standardized break structure, and information about the structure of each exam section.
CPA Review to Accompany the AICPA Sample Test
The AICPA Sample Test is an extremely valuable component to add to your CPA Exam preparations, but it cannot stand alone. To receive even more input on the content and conditions of the CPA Exam, you should also depend on an exam-emulating CPA review course. By structuring our course to authentically imitate the look and feel of the CPA Exam, Gleim CPA has produced CPA prep that emulates the CPA Exam more than any other course available. When you combine our course with the AICPA Sample Test, you can feel at home with the CPA Exam each time you sit. Experience the exam emulation of Gleim CPA Review today by signing up for access to a free CPA demo.