After a few years in banking, I went to work for one of my clients in their finance department. There, I specialized in internal corporate finance. Very soon I realized that all of the seniors in the department had the CPA certification. Therefore, I figured I should get mine as well someday soon.
Coincidentally, my boss challenged me to take the exam sooner than I had planned. Specifically, she encouraged me to pass the CPA Exam on my first attempt within the year, just as she had done more than 10 years ago. As a non-accounting major with a full-time job, this sounded like a daunting task. However, I agreed to take on the challenge so I could advance my career.
In February of that year, I signed up for accounting classes and the Becker CPA Review course. The Becker study materials were good, but the live classes were a huge disappointment (let alone expensive!). In the end, I decided to skip all the live classes and simply study on my own at home.
In November of that year, I took all 4 sections of the exam and managed to get the following scores:
The passing score for the CPA Exam is 75. So, as you can see, I achieved complete success!
After I finished the CPA Exam on my first attempt, many of my colleagues, friends, and friends of friends started asking how I did it.
Due to their curiosity, I began to carefully research the CPA review courses available. As a result, I was surprised to discover that there are actually several very helpful, affordable, and superior CPA review courses available besides Becker.
Then, I summarized my findings in my CPA Exam review courses comparison and created this website to share my comparison with others. Now, after reading my analysis and completing their own research, most of my readers decide to choose something other than Becker. Rather, they find the best CPA review course for them and have a better study experience.
So, which review courses do I recommend for CPA Exam success? I suggest Wiley CPAexcel, Gleim CPA Review, and Roger CPA Review for these reasons:
Wiley CPAexcel stands out from the crowd by offering these resources:
Therefore, this course perfect for busy candidates who need all the study flexibility they can get.
Check out my evaluation of Wiley CPAexcel to learn more about the pros and cons of this program.
Dr. Irvin Gleim and his wife authored one of the first CPA review books on the market, and consequently, the first version of Wiley CPA Exam Review.
Dr. Gleim then went on to create a comprehensive review system that includes video lectures, full-coverage textbooks, adaptive technology, and thousands of practice questions that candidates can access online. While his children help him run the business now, Dr. Gleim is still very much involved.
According to my experience, you really need to understand the concepts tested to pass the CPA Exam. You cannot simply memorize mnemonics. Additionally, you also should learn specific CPA Exam testing strategies to have the best chance at success. Thankfully, the Gleim CPA Review Course is thorough enough to help you achieve deep comprehension. And, the Gleim team is experienced and knowledgeable enough to supply candidates with all the support they need.
Read my assessment of Gleim CPA Review so you can discover all the pros and cons of these study materials.
In the world of CPA review, Roger Philipp’s teaching style is revolutionary. Yes, he actually manages to make studying for the CPA Exam kind of fun and help his students pass at the same time.
Furthermore, Roger offers several integrated packages of videos lectures, textbooks, flashcards, practice questions, and predictive technology in their online courses.
Introduce yourself to Roger CPA Review by reading my thoughts on this course.
While each of these courses has impressive pass rates (around 88%), they all cater to very different candidates.
Wiley CPAexcel is the course for candidates who can only study during their lunch hours or while the kids are sleeping. This course is also excellent for those who need a good way to track their study progress.
Gleim CPA Review used to be too intense, but the company has put a lot of effort into improving the user-friendliness. Still, the obvious benefit is the cost, as this course offers a very good value for money. Moreover, the unique and systematic approach to helping students study on their own and the largest database of online practice questions makes Gleim ideal for driven candidates who like to drill questions.
Finally, Roger CPA Review is great for those who get bored easily and need a lively and charismatic instructor to keep them focused and motivated.
So, what does my story of CPA Exam success mean to you?
First, it proves anyone can earn the CPA certification when they put in the time and effort.
Second, it reveals that you should NOT simply pick the CPA review course with biggest brand name and make the same mistake that I did. One of the main reasons I set up this website is to tell all aspiring CPAs that there are better, cheaper CPA exam review courses out there with more personal customer service and higher passing rates.
I hope this site helps you make your CPA Exam preparations more efficient and effective!
I’d love to send you free information on the process, potential pitfalls, and tips to pass the CPA Exam in the form of a mini e-course. Please select the version most suitable for your needs:
|For U.S. candidates
(Those with U.S. degrees or who
graduated/live/work in the U.S.)
|For Intl Candidates
(Those who study abroad or who
graduated/live/work outside of the U.S.)