Have you ever thought about challenging your CPA Exam score? If you ever get a 74 or face losing section credit as your 18-month window comes to a close, you might be very tempted to take this step. But the truth is that requesting a CPA Exam score appeal or score review is never a good idea. I’ll explain the process, fees, and success rates of score appeals and score reviews so you can see why you should skip these steps and move on to trying again.
It generally takes a few weeks for the AICPA to get back to you. One reader who requested a CPA exam score review said the process took 8 weeks.
It depends on the parts you are challenging. For example, it costs $200 for FAR. In my opinion, the examiner set the price such that it’s cheaper and less time-consuming to retake the test.
According to the AICPA, the likelihood of a score change following score review is exceedingly small, or less than 1 percent of all requested score reviews since the inception of the computer-based test.
Your 74 does not mean you were one point away from passing; your 74 means once they determined you failed, they compared your score with other people that failed and determine you performed better than them but still failed. You may be 5-10 correct answers away from a passing score.
Another way to look at it is that your percent of right answers may be exactly equal to the percent of someone who passed, but the questions he answered were harder, as determined by the fact that fewer test-takers answered them correctly, and the questions you answered were easier, i.e. more test-takers answered correctly.
So your score does not depend on only your performance, but also on the thousands of other test takers.
A few years ago, the AICPA did mess up on FAR scores once and failed people who really passed. They notified those people and passed them.
I am the author of How to Pass The CPA Exam (published by Wiley) and the publisher of this and several accounting professional exam prep sites
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