Reddit is Bickering Over the CPA Exam Getting Harder (or

There is a entertaining minimal conversation going on on r/accounting proper now (it was yesterday actually but I have the rona and time is a meaningless measure when one particular is contending with mind fog of this stage) and we’d be remiss if we did not recap it for you. Very first, the original post:

I didn’t understand Barry Melancon moved from the AICPA to greater education and learning.

Even though the topic of foregoing the CPA exam and likely ruining your full vocation is a worthy topic on its have, we’re just heading to skip proper previous that and get to these reviews.

Photographs FIRED. You hear that, oldies? You young ones experienced it so straightforward back again in the working day. You drive the CPA exam as the only possibility since back in your day it was a breeze (or one thing).

Truly, it is fact that the content of the examination has developed around the several years as the breadth of know-how an entry level CPA is anticipated to have has expanded (source: just rely on me bro). That is not to say the contemporary CPA examination is more durable, just much more. Shifting on…


Here’s some ancient information I unearthed from a treasure chest beneath NASBA headquarters on candidate quantities about the a long time, “the years” currently being 1950-1990:

Candidate Functionality on the Uniform CPA Assessment (1991)

Wow that’s a actual relic, is not it? Truly it has no relevance to this conversation I just imagined it was awesome. Truly, when was the past time you observed a 31-year-aged, hand-scanned PDF? This is a serious piece of history in this article.

What were being we conversing about? Oh ideal, no matter if or not the CPA test is more difficult now or was harder again in the working day. No discussion of CPA exam problems would be comprehensive without the obligatory mention of the 150-hour rule. Simple fact: requiring a fifth yr of instruction adds issues. Except if you seriously, truly like university and student loans.

Did you know: 40 many years in the past there was no 150-rule? In 1983, Florida became the first point out to have to have 150 units for licensure. As discuss of a significant accountant scarcity boosts, hope to see states significantly think about softening the requirement. Illinois has already performed this powerful January 1, 2023, you can sit for the CPA test in the condition of Illinois with 120 units (it is nonetheless 150 for licensure, sorry).

This outdated timer reminds us that while of course, the “old” test was challenging, so much too is the latest a single and equally for different reasons.

Introducing to the higher than remark, they did not even have calculators again in the day. Calculators were additional to the CPA examination in 1994, 10 a long time before the exam was computerized.

A 1998 Journal of Accountancy write-up touches on some of the alterations that transpired to the CPA examination in the 90s:

All through 1996, 122,000 candidates sat for the Uniform CPA Evaluation, but it was markedly distinctive from the test CPAs have been using for 80 yrs. Mainly because the examination is the gateway all CPAs have to move through, modifications in its information and administration have an impact on the total occupation. Considering the fact that 1990, the examination has gone through important modifications: Candidates can now use calculators in some sections, selected essay inquiries are graded on crafting expertise, the time allotted to take the examination has reduced, new objective remedy formats have been additional and the test has become nondisclosed.

Notice: “nondisclosed” in this context usually means they stopped releasing examination thoughts so the queries could be reused. The follow inquiries released by the AICPA now do not surface on the test.

More challenging? Not harder? A single OG from back in the day argues their situation:

Can we all just agree the exam is tricky? It was tough then and it is difficult now. /thread.

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