There is little more that is painful to the CPA hopeful than agonizing over your score after taking the CPA Exam. Months of prep and studying lead up to the exam and then it's a waiting game. For the past couple years this waiting time has been around 10-20 days, depending on when you take the test. For Q2, Q3, and Q4 the longest you could have to wait is four months. Taking the test in April will get you results back by August 17 (AUD, FAR, REG) and
August 21 (BEC). Below is the complete testing and score release breakdown for the remainder of 2017.
Testing: April 1 - May 31 Score Release: August 17-21
Testing: July 1 - September 10 Score Release: September 22
Testing: October 1 - December 10 Score Release: December 22
The reason behind this is standard protocol to make sure new testing is statistically valid and is done in most instances where high-stakes testing takes on a new format. New passing scores may be set so the test can be held legally defensible as well. Now, this may be causing you to panic a little "Four Months? New Scores?!"... but don't overthink it. This is a bit of an inconvenience to you, but it's being done to retain value to you passing the exam so no one can question the new format. We have the AICPA Blueprints, are still confident in our pass rates, and will be with you every step of the way right before you go to take the test and will be waiting with you for the results. As you wait, we recommend a few things to do.
The AICPA did include this note for students for which the ten weeks could bring up credit issues, saying "The AICPA, NASBA, and state boards are aware that some candidates testing in the Q2 2017 launch window may be impacted by the 10-week score reporting hold. In June and July, NASBA will notify state boards of all candidates testing in Q2 2017 with existing conditional credit who will be impacted by the score hold. The state boards will consider extending a candidate's conditional credit. Extensions of credit are handled on an individual case-by-case basis. Candidates do not need to contact their state boards. State boards will notify candidates if an extension is granted."
Again, this should be reason not to worry as it looks most if not all worries have already been addressed. That being said, here are a few things you can do to make sure this odd time in the CPA Exam goes as smoothly as possible.
Do your best to treat testing as normal
There might be a lot of red flags going up in your mind but know that the only things changing are the way the test is being given (for which the Blueprints have been released and the time between test and release. We've been prepping for long before you even started to think of the CPA Exam change and the time between is a little longer, but isn't affecting the results you'll receive any more than a week or two wait would. This means you should proceed mostly as normal. Take a small break and then start studying for the next section of the exam. We only recommend one small change...
Brush up on the test you just took
If you stick to the plan before the test, you should be able to trust the process and expect the results, but you may also be able to know things didn't go well. Even if you feel confident, it's not a bad idea to keep the knowledge fresh in the rare case you'll need to take the same section of the exam again. We recommend mixing in a practice exam for the respective section you just took as well as some flash cards to make sure the knowledge is being stirred up rather than stored. No matter what, this should be fine as our CPA Exam Reviews don't focus on memorization and regurgitation but rather retention and application. So even if you need to take the test again, you'll have a solid core of information still intact.
Contact us along the way
You may be able to come up with a plan for the next eight months, but it is likely nerves will get to you or new questions will arise. We've always prided ourselves on helping many students while paying close attention and providing personal advice to all. Send us an email, and we'll get back to you, help you decide what step to take next, and even talk you through with some encouragement if it's what is needed. No matter what, we want to alleviate the worry you may be experiencing as much as possible.