Studying for the CPA Exam every day for months can be taxing. But as difficult as it is, there are times when studying can actually be enjoyable. And those are things that I think every CPA Exam candidate should focus on. Too often, we let the negatives outweigh the positives on our journey to licensure. So today, I’d like to bring to light the things that I personally believe are great victories to savor in your studying experience.
Right now, I am studying for my weakest section of the exam, REG. Because this section requires more time and effort on my part to understand, I keep things positive by monitoring my short and long term study goals. As a result, here’s what I look forward to.
Completing all of the online lecture series for a section gives me a nice, big feeling of accomplishment.
Half the time consuming part of studying is actually sitting through the video lectures, reading the textbook, and absorbing or learning the material. So when my dashboard shows me that I have completed all the lectures, it means that I have gone over all the material at least once and now all I need to do is focus on practicing the multiple choice questions. Having a software system that really tracks and monitors your daily progress is crucial. Consequently, I have an easier time focusing on the questions when I know that I’ve learned everything and now just need to practice applying it.
Which brings me to the next enjoyable moment. I feel very excited when I see my progress with the practice multiple choice questions.
Since I circle question numbers for wrong answers, I have a good indicator showing how much progress I have made since my previous attempts. The more I study and practice, the less questions I answer incorrectly. Sometimes it gets cut back by a little; sometimes a lot. But what matters to me is visually seeing that I’m not stagnant. Then I can think back to when I had struggled with certain questions and see that I have finally mastered them. It is a great feeling to realize you’re understanding the concepts by answering the practice questions more accurately and correctly.
Lastly, when I’m able to get a score of at least 85% on the practice questions, I breathe a huge sigh of relief.
This not only tells me that I’m doing well, but that I am going to be well prepared on exam day. This makes me incredibly happy since we all know how difficult it can sometimes be to answer a majority of the practice questions correctly. This will not happen overnight and as you see your score increase, you get a happy feeling knowing that your studies are paying off. In doing this, I build a sense of confidence in my overall understanding which enables me to study on my weaker areas for the remainder of my review.
It’s important to find the happy moments when studying for the CPA Exam. So the next time you hit the books, remember to look at the bright sides of what you’re doing and how you’re progressing a little each day. Such an understanding will also help you understand accounting better in addition to giving yourself confidence and staying positive throughout your licensing journey.
--J. Frazier, Guest Blogger for Roger CPA Review