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Tips for the Auditing Section of the CPA Exam

Taking a little break from studying Auditing for the CPA Exam because i'm writing out this blog post.  I was just thinking of a few tips that might help out some people while studying for this section.  First thing I thought of was the simulations.  You definitely should leave a good amount of time to do these simulations.  There are 7 Task-based simulations, 6 of them are graded, and 1 is on research.  I would HIGHLY recommend you practice the research question on the AICPA website or through the Wiley online practice software.  This is actually one of the more easier areas and can be worth "free" points essentially.  But you should really be comfortable with how to do it before you actually take the exam.  Once you get used to it, it's basically like making a simple google search and finding out the answer.  I have practiced this a few times and I would say I'm very comfortable with this function of the exam.  Make sure you know your mnemonics!  There are definitely a lot of parts in Auditing where it's pure memorization.  

Mnemonics will greatly help out in this aspect. You should really take your time and study them, whether by memorizing them by writing them out on blank pieces of paper or studying them by notecards, etc.  One warning is that you should NEVER write out your mnemonics before beginning the exam.  You will have a time limit and you can get locked out ( and you would have to forfeit all of your money towards that exam and take it in your next window.. talk about a nightmare!) So make sure you either write it out and spend 5 or 10 minutes writing them out, or if you have them fully memorized, that would be even better!

You can't be a perfectionist when you take the exam.  There are time limit constraints and you can't spend 10 or 15 minutes stumped on one question.  You HAVE to move on.  Time is basically of the essence and it's very important that you leave yourself enough room to finish the Task Based Simulations.  If you do not know the answer, GUESS.  Guessing will give you a higher chance of getting it right than completely skipping it or wasting valuable time on 1 multiple choice question.   

The average pass rate is around 45-50%.  That means you should definitely put your time into studying and make sure that your time is put into good use and your studying habits are above average.  Failing a section isn't the worst thing in the world, but passing it on your first try just gives you that confidence you need to move on and pass the other sections! Hope this was helpful to some people studying for the AUD section ( or any section )

- Bryan

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