CPA USA Exam Stress Advice: How to Avoid Exam Anxiety

It goes without saying that preparing for the CPA USA Exam is stressful in and of itself; stress and the CPA USA exam frequently go hand in hand. It’s impossible to completely eliminate pre-exam anxiety, and doing so definitely wouldn’t be a good idea as stress may be a motivator.

CPA USA Exam Stress:

There are a number of things that can make the CPA Exam stressful. 

  • Determining your eligibility to take the exam is the first important factor that can be stressful for CPA USA exam candidates.
  • The CPA Exam application process is the next major factor that may cause CPA exam stress. This can be stressful due to the front-end paperwork, exam cost, and the amount of time you will have to wait before receiving your Notice to Schedule (NTS).
  • The most stressful part of the CPA USA exam preparation is studying for the exam once you have completed the eligibility and application processes.
  • Procrastination is also a significant factor to CPA USA Exam study stress.
CPA USA Exam Stress Advice

The days you take each of the four CPA USA Exam parts will be the most stressful days of the whole exam procedure for you. However, there are strategies for managing exam stress that you can use to make the day of the exam less stressful. 

1. Find out how to go to the examination center:

Make sure you know where your Prometric testing center is and how long it will take you to get there. If you have never visited your testing center before, you should do a practice drive before your exam. Make your practice drive around the same time as your exam to examine how traffic influences the travel.

2. Arrive early:

You must check in at Prometric at least 30 minutes before the commencement of your exam. You might not be allowed to take the test and you won’t get a refund if you’re late. Avoid getting delayed in unexpected traffic by making a plan in advance.

3. Bring the required documents:

When you arrive to take your exam, Prometric will require that you have two forms of identification and your most recent Notice to Schedule (NTS). At least one of the forms of identification must include a recent photograph, and both forms of identification must carry your signature, display the same name as it appears on your NTS, and must not be expired. You will not be permitted to take your exam and will not be eligible for a refund if you accidentally present an outdated NTS or fail to bring the necessary forms of identification.

4. Prepare yourself for screening: 

Exam security is a top priority for both Prometric and the AICPA. On the day of the exam, they will digitally picture your face and scan you with a hand-held metal detector wand while you have your pockets exposed. You will be asked for your fingerprint when you enter and before and after any breaks because Prometric also uses a bio-metric fingerprint-capturing system. You will not be able to complete your exam if you leave the testing room without exiting a testlet and choosing the break option.

5. Be ready for the CPA Exam’s testing environment and functionality:

It’s important to realize that the CPA Exam is divided into testlets and is a progressive exam. You must complete the testlets in order, and once a testlet has been submitted, you cannot go back to it. Be ready to use the on-screen calculator as well. You will not be allowed to bring your own calculator to the CPA USA exam. 

Also, Sample Exams are available on the AICPA website. Review the Sample Exams in order to become familiar with the functioning before the actual exam day. You should be familiar with what the CPA Exam calculator can and cannot accomplish before taking the test because it has restricted capability. Your stress on exam day will be somewhat reduced if you are ready for this functionality. 

6. Set a clear goal: 

You’ll probably spend the majority of your free time studying while you’re preparing for the CPA USA Exam. You won’t have much time to spend with friends and family as a result. To ensure that the people in your life can support your professional goals, it’s important to set up boundaries with them. 

Tell your loved ones that you’ll be studying and won’t likely be able to take part in some social activities for a while. Inform them that you still value their support and promise to make time for them whenever you can.  

Studying will be extremely difficult since the CPA USA Exam is undoubtedly challenging. However, you can avoid burnout and retain your attention during the demanding study process by taking care of your physical and mental health.

7. Set some time for relaxation: 

There are additional relaxing methods than exercise that might help reduce stress. Your mind can be calmed and anxiety can be reduced through deep breathing techniques and meditation. When you’re feeling stressed out, listening to soothing sounds or reading a book might help you unwind and regain your attention.

Consider including some downtime in your study regimen. Give yourself a couple of hours every day to accomplish something enjoyable that has nothing to do with the CPA USA Exam. This is important for dealing with CPA Exam stress. 

After taking the test, you go onto the final CPA Exam stressor: waiting for your results. Many candidates feel they failed the test after leaving the examination center. But until you get your score, you won’t know whether you passed or not. Spending time analyzing your exam performance after the fact is a waste of time. The AICPA publishes test results quite rapidly under standard testing conditions. Take a break and resume living your life during the week or weeks you are waiting to receive your score. You will need to start studying for your next exam if you haven’t finished taking all four parts of the exam. Take a few days off at the very least to treat yourself before you do that. For a while, let your stress go and learn how to stop stressing about exam outcomes.

Prepare to rejoice when you receive your score and discover that you passed. We know you can do it, and we know you can do it with less stress if you plan ahead of time! Best wishes!

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