Picking the best CPA review course to study for for the CPA exam and prepare you for a career as a certified public accountant can be a challenge. With so many different CPA study materials available that all claim to have the ideal study methods, how can you tell which one will help you the most?
Rather than focusing on the features and advertised claims of the course, you should think about your study habits and what helps you learn the best. Every CPA candidate has a slightly different learning style, so it only makes sense that everyone might need a different CPA study guide.
There are a ton of options to choose from, but the most important thing is to look at what features help you stay focused and memorize facts the fastest. For example, if you learn best by working practice problems, you may be a tactile learner who needs a CPA prep course that emphasizes their test bank.
Studying for the CPA exam is no joke. You’ll likely spend as much as 100 hours studying for each CPA exam section. You want a study course that meshes with your learning style and reduces your study time—not something that adds to it.
That’s why I made this resource. I reviewed all of the most popular CPA exam review courses and compared their features, study methods, practice question test banks, and video lectures, so you can decide which is right for you.
Let’s jump in!
Top 5 CPA Review Course Study Materials Compared
|CPA Review Courses||Surgent CPA||Gleim CPA||UWorld Roger CPA||Yaeger CPA||Wiley CPAexcel|
|Price||$1,599 with Discount Code||$1,599 with Discount Code||$2,549 with Discount Code||$1,019 with Discount Code||$1,960 with Discount Code|
|Video Lectures||350 lessons||100+ lessons||120 hours||104 hours||110 hours|
|Final Cram Course||Extra $225+ per section||Extra $225+ per section|
|Customer Service||Personal Coach, Live Chat, Emails||Phone - limited times, Email Support||Homework Help Center open 24/7||Live Chat, Phone hotline||Forum/Message Boards with Coaches|
|Unlimited Access||18 Months, 6 month ext. available||18 months|
|Most Unique Feature||Most advanced technology||Largest Test Bank of MCQs||Most engaging course lessons||Redesigned Student Portal with Exam Planner||Bite-sized Lessons, Unlimited Access Forever!|
|My Opinion||My Review||My Review||My Review||My Review||My Review|
|Test it for Yourself!||Get Started!||Get Started!||Get Started!||Get Started!||Get Started!|
Best CPA Review Courses & Self-Study Materials in 2023
Here is a list of the best CPA review courses and exam study materials that will prep you to pass the CPA exam and become a certified public accountant.
- Surgent CPA Review Course
- UWorld Roger CPA Prep Course
- Gleim CPA Study Guide
- Yaeger CPA Review Course
- Becker CPA Review Course
- Wiley CPAexcel Study Materials
Surgent CPA Review
Surgent CPA review is a new comer to the CPA study guide market. Using their 30+ years of professional education experience as one of the most respected CPE providers, they first developed their flagship CPA course in 2018 with much acclaim.
Surgent almost pioneered the adaptive learning approach that most courses try to emulate today. They were ahead of their time. The Surgent CPA study guide has a robust set of features including:
- Advanced adaptive course technology
- 7,700 MCQ Test Bank
- 400+ task-based simulations
- 350+ “nano-sized” video lectures
- 1-on-1 virtual CPA exam tutoring
The online dashboard and course software is super easy to navigate and use. The real winner in the Surgent prep course is the combination of adaptive learning and CPA mentorship. The adaptive software creates a custom study guide designed for you and gives you the ability to do 1-on-1 CPA exam tutoring with one of their CPA exam experts. What’s not to like about that?
UWorld Roger CPA Review
UWorld Roger CPA review was created when the well-known digital learning company, UWorld, acquired Roger CPA Review in 2020. This merger combines the resources and technology of UWorld with the CPA exam expertise of Roger CPA. It’s an awesome combination.
Roger Phillips started his original review course as an alternative to the dry, boring accounting lectures given by the other prep course companies at the time. Roger’s legendary lecturing style gives candidates a breathe of fresh air. His animated presentations help students stay focused and his use of clever, original mnemonics give students something to remember. Roger CPA is perfect for visual learners.
The Roger CPA study guide includes a ton of features:
- SmartPath Predictive Technology built in
- Most engaging lectures
- Roger QBank test questions
- Unlimited Full-Length Practice CPA Exams
- 4-Part Cram Course
- Curated “Expert Deck” Flashcards
The UWorld Roger CPA dashboard software is extremely modern and designed to track your progress to help you focus on the topics you need to study. Roger also includes an audio version of his lively lectures, so you can listen to them and study while you are in the car. The Roger CPA study guide has everything you need to pass and is great for visual learners who want more vibrant lessons.
Gleim CPA Review
Gleim CPA review is one of the longest standing and most respected CPA prep course providers. They have been helping candidates pass the exam for over 45 years! Needless to say, they know what you need to study to ace the exam.
The Gleim study materials are best known for its in-depth study textbooks and explanations. Gleim has some of the most detailed explanations to practice problems out of any CPA review company. These comprehensive answer explanations help guide your thought process, so you can understand the questions and why one answer is correct. Gleim also has the largest CPA test bank out of any CPA test prep provider.
The Gleim study guide is packed with different helpful features including:
- SmartAdapt™ Course Technology
- 1,300+ Simulations
- 10,000+ MCQs with explanations
- Digital and physical books
- Expert-led Video Lessons
- Audio lectures
Gleim recently updated their entire course software package including their signature SmartAdapt software that helps you identify topics you need to study more and create a custom course based on your current knowledge set. The dashboard is clean and easily shows the areas you need to improve before you test date. Gleim is a great choice for anyone who wants to work practice problems. Their test bank is by far the best and most helpful.
Yaeger CPA Review
Yaeger CPA review was developed by Phil Yaeger soon after he passed the CPA exam. He used a study guide and thought there should be a better tool to pass the exam, so he made one.
The Yaeger study materials are centered around the video lectures. No other prep course video lectures go into as much detail or give as comprehensive examples as Yaeger does. After you watch a Yaeger video, you won’t have a single question about the topic. He covers every concept thoroughly, so you won’t get confused.
The Yaeger CPA course materials include a bunch of other features including:
- Over 120 hours of Video lectures
- Online Textbooks synced to Video Lectures
- 4,500+ Multiple Choice Practice Questions
- TestBank: Quiz Generator & Exam Simulator
- Cram Course & Final Review
Another area where Yaeger shines is in their student support and CPA exam mentorship. Yaeger is the only company that offers full access to their study material presenters. That’s right! You can contact Phil Yaeger directly and ask him questions about CPA exam topics or about the course itself. No other study guide gives you that level of support. You won’t have to worry about getting lost using Yaeger CPA. Their support system is awesome!
Becker CPA Review
Becker CPA Review has been the industry standard CPA prep course for over 40 years. They have successfully guided tens of thousands of CPA candidates through the CPA exam. Becker CPA is easily the most respected CPA test prep provider partnering with prestigious colleges and being endorsed by the big 4 accounting firms.
The Becker CPA exam prep course materials are cohesively designed to help you understand exam topics easier. The new SkillMaster video lectures give candidates expert explanations and guides to the task-based simulations. These are really helpful since most candidates struggle with the simulations on the exam.
The Becker CPA test prep course includes the following features:
- 7,000 MCQs
- 400+ simulations
- SkillMaster video explanations
- 190 hours of bite-sized video lectures
- 1,200+ CPA flashcards
- Adapt2U software
- 8 simulated exam & 12 mini exams
Becker CPA is the industry standard for a reason. They have some of the best review materials out of any test prep company. Rather than focusing on flash and gimmicks, Becker focuses on making a quality course that actually works. There is a reason the Big 4 firms endorse Becker. You can’t go wrong studying with Becker CPA. They have everything you need to pass the exam.
Wiley CPAexcel Review
Wiley CPAexcel review is one of the leading CPA prep guides with a course that just works. First developed when Wiley acquired Kaplan CPA review in 2010, CPAexcel has become one of the most popular CPA prep tools for candidates in the past decade.
The signature Wiley CPA bite-sized lessons help candidates stay focused on targeted topics instead of expansive chapters. These small lessons help you learn faster and retain way more information. They organize the study materials into short facts that are easily digestible and memorable.
The Wiley CPA Excel course materials include the following features:
- 2,200-Page Online Study Guides
- 10,000+ Practice Questions
- 10,000+ Test Questions & Simulations
- Live Online CPA Classes
- 1-on-1 CPA exam mentoring
- Unlimited Access Until You Pass
The biggest benefit of Wiley CPAexcel is the combination of all of their course features. The bite-sized lessons combined with an absolutely huge testbank of practice problems and access to a CPA exam mentor and tutor makes this a great course for any CPA exam candidate. The best thing is that it doesn’t expire either. You have access to all of these features until you pass the exam with no additional hidden fees!
Other CPA Review Courses
There are several more CPA study courses out there that many candidates have used to pass the exam. Here’s a short list of CPA study courses:
- Fast Forward Academy
- Universal CPA Review
- Lambers CPA Review
- CPA Review for Free
- Ultimate CPA Exam Guide Mentor
- Kesler CPA Review
Top CPA Exam Review Supplemental Study Materials
Every study guide that I reviewed emphasizes different features and study tools. Some focus on video lessons while others focus on textbooks. Every course doesn’t have every feature, so you might pick a course based on its focus even though it doesn’t have a few important features that you’d like to have.
That’s ok though. There are plenty of CPA exam supplemental study materials that you can combine with your CPA study guide to make the perfect review course for your learning style. It’s ok if your course company doesn’t offer one of these supplements. Getting review materials from multiple companies will give you a better idea what’s on the exam.
The main CPA exam study supplements that candidates use are test bank questions, cram courses, mobile apps, flashcards, and audio lectures. Let’s take a look at each of these study aids and see if you should add these to your CPA course.
Best CPA Review Test Bank
The most productive way to study for the CPA exam is to practice working multiple-choice questions and past CPA exam questions. This not only gives you an idea of what topics are presented on the exam, it also gives you some experience reading and understanding the questions themselves.
Remember, CPA exam questions are written to confuse you. The AICPA not only tests your understanding of the topics, but they also test your ability to process information. The only way to get better at understanding and answering questions is by practicing them.
You can’t practice too many practice questions, so an additional CPA test bank is a good thing to add to your review course.
Here are the best CPA exam test banks that will help your practice CPA exam MCQs and help you pass.
Gleim CPA Test Bank
The Gleim CPA Mega Test Bank is the largest CPA exam test bank with over 10,000 multiple-choice questions to practice. That means you will have over 2,000 questions for each CPA exam section.
As with all Gleim study materials, the Mega Test Bank includes their detailed answer explanations to help you understand the concepts and analyze the answers. This is particularly helpful when trying to figure out why your answers were incorrect. Gleim CPA explains the flaws in each incorrect answer, so you can understand the entire question better and not get tripped up on that concept in the future.
The Gleim CPA testbank also comes with over 560 task-based simulations as well as optional physical study books. This is an awesome study aid that most candidates should consider getting regardless which full course they use.
Wiley CPA Test Bank
The Wiley CPA test bank is an excellent CPA exam practice tool and study aid. With over 6,000 CPA exam questions and 200 practice simulations, this might be the CPA supplement that you need to pass the exam.
The Wiley CPA testbank also includes answer explanations in their signature bite-sized lesson style. The explanations are easy to understand without going into too much unnecessary detail. You can review your answers or practice questions online, offline, or on your mobile device. That means you can practice some MCQs wherever you are.
Wiley includes their test bank with their full CPAexcel review courses, so if you use another course, buying this test bank would be like adding CPAexcel to your existing course for a pretty affordable price.
Best CPA Review Cram Course & Final Review
A CPA exam final review or cram course is a perfect way to get one last minute review in before your exam day. The CPA exam has tons of facts and simple concepts that you have to memorize. These facts can be easy to forget during your study process.
That’s where a final review course comes in. Your CPA cram course gives you an overview of the most important topics and facts you need to brush up right before you test. It’s one last cram to make sure the key information is in your short-term memory.
These last minutes reviews are extremely helpful and could raise your score as much as 4 points! Here are the best CPA exam cram courses and final reviews to help you study the last minute before your exam date.
Gleim CPA Exam Cram Course
The Gleim CPA Finish Line cram course is a final review that covers the essential topics on the exam. It’s designed to use adaptive technology to assess your knowledge of the most important topics and helps you improve the weakest areas before the exam day.
The Gleim Cram Course starts by testing your knowledge with a full mock CPA exam. Once finished, the Gleim software will build a Rapid review course that focuses on the topics you struggle with the most.
The Gleim CPA last minute review includes 1,200 MCQs, 80 simulations, and unlimited customized exams. This is a great CPA exam supplement that could be added to any review course.
Wiley CPA Final Review
The Wiley CPA 11th Hour Final Review is a crash course loaded with CPA exam study materials. Wiley CPAexcel includes hot topic video lessons that cover all of the concepts that you need to review before exam day.
The Wiley CPA cram course also includes a unique guide to taking the CPA exam itself. This is the only final review that has a complete section dedicated to offering CPA exam tips and strategies for how to read exam questions and better ways to narrow down answers. These tips and tricks alone are worth getting this last minute review.
The CPAexcel final review also includes full mock exams for each sections as well as instructor led video lessons to help you remember important concepts.
Roger CPA Review Cram Course
The Roger CPA cram course is one of the original final review guides. Roger pioneered the idea of doing one last minute cram to memorize important topics.
This course is designed to take two weeks and cover every key concept that you need to remember.
The Roger CPA final review includes both a study textbook and Roger CPA video lectures. These video lessons are not the same lessons in the normal course. They are specifically designed for this final two-week cram course.
The Roger CPA crash course is a great way to finish off your study sessions during the weeks leading up to your exam. It will definitely help you improve your score.
Best CPA Exam Mobile App
Studying with a mobile app is a great way to get some extra exam question practice in or read your textbook while you are on the go. Unfortunately, not every study guide comes with a mobile app that you can put on your phone.
Don’t worry though. There are a few different mobile apps that you can add to your study course, so you can study anywhere. Plus, a few of them are free!
Surgent CPA Review Mobile App
Surgent CPA review offers a free mobile app that you can download in the app store even if you haven’t purchased a course through them.
Surgent includes over 2,000 MCQs with explanations, so you can practice answering mock CPA exam questions on the go.
This app isn’t that comprehensive and doesn’t include a ton of study materials, but it is free.
Regardless which course you decide to go with, this is a good add-on that you should probably download no matter what. It’s FREE!
Roger CPA Mobile App
The Roger CPA mobile app contains the entire Roger CPA review course. You can watch Roger’s engaging lectures, practice questions using the Qbank, and even allow the SmartPath software to create a custom course for you.
It’s the full course in your pocket! Unfortunately, it isn’t available outside of the Roger course, so you can’t add it to another CPA course.
This might be a reason to go with Roger for you full course however. This app is super useful because it syncs to your regular course. Whatever modules you complete on the app with show up on your main course dashboard.
This is a perfect reason to get the full Roger CPA course.
Best CPA Review Flashcards
Flashcards are a great way to practice memorizing key facts that appear on the exam. These study aids are particularly helpful for the FAR and REG sections that are heavily based on memorization.
Only a few CPA test prep companies still offer stand-alone flash cards as a study supplement. Most companies include flash cards in their full course materials, but they don’t offer them by themselves.
Here are the best CPA exam flashcards to help you memorize CPA exam topics and concepts quickly.
Wiley CPAexcel CPA Exam Printed Flashcards
The Wiley CPA Flashcards include 250 cards for each CPA exam section with 1,000 cards in total. These CPA flash cards are designed to test the most important topics covered on the exam. They are updated every year, so you know they are relevant to the most recent exam changes.
The cool thing about the Wiley CPA flashcard set is that it’s a printed flashcard deck. You get physical cards that you can write notes on, tab the edges to review, and bring wherever you need them.
This is a great resource that is focused for a final review.
Roger CPA Exam Digital Flashcards
The Roger CPA flashcards expert deck software lets you sort and organize flashcards by topics and categories, so you can make custom quizzes from them.
This is a new take on CPA flashcards that combines the traditional idea of a memorization tool with the modern SmartPath adaptive software. Roger CPA’s flash card method “integrated spaced repetition” is designed to help you study the heavily tested exam topics without being buried with extra information.
This is an awesome CPA exam study resource, but it is only available with the full Roger CPA review course. It used to be a stand-alone item, but UWorld integrated it into the full course. This is a great reason to use Roger as your main study guide though.
Becker CPA Exam Printed Flashcards
The Becker CPA exam flashcard deck is great way to test your knowledge of the most popular key topics on the exam.
Becker CPA included the most commonly tested subjects in their 1,000 CPA flash card deck.
These printed flash cards are only available to Becker CPA students, so you will need to get the full course if you want to use them as a study supplement.
Best CPA Exam Audio Lectures
CPA audio lectures are a great way to passively study for the CPA exam while you are doing other activities. Whether you are commuting to work or exercising at the gym, listen to audio lectures will help you retain the info you need to learn in order to pass the exam.
It’s kind of like listening to a podcast, so when you can’t sit and study with your textbook or practice questions, you can listen to study lectures.
Here are the best CPA review audio lectures that will help you study for the CPA on the go.
Yaeger CPA Review Audio Lectures
Yaeger CPA offers a full set of audio lessons that you can listen to on your phone or mobile device. These lectures are taught by Phil Yaeger and include tons of detail about every topic.
The Yaeger CPA Listen-n-Learn methodology gives students an opportunity to think about key exam concepts while doing other tasks. These aren’t the standard lessons in the full Yaeger CPA course.
Yaeger CPA specifically created these lessons for students who are on the go, so you can comprehend the topics without needing to see them drawn out on a dry erase board.
This is an ideal addition to any CPA course that you already have. Plus, it’s super affordable.
Gleim CPA Audio Lectures
Gleim CPA includes an audio version of their video lessons, so you can listen to them at any time.
These short lessons are only touch on key CPA exam topics and don’t cover every single subject that appears on the CPA exam.
This is a great feature of the Gleim CPA review course, but it isn’t available on its own.
Roger CPA Audio Lectures
The Roger CPA audio lectures are the most engaging audio lessons out there. Roger brings his explosive video lecture presentation to audio format.
This is a great way to study if you are on the go a lot. Roger’s personality grabs your attention and helps you stay focused on the study content.
These audio lessons are only available with the Roger CPA study materials. If you want to experience Roger’s teaching style in audio format, you might want to use Roger CPA as you main CPA study guide.
Frequently Asked CPA Exam Questions
Here are some of the most commonly asked questions that CPA candidates have about the CPA exam.
Which CPA review course has the best pass rate?
Becker CPA review has the highest published pass rate at 95% followed by Wiley CPA and UWorld Roger CPA review at 92% and 91%, respectively. All CPA review course provides claim a CPA exam pass rate over 90 percent.
Keep in mind that CPA exam pass rates are measured by candidates who fill out a survey after they complete their CPA review course, so it might be slightly subjective depending on who completes their surveys.
Do I need a CPA review course to pass the exam?
Most CPA candidates who pass the CPA exam use a professional CPA study guide. A CPA prep course increases your chances of passing the CPA exam and gives you an edge that you won’t ordinarily have.
Yes, it is possible to pass the exam without one, but it’s not likely. The NASBA published CPA exam pass rates are typically less than 50 percent, so you odds of passing without a CPA study course is low.
Also, why risk it? You don’t want to fail and have to take it again. Just pass it the first time with a real course.
Will a CPA prep course help me pass the CPA exam?
Yes, a CPA study prep course will help you pass the exam. The NASBA published CPA exam pass rates are 50% while the CPA test prep companies’ pass rates are over 88 percent.
A study guide is an investment into your future. It’s also a huge time saver. If you fail an exam section, it could cost you months of time preparing for it again. Don’t waste your time. Get a course that works for you.
Which CPA exam section should I take first?
You should take the CPA exam section that you feel most comfortable with first. This will increase the likelihood of passing your first section and give you the confidence to move forward.
There are a lot of theories and speculation out there about CPA exam order and which section should be your first, but it really comes down to your knowledge and skills. It doesn’t make sense that everyone should take the same section first or any section in the same order. We all learn differently and have unique skills.
Don’t focus on the hardest CPA exam section or the easiest. You should take the easiest section for you based on your own knowledge and skills.
How Do I Become a CPA?
The journey to become a CPA consists of four basic steps: complete your college education, pass the CPA exam, finish a work experience requirement, and apply for a CPA license. Once you complete these steps, you will become a certified public accountant.
The CPA journey is difficult and takes several years to complete. It takes even more if you don’t finish college in four years and have to retake the exam several times. Ultimately, it’s one of the most rewarding career decisions you can make.
Why Should I Become a CPA?
Becoming a certified public accountant is one of the best decisions you can make in your career. Whether you want to work in public accounting or sit on the board of a public company, the CPA credential will open the doors to opportunities and promotions that you wouldn’t normally have access to.
On average certified public accountants make over $1M more than their non-certified counterparts. If you promotions and advanced opportunities don’t convince you, maybe that CPA salary fact will.
What are my State CPA Exam Requirements?
Every State Board of Accountancy sets their own CPA exam requirements that candidates will have to fulfill before they are eligible to sit for the exam. Most states require CPA candidates to complete a bachelor’s degree in accounting with at least 150 college credit hours before they qualify for the CPA exam.
Since every state has different unique CPA exam requirements, you should contact your state board for more information about the academic and individual requirements that must be met before you take the CPA exam.
How Do I Apply for the CPA Exam?
The CPA exam application process is administered through both your State Board of Accountancy and NASBA. The process consists of three main steps: submit your college transcripts & application the State Board, use your NTS to schedule a testing date, schedule an exam date with a Prometric testing center.
The application process can be a bit confusing, so it’s a good idea to contact your state board before you submit your application. If you don’t have all the proper forms and transcripts, your application may get denied and you will have to pay additional exam registration fees.
How Long Should I Study for the CPA Exam?
Most CPA test prep courses suggest that CPA candidates study for 80-100 hours per CPA exam section totaling 300-400 hours for the entire CPA exam.
This total study time varies greatly among candidates as it really depends on your current understanding of the topics covered on the exam. For instance, if you are right out of college, you may be more familiar with some of academic concepts on the exam than someone who graduated 8 years ago.
The main thing is that you don’t over study. There is no need to get a super high score on the CPA exam. No one in the professional world cares if you scored an 80 or a 91. They just want you to pass and become certified. Don’t waste your time over studying, but make sure you are prepared.
Should I Take Multiple CPA Exam Sections in the Same Testing Window?
Generally speaking, CPA candidates should not take multiple CPA exam sections in the same testing window because it decreases their chances of passes either section.
The more you split your studying time up, the less you focus on a single section. That’s why it’s a better idea to study for a single section for each testing window. This gives you the most time to study and focus on specific topics.
Keep in mind, you might not have that luxury as you get closer to the end of your 18-month testing window. Many candidates need to pass multiple sections in a single window because one or more of their passes sections are set to expire. In this case, do whatever you need to pass. Pass the exam at all costs! You don’t want a passed exam section to expire.
Author, Educator, Entrepreneur
Shaun Conrad is a Certified Public Accountant and CPA exam expert with a passion for teaching. After almost a decade of experience in public accounting, he created MyAccountingCourse.com to help people learn accounting & finance, pass the CPA exam, and start their career.
- Top 5 CPA Review Course Study Materials Compared
- Best CPA Review Courses & Self-Study Materials in 2023
- Top CPA Exam Review Supplemental Study Materials
- Best CPA Review Test Bank
- Best CPA Review Cram Course & Final Review
- Best CPA Exam Mobile App
- Best CPA Review Flashcards
- Best CPA Exam Audio Lectures
- Frequently Asked CPA Exam Questions
- Which CPA review course has the best pass rate?
- Do I need a CPA review course to pass the exam?
- Will a CPA prep course help me pass the CPA exam?
- Which CPA exam section should I take first?
- How Do I Become a CPA?
- Why Should I Become a CPA?
- What are my State CPA Exam Requirements?
- How Do I Apply for the CPA Exam?
- How Long Should I Study for the CPA Exam?
- Should I Take Multiple CPA Exam Sections in the Same Testing Window?