CPA Exam Hacks

From Smile0523:

The AICPA was suing KAPLI, a CPA review provider, for releasing test questions from a recent CPA exam that had not yet been made public. This month a settlement has been reached and the AICPA promises to dismiss all charges once the terms of the settlement have been met. In addition to the financial portion of the settlement, KAPLI has agreed to educate CPA test takers about the importance of keeping test items confidential.

I personally found this article interesting because I did not realize such a thing was happening and that examinees were leaving the test center with test questions. I also found that this relates to Professor Holtzman’s recent post questioning why smart people do stupid things. Clearly those involved in these cheating scandals cannot accurately measure their risks. What are your thoughts?

From Mark:
KAPLI is a Korean-language CPA Review Course.


About Mark P. Holtzman

Chair of Accounting Department at Seton Hall University. PhD from The University of Texas at Austin. Worked at Deloitte's New York Office. BSBA from Hofstra University.


  1. I agree that this relates to Professor Holtzman's post about smart people doing stupid things. Disclosing questions that are not yet made available to the public puts most people at a disadvantage to the select group which knows of the questions. Also, this hurts the publics confidence in CPA's because they may begin to think that cheating on the exam is easy to do and that CPA's may not have honestly passed the test.

  2. I agree with Erik's comment. The CPA is a difficult exam and people should have the same knowledge of questions going into the exam. Creating an unfair advantage by disclosing questions that have not yet been made available to the public, sheds a negative light on the profession as a whole and with all the scams that have occured, that is just another thing we do not need.

  3. I actually have a question and a few comments regarding this issue:Why do people take a CPA review course in a different language when the CPA exam is 100% in English? How does that make any sense? Is the CPA exam administered in different languages outside of the USA? If the person plans on working in the US, why would they take a Korean-based course?I don’t get the impression that most people who divulge confidential test information do it for monetary reasons. I think it comes up during conversation with co-workers and peers who are asking for advice. That being said, it’s still wrong and unjust to disclose confidential information.I think the best way for the AICPA to combat this would be my mixing and alternating questions even more.The AICPA should take a page out of the book of the CFA Institute, who are known for going to great lengths to prevent this kind of behavior.Blackswan87

  4. Integrity is the cornerstone of the accounting profession and anyone pursuing a career in public accounting without this virtue is definitely on the road to disaster – dishonesty has a way of festering and leading to public disgrace. Moreover, the CPA exam in my opinion is designed to boost the public’s confidence in the level of intelligence one must have in order to pass the exam and become a service provider. Therefore, the AICPA must do all it can to maintain the public’s trust in its ability to maintain a fair testing environment.

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