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      November 20, 2018

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Becker CPA Review vs CPA Training Center

Best CPA Exam Reviews

To help you find the Best CPA Reviews, TopConsumerReviews.com provides you with an in-depth comparison of Becker CPA Review and CPA Training Center.

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What's the best CPA Review program to help you pass the exam? Whether you're about to graduate from college or you've been wanting to get your CPA for years, you know that it's a big commitment. Taking the four sections of the CPA exam is not only challenging but expensive. Because of the constantly-changing nature of the content of the CPA exam, it can be very difficult for even the best students and seasoned professionals to pass the test without using a very rigorous preparation program.

For nearly half a century, CPA Review programs have helped aspiring accountants to know what to study to succeed on the required tests. Of course, as times have changed, so have many of these providers: what used to be available only in textbooks and later on CD-ROM has now evolved into a format that can be accessed virtually anywhere, using a tablet or laptop to take adaptive practice tests, using a phone to listen to lessons on MP3, and so on.

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Best Reviews

2018

CPA Exam Reviews

3.5 stars
Becker CPA Review

BECKER CPA REVIEW Visit Site

Cost:

$1,131 per section (AUD, BUS, FIN, REG)

$3,487 for the Becker Bundle

Becker is one of the most recognized names among CPA Review companies, having started in 1957 and currently with over a million students who've used their program to pass the CPA exam.

This is the only company in our review that offers four approaches to test prep:

  • Self-Study: watch lectures and do simulations and mock exams on your timetable
  • LiveOnline: webinar courses give you live instruction, wherever you choose to connect
  • Live: more than 100 classrooms worldwide, with 18-30 hours of in-person instruction per exam section
  • University Cohort: this option is designed for specific firms, customers, or universities and may be available in your area

If you start the Becker CPA Review program in one format but decide to switch to a different structure, you can do so for a fee of $195.

Most students opt for the Becker Bundle at $3487, which includes all 4 parts of the CPA Exam, along with these features:

  • 100 hours of modular review
  • 6,200+ multiple choice questions
  • Textbooks and e-books
  • 300+ task-based simulations
  • 1,400 digital flashcards
  • Interactive study planner
  • Accounting for Empires learning game
  • Unlimited academic support
  • Adapt2U learning technology, with a pre-assessment that helps determine your ideal path for study and performance reports that track your progress

What happens if you don't pass? You may be able to take advantage of the "Becker Promise"; there's a long list of eligibility requirements, but in general you'll get a tuition waiver for reusing the Becker materials for a second round. However, the fine print says that you'll pay a $195/part material and license fee for each section you need to retake, and you'll only have a year to use it. If you don't qualify for this tuition waiver, you are eligible to buy the Becker program again at a discount of 50%. Of course, if you don't pass it the first time, you may not want to pay for it again, even at half-off.

Becker Professional Education, the company that provides the CPA Review program, has an excellent "A+" rating as an accredited business with the BBB. But, what do the students have to say? For those who use the online platform, the feedback is almost entirely positive. They especially like that the Becker mobile app keeps track of their learning and syncs up seamlessly from tablet to smartphone to laptop and back again. They also appreciate that the study time is completely customizable to fit their life, whether they're trying to fit in a few lessons between classes or juggling a full-time job.

On the other hand, those who've used the live classes haven't always found the instructors to be helpful or effective. If you want the live format, you may do better with the LiveOnline program, which gives you the ability to switch instructors to ones that are a good match for your learning style, rather than being obligated to study with the ones that are in your geographic area in the live not-online classes.

Obviously, the biggest drawback of the Becker CPA Review system is the cost: almost double the price of several competitors' test prep programs. And, that cost isn't limited to the program itself: remember that if you don't pass, you will still have to pay money to reuse the course materials for your next attempt at passing the CPA exam.

Becker is still well-respected by the Big 4 accounting companies, because of their longstanding reputation and flexible study options that include live classroom lessons. Their CPA Review can probably help you pass the exam - if you can afford their test prep program.

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1 star
CPA Training Center

CPA TRAINING CENTER Visit Site

Cost:

$1,199.80 for DVD/PDF course

$1,800 for online video self-study course

CPA Training Center is part of the Training Center brand, which offers instruction across a variety of careers, such as Engineering, Banking, Insurance, and Human Resources. They offer connections to several different online training courses to prepare you for the necessary exams to get your CPA.

If you prefer to study using DVDs, you can choose a package that includes video lessons for AUD, BEC, FAR, and REG along with PDF textbooks you can print on your own. Interestingly, this course is the Lambers CPA Review Package: one of the competitor CPA Review courses we examined. This is priced at $1,199.80

In fact, the more we dug into it, we found that CPA Training Center is just a reseller of other programs. We found most of the other programs we reviewed, from Lambers to Yaeger, all sold at the same price or higher than when buying directly from the company that produced the course.

Browsing the site trying to find the right coursework was confusing. The website is outdated, and not all courses are featured in easy-to-locate places. For example, when following one link to the CPA Training Center courses, we found an online video self-study course through CPA Excel, priced at $1,455. But, when we visited the site later and tried to find the same course using the Exam Prep or Certifications links, we couldn't find it. Instead, we were taken to a more expensive course produced by Kaplan.

We found only negative reviews about Training Center products: customers said that they paid the business for their coursework and got nothing, or they were handed off to a third-party service for the review they paid for.

CPA review courses aren't cheap. Why go with a lackluster, third-party reseller if you can work directly with the companies that make the courses? Given that CPA Training Center has no listing with the BBB, no positive customer reviews, and hard-to-navigate website, we strongly recommend that you choose one of the higher-ranked CPA prep programs in our review.

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Continued from above

When deciding on the best CPA Review program for your needs, you should carefully consider your options based on your learning style, budget, and timeframe. These programs vary widely, and it's important for you to know exactly what you're getting before making a significant financial investment.

In other words, as you compare what different companies have to offer, keep in mind these factors:

  • Price. What will you spend for your CPA Review program? What's included at that cost?
  • Flexibility. Can you purchase study materials for just one section of the test? Does the program take a one-size-fits-all approach, or are there study and/or testing portions that adapt to your strengths and weaknesses?
  • Timeframe. Many CPA Review providers limit your access to the study materials, with deadlines ranging from 12 to 24 months. Will you be able to complete your studies within that timeframe?
  • Instruction Method/Format. How does the review program convey the material: text-only, text-plus-video lecture, etc.? What's the best method for your learning style?
  • Reputation/Guarantee. Is the CPA Review program effective? What is the pass rate for students using their method? Does the company offer any guarantee or refund if you fail all or part of the four-part exam? What do other students say about their experience using the program?

TopConsumerReviews.com has reviewed and ranked the best CPA Review Programs available today. We hope this information helps you find the best study plan that will lead you to success on the CPA Exam!

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