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Surgent CPA Review is shaking things up in the CPA test prep arena. While all the other courses out there are sticking to traditional study models, Surgent has developed the most efficient way to study for the CPA exam and claims to cut down 50 hours of study time.
With software that utilizes true adaptive study algorithms, you will eliminate unnecessary study that dramatically reduces your CPA prep time. They’re one of the only course with real-time algorithms (continuously adaptive study plans), accurate pre-assessments, and factored exam weightings.
It also includes features like a CPA Exam Success Coach, robust physical flashcards and textbooks, and some of the industry’s best CPA course instructors: Surgent has a lot going for it. Let’s look at all that Surgent CPA Review has to offer to see if this is the best course for you!
Overview of Surgent CPA Review 2019 Course
Surgent offers a couple different course packages. However, their most popular and effective option is their Ultimate Pass, which comes with a price tag of $2,899. This is their course that is most in line with the industry average, as it includes study materials for all 4 sections of the CPA exam. Additionally, Surgent offers a Premiere Pass for $2,399 and an Essentials Pass for $1,899. I will be referencing the Ultimate Pass course throughout this review since it is the most popular.
Printed flashcards and textbooks for offline study
A.S.A.P. technology targets your weaker areas
12 half-hour 1-on-1 sessions with a CPA Exam Success Coach
Unlimited access until you pass
Free course updates
Free mobile app with digital flashcards
Additional Excel for Accounting certification
Ultimate Customer Support: guaranteed one-day response time
Rest easy, because Surgent continuously updates its courses and also incorporates new adjustments anytime a major alteration is introduced. Surgent makes a point to update any and all materials based on AICPA changes, new laws, and student feedback. You will have the most up-to-date CPA review course available if you decide to purchase Surgent.
In anticipation of the recent CPA exam changes, Surgent has added even more task-based simulations as well as updating its content. Specifically, Surgent has added the new Document Review Simulation questions to the FAR, AUD, and REG sections of the review course. And if any other changes come up while you are preparing for the CPA exam, Surgent’s CPA review course will automatically update your online materials, for free.
The primary phase of the Surgent CPA review course is practice. This is where you get to test your knowledge with an unlimited amount of practice exams. These are crucial to your final review because you need to be exposed to the tools and features of the CPA Exam before you sitting for the real one.
The Surgent practice exams are timed to match the timing of the actual CPA Exam, so you can develop exam-specific management skills by learning how long to spend on each question or simulation. By having this exposure to prior exam questions in exam-like conditions, you can help alleviate exam anxiousness.
The Surgent instructors understand how difficult it is to listen to hour long lectures, so it made sure none of the video lessons goes over 30 minutes. By having 350 bite-sized video lessons, Surgent CPA Review allows you to digest complex concepts in small bites so you can retain more in the long term. You can download instructor lecture notes and/or the video slides to print out or view from your mobile phone so you can study anywhere.
Since Surgent’s focus is to get you prepared for the CPA Exam as efficient as possible, the bulk of your reviewing will be done in the multiple choice questions. Your CPA preparations can be extremely goal oriented, meaning you only watch the videos that you need. Alternatively, if you want to take the scenic route, you can learn from the many videos Surgent offers. Feel free to leave feedback on the video lessons; Surgent frequently goes in and updates their lectures so they can be engaging and informative.
Surgent has 400 task-based simulations in its CPA review course. These include the new Document Review simulations that are seen on the newest versions of the CPA exam. Hence, as you move forward with your study phase, you will be introduced to more and more simulations. And with the adaptive learning software, you will be given the right TBS that you need to practice with the most.
Multiple Choice Questions
Surgent CPA Review’s Ultimate Pass comes equipped with 7,250 multiple choice questions on which you will be working with for majority of your studies. Since Surgent prides itself on its efficiency, it has organized the multiple choice questions and content into three phrases: assess, study, and practice.
You will begin with the initial assessment phase where you complete multiple practice exams and the algorithm determines what you know and don’t know. The course will continue to adapt once you move on to the study phase and begin answering multiple choice practice questions. If you incorrectly answer a question, the adaptive learning software will remember and reorganize that question so you can try again in the future.
The best part about Surgent, in my opinion, is that the bulk of your studying is done while you are practicing with multiple choice questions. When you get a question wrong, you will be provided with the correct answer and detailed explanation. Here, you can click relevant terms and reference links that take you to the digital textbook’s section covering the topic of the question. I loved this because I knew I was studying what I needed to know and not wasting time on topics I already understood.
The best part about Surgent, in my opinion, is that the bulk of your studying is done while you are practicing with multiple choice questions.
On top of your normal assignments, you will be provided with daily Surge Cards. These are generated specifically to your unique needs and will include relevant multiple choice questions, videos, and study sessions. The Surge Cards are like your daily medicine for your CPA study pains, pinpointing the symptoms that are bringing down your whole score and providing you with the correct remedy.
Surgent has more than 2,200 flash cards that you can use via its mobile app. You can download the app from the Apple or Google Play stores. These flashcards are a great study tool that let you study terms and questions on the go. In terms of physical flashcards, Surgent has brand new printed versions—250, 250, 250, and 300 for AUD, BEC, REG, and FAR, respectively.
So far, many of the features provided in Surgent’s Ultimate Pass might sound familiar to anyone with CPA prep course experience. However, their ReadySCORE adaptive learning technology is the killer app that makes this course far beyond the ordinary.
But what is ReadySCORE? Here’s what you need to know:
ReadySCORE is a complex adaptive learning program that derives its assessment metrics from authentic CPA scoring data. After taking an initial assessment test, ReadySCORE helps students to determine their overall exam readiness with a numerical score. Then, this score is updated as they progress through Surgent’s coursework, reflecting their progress on individual topics and question types.
You may think this sounds like a bunch of flashy technology wrapped up in buzzwords, but the truth is that it generates real results. According to Surgent, students with a ReadySCORE of 75 or higher have an exam pass rate of roughly 88%!
When you first log in to Surgent CPA Review, your first step will be to enter your exam date and the days you can dedicate to studying. The software will then calculate how many hours you will need to study on each of your selected days to complete your course on time. You can change this whenever you want and the software will recalculate automatically.
Once you’ve set that up, you will need to go through the assessment phase. Remember, this part is important for Surgent’s adaptive software to determine what areas you need to be targeting in order for your study time to be optimized. Then you can move on to the study phase. Your dashboard will reflect all of these phases to you and keep you on schedule.
Surgent has recently (and successfully) overhauled its product and redesigned the dashboard to give users a better experience. Everything you need can be easily found in your home screen, and once the software has determined your strengths and weaknesses, your dashboard will contain a personalized study plan that targets your unique needs. Here you can access all your assignments and continue with your study phase.
Since Surgent CPA review is so adaptable, it can be confusing at first with regard to using the course to ensure you get the most out of it. No worries; Surgent has New Student On-Boarding! Here you can have your questions answered immediately and watch a live demonstration on how your Surgent course works. No other review courses have this personal touch at helping you figure out how to get the best bang for your buck from your CPA review course.
Surgent offers unparalleled access to great CPA instruction. With the Premier course, you get a Dedicated Coach who offers you personalized guidance along your studying journey. You will receive one-on-one study help throughout your prep course, and you can kick off your studying with a thorough onboarding session to ensure you’re focused on the right areas.
If you run into any problems during your studies, Surgent offers support via email. You can email [email protected]with specific questions about the course content and the Surgent editorial group will respond within 24 hours. Just make sure you include your exam section and question’s ID number when emailing so they can be as specific as possible.
Course Access and Updates
Not many other courses can top Surgent’s course access and updates. When you pay for Surgent CPA review, you will have unlimited access to study materials until you pass. And since Surgent keeps its course constantly up-to-date, you will never have to pay for updated content. It’s nice to know that when you purchase Surgent you will never have to pay any additional fees like so many other CPA review courses make you do.
What Courses Does Surgent CPA Review Offer?
There are a few prep courses offered by Surgent, and all of them can help you pass. The Ultimate Pass offers all the trappings of a comprehensive review course and more, while the Premier Pass and Essentials Pass offer complete study programs designed for a tighter budget.
In particular, the Ultimate Pass Package is Surgent’s game-changing online CPA review course that provides helpful 1v1 personal attention from a dedicated success coach, plus hours of mentoring from an Accounting Professor. At this time, there are no other courses like it.
Let’s break down the benefits of what’s included in the Ultimate Course Package:
Success Coaching (a $600+ Value): Students are also assigned dedicated success coaches to guide them along their CPA journey. Success Coaches assist students with study and exam schedules, study strategies, test-taking tips, and accountability. Students get 12 sessions with a CPA Exam success coach (3 30-minute sessions per section).
Surgent’s Critical Skills Certificate: Excel® for Accounting and Finance Professionals: Since its incorporation into the CPA Exam, students with Excel® knowledge have a leg up on those without. Students will walk away from this course with a better understanding of how to use Excel to their advantage during the CPA Exam, as well as a skill set that will set them apart from other job candidates or colleagues.
Printed Textbooks ($500+ value) and Flashcards ($150+ value): High-quality bound textbooks and spiral bound printed flashcards. These resources are fully aligned with CPA Exam Blueprint categories. Printed textbooks include multiple-choice questions, simulations, and explanations at the end of each category (whereas digital textbooks do not). Surgent prints textbooks on demand and textbook content are updated on a quarterly basis, ensuring candidates receive the most updated content at the time of their order. By comparison, most providers update their textbooks annually.
Integrated Test Bank: The Ultimate Course includes an extra 1,000 MCQ’s which is ideal for students who want to supplement their exam prep with additional study material
Audio Review Course: Study on your way to work, in the car or on a beach while listening to the Surgent CPA Review audio course.
Ultimate Customer Support: Students receive the highest tier,unlimited content and technical support from Surgent’s concierge team, with responses guaranteed within one business day.
The chart below breaks down the major differences between the three different packages. Take a look to see which course suits you best:
Online Mobile Friendly Course for All 4 Sections
Full Access Until You Pass
Free, Automatic Content Updates
Personalized Adaptive Study Plans
Ongoing 1 on 1 Coaching
350+ Targeted Video Lectures
Customized Study Notes for Each Lecture
7000+ Multiple Choice Questions
400 Task-Based Simulations
Document Review Sims
Flashcard App for iOS and Android
Printed Textbooks for All 4 Exam Sections ($500 Value)
Printed Flashcards for All 4 Exam Sections ($150 Value)
Premier Support from a 1 on 1 Dedicated Coach ($400 Value)
Here are the answers to Surgent’s most frequently asked questions!
Q: Is Surgent compatible with smartphones and tablets?
A: Yes, all of Surgent’s course features are compatible with most smartphones and tablets. The only devices that don’t support Surgent’s software are Kindle Fire, Nook Tablets, and E-Readers.
Q: Is there a pass guarantee?
A: Yes, Surgent has a pass guarantee. You can read the details here.
Q: What is Surgent’s pass rate?
A: The rates for Surgent’s students is 89.7%. Students that finish their studies with a trending score of 80% or higher have a 100% pass rate.
Q: What is adaptive learning?
A: Adaptive learning is a learning technology that Surgent incorporated into their software so it can quickly reveal your areas of need and automatically create a customized study plan that focuses on where you need the most help. The goal is to reduce study time and increase efficiency.
Q: Do I have access to the course offline?
A: Surgent’s CPA Review course is completely online, so you will need internet access in order to use the course.
Q: Who are the Surgent Instructors?
A: They are experts in their field and are engaging and skilled at breaking down the troublesome topics into easy-to-understand sessions. Some of the key instructors include Jack Surgent and Liz Kolar. You can check out the instructors biographies here.
Q: Is there an app for Apple and Android devices?
A: Yes, Surgent offers a free app on both devices for the CPA review flashcards. There are over 2,200 flashcards that include terms with definitions as well as multiple-choice questions with solutions.
Q: What is Surgent’s refund policy?
A: You may cancel and receive a refund for all charges within 14 days of your order placement date. No more than one video part purchased can be viewed to qualify for the refund. Notification of cancellation must be done via email within 14 days of the order placement date.
Surgent not only offers a financing plan for its full course, but also comes without any fees and 0% interest. Surgent really does knock it out of the park when it comes to saving you money. With a firm belief in not taking anymore money from you except for the initial payment, Surgent offers you the flexibility in a monthly tuition plan.
Surgent is always offering discounts, but the best discount is 50% off for switching from a competitor product. Hence, if you’re using a review course that isn’t up to snuff, you can switch to Surgent and get half off! See all the best Surgent CPA discounts below:
SAVE $1,000! Surgent CPA Review Ultimate Pass Discount
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Which CPA review course is better, Surgent CPA Review or Becker CPA Review? I have used both of these courses extensively and found significant differences worth noting. For starters, Becker is the most expensive course on the market and will cost you $3,393. Surgent’s Ultimate Pass, however, is noticeably more affordable than the cost of Becker at $2,999 (which is even lower with the Crush discount!).
Surgent also offers better accessibility and updates. Becker’s software expires after 18 months which can end up costing you more money and time. Furthermore, if you need to renew your access, Becker will charge you 50% of the original course cost. Surgent, on the other hand, gives you access until you pass and free automatic updates. Why spend more money when you don’t have to?
When it comes to the course content, Becker still falls behind Surgent. Becker’s books are overly fanciful and the reading material is dry and difficult to get through. Alternatively, Surgent’s books are clean and are seamlessly integrated into your multiple choice questions. This is great because if you get a question wrong, the related material will pop up and you can read and learn right after you answered incorrectly.
I would pick Surgent over Becker any day, but check out their demos to see which course works best with how you learn!
Who Is Surgent CPA Review Best For?
Honestly, anyone can use Surgent. With the adaptive learning software, the course becomes unique to your needs and you receive a personalized review course. If your goal is to pass the CPA Exam fast and without any unnecessary study time, Surgent is the course for you!
Furthermore, Surgent is the only non-linear course on the market, so you will end up saving hours of time studying with this style of prep course. By using analytics and lots of multiple choice questions, your strengths and weaknesses will be identified so you don’t waste any time studying topics you already understand. Check out Surgent’s free demo to see if this is the course for you!
“The ReadySCORE is very helpful anf allows you to see which areas you need to be spending more time on. It also lets you when the best time to take the exam is. Overall, I am very pleased with Surgent, and I would recommend it to anyone.”
“When preparing for the CPA exam I was originally overwhelmed. I did not feel like my University prepared me well enough for the level I would need for the exam. I was worried it would be impossible to be ready to take my tests. The video lectures helped a lot with just brushing up on topics that I had forgotten. Practicing multiple choice questions helped me gain confidence. I took my time and tried to use the ready scores to help me know where my weaknesses were. I passed all 4 exams the first time. I am so grateful that I used surgent and saved my money to use for celebrating my passing scores instead!”
“I’ve been studying with surgent for about 2 months and I find it very easy to work with. I helps you concentrate in the areas you need help. The videos are not Long which keep you from dozing off at long lectures. Material is easy to learn and understand.”
“I've been using Surgent since Dec. 2017 along with Wiley and Becker, so bear with me for this comparative review on the (A) MCQ (B) Videos (C) Textbook. (A) Surgent's MCQ software is superior due to its (1) ASAP Technology (2) organization with AICPA blueprints (3) explanations with video/text resources and (4) readySCORE: (1) ASAP technology prioritizes questions I constantly get wrong so I don't waste time answering questions I know. With a recent update, the MCQ choices order is randomized so I don't always pick choice A just because it is correct. (2) The outline is organized with the AICPA blueprints so I get a sense that I am practicing what will be on the exam. Wiley and Becker have organized their lessons with their own outline. (3) Explanations with video/text resources are provided after each MCQ whether I got wrong or correct. These help for a quick review on a topic instead of having to spend up to 45mins relearning a complete lesson like Wiley and Becker. (4) The readySCORE helps provide a sense of confidence that I am ready for the exam. Recent updates have improved the readySCORE calculation. Wiley and Becker lack these four key points, so I prefer Surgent's MCQs (B) Surgent's Video lessons are very straightforward, provide some MCQ reviews, and cover the key points of the topic. However, the video lessons do not tie-in with the textbook, lack emphasis of certain points in the MCQ's, and ultimately lack mnemonics. I prefer Wiley and Becker's videos over Surgent depending on the topic. (C) Surgent's Textbook is not intended to read from cover to cover. The textbook is a collection of explanations, like a study-guide you would make in college and only works as an encyclopedia or glossary to explain individual MCQ's and simulations. It is similar to Wiley's textbook, so I favor Becker's textbook which is similar to a college textbook. I have successfully passed AUD with ~3 weeks of studying thanks to Surgent, but I scored exactly a 75%. If you are hoping to pass quickly with MCQ's and have a solid undergraduate education then Surgent is a great choice.”
“I highly recommend using Surgent for your CPA review! My personal favorite part of the course are the videos. They are not long in length (at most 20 minutes), straight to the point, and you have to option to download power-points or lecture notes from the video. When doing practice questions, you can track your progress for each section and subsection of an exam to see what your weak spots are. In addition, although the assessment quiz is quite lengthy at the intro, you have the option to skip it and go straight to studying. Lastly, the course NEVER expires! I got the course before I could even sit for the exam and used it to help study for college courses as well.”
“I've been using Surgent CPA review for a couple of months now and have enjoyed it a lot. Surgent is the only review course I own but I have tried Roger and Becker on a trial and from a friend's account, respectively. I opted for Surgent over the prior two because I found its layout attractive and intuitive. Surgent also offers an extensive assessment quiz at the beginning of each section that although lengthy, is very helpful in addressing weaknesses and improves the efficiency of my studying. Lastly, a big pro about this review course is that it does not expire, unlike many other.”
“Surgent CPA review is unmatched in the market because my CPA review package at the basic level is customized to my strengths and weaknesses. This allows me to put less time studying what I know and more time studying what I don't know. The customer service I have received with Surgent has been fantastic and I highly recommend this review course to other colleagues. The videos are fairly brief and extremely informational. The dashboard is very accessible and user friendly. My favorite part about Surgent, stated above, is that I can study less and retain more. Surgent provides great value and I am confident to take my upcoming CPA exam!”
“I used the Surgent Review course. I found the course questions to be very similar both in format and content to the actual exam. The instructor-led videos were informative and condensed. They were all under 20 minutes which helped my understanding without losing my attention. The dashboard is easy to use, updated, and clearly states your trending scores, which sections you have completed and (for Simulations) color-coded based on score. The customer service for Surgent is great. I received a Coach who I had 2 FREE calls with throughout my studying. She helped me come up with a study plan based on my schedule. My favorite things about Surgent were the fact the course NEVER expires, that it has the lowest study times of any course, and their pass-rate guarantee! I thought the course could have more Simulations. Because I now have Surgent forever, it is undoubtedly a great value for its price!”
“I have tried other courses and I think Surgent is one of the more easier to navigate and understand the layout of how to use it. I think the lectures are pretty solid and the MCQ are good and there are a lot of them. I recommend Surgent CPA”
- Robert Abrams
Surgent Overall rating: ★★★★★ 4.5 based on 18 reviews