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Here Are the Colleges with the Best CPA Exam Performance

Did I mention I'm enjoying this?

These 2010 CPA exam stats have to do with first-time testing events taken by candidates without advanced degrees. The cool part is this is all broken down by section; the not that cool part is the same few schools absolutely killed it on every part.

Wake Forest ranked first for every single section, which comes as a surprise to no one. Fifty-seven candidates took AUD and only five of them failed for a pass rate of 91.2% – Wake Forest's worst performance of the four sections. For BEC, 57 candidates slaughtered 56 exams (man, must suck to be the one guy or gal who failed BEC at Wake Forest) for a pass rate of 98.2%. They also pulled 98.2% on FAR and again 57 candidates passed 56 exams. Makes you wonder if the BEC slacker failed FAR too. For REG, Wake Forest candidates took 55 exams and passed 53 for a pass rate of 96.4%.

University of Virginia came in second on all four parts, with 85.3% on AUD, 95.6% on BEC, 87% on FAR and 82.8% on REG. When did AUD get so hard?? You guys used to destroy that section.

Let's look at the remainder by section for simplicity's sake.


3. Kansas State University 85.3%

4. Calvin College 78.6%

Also 4. Trinity University 78.6% (the exact same number of candidates sat for and passed the exact same number of exams as Calvin College)

6. University of Wisconsin – Madison 78% (Go Badgers!)


3. University of Wisconsin – Madison 95.3%

4. Texas Christian University 88.9%

5. Calvin College 87.1%

Also 5. Trinity University (wtf) 87.1% (and again, the identical number of candidates sat for and passed BEC exams from Calvin and Trinity)


3. University of Wisconsin – Madison 85.8% (killing it, guys, very nice)

4. University of New Hampshire 85.4%

5. Cornell University 85%

Bet you thought Calvin and Trinity might show up again? No. Trinity did come in 10th on FAR at 83.8%.


3. Emory University 82.1%

4. University of Mississippi 80.8%

5. University of New Hampshire 80.5%

Overall the top five schools for first-time pass rates were (in order, obviously) Wake Forest, University of Virginia, University of Wisconsin – Madison (this should make up for the Rose Bowl, guys), Cornell and Trinity. Shout out to DC's Georgetown University for coming in 19th at 75.2%.

If anyone is butthurt about Wake Forest's CPA exam performance (again) this year, check out this "useful" discussion on which is a better school, Wake Forest or Georgetown.

Now would be a good time to relay the prominent disclaimer NASBA has inserted in this book. "Institution-level data are provided in this report to give institutions an opportunity to monitor the success on the CPA Examination for students graduating from their programs. These data are not intended to represent the quality of the institution."

So don't go getting in a lather over how much "better" your school is than anyone else's, these are only numbers and when it comes down to it, the ultimate responsibility lies with the candidate, not the school nor NASBA nor the AICPA nor any bloggers who give you bad advice nor this website's obnoxious layout.