Now that you have received your notice to schedule (NTS), it is time to schedule the exam.
For the CPA Exam, you need to know about three kinds of dates/windows:
- The Testing Windows
- The Blackout Dates
- The 18 Month Rolling Window
The Testing Windows
Testing windows are the semester dates when you can take the CPA exam.
The windows include the first two months of each quarter immediately followed by the No Testing month.
So, the year looks like:
- January 1 – March 10
- April 1 – May 31
- July 1 – September 10
- October 1 – December 10
Candidates can schedule their exam for a specific date and time for the time their is valid.
Note: Keep in mind that you can schedule for a particular section only once in a testing window. For instance, if you didn’t clear a section in the January window, you will have to wait till March to reschedule the exam.
The Blackout Dates
During this period, the Prometric Testing Centres do not offer any testing. Hence, the name: blackout dates.
Typically the blackout dates fall in the third month of every quarter.
However, there is quite often some roll over between the blackout dates and the testing windows. So, sometimes Prometric Testing Centres offer testing in the first week of the blackout month.
Keep an eye out for these dates.
The 18 Month Rolling Window
From the date of your first exam schedule, you will have an 18 month rolling window period.
The candidates are expected to successfully complete the four sections in the CPA exam during this period.
Suppose if you had scheduled to take one section, then you need to finish the remaining sections within the 18 month period.
If you are unable to take the exams for the remaining sections or couldn’t clear them within the 18 month period, then the completed exam is dropped/ invalidated. You will have to take the exam again.
Unfair! But that’s how the rules go.
So, make sure you pass all four sections ASAP.
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