CPA Examination Score Release Timeline 

Published March 11, 2017

 
The scoring of the Uniform CPA Examination is treated with a high level of importance, due diligence and attention to accuracy. Responses to all questions go through multiple quality assurance reviews to ensure accuracy in scoring. Read How the Exam is Scored? for an explanation on the scoring process.

The score release timetables below are for the Q1 through Q4 2017 testing windows to help candidates plan their testing schedule.

Scores for the Examination will be released by NASBA to candidates and state boards of accountancy based upon the target score release dates in the tables below. Note: Some boards of accountancy require at least one day beyond the published target release date in the table to process and release Examination scores.

Q: What is the testing window?
A.
Candidates may sit for the CPA Examination during each quarter, or testing window. They are: January 1 - March 10 (Q1), April 1 - May 31 (Q2), July 1 - September 10 (Q3), and October 1 - December 10 (Q4). Scores are released four times for the first testing window while scores will be released once after the close of the Q2, Q3 and Q4 testing windows to allow the Board of Examiners to conduct its standard setting process for the updated Examination debuting on April 1. (See the questions below the tables for a description of the standard setting process as well as score hold information)

Q. When can I expect to receive my scores?
A. A general score release timeline score release for the four testing windows of 2017 is provided in the tables below. The target release dates indicate when scores for the Examination will be released by NASBA to state boards of accountancy.
 
Please be advised some boards of accountancy require at least one day beyond the published dates listed in the table to process and release exam scores.

January/February/March (Q1) Testing Window

If you take your test on or before:

And the AICPA receives your examination data files from
Prometric by 11:59 PM (EST) on:

Your score will be released by
the target release date:

January 20

January 20

February 7

February 14

February 14

February 23

February 28

February 28

March 8

March 10

March 10

March 11

**After March 11

March 21

March 24


**The examination data files the AICPA receives after March 11 will be included in the final target score release date.

April/May (Q2) Testing Window

If you take your test in:
And the AICPA receives your examination data files from
Prometric between:

Your score will be released by the target release date:
April/May
April 1 - May 31 August 16 - August 18+

July/August/September (Q3) Testing Window

If you take your test in:
And the AICPA receives your examination data files from
Prometric between:

Your score will be released by the target release date:
July/August/September July 1 - September 10 September 22+

October/November/December (Q4) Testing Window

If you take your test in:
And the AICPA receives your examination data files from
Prometric between:

Your score will be released by the target release date:
October/November/December October 1 - December 10 December 22+

+Due to the substantive changes introduced to the Examination in April 2017, time is required to conduct the standard setting process, which includes statistically validating candidate performance and setting a passing score. To allow sufficient time for the standard setting process, scores will be released only once following the close of the Q2, Q3 and Q4 testing windows.

KEEP IN MIND:
  • All dates and times are based on Eastern Standard Time zone.
  • For the vast majority of candidates, the AICPA receives the Examination data files from Prometric within 24 hours after a candidate completes the Examination
  • The scores for the Examination data files received after the AICPA cutoff dates will be in the subsequent scheduled target score release.
  • Some candidates who take the BEC section might receive their scores approximately one week following the target release date due to additional analysis that might be required for the written communication tasks.
We encourage candidates to visit the Psychometrics and Scoring page on the CPA Examination website for information about score release and the scoring process.

For updated information, please visit nasba.org.


Q. Why will there be a score hold for the Examination in Q2, Q3 and Q4?

A. Anytime the Examination undergoes significant changes, a passing score is set so that the assessment remains legally defensible. This is common practice in the world of high-stakes testing. The score holds after each testing window will allow sufficient time for the Board of Examiners to properly conduct its standard setting process. Upon completion, candidate scores will be released once after the close of each window as outlined in the tables above.

Q. What is the standard setting process that you will conduct in 2017? 

After the close of the Q2 2017 testing window, the Board of Examiners will assemble panels that consist of CPAs with experience supervising the work of newly licensed CPAs. There is one panel of CPAs for each section of the Examination. These CPAs will review test questions and performance data for candidates in the Q2 2017 testing window and approve ratings to recommend a passing score for the Board of Examiners approval.

Once the passing score for each section is approved, it will remain in place until there are significant changes to the Examination in the future. Prior to the 2017 standard setting process, passing scores were most recently set in 2004 when the Examination was computerized, and again in 2011 following a revision of the Examination. 

After the close of the Q3 and Q4 2017 testing windows, additional data analyses are require for quality assurance and validation purposes.

Q. What if the score release hold impacts my ability to complete the Examination within 18 months?

A. There is no need to contact your state board of accountancy. The AICPA, NASBA, and state boards are aware that some candidates testing in the Q2 2017 launch window will be impacted by the 10-week score reporting hold. With Q2 2017 scores scheduled for release by August 18, candidates may be unable to retake a failed section in Q3 2017.

NASBA's National Candidate Database is designed to prohibit expiration of conditional credits until advisory scores are received if candidates take the Examination prior to the date of their score expiration. In June and July, NASBA will notify state boards of all candidates testing in Q2 2017 with existing conditional credit who will be impacted by the score hold. The state boards will consider extending a candidate's conditional credit. Extensions of credit are handled on an individual case-by-case basis. State boards will notify candidates if an extension is granted.

Q. It is past the target date for my score release, and I still do not have my score.  What happened to my score?

A.
A vast majority of the scores will be released on the target date; however, these dates are still targets, not a guarantee.

There are several factors that can influence the score release. First, the target date reflects the day that NASBA distributes scores to state boards of accountancy, and the turnaround required for each state may vary. Secondly, some scores can be delayed due to a scoring inquiry that requires additional psychometric analysis. And finally, some scores in the BEC section might be delayed to a subsequent score release due to additional analysis required for the written communication task (see below). 

Q. What about score releases for candidates testing under the international testing program?

A. The scoring timeline for candidates testing under the international testing program can be found in the International Testing FAQs.




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