Updated:December 14, 2018
Kenneth W. Boyd
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Surgent CPA Review is one of the newest CPA exam study materials on the market today, but it isn’t a new company. Surgent has been producing the highest quality professional continuing education for accountants, CPAs, EAs, and other professionals for over three decades. They’ve taken all of this experience and expertise in professional education and have applied it to help candidates pass the CPA exam.

This CPA exam review course is developed to help candidates learn faster using new adaptive technology. Most other courses on the market require candidates to read through each chapter and watch each lecture individually even if they already understand the topics and concepts presented in those chapters. Surgent takes a new look at how the traditional CPA study guide is formatted. Their intuitive software helps point candidates to areas of study that they need to work on instead of simply forcing them to study things they already know.

Let’s walk through each component of the Surgent CPA Review course format and see what’s inside.

Surgent CPA Prep Course Format

The Surgent CPA Review materials have several different components within the dashboard. We’ll discuss the details of each one and how you can use them to study for the exam.

Video Lectures

One of the most important parts of any review course is the video lectures. Surgent includes more than 350 lectures covering the most important topics and concepts covered on the exam. These lectures are presented by Surgent’s professional instructors who have decades of experience educating accounting professionals. One of the coolest parts of the lectures is the interface. The videos are played alongside the study text and the notebook. This allows candidates to follow along in the book, highlight sections of interest, and make notes and bookmarks for reference later.

Study Textbook

The study book contains detailed information about the topics covered in the lectures and the practice questions. This book is also integrated into Surgent’s adaptive system, so it suggests readings based on your current readings and pace through the practice questions.

Surgent CPA Review Testbank

The Surgent CPA Review course test bank includes more than 6,800 multiple-choice and practice questions that candidates can use to learn concepts and practice taking the exam. This isn’t the biggest test bank on the market, but it is uniquely used. The software tracks your answers to help improve your knowledge of different subjects. For example, if you score low on one subject, it will automatically add that topic to your study schedule and suggest that you read that section in the study text. This type of interactive study guide helps create more helpful study materials and increases the candidates’ learning efficiency. You can also create custom quizzes on any topic you want through their custom exam generator.

Task-Based Simulations

Surgent CPA Review includes more than 295 task-based simulations in their course. This is plenty to practice and get a feel for their format on the exam. Plus, like everything else in this course, they are integrated into the adaptive technology. When the software identifies a weak area, it will suggest you try the task-based solution as well to improve your knowledge of the topic.

Exam Simulator

An exam simulator is one of the most important parts of any review course. It allows the candidate to practice taking the exam and navigate the AICPA interface. The Surgent exam simulator is very close to the AICPA version. It also allows you to practice questions in two different modes. Practice questions display the answer and explanation for the answer right after you click your choice. This mode is great for studying concepts and understanding information. The exam mode doesn’t display any answers until you submit the full quiz. This mode allows you to practice actually taking the exam.


Many review companies either don’t offer flashcards as an option, or they charge a ridiculous fee for them. 2,000 plus digital Surgent CPA flashcards come with the standard study materials for no extra charge. You can use these on your phone or mobile device to study and practice answering questions anywhere. They also have printed flashcards available for a small fee.

Course Analytics

As with any adaptive review course, the main engine that drives it is analytics. Surgent proves one of the most robust analytic packages out of any CPA review course on the market today. It allows you to pinpoint your weak areas and double down on studying those concepts. It also uses the analytics to suggest areas for you to study. This is one of the powerful tools in this study guide because it dynamically generates a unique learning environment for every candidate. This means your study guide will be tailored specifically for your learning needs!

Interactive Study Schedule Planner

The interactive study schedule creates a custom study schedule for you. After you identify how many hours per week you want to study and block out free days, the planner automatically generates a study schedule for you. You just have to follow it. The best part is if you miss a day or don’t get through enough information in one day, the schedule will automatically update and generate a new schedule based on the remaining material that you need to get through.

That’s a brief overview of all the important components in the Surgent CPA Review course study materials. Let’s look at the benefits and drawbacks of this review course compared with other ones on the market.


Free Trial

Are you still on the fence about trying out an adaptive course? Well, you don’t have to commit to it before you shell out a bunch of money. Surgent offers a free trial that you can test drive before you buy it.

Adaptive Learning

Adaptive learning can be a benefit and a drawback at the same time. The technology is amazing and can really help candidates speed up their study time, but some people aren’t ready for this type of change.

Unlimited Access

Surgent allows you to use your full course materials until you pass the entire exam. There are no renewal or extension fees. You simply keep using it until you become a CPA. This is a big benefit and huge cost savings.

Cram Course Included

Surgent includes a full final review cram course with their standard review materials. This can be used a week or two before the exam to refresh on everything you need to know and memorize. A lot of other companies charge $500 plus for something like this.


Surgent is currently offering a 10% discount on all courses. Please click the link below 🙂


No Offline Course

There is no offline version of this CPA review course available. You can’t watch the videos or practice multiple-choice questions without being logged into your account. You can, however, read your printed study materials

No Audio Lectures

This isn’t a big deal, but many candidates want audio lectures that they can listen to in the car or while they are doing something else. This course doesn’t offer them.


This style of prep course is truly powerful. It can help candidates learn much faster than traditional linear courses, but a lot of people aren’t ready for it. It only works for candidates who want to use it as it is intended. Thus, if you want an adaptive course, this one is sweet. If you want a more traditional course, this one is probably not for you. That being said. It’s an awesome course if you are willing to embrace the new, modern technology of an adaptive course.

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Kenneth W. Boyd is a former Certified Public Accountant (CPA) and the author of several of the popular "For Dummies" books published by John Wiley & Sons including 'CPA Exam for Dummies' and 'Cost Accounting for Dummies'.

Ken has gained a wealth of business experience through his previous employment as a CPA, Auditor, Tax Preparer and College Professor. Today, Ken continues to use those finely tuned skills to educate students as a professional writer and teacher.

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