Is Becker CPA Only for Big 4? While the short answer is no, you’re probably aware that most CPA candidates working at a big 4 use Becker CPA exclusively. If you’re planning on joining a Big 4, then Becker is an obvious choice. You want to be fully prepared (and confident) on exam day and Becker is one of the most thorough review courses available.
Now, it’s widely understood that the CPA Exam is challenging. Nearly half the candidates who take it do not pass on the first try. Therefore, the difficulty level dictates why candidates need more than a simple review book to pass the CPA Exam. Becker has a full, comprehensive study system with three options to choose from: Advantage, Premium, and Pro. While Becker is one of the more pricier review courses on the market, it is one of the most thorough. And you can see how Becker stacks up in my article about how to select a CPA review course.
Why is Becker CPA So Popular?
Why is the Becker CPA review course so popular, especially with those who are Big 4 bound? One reason Becker is such a popular course is that you have access to study anywhere, anytime from any internet-connected computer. Additionally, you can download materials and work offline. Becker was one of the first CPA review providers to make studying accessible via an app, and while now it’s more the norm, we find that the Becker app is still leading the way.
Secondly, Becker works with Big 4 firms to provide CPA courses to Big 4 employees at a reduced rate. And because Becker is provided to nearly all Big 4 employees for “free,” it’s the easiest option. Think about it: do you want to spend many, many hours vetting and trialing different CPA review courses? Or do you just want to go with the option that you know works for nearly half of the CPA Exam candidate cohort? Now, I’m not saying you shouldn’t investigate the other options, because there might be another course that better fits your learning style. However, I am providing the reason why many Big 4 employees just accept the firm’s offer to use Becker CPA.
What Comes with Becker CPA Review?
With Becker Pro, Becker Premium, and Becker Advantage, you can rest assured that the content is relevant and up-to-date so you can pass your exams on the first attempt. Becker consults regularly with the AICPA to remain accurate with any exam changes, additions, or updates.
The Becker Pro CPA Course is the most comprehensive and includes:
- 4-part comprehensive courses (online and printed textbooks)
- Over 1,400 digital AND printed flashcards
- Academic CPA tutoring sessions
- Adapt2U Technology powered by Sana Labs
- Over 400 videos just on simulations alone (also, there are also 100+ hours of general instructor-led videos)
Additionally, the Becker Pro course also includes other extras like unlimited access to the material, a Final Review with new MCQs and TBS, access to the CPA Exam success coaches to guide you through the process, a live classroom scheduling option, and more. Many candidates decide to go for the full version to ensure they get the best study materials around, especially if they are working at a Big 4.
Most candidates with Big 4 offers will be getting Becker CPA for free so they opt for the full program so they can get everything. This is excellent because the Becker Pro course is the most comprehensive and thorough review course available on the market today. If you use it properly and apply the tools and knowledge within, you can’t lose.
Becker CPA Simulated Exams
Studies have shown that mock exams are one of the best ways for a candidate to prepare for the real thing. Becker review courses have lots of opportunities to take simulated exams. What better way is there to tell if you’re prepared for the exam than by taking the tests? The mock tests are designed to simulate the questions and difficulty level of taking the actual exam. So, by taking mock exams, you’ll be comfortable on your exam day in the best way possible.
You will also get to complete a Final Review after you’ve made it through the simulated exams. This strengthens your preparation for some of the most difficult test concepts with up-to-date lectures, multiple-choice questions, and simulations. A Becker Final Review goes over everything covered in the main course but in a super-condensed, lightning-fast fashion. The goal of the Becker Final Review is to refresh you of everything you’ve learned and help you pinpoint your weak areas.
Not sure if Becker is right for you? They want to be sure you’re 100% happy with your choice so they have a 14-day Becker CPA demo. Get access to pre-assessments, progress tests, simulations, conceptual videos, personalized review sessions, flashcards, simulated exams, and more with the free Becker demo.
You can also follow my steps to passing the CPA Exam with Becker during your trial, and if you like the process, keep going with it when you purchase your course!
Is Becker CPA Only for Big 4?
So, is Becker CPA only for Big 4 bound candidates? Actually, it’s not. Any candidate looking to take the CPA Exam can successfully utilize the Becker CPA review system. You will see Becker mentioned as the standard at Big 4s and many other leading firms within the industry because it has such a good reputation. When something is held in such high regard, it’s going to get the word-of-mouth advertising in the industry that keeps it on top, too. Becker CPA affords candidates a higher percentage of passing and they are very exam-oriented. This means, in short, that they are a course specifically designed to help you pass – and to make the most number of candidates pass.
Becker also offers zero-percent financing for everyone. They have no credit check so you can make monthly payments over three years. This is one of the only review courses that offers a payment plan of this type, so even if you’re not in a Big 4 firm that offers reimbursement, Becker makes their course affordable for you.
Becker Big 4 Reimbursement
You may have heard about Becker reimbursement programs. If you work for a Big 4, this is an option that might be available to you. Usually, a Big 4 firm will give you a Becker code with your offer letter. If for some reason you don’t get it, you can always ask your recruiter about it.
Experiences will vary but many have reported that when they worked for a Big 4, they received a discount code for special pricing. Others have said they were reimbursed when they showed proof that they had paid for Becker. Sometimes the firm will pay for the whole exam review cost for you, which could be over $2,000. In other cases, they will buy materials upfront for you, rather than reimburse you. Again, you should always ask to be sure your firm offers this and how they like to do it.
If you are interning at a Big 4, this is another opportunity for you to save more. After accepting your offer, contact your recruiter and they should be happy to send you the Becker code. All other costs for the CPA Exam, such as paying for the exams, transcripts, or a supplemental review course will be out of pocket and reimbursed to you later. You should always keep your receipts!
Important note: If you get reimbursement, you will get taxed on the full amount of the reimbursement, so keep this in mind.
When Becker CPA Paid For?
Typically, the time between an internship and when you receive a Big 4 offer and when you start with the firm is about a year. Many people wonder if their Big 4 reimbursement will apply at the time of the offer, or at the time they start. Usually, you will get the Becker code with your offer letter. Becker bills the Big 4 firms directly for this so there is nothing out of pocket for you. This means you can start studying right away.
However, the additional fees like CPA Exam fees, licensing and other costs will not be reimbursed until you actually start at the firm. This is why it is important to know that you will be paying out of pocket for some things along your journey. Keep all of your receipts and proofs of purchase for these things so that you can get reimbursed by your Big 4 later.
Repaying Becker to a Big 4 Firm
What if you leave your firm in the first year? Would you then need to repay the cost of the Becker review course to your firm? And if so, do you have to pay the full cost of the review course? It’s common knowledge the Big 4 get these courses at discount in order to offer them to their new hires.
The simple answer is: read your contract.
Unless it is in your contract that you have to pay them back, you shouldn’t have to. Some firms will have a section included in your offer contract that states you will need to pay back the value of the Becker course if you leave within two years. If it is not specifically stated in your contract, then you are not expected to pay anything back.
Now you know the answer to the question, “Is Becker CPA Only for Big 4?” it’s time to make the decision for yourself. If you’re going to a Big 4, it just makes sense to choose Becker. It is absolutely worth it and is likely the most comprehensive review course available to you. It is the standard for Big 4 bound candidates and since you should get a discount code for it to use at checkout, you don’t even need to spend out of pocket for it.
Conversely, even if you’re not working in a big 4 firm or a firm that provides you with any sort of Becker discount, we highly recommend you purchase Becker. And usually, there are deep Becker discounts to help you as it’s understood that you’re paying for this expense out-of-pocket. Becker discounts are available throughout the year (but not all the time), so be sure to check the available discounts before you purchase (no code required; discount applies when you visit the page).
Downsides to Becker
So, all of this sounds great, right? What’s the catch? Does Becker have any downsides? In our experience, there is always a downside, especially if you look hard enough, but Becker doesn’t have many. It is pricey, which you’ve heard us mention. However, when you consider the fact that most firms will cover the costs, that’s not a factor.
Additionally, if you factor in the ROI from the job you will get after you pass your CPA Exam, it’s well worth it, even if you’re paying out of pocket for it.
Another downside – but it’s really a nitpick at this point – is that it doesn’t have as many MCQs as some review courses. This may not be an issue since they offer so much more in their comprehensive course. However, if you really love practice MCQs and you don’t’ feel it has enough, you could always purchase a supplemental course with more MCQs. That’s a pretty easy fix.
Becker for Non-Big-4-Bound
What if you’re not planning on going to a Big 4? Is Becker still a good option for you? It will still be a good option, for all of the reasons above.
However, if you really don’t have the budget to afford this course, even after the Becker discounts, then you may want to try one of these CPA review courses instead. Additionally, you can check out CPA tutoring options too.