One of the new features of the new CPA Exam arriving April 2017 is an opportunity for CPA Exam candidates to take a break during their test. During each exam section of the new CPA Exam, candidates will be offered a standardized, 15-minute break. This break will occur immediately following the first Task-Based Simulation testlet – at approximately the midpoint (2 hours) of the exam.

The decision to place the standardized break (which does not count against the candidate’s testing time) after the first TBS testlet is based on the typical time spent by candidates completing the requisite number of multiple-choice and task-based simulation questions. Candidates may use this break as a guide to assess their time remaining to complete the exam – although candidates should be aware that the actual time spent on the testlets varies based on the degree of difficulty of the questions and candidate preparedness.

The exam clock stops for the standardized break after the first task-based simulation testlet is completed. The candidate may choose to decline the standardized break and continue testing, but the break will not be offered again. A candidate who chooses to take the standardized break will leave the testing room, adhering to all security protocols, and will be readmitted to the testing room once cleared by Prometric personnel. If the candidate has not returned and started the second task-based simulation testlet prior to the expiration of the 15 minutes, the exam clock will restart.

Candidates may continue to take an optional break between any two testlets, just as they can now on the current CPA Exam; however, the exam clock will continue to run during that optional break.

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