Monthly Archives: September 2013

UFE 2014 – Welcome to the next cohort of UFE writers

We’ll get back to UFE 2013 in November, but for now, it’s a great time to welcome new UFE 2014 writers to the blog!

No doubt many of you are already thinking about the Core Knowledge Exam (the CKE as most call it) or the UFE, you needn’t get too worked up yet, it’s still early, and you’ll have enough time throughout the next year to worry about getting behind. For now, no matter if you’re fresh out of school or already been working a while, you’ve got almost an entire year to get ready. Plenty of time.

At this time in the process it’s best to start getting some technical in. Those writing the CKE in January may be beginning your prep courses for that which will serve as great reviews of your technical knowledge. Take these courses seriously since they’ll provide all the technical you need for both the CKE and the UFE.

Of course, if you’re going the self-study route that is fine as well. Now is a good time to start getting into it.

Last piece of advice for now: the UFE is a marathon, not a sprint. If you go too much, too soon, you may just take yourself out of the race.

Luckily, we’ve build a nice sized audience of past CKE and UFE writers this year. I’m sure a lot of them will be happy to chime in and offer you advice along the way. The more the merrier.

All that to say… Welcome!

What happens next?

I hope everybody had a good weekend and took some time to let loose and all that good stuff.

There’s not much more left to say about the UFE for the time being. I will point you to a post from last year as to what happens next for those that are curious. Why does the UFE take so long to mark? Who is marking it and when is that happening? All this answered below.

Your UFE – What happens to your response now?

We’ll shortly be welcoming the new cohort of Core Knowledge Exam (CKE) and UFE writers to the blog. Stay tuned!

So you think you failed the UFE – 2013 edition

For days..err…weeks after the UFE is finished one of the most popular searches that lands people here is something related to failing the UFE.

1 i think i failed the ufe
2 failed the ufe
3 i failed you + blog
4 i think i failed the 2012 ufe
5 i think i failed the ufe 2012
6 think i failed ufe
7 thought i failed the ufe for sure
8 ufe exam 2012 failed
9 what i can do after failed ufe

Certainly group #7 there is quite sure of themselves! Group #3 is probably not UFE related so not sure why they’re coming here. Group #9 may already be studying for the next UFE.

If you’re one of those in this year’s bunch who thinks they failed the UFE with a variety of levels of certainty, you’re not alone. I poke fun a little above but I get that this is a challenging time for many whose futures may rely on this. A lot of people feel this way after the UFE. Even Gold Medallists feel this way sometimes after the UFE. It may be the biggest exam of your life and it’s normal to feel like you blew it. 

I wrote about this last year so please go check it out. The advice stands for this year’s writers. Hang in there.

If any previous UFE writers have any tips for this year’s cohort on getting through the next few months please do share!

Congratulations – UFE 2013 is DONE!

Congratulations! The 2013 UFE is finally and officially over! All that hard work is now behind you and you get to let it all go (in good time, of course). Hard to believe it’s over.

No doubt most of you guys will have some sort of partying coming to you today or over the weekend. I know I felt pretty worn out on the Thursday.

Now the long wait begins.

We’ll have a few more posts coming in the next week or so about the long wait ahead, what happens to your response now, how you might be feeling and so forth. Not too long from now you’ll put the UFE behind you and, for a while, forget all about the UFE and UFE Blog.

My Thank Yous

I’d like to take this occasion to say THANK YOU to a couple of sponsors who have come along this year to help defray some of the cost of running this thing. Thank you to both exaMENTOR and CPA Formula who have stepped up and who I know have also been there to help many candidates get through the process this year. It’s been great to deal with the dedicated people at these organizations.

And even more importantly, I’d like to take this occasion to say THANK YOU to all of you who came by this year. Many of you took the time to write kind notes that this blog was helpful and that was much appreciated. It’s the real reason I do this and it makes it worth doing. So thank you who are reading this now. My only wish is that you pass on the information to the next cohort of writers that have started to trickle in and that you check back once in a while and offer the lessons you learned this year.

Congratulations again to all those who wrote. You deserve a great weekend, I hope you enjoy it!

UFE 2013 – Wednesday

Wow, you’re done 2/3 of the UFE. Hard to believe it’s almost over.

Remember, 1/3 is still left and this is still a significant chunk.

Tomorrow will be a hard day because you’re tired now and probably a little sick of writing so much. Certainly, the Thursday was my most difficult day. The 2010 UFE was heavy on procedures and I remember just being so sick of writing them on Thursday. They threw in some difficult tax stuff in Day 3 as well. I had imagined they might take it easy on us Day 3.

Get a great sleep tonight and push on tomorrow. It’s not over until tomorrow at 1pm. Don’t give up one bit until that time.

Good luck – you’re almost through it!

UFE 2013 – Tuesday

Congratulations on finishing the first day of the 2013 UFE!

I hope you stuck to my advice and avoided all talk of the UFE afterwards. Be sure to keep that going until you’re done on Thursday.

Don’t worry if you feel awful.  Even Gold Medallists feel this way sometimes. The key is to remember that each day is worth about 1/3 of the marks so you’ve still go plenty of roadway ahead to do well. Just about everyone feels not so great after leaving the UFE.

Hang in there, enjoy your evening, get lots of sleep and back full force and confident tomorrow! Good luck!

The time has come: UFE 2013 begins!

Your long journey, hard work and years of study are finally culminating in writing the UFE tomorrow.

Congratulations! You’re this years lucky bunch who have gotten yourselves here to this moment which few people get to participate in. The UFE is one of those shared journeys where you feel similar to everybody else in the room. It’s a unique experience and most CAs remember these moments well into the future.

You’re already champs in my book. Keep calm and know that somewhere along the way you’re going to say WTF to some of the stuff. That’s normal and most people have a few of those panic moments somewhere in the three days. Have confidence and write. When I wrote the UFE in 2010 it was all the ducks on the paper.

My last bits of advice: After each day, don’t talk about the UFE with anyone else that wrote it. There is little outside and much downside risk so it’s a bad decision. You could easily shake your confidence when you hear someone mention something you never even saw (this always happens!). So just don’t. Go home, go out but make it a rule not to listen or talk about the UFE until Thursday at 1pm. At least then, you can’t do any damage. Second, stick to your training and what you’ve been doing in the past month. Don’t choose a new approach because you got freaked out by something.

My sincere best wishes – good luck, friends!

Your major studying is behind you

Hey everybody – good news! Your UFE studies are mostly behind you after today.

As discussed before, I wouldn’t recommend you do any new mocks after today. Even today, I’d stick to the ‘feel good’ mocks. You might not feel completely ready but going too hard the weekend before isn’t going to do you much good so just relax a little and I highly recommend you take this weekend off completely.

On Monday, do some light technical review or one ‘feel good’ mock and call it at half a day. Don’t worry, you won’t forget everything you learned the last month.

The UFE writing days can be exhausting, you can’t go in half full of energy so don’t take any risks here. Get a good bunch of sleep prior to Tuesday and be at your best.

If you want to do one more little activity over the weekend or on Monday, try my suggestion to come up with a UFE DRP, just in case. Also a good recommendation, check out some ideas on dealing with stress and some snacks to bring for the long days.

Wishing everyone a great weekend!


Writing feel good mocks

You’re coming near the end of your UFE study period, boy has time flown by fast. One of the thing you may have heard about is writing some ‘feel good mocks’ or ‘competency builder mocks’ in the final days prior to the UFE.

You may, quite reasonably, ask the question: What the heck are these things?

The answer is that these are mock exams that you have already written before and scored well or very well on. This is not a new mock!

Why would you do this?

It’s recommended you do this in the last days of your UFE study period so that your confidence stays high. What’s worse than writing a new mock a day or two before the UFE and just getting destroyed with NAs and NCs. That might just shatter your confidence.

By writing feel good mocks, you’re sure to score pretty well again and you also maintain your writing skills so you don’t let them rust.


So let’s hear from you guys in the comments: What are going to be your feel good mocks?

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