CPAStudent Stories

Back on the Saddle and Studying for FAR

The sun and warmth has finally come to Minnesota, and I cant tell you enough how it makes a huge difference in both overall mood and energy levels.  I managed to get back to where I knew I needed to be for studying managed to get in just over 30 hours this week.  Phew!  After multiple distractions the past few weeks, it was good to get my hands dirty again and roll up the sleeves. 

Due to some internet issues (there’s always something) at home this week, I decided to go to the book, mechanical calculator, and scratch paper.  Since the internet wasn’t reliable, I reviewed my notes from the lectures and focused on intangibles, receivables, and bonds; and just began some review of the leases section. 

Additionally, one thing I found extremely useful was reviewing the GAAP balance sheets and statement of earnings and comprehensive income.  Roger has these presented well in the full FAR course   Every section I’ve been through goes back to recording a transaction that appears on these statements.  Once I was able to have a firm grasp of these statements, the studies made even more sense.  I literally took about 30 minutes every day to write out, over and over, these statements until I could do them without looking at the book.  Rogers mnemonic ON-TIDE-N-OC really simplifies the flow of the earnings statement.  Don”t overlook this simple, yet effective mnemonic!  I really think this help pull everything together and to allow you to understand subsequent sections. 

FAR is very detailed, but don’t forget that everything flows back to the financial statements.  Understanding the details of the statements makes the learning come faster.  Additionally, knowing the statements makes you analyze what the questions are asking you.  During the PP&E sections, if you understand the statements, you will understand the logic of the rules of when you need to capitalize it (BS) or expense it (IS), and you will see exactly where it goes in your mind once you know the statements.  This is a fairly simple and high-level example, but if your study efforts are getting compressed, a working knowledge of the statements allows you to logically examine most questions from the practice materials.