Accountancy Qualifying Exam: A Do-or-Die Adventure


Accountancy, to my opinion, is the toughest course being offered at the University of St. La Salle- Bacolod. Annually, a qualifying exam is organized to screen the students as a sort of evaluation as to what they have learned for the whole year. Normally, about 50% of the total examinees pass this exam. Those who fail usually shift to other courses while others transfer to other schools for the dream of acquiring the suffix CPA. On the other hand, those who successfully surpass the 4-hour examination are able to proceed to the second year. Now that my time has come, I did all my best just to pass the exam. Wrong! the question is not just about PASSING but PLACING. My family never requires me to top the exam, it is I who strictly injunct myself. I am really vocal and honest when it comes to my feelings. I want to share this observation of mine about other people who pretend as if they are complacent by only passing the exam when subconsciously, their actions totally express that they want to top. Others often say, “I’m afraid I won’t pass for I was not able to study,” when in fact they topnotch the class. I’m just sensitive to the feelings of those at the bottom level of the hierarchy of learning. What would they feel? Some could even retort, “What a thing to say! If our topnotcher says she ‘s unprepared, what about me? I don’t understand the lessons either.”

Too much for the introduction. Now I’ll tell you my experience including my preparationΒ  regarding this famous exam. The day before, that was on the 24th, our dismissal was at 11.30 AM. My classmates and I decided among ourselves that we’d stay in the library. There we reviewed our lessons while waiting for the Taize (sort of prayer and chant) which will be at 5.30PM. My mind was really overweary at that moment so I slept in the library for an hour and a half. When I woke up, my chums weren’t there anymore and the feisty librarian queried me if where my companions are(my friends left their bags,books,cameras,and papers generously on the long table) . I replied, “Uhhm, I don’t know, they went out,and for an hour, they haven’t returned yet!” She said in a disciplinary approach, “Call or text them. They should be here after 5-10 minutes or else I’ll send all their belongings to the Discipline Office.” Good thing! They arrived. They said they went to the church to light some candles in petition of passing the exam. To cut the story, I arrived at my humble hearth by 7.30PM with my physical body tired and restless. I forgot that the exam will be @8AM the following day. So, I expedited my actions. I answered a long accounting problem and I did it for 18 minutes only. The second one was terrible, it took me an hour to balance the accounts because I forgot to adjust the Bad Debts Expense. Afterwards, I studied Financial Accounting 1 to familiarize myself with the concepts and theories.

February 25, 2012-The “Parousia” has come. TUPAS was my surname so I was assigned to the last room. The answer sheets were given, after a minute followed the questionnaires. Part I was about THEORIES. An hour is allotted for that part. I was surprised upon noticing that about 20 out of a hundred questions were twin sisters of the questions in my reviewer. As a result, I finished the first part 30 minutes ahead of time. I was confident with my answers except for about 5 questions which I was not able to fully comprehend what they were implying. Short problems comprised the second part. It was a two-hour round with seventy lengthy problems. OMG, It perplexed my mind so terribly to the extent that I could not provide solutions/ answers to 15-20 of them. The intricate questions consumed my time ineffectively that I wasn’t able to have a round of reviewing my answers. I told myself that it’s alright. The last part was the Financial Statement Preparation. It was easier than what I assumed but I was uncertain if I correctly classified the expenses as to selling or administrative. In that part, i finished 15 minutes ahead of time. After the exam, we rushed to our other classmates and discussed our answers. We then had a sort of picture-taking to document the memories we shared that day. We were all excited to know the results although we know that not all of us will be happy by the time the results will be posted. Still, we wore happy masks for it was the judgment day which will assess whether or not we will still be CLASSMATES in the “A” section by the next school year.

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32 thoughts on “Accountancy Qualifying Exam: A Do-or-Die Adventure

    1. stvensontupas says:

      Nothing beats understanding the accounting concepts. It is not enough that you memorize; you must analyze. Also, do not let fear overcome you. When I was just in first year, I was already reading Valix’s Financial Accounting 1. God Bless! Remember: Prayer, indeed, serves as the greatest learning complement.

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  1. stvensontupas says:

    Sending you my good luck wishes Crisyl. Remember that ‘the best preparation to do good tomorrow is to do good today.’ Work out on your problem-solving and analytical skills. Ground every process you make on the theories you have learned. In that way, you will never be off-track. πŸ™‚

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  2. Monalissa Medina says:

    Hi sir, I’m just a freshman. When our instructor told us the statistics of the students who passed the qualifying exam every year, I fear I can’t make it. But then, I trust myself and keep on praying that I can pass it since it’s too early so I can study hard first. And now, I need your help. Will you please tell me the weakness of those who failed the exam? And the strength of those who passed? I hope there’s a secret weapon here. πŸ˜€ I want to pass it, what to do? Please help me, give me some advice.

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    1. stvensontupas says:

      It is beyond my scope of knowledge to identify the weaknesses of those who failed the exam, for if I do so, I may sound judgmental for expressing an opinion without even probing the subjects. Anyways, I am generous enough to share to you the dominant characteristics of those who pass. Right now, in the graduating batch, there are only 35 survivors left of us from among about 300 entrants when we were in First Year. What is noticeable is that the 35 of us who were fortunate to hurdle over the challenges share the values of hardwork, perseverance, and discipline. Hardwork. Practice as many problems as you can. Don’t plainly rely on the textbook exercises. You can visit the Filipiniana/Accounting section of your library for more helpful resources. Maybe this is the time for you to start burning midnight candles. Perseverance. A low mark isn’t the end of your voyage. Remember that failure is delayed success. Charge your mistakes to your learning experiences and strive to work out for your personal growth. Lastly, Discipline. Forego the unnecessary social affairs. You can have more of those after garnering the CPA title. Control is the key. Devote more time to studying your lessons. “Accounting 1(2) is very easy,” you’ll be able to tell this to yourself when you shall have reached the Senior Year. Let go of your fears. Convert them into fuel for persistence. Mona Lisa, your name is patterned from “the best known work of art in the world.” Only you can draw the portrait of your destiny. So, thrust your fists on the core values required of a BSA student: hardwork, perseverance, and discipline. You can do it! #GiveMeAnUpdate πŸ™‚

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  3. Niki Spangler says:

    It’s very well written; I love what you got to say.
    But maybe you could do a little more in the display of the content so people could connect with it better.
    You’ve got an lot of text for only having one or 2 images. I was wondering if you could space it out better? πŸ˜€

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    1. stvensontupas says:

      Thanks for that suggestion, Niki. I actually wrote this about 3 years ago. Back then, this was a private blog and I didn’t expect to have a wide audience by the time I shall publicize it. I opted not to edit it anymore so as to preserve the natural emotions that inspired me to write it. I’ll try to add more pictures in my next post. πŸ˜€

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    2. stvensontupas says:

      One more thing, you were suggesting adding images ‘so people could connect with it better.’ Actually, in-mail messages I’ve received told me that they can already feel the tension by simply reading this article. Perhaps, it’s because they’ve undergone the same feeling I’ve experienced. Oh! Those pre-examination apprehensions are just unforgettable. πŸ˜€

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  4. Karen says:

    Oh my. I hope my sister passed the Qualifying exam. Only the first 25 will get through the next level. 😦 Even if she did passed the Quali exam she need to make sure she’s on the top 25. I think I’m more nervous than my sister. :p

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  5. micol villalva says:

    Your words are really amazing! Keep it up, keep inspiring. Im freshman and will take qualifying next week, Goodluck for your upcoming exam. Godbless πŸ™‚

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  6. Kristine says:

    I’m an incoming BSA freshman in my school and accounting is really my first choice. But I’m afraid that I might fail because I’m not good in English and I know an accountant always use it. Can you give me an advice as to what I can do to improve my English skill. Sorry for the grammar, I hate English but I really want to be an accountant. I feel like I will not make it. 😦

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      1. stvensontupas says:

        Try to change your perspective, Kristine. Here’s a verse from the Bible that I really hold on to. I’m sharing it to you. Mark 11:24 says, “Therefore, I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them.” Never doubt your capabilities; never succumb to self-pity. Ask it from the Supreme Being. You can always improve your understanding and command of the English language. First things first. You said, “I hate English.”In my case, I write in most of my test papers, “I can do it. God Bless!” Think positively. My advise is that you should learn to appreciate the language.What is important is that you can understand the message that the words relay and react accordingly. That is why you are at school. If I am not mistaken, you shall have four English courses namely, Study and Thinking Skills, Speech and Oral Communication, Philippine Literature, and Writing in the Discipline. Begin to form an interest in these courses by studying them diligently and complying with the requirements at a level beyond the average. Only you can elevate your abilities. I understand that you may find reading textbooks boring. My suggestion for you is to read inspirational, fiction, or books of any genre that interests you. You may tend to adapt to the writing styles of the authors. Moreover, reading widens your imagination and deepens your understanding. I have a cousin who once had a difficulty in translating her thoughts into English ideas. But when her shelves had been filled with books, she began to speak fluently and write papers of excellent quality. May the Good Lord bless you.

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  7. Yona says:

    I’m a freshmen BABA student in USLS and next month will be our Qualifying Exam. I’m so nervous and doubting myself (I know I shouldnt) its because, my grades for the past month are not that hight and I keep reading my book but my grade is still the same. I’m thinking that, “maybe this course isn’t for me.” But this is all I know and want. Maybe i just need a lot of practice and focus in my study.. Also i’m kinda afraid because my classmates are so smart and all.. Can you give me a bit of encouragement there? 😦 Thank you and I appreciate it! I know God have agood plan in each and every one of us!

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    1. stvensontupas says:

      Yona, I’m sorry for replying late. Manong Stvenson’s busy for the past 3 months. I appreciate your asking for advice. You have more or less 2 weeks to prepare for the Exam. You may have difficulty in understanding the topics but with constant practice, a healthy study plan, and heartfelt prayers, among others, there is no doubt you’ll pass. Let not their intimidations take effect on you. More importantly, do not compare yourself to them. We are all created unique. You may not have discovered it yet but your bandwidth may receive signals that theirs may not. If you have developed an addiction to Facebook or Instagram,better evaluate your social media account usage and track your time properly. If possible, “Fast on Facebook” starting this Ash Wednesday. Good thought: 2016 is a leap year. With the right attitude and mindset, strive to take on a great leap— a leap that will decide for your future. Who can do that? NO ONE BUT YOU.

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  8. Kristine says:

    Hi manong Stvenson! I’m an incoming BABA2 student and I’ve experienced the same dreadful quali, but thankfully I passed. I know the challenge doesn’t end here and I have to step up my game. Can you comment the list of books that we need for 2nd year, and the years after that, so I ( and other people who are interested) can do some advance reading?

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    1. stvensontupas says:

      Brigham’s Finance book and Valix’s Financial Acctg 1 will be required of you. You may consider downloading the accounting standards for a comprehensive understanding of the concepts. Of course, since our school offers “fast track” education (4 years), expect to encounter auditing problems. My advice for you is not to be intimidated by the length of a problem, the number of information given, the number of items required, and the strictness of the teacher, among others. Rehearse on as many problems as you can before your final performance. Never forget to pray all the time. Believe. Act. Give thanks. (BAG). Surely, you’ll bag the CPA license. Have a meaningful Holy Week, Kristine. πŸ˜€

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