prometric testing center

You’ve been preparing all these weeks and months for the CPA Exam; you should also take some time to prepare for the testing experience itself. Knowing and understanding the process at the Prometric testing center may not remove the exam jitters but it will help to reduce the stress level a bit.

So what should you expect?

When you walk into the testing center, you will be greeted by a Test Center Administrator (TCA) who will help you with the check-in process.

The TCA will assign you a locker and provide you a locker key. You will be required to put all personal items in the locker. You will be permitted to keep your ID and key with you.

Prometric testing centers utilize a biometric process to validate your identity; this includes scanning your government-issued ID, verifying the photo on the ID, and capturing your fingerprint. On your first visit, they will capture multiple fingerprint images: 3 from your right hand and 3 from your left hand.

You will be asked to empty and turn your pockets inside out prior to every entry into the test room to confirm that you have no prohibited items.

You will also be scanned with a hand-held metal detector wand. You will be scanned prior to each entry to the test room, including reentry from any breaks.

You will be continuously monitored by video and physical observations. All testing sessions are recorded.

You must present valid (unexpired) and acceptable ID(s) in order to take your test. Note: Your name on your ID must match the name you provided on your application and that appears on your NTS (Notice to Schedule).

Here are some do’s and don’ts for the testing center:

  • You cannot bring any notes, published materials, or calculators into the exam.
  • You are allowed to bring soft earplugs or center-supplied tissues in the test room.
  • Any clothing or jewelry items allowed to be worn in the test room must remain on your person at all times.
  • Removed clothing or jewelry items must be stored in your locker.
  • You cannot bring hats, food, drinks, purses, briefcases, notebooks, pages, watches, cell phones, recording devices, or photographic equipment into the testing center.

Other Tips

  • Select a testing time that works best for you. If you are not a morning person, do not schedule your exam at 8:00 a.m.!
  • Do a test run. Drive to the testing location at the same time of day that you will be taking your actual exam. This helps you understand the traffic pattern and volume.
  • Give yourself plenty of time to get to the testing center. Plan to be there at least 30 minutes prior to your scheduled start time. The start time on your NTS is the time the exam in scheduled to start, not the time you should arrive.
  • If the location is a far distance from your home, plan to stay in a hotel.
  • Don’t stay up late the night before studying. Get a good night’s sleep if at all possible.
  • Eat a healthy meal before the exam.

For additional information on the Prometric testing center and to schedule your exam, please visit the Prometric website at

For additional tips for success on the CPA exam, subscribe to the Surgent CPA Review blog, Passing Insights.