Top 5 Enrolled Agent Courses

Choosing the right EA review course is the single most important decision you will make on your Enrolled Agent journey.

Consider how competitive this industry has become— the BLS expects positions to decrease by 4% over the next ten years1, with automation being one of the core causes2. And while this will probably lead to increased salaries over the long term, it also means that you’ll need to work even harder to achieve success in your career.

A lot of the hard work is studying so you can pass the IRS Special Enrollment Examination (SEE). But in order to make those hundreds of study hours count, it’s crucial to find the course that best fits your learning style and background.

So here’s the good news – I have personally tested every major EA review course on the market so you don’t have to!

The comparison chart below will help you figure out which EA review course best fits your needs.

What Are The Best EA Review Courses?These are the Top 5 Best EA Review Courses in 2021 ( July ):

  1. Surgent EA Review Course

  2. Gleim EA Review Course

  3. Fast Forward Academy EA Review Course

  4. Lambers EA Review Course

  5. Wiseguides EA Study Materials

Here are the best EA review courses & EA study materials to help you pass the exam on your first try and become an Enrolled agent.

How do you rate Surgent EA Review ?


Surgent EA Review Course (Rank: #1)

Surgent EA Review Course - Best EA Review Courses


Surgent offers a wide range of materials in order to appeal to every type of student. You’ll find something you like here no matter what your learning style is.

Course Details

When you enroll in a Surgent prep course, you can expect a traditional study experience. Their enrolled agent exam prep curriculum includes a wide range of materials: lectures, practice questions, and virtual coaching. All of this is paired with an excellent adaptive learning program that ensures you’re always spending your time in the most productive way.

Surgent EA Review: 2 Minute Overview (With a lot to like!)

Additionally, everything Surgent offers is available on mobile and desktop. If you’re interested in trying them out, we recommend the Ultimate Pass course; it comes with 2 supplementary courses on Microsoft Excel and professional ethics, in addition to everything I mentioned above.

Surgent courses come with a wide array of materials, such as:

  • 1,800+ Practice Questions
  • 25+ Video Lectures
  • Unlimited Practice Exams
  • Adaptive Learning Technology
  • Printed Textbooks
  • Flashcards
  • 1-on-1 Coaching

Surgent EA Pros & Cons

Adaptive Technology: Surgent believes in helping their customers study smarter, not harder. That’s why their course includes an adaptive learning system. This technology allows the course to shape itself around your strengths and weaknesses— meaning you aren’t forced to revisit subjects you already understand.
1-on-1 Coaching: Surgent offers an additional coaching program for anyone using their Ultimate Pass course. Each coach helps to reinforce everything you’ve learned through the rest of the course. And since these sessions are 1-on-1, you have the full attention of your teacher.
Audio and Video Lectures: Lectures are a major part of Surgent’s study program. They offer over 25 video lectures for all exam sections, as well as audio-only versions. Feel free to watch one lecture on your computer or tablet and listen to another one while on your commute or at the gym.
Multilingual: Surgent offers their courses in multiple languages. If English isn’t your first language, this course should be your first choice— this is one of the only Enrolled Agent exam prep courses that offers this feature!

Bottom Line: Surgent is an excellent option for anyone who wants a no-nonsense approach to studying. They have plenty of excellent study options for anyone hoping to become an Enrolled Agent.


Surgent EA Review Course Discounts & Promo Codes

Gleim EA Review Course (Rank: #2)

Gleim EA Review Course - Best EA Review Courses


Gleim’s EA review course is designed to replicate the exam-taking experience as accurately as possible. This means you can become familiar with both the test content and format at the same time.

Course Details

As I mentioned previously, Gleim’s course focuses heavily on content that realistically compares to the actual exam. This includes unlimited practice exams with detailed answer explanations. You’re free to prepare for the test on your own terms when you enroll in the course, but Gleim’s instructors recommend mimicking the actual exam conditions when using their practice tests.

People Who Use Gleim Pass

Much like Surgent, Gleim offers 3 different course options. Firstly, you can just buy the test bank for $379. Next is the Traditional course for $503, which adds the adaptive course technology and some audio lectures. Finally, the Premium course costs $598 and comes with a series of video lectures and instructor support.

Gleim’s focus on testing shines through their materials, which include:

  • 4,000+ Practice Questions
  • Detailed Answer Explanations
  • SmartAdapt Technology
  • Unlimited Practice Exams
  • Digital/Printed Books
  • Digital Flashcards

Gleim EA Pros & Cons

Detailed Answer Explanations: Every test question comes with an in-depth explanation for the answer. That way you’re still learning even when you’ve got a question wrong. Plus, it’s a great way to understand aspects of the answer that you may not have understood otherwise.
Custom Practice Exam: Anyone using Gleim’s program has the option to create their own practice exams. Doing so lets you focus on areas that you know you need extra help in. Plus, you can exclude questions from areas you’ve already mastered.
Course Analytics: Gleim’s EA course comes with a SmartAdapt learning platform that contains detailed analytics. Using this platform will allow you to track your progress and identify the areas that you need extra help in. Plus, it’s a great tool to let you know when you’re ready to attempt the exam.
Limited Focus: Gleim’s greatest strength can also be a bit of a weakness. Anyone who has a different learning style that doesn’t prefer repetitive practice exams may not find Gleim as effective. There are a few alternatives included in their catalog — such as coaching — but there’s an obvious bias towards practice tests.

Bottom Line: Gleim is an excellent option for anyone who wants a course with a heavy testing focus. You’ll easily pass the EA exam if you use Gleim’s unlimited exams and study their detailed answer explanations!


Gleim EA Review Course Discounts & Promo Codes

Fast Forward Academy EA Review Course (Rank: #3)

Fast Forward Academy EA Review Course


Intricate Video Content: While the video lectures on their own aren’t particularly noteworthy, the way that Fast Forward Academy’s EA review course integrates supplementary information is impressive. Boring video lectures become informative multimedia presentations.
Community Feedback: Fast Forward Academy EA review course integrates their community forum seamlessly with the rest of their study tools. Because of this, students can easily compare their progress with their peers as a barometer for their study efficiency.
Low Cost: Whether a student is interested in trying the full digital course or simply wants the written study guide, the conveniently low price for either package is well within a frugal student’s budget.

Bottom Line: The affordable EA review course study program provided by Fast Forward Academy is a terrific resource for students who learn best through video content. Integrated community features are a convenient fringe benefit.


Fast Forward Academy EA Review Course Discounts & Promo Codes

Fast Forward Academy Summer Sale Coupon Code

Lambers EA Review Course (Rank: #4)

Lambers Review Courses


Multiple Options for Review: Lambers EA review course offers students the option to review with audio lectures, video lectures, and an online workbook. The audio EA review course can be downloaded to your computer and then synced with iPods and other MP4 media players for convenient study while you exercise or commute.
Flash Trainer: Although the traditional study materials like video lectures and audio content are included with this course, it’s Lambers’ Flash Trainer that makes this program stand out. This is a new twist on an old classic, providing a seamless method of testing your memory and understanding of EA curriculum with digital flashcards.
Intuitive Process: With the aid of their subject matter expert Eva Rosenberg, Lambers revamped their outdated course to include a helpful and streamlined study routine. This three-step process evaluates each student’s specific educational needs and meets them with adaptive educational drills and simulations.
Video Content: Don’t get me wrong: the video lectures provided with Lambers EA Review provides useful information to help students understand core concepts covered on the EA exam. However, the presentation for these video lectures is static and bland, feeling like a glorified PowerPoint presentation.

Bottom Line: The insight provided by Eva Rosenberg and Arthur Reed in Lambers’ EA review course is impossible to find anywhere else. With a bit more engaging video content, this would be one of the top courses on the market!


WiseGuides EA Review Course (Rank: #5)


Low Price: Pay as little as $49 per exam section (90 days of access) or $79 for each part of the exam, or $237 for all three (12 months of access). The WiseGuides EA course includes access to all online features, practice questions and online exams, 1,500 digital flashcards and hard copy textbooks.
Number of Practice Questions and Materials: You’ll get a total of 2,900 study questions and 1,700 electronic flashcards for all three parts of the exam, an unlimited number of online practice exams, and eLessons or printed Lesson Books for additional practice. Although the technology is old, you will get a lot of material at a bargain price, making this course a great supplement to another study program.
Outdated Technology: In terms of layout and design, this course needs significant updates. Limited feedback and analytics are available when it comes to performance tracking, and the online tools and course dashboard are very basic and old-school. The free demo will give you an idea of the tools and capabilities you’ll get with this course, so definitely try it before you buy it.

Bottom Line: If you can manage to stomach the obsolete technology behind their EA review course, WiseGuides can provide one of the most affordable courses that still includes thousands of practice questions


  • Rank
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  • 3
  • Course
  • Surgent EA Review
  • Fast Forward Academy
  • Gleim EA Review
  • Top Features
  • Most Material Covered
  • Most Cost Effective
  • Best Value

Enrolled Agent FAQs

Want to learn more about enrolled agents or the EA exam process? Here are some helpful answers to frequently asked questions:

What is the best Enrolled Agent prep course?

The EA exam prep course that offers the best experience for the widest range of students is Surgent. Their curriculum is made up of several different study materials, they offer live instructor assistance, and their adaptive learning technology is second to none. Gleim also has an excellent catalog of EA exam review courses with the largest volume of practice questions and quizzes.

Is the enrolled agent exam difficult?

When looking at the pass rates for EA exam takers, it’s clear that this three-part exam is very difficult— but it gets easier as you progress through each level. According to data gathered by Gleim, Part 1 has the lowest average pass rate (around 61%), and Part 3 has the highest (around 85%).3

How do I prepare for the enrolled agent exam?

The IRS recommends consulting several of their official tax forms and documents when preparing for the EA exam.4 Additionally, they have a list of recommended prep course providers to help you understand the test material, including several of our top-rated courses like Gleim and Kaplan.5

How long should I study for the enrolled agent exam?

According to Fast Forward Academy, students typically need between 40 and 160 hours of study time for each section of the EA exam. They recommend scheduling regular study times over a period of 3 to 4 months in order to meet this goal and pass the EA exam.6

Gleim EA Review Courses

Additional Resources to Get You On the Right Track

Not sure you want to become an Enrolled Agent? Don’t worry, I’ve got your back! Check out my Enrolled Agent vs. CPA comparison and see what’s a better fit for you. You can also learn more about other finance and accounting related certifications: CPA Exam Courses, CFA Prep Courses, and CIA Study Materials. And if you have any Enrolled Agent questions, just drop a comment below and I’ll personally help you find the right course for you!

When preparing for the Enrolled Agent exam, you can’t take your preparations lightly— after all, the IRS notices the tiniest discrepancies when conducting their own investigations.

In order to ensure you’re able to take your exam preparations seriously, we’ve compared two of the most popular EA prep companies: Gleim vs. Fast Forward Academy. In our analysis we’ve taken nothing lightly and left nothing to the imagination. 

Below you’ll find in-depth reviews that will help you find the perfect choice for your exam prep.

Let’s stop wasting time and jump right in!

Overview of Fast Forward Academy vs. Gleim

Before we jump into the specifics of each course, let’s take a step back and briefly go over both companies:

Fast Forward Academy EA Review Course

Fast Forward Academy EA Review Course

Fast Forward Academy is a company dedicated to providing higher education for professionals in order to further their careers. In addition to their EA exam prep course, Fast Forward Academy also helps students prepare for several other certification exams. Essentially, they‘ve built their company around three main tenets: expert instruction, powerful technology, and unparalleled support. 

Fast Forward Academy understands that students all have a personalized style of learning. Hence, their services are designed to better handle different types of learning while still providing the kind of academic support you’d expect at the collegiate level. Throw in their user-friendly designs and fully attentive Customer Support Team and you have a real recipe for success.

Gleim EA Review Course

Gleim Exam Review Course

In a world of constant tech developments, it’s refreshing to see an Enrolled Agent exam prep company that offers a more traditional service. Ever since the publishing of their seminal CPA review textbook, Professor Irvin Gleim and his wife have continued to work tirelessly to expand their offerings and hone their craft.

In addition to being an eco-friendly company, Gleim also has a basic understanding of a student’s most valuable resource— time. By maximizing the amount of knowledge imparted to their students into the least amount of time possible, this Enrolled Agent prep course’s effectiveness cannot be understated. Gleim’s students clearly agree; they have incredible word of mouth and customer reviews to go along with their pristine services.

Gleim EA vs. Fast Forward Academy: Course Access

Gleim and Fast Forward Academy both have solid policies regarding access to your enrolled courses. For both of these providers, you can expect to have access to course materials until you’ve actually succeeded at passing your Enrolled Agent exam:

Gleim has an Access Until You Pass Guarantee for their courses. Essentially, if you’re on your second (or third, or fourth…) attempt to pass the EA Exam, you won’t have to worry about paying to extend your membership or shelling out for new study materials.

Instead, Gleim firmly stands by making sure that you get the best EA prep materials for as long as you need them in order to help you pass. Take your time; digital content is automatically updated at no additional cost. 

However, it’s important to note that the Access Until You Pass guarantee is included only within Gleim’s EA Exam bundle— purchasing individual aspects of their package may not include the same level of access.

Fast Forward Academy, like Gleim, also has a very generous policy when it comes to accessing your course materials. They believe that you should have access to the content that you have enrolled for so long as you are still trying to pass your EA Exam.

This Enrolled Agent review course also ensures that you receive regular updates to your digital content at no additional cost. But when it comes to physical textbooks, you’ll have to pay for the newest editions— albeit at heavily discounted rates..

Winner: Tie

As both Gleim and Fast Forward Academy offer guarantees that allow you to access your course materials for as long as you need prior to taking your test, this will really come down to your personal tastes. 

If you’re someone who studies quickly and tends to pass exams on your first go, then these guarantees are probably not as exciting for you as they are for those who delight in taking their time. Alternatively, if you are a fan of physical textbooks, then the heavily discounted newer editions on offer with Fast Forward Academy could be a particularly important special feature.

Gleim EA Review vs. Fast Forward Academy EA Review: Study Materials

The road to success is paved with hard studying, but the building blocks of that road for each of our competitors are made of different materials.

But which of these two review courses offer the best practice questions, video lectures, and flashcards?

Let’s jump into the course and platform specifics of both Gleim and Fast Forward Academy:

Fast Forward Academy is dedicated to providing an impressive technological platform. Their system is easy to use — as well as easy on the eyes — which clearly demonstrates that a great level of care has gone into the overall presentation. Additionally, their digital platform (with over 3,500 multiple choice questions and more than 45 hours of video lessons) is accessible across all types of devices, ensuring that you are able to study on the go. 

Speaking of studying on the go, Fast Forward Academy also allows you to create your own digital flashcards straight out of the actual lesson plan. This allows you to generate an unlimited number of them— just like how they offer unlimited customizable practice exams. You can also leave notes in your textbook or pose questions to the online Fast Forward Academy community where other students and instructors can help you out.

But if these features don’t impress you, this next part probably will:

Fast Forward Academy EA Review Course Dashboard

Fast Forward Academy EA Review also includes a Performance Tracker that updates as you go through your course content. The tracker is set up almost like a dartboard; the goal is to get all of the different subjects tracked into the center circle, like a bullseye.

But what about Gleim’s Enrolled Agent review course?

Gleim actually has quite a few similarities to Fast Forward Academy’s platform. This isn’t a negative point against Gleim, but it helps to highlight what new features and benefits they bring to the table.

Basically, Gleim’s online platform and physical textbook options differ from FFA in a few key ways:

First, they have the largest selection of test bank options out of any online provider. The 3,900-plus practice questions in these test banks are from previous versions of the actual EA Exam that have been released by the IRS. And since Gleim supports all devices, this vast wealth of EA exam prep content — including over 450 lecture videos — is accessible to you at all times.

People Who Use Gleim Pass

Gleim also tracks your personal performance, similar to Fast Forward Academy. However, the key difference in their systems comes down to Gleim’s SmartAdapt Feature. This feature tracks your performance and actually helps guide you through your studies, telling you to focus on key areas and helping you to create a study plan.

Winner: Gleim EA Review

Gleim wins since it not only has the ability to identify areas of weakness, but to also help you tackle these areas head on and improve. Sure, Fast Forward Academy offers similar benefits— but the key difference is the way that Gleim actually guides you through these topics and keeps you on schedule. You really get the most out of your time when you spend it on Gleim EA Review!

Gleim EA Review vs. Fast Forward Academy EA Review: Pricing

There’s no avoiding the fact that you’ll need to pay up for access to the best EA review materials. Here’s how these two courses approach their pricing:

Gleim offers you the option of purchasing their course or study materials independently of each other. However, you’ll probably want to go with their bundle to take advantage of all of their features. Either way, you’re looking in the ballpark of somewhere just under $400 or just around $600. For the amount of guidance the system affords you in your studies as well as access to video content from actual university professors, this is a great deal!

Fast Forward Academy also allows you to purchase their course and materials as a bundle or as individual pieces. The spread of their pricing is more narrow though, with most of your options staying around the $500 range. For the amount of content included in the course, this is also a real steal.

Winner: Fast Forward Academy EA Review

At the end of the day, Fast Forward Academy offers the lower overall cost for their highest bundled option. If you’re looking to get an incredible amount of study content for one of the best price points available, this is your best bet!

Quick tip: Consider signing up for a financing program with Affirm if you need help paying for either of these EA courses!

Fast Forward Academy vs. Gleim EA Review: Supplementary Content

Now that we’ve gone over the main course, what do Gleim and Fast Forward Academy EA Review have to offer as supplementary content?

Aside from their two different EA review course bundles, Fast Forward Academy sells an Enrolled Agent Study Guide and a set of 500 print flashcards. These are more affordable than the full course bundle, but the price can still be intimidating for what you get.

Gleim doesn’t offer paid supplementary content for their EA students. However, they do have an entire section of their website dedicated to free student resources. You can find over 100 free study questions for the EA Exam in addition to handy guides to tax industry updates. It’s nice to see so many helpful links and free materials and is a welcome surprise if you’re used to paying for everything.

Gleim EA Review Course - Free Resources

Winner: Gleim EA Review

Although FFA offers some extra study materials that Gleim doesn’t, they devoted an entire section of their website to help future Enrolled Agents completely free of charge. This certainly speaks volumes of their dedication to education, and it gives them the win in this category!

Final Recommendation

Now that we’ve broken down what both Gleim and Fast Forward Academy has to offer students taking the Enrolled Agent exam, which is the best choice?

Winner: Gleim EA Review

The fact that Gleim has been helping students for so long, and has continued to stand the test of time, makes them easy to recommend. Their commitment to students is clear in their abundance of resources and free study materials on their website. Give them a look if we’ve piqued your interest here today.