Learn about the CPA Exam and process to become a licensed CPA
- Get to know the Exam partners and the Board of Examiners (BOE)
- Review NASBA’s Candidate Bulletin for details about the process to become a CPA.
- Review the AICPA’s CPA Exam Booklet for general information
- Watch our informative video for general details about your Exam strategy
- Find answers to CPA Exam frequently asked questions (FAQs)
- Subscribe to the official CPA Exam podcast, Next Stop: CPA
- Check out This Way to CPA for helpful information and support.
- Connect with other CPA candidates by joining the AICPA’s Exam Candidate LinkedIn group
- Consider joining the AICPA as an Exam Candidate Affiliate Member
Determine your eligibility
- Visit the NASBA website for eligibility guidance
- Select a jurisdiction where you want to become licensed as a CPA and review its specific requirements
- If you’re an international candidate, consider using NASBA’s International Evaluation Services to determine if your are eligible to take the Exam
- Choose a jurisdiction that participates in international administration
- Some non-U.S. residents may be eligible to take the International Qualification Examination (IQEX)
Submit your application
- Complete your application and submit the required documentation
- Your application will be verified for eligibility
- You will receive a Notice to Schedule (NTS), which is valid for six months
Schedule your Exam
- Decide when you will take the Exam
- Use your NTS information to schedule an Exam date with Prometric
- You can take your Exam at any Prometric test center where the Exam is offered
- International candidates may not be eligible to test at all Prometric locations outside of U.S. jurisdictions
- International locations require an additional fee
Prepare for your Exam
- Study the Exam Blueprints and use all available Exam resources and study tools to prepare
- Learn the Exam’s format and functionality by practicing with the sample tests and accessing the tutorial topics found by selecting the “Help” button in each sample test.
- Review the testlet structure of each Exam section.
- Use your NTS to get six months of free access to NASBA’s Professional Literature package.
Take your Exam
- Pass all four Exam sections within 18 months (score a minimum of 75 on each section)
- In most cases, the 18-month complete “clock” begins based on your attendance date when you pass the first Exam section, but check with your specific Board of Accountancy.
- While you can take more than one Exam section per test window, you cannot take retake the same section in the same test window*
- Pass Ethics exam (only if required by your Board of Accountancy)
*As of July 1, 2020, testing windows will be replaced by continuous testing. Visit the Testing Window and Score Release Dates page for more information.
Apply for your license
- Generally you must have 150 credit hours of education with a concentration in accounting. This includes:
- 30 semester hours in accounting subjects, and 24 semester hours in business administration subjects
- A minimum of 15 semester hours in accounting must be at upper division or graduate level
- Must have a minimum of one year of experience (approximately 2,000 hours) verified by a licensed CPA.
- Experience should include accounting, attest, auditing or tax
- For licensure specific requirement information, visit the NASBA website or contact your Board of Accountancy.