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CPA Exam Information

Are you interested in the CPA certification?

Then you’ve come to the right place!

You can get essential CPA certification details and CPA Exam information right here.

What Is the CPA?

The CPA is the Certified Public Accountant license. The boards of accountancy in each of the 55 U.S. jurisdictions grant the CPA to accountants. Accountants must meet a set of requirements specific to their state board to qualify for the license. The state boards hold CPA candidates to such elevated standards because CPAs are accounting experts entrusted to protect the public interest. CPAs must demonstrate high levels of knowledge and competence to fulfill the position. For this reason, once you earn the CPA, you join an elite group of greatly respected professionals. 

The Benefits of Becoming a CPA

Why should you pursue the CPA? The CPA advances the careers and lives of accountants with several major benefits. These benefits include increased income, job opportunities, job security, and more. Discover the advantages the CPA affords in this article.

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The CPA vs. the World

Find out how the CPA compares to other certifications and degrees:

How to Become a CPA

The process of becoming a CPA is a bit involved and can take some time. However, we’ve broken it down for you into 10 simple steps. Some of these steps, like learning about the benefits of the CPA, are pretty easy. Others, like studying for and taking the CPA Exam, ask quite a bit more of candidates. However, you’ll always know exactly what to do next on your journey to certification when you follow this user-friendly guide. Find the way to become a CPA in this article.

CPA Exam Requirements

Again, earning the CPA means meeting a set of strict requirements. While the CPA requirements differ from state to state, they typically include an education requirement of 150 credit hours, an experience requirement of 1-2 years in accounting, and an examination requirement of passing the Uniform CPA Exam. Many state boards also expect CPA candidates to pass an ethics exam. When you apply for the CPA, you must know exactly what your state board expects of you. You can learn all about the general guidelines for the CPA requirements, called the 3 Es, and more about the specific requirements of your state in this article.

The 4 Es

Some states have 4 requirements instead of 3. Learn more about the 4 Es:

CPA Exam Fees

Once you’ve earned it, the CPA affords many major career advantages. But until then, you will have to pay for the process of becoming a CPA. This process includes a variety of CPA expenses, such as application and registration fees, exam fees, review course costs, travel and accommodation, licensure fees, and more. You can find out more about these CPA Exam fees and how to save on them in this article.

You'll also want to purchase the highest quality CPA review course you can afford. I've created a guide on how to choose your CPA review course that I hope you find helpful!

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CPA Exam Pass Rates

Passing the CPA Exam is a significant part of qualifying for the CPA. Consequently, you must thoroughly prepare for this task. For this reason, you may have questions about the exam. Questions like, “How many people pass the CPA Exam each year?” And, “What do these pass rates say about the exam?” Thankfully, this article has answers. It reveals that the CPA Exam pass rates are a bit low: they average about 50% for each section. Therefore, these pass rates indicate that the exam is a real challenge. However, it is not one that you can’t overcome with determination and hard work. This article unpacks the CPA Exam pass rates and tells you what these pass rates mean for you.

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International Pass Rates

See past pass rates for these areas:

CPA Exam Application

The process of applying for the CPA Exam is just complicated enough that you will want to have a firm grasp on it before you start. The CPA Exam application encompasses several different forms and fees that you must submit and pay at certain times. Also, multiple parties participate in the process, so you have to determine who you must communicate with and when. The application isn’t the hardest part of the CPA Exam, but because it can be tricky to keep track of, you should get all the details on the necessary procedures in this article.

Get specific guidance on applying for the exam if you’re from:

CPA Exam Schedule

The CPA Exam consists of 4 distinct exam sections, all of which you must pass in a 30-month period. These sections address different accounting topics with specific types of questions. Therefore, the order in which you schedule the exam sections can affect your ability to pass within your 30-month window. When you arrange your exam sections strategically, you can increase your chances of passing quickly. See which CPA Exam schedule we recommend in this article.

CPA Exam Sections

Learn about the 4 CPA Exam sections. The 2023 exam had sections called AUD, BEC, FAR, and REG. The 2024 exam, however, has 3 Core sections (AUD, FAR, and REG) and candidates must choose from 1 of 3 Discipline sections (BAR, ISC, and TCP).

CPA Exam Scoring

As you prepare to pass the CPA Exam, you need to know what passing the exam looks like. What is the score you’re shooting for? How does the AICPA determine if you earned that score? Is the CPA Exam score curved? How are the written communications graded? You don’t have to fret about finding this information because it’s all right here in this article. Read about the CPA Exam scoring now.

CPA Exam Score Release Dates

You can only sit for the CPA Exam during certain times of the year, and you can only receive your CPA Exam score on certain days of the year. Once you take an exam section, you must pay attention to the calendar so you don’t miss the CPA Exam score release dates. These dates alter every year, and there are not always the same number of score release dates in a quarter. To clear up any confusion about when you’ll get your score and to help you find it when it’s available, read this article about the CPA Exam score release.

CPA Exam for International Candidates

If you’re not a citizen of the United States, you can still earn the U.S. CPA. You must apply to a state board just like domestic candidates do, but after that, you’ll have to take some extra steps to meet all of the CPA requirements. As an international candidate myself, I have firsthand experience jumping through these CPA hoops. Therefore, you can learn about my personal CPA journey and receive my guidance and suggestions for managing the CPA application process as an international candidate in this article.  

International CPA Exam

Good news for international CPA candidates: you have options for which exam you can take and where. If you’re a member of a non-U.S. professional association, you may be able to take the IQEX exam. Or, if you’re a citizen, permanent resident, or long-term resident in one of the countries containing an international testing center or a neighboring country, you can take the CPA Exam close to home. But if you don’t qualify to take the CPA Exam abroad, you can still do so in the U.S. This article tells you how to pursue each international CPA Exam path so you can earn the CPA as smoothly as possible.