Interview with Leslie-Anne Rogers, Expert in CPA Exam Qualification Services

Leslie-Anne rogersI am honored to have Leslie-Anne Rogers, in-house expert on CPA exam qualification service at CPAexcel, to shed some light on changes in qualification rules, her views on evaluation agencies, and how she can help international candidates to successfully apply for the CPA exam.

Let’s Meet Leslie-Anne Rogers

Stephanie: I understand that you have been helping international CPA exam candidates for the last 16 years. How did you get started?

Leslie-Anne: I started working as a marketing coordinator for a large CPA review course provider who wanted to expand their reach into the Canadian market because there were a lot of Canadian and internationally educated candidates living in Canada who wanted to become U.S. CPAs.

One of my biggest early lessons was that most of these people weren’t initially interested in which review course to take; they were much more interested in getting accurate information on what it took to become a CPA, what the exam was like and if there was a state that would work for them from an eligibility standpoint.

That lesson lead me to shift my focus to what I specialize in now which is eligibility, state and evaluator selection and the application process and I provide assistance for candidates from all over the world. It is a really fun and rewarding job!

Stephanie: There has been quite a lot of changes in the state board rules on qualification especially in the past couple of years. In general, do you think it’s more difficult to get eligible for the exam?

Leslie-Anne: Yes, it has definitely become more difficult. For example, Delaware used to allow candidates to sit for the exam with a two year diploma and now they require five years of university. Most states have moved to requiring this amount of post-secondary education and this can be problematic for candidates who come from countries where a three year undergrad degree is the norm.

Stephanie: We have a lot of aspiring candidates from India. One of the most common questions is whether a holder of BCOM (or other 3-year bachelor degree) can get qualified for the CPA exam. What is your view on this? I usually ask these candidates to either get a 2-year master’s degree or transfer their credit to a 4-year degree and graduate from there.

Leslie-Anne: Our answers would be similar with some slight exceptions. For example, if a candidate is only interested in passing the CPA exam, there are a few states that they could write but that would depend on which university they attended and what their average marks were*. Those same candidates would then need to get an extra year of education in order to get the CPA designation as well as to show that they have meet the work experience requirements.

*For candidates who don’t qualify to sit based on this criteria, they would definitely be well advised to get a two year masters degree in accounting and/or business, that way, they would make themselves eligible for a number of states.

Stephanie: How about BCOM with CA certificate?

Leslie-Anne: There are still options available for Indian BCom candidates who also have their ICAI but my suggestion for candidates in this category is not to procrastinate, especially if they are serious about becoming CPAs! There are no guarantees that the states which currently accept Indian CA coursework will continue to do so.

Stephanie: Speaking of credential evaluation agencies, many states recognize more than one of them. Does it make a difference which agency we choose?

Leslie-Anne: Yes, it can often make the difference between being accepted or not accepted as an exam candidate.

Stephanie: What do you think about taking the CPA exam at non-US testing location?

Leslie-Anne: I think offering international testing sites was a brilliant idea. It has been a very exciting time for those candidates who live in the IExam countries because they can now save themselves the time and expense of traveling to the U.S. to sit for the exam and of course, the number of exam candidates in those countries has grown considerably.

Stephanie: Finally, many readers ask for help in transferring their CPA exam credit from one state to another, mostly because they realize they have trouble fulfilling the experience requirement after passing the CPA exam. Do you offer any assistance on this?

Leslie-Anne: Yes, I am definitely willing to give candidates information on switching states to one where they think they will be able fulfill the work experience requirements. An important note though: not all candidates will have this option. Switching can sometimes be difficult, if not impossible to achieve, however I should be able to let them know if it can be done, and if so, how to do it.

Do You have Questions for Leslie-Anne?

I hope you enjoy this post. You can reach LA by phone or drop her a note here on this page.

Chat with Leslie Anne Today!

Note: I am going to close the comment section below because too many of you leave a comment for Leslie-Anne here. Please click the button above to contact her. Thank you.

About the Author Stephanie Ng

I am the author of How to Pass The CPA Exam (published by Wiley) and the publisher of this and several accounting professional exam prep sites

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  • Salman says:

    I have Qualified ACCA and also have BSc in applied accounting from Oxford Brookes university which is joint qualification with ACCA.
    I am planning to do MBA here is USA as i recently moved here so i want to know wether after doing MBA i will be able to sit for the CPA exams? as i will be able to get credit hours on MBA but dont wether ACCA and my BSc will get me credit hours so i can fulfill all the requirements.

    • Stephanie Ng says:

      Hi Salman, with the MBA I think it is likely ok, but it is best to count the number of accounting credit hours you have, and see if you need extra from your MBA class. Typically MBA classes don’t have a lot of accounting but you can take more accounting electives if necessary. Regards, Stephanie

      • salman says:

        MBA usually have 36 credit hours but i am worried wether i will get credit hours from ACCA and Oxford Brookes BSc? Do you have any info about ACCA and its BSc with Oxfod brookes?

        • Stephanie Ng says:

          Hi Salman, it depends on a lot of factors, including when you took the ACCA (the syllabus was different in different years). You really need to invest in an evaluation report to know for sure. If not, at least contact Leslie-Anne. Regards, Stephanie

  • Anoop Pillai says:

    Hi,

    I have passed B.com & M.com Degree (both private study- passed with marks between 50-60%) from Mahatma Gandhi University, Kerala, India.
    Professional certifications include- CMA (USA) and ICWAI- Inter (Indian CMA).

    Total work experience is around 9 years in Accounts and Finance field, currently working in a Private company in QATAR as Commercial Manager from 2010.

    Could you please advise, am i eligible for joining CPA? If eligible, which State would be most comfortable? Do my certificate need to be attested by any Foreign Credential certfier?

    • Stephanie Ng says:

      Hi Anoop, with BCOM and MCOM, you should be able to fulfill the degree and 150 credit hour requirement, and likely also the accounting credits. The possible bottle neck is your experience as I don’t know whether your supervisor is a US CPA or not. Assuming he/she is not, it’s still possible. Please check out this page for details: https://ipassthecpaexam.com/cpa-experience-requirements/

      If you can’t figure it out, it might be a good idea to seek Leslie-Anne’s advice. Regards, Stephanie

  • Paras Dhingra says:

    Hi
    I am a B Com regular from kurukshetre university (India) and also a CA with 4 year of experience
    Can any state will qualify my credintals for CPA

    • Stephanie Ng says:

      Hi Paras, Leslie-Anne doesn’t normally check this comment section, so you have to contact her by clicking the link above. Regards, Stephanie

  • Faraz says:

    Hi,
    I am an IT graduate ( 4 years degree) plus an MBA in Finance ( 2 years degree) from an educational institute outside of USA. Besides, I have an MPA in Finance and Economic Policy(1 year program) from School of International and Public Affairs, Columbia University New York, New York, USA. Do i qualify for sitting the CPA exam with New York state.

    Thanks

    • Stephanie Ng says:

      Hi Faraz, in terms of 150 credit hour and degree requirement, you are likely ok but not sure if you have enough accounting credits… Regards, Stephanie

  • Rahul says:

    Hi,

    I am B.Com., CA and MBA (distance learning program) from India with 5 years of experience in public accounting in India and 1 year in California. I want to know whether I am eligible to apply for CPA exam in California? Also, which all transcripts needs to be evaluated and whether I can send the original for evaluation or do I need to get the attested copies in a sealed packet from my Universities?

    Thanks

    Regards
    Rahul

    • Stephanie Ng says:

      Hi Rahul, it sounds like you can fulfill the degree and 150 credit hour requirement but you’ll have to go through the evaluation agencies to find out, or seek Leslie-Anne’s advice by clicking the link above (she doesn’t check my site often so you have to take the initiative of contacting her). Whether the evaluator needs an original copy, it depends. Please check out this page for more info: https://ipassthecpaexam.com/foreign-credential-evaluation/

      By the way Rahul, for California you must have either SSN or ITIN to get the license. You can take the exam but must transfer exam credits to other states at a later date, and this is a risky process. If you don’t have either one, it’s best to pick another state.

  • Anupinder Singh says:

    Hi,
    I hav 3years bachelor degree (correspondence) with 55%marks in India and hav completed 1 year of M.Com. Am i eligible to pursue CPA from USA?

    • Stephanie Ng says:

      Technically it should work in some state, Anupinder, but you need to select a state that let you take the exam with less than 150 hours. You still need to complete the MCOM so you get 150 credit hours in the end, for the license. As to which state to apply to, it’s harder to tell without knowing what courses you have taken. Check out my page on educational requirements and see if you can figure it out: https://ipassthecpaexam.com/cpa-educational-requirements/

      Otherwise, seek Leslie-Anne’s advice. Cheers, Stephanie

      • Anupinder Singh says:

        Thanx Stephine for ur advice,but i still want to know whether I need a cpa license for applying for a job in USA or a CPA certificate is sufficient ? Is it possible to get started on the base of 120 credit hours and get the rest 30 credit hours by doing some courses pursued in USA after I will reach USA ? And can u tell me the minimun annual salary package a CPA gets in USA.?

        • Stephanie Ng says:

          Hi, these days you can’t really put CPA after your name with CPA certificate alone. So you can decide how useful that could be. But yes, there are states that allow you to sit for the exam with 120 credit hours and then fulfill the rest later on. You can’t need to go to the US for that.
          On salary, I have this rather old page but it may be helpful: ipassthecpaexam.com/cpa-salary-guide/

          • Anupinder Singh says:

            Hi, Actually I m from India and can u please advice me under which state board should I apply for CPA, keeping in mind the above qualifications of mine, to easily fullfill the regulations of that state board..thanx again..

          • Stephanie Ng says:

            Please contact Leslie-Anne if you are not able to narrow down to a few states based on the info on this site. I try my best to help, but readers need to at least narrow down their choice first. Thanks.

  • Claudia says:

    Hello
    I am from Dominican Republic, I have a 4 years degree in Accounting of a Non qualified university and also I have a master degree (2 years) in Finance Management of a ACBSP qualified university and the master I have is qualified as well. Do you think I’m able to meet the Education requirement? I Also worked as an Auditor between 2000 – 2005 for a local accounting firm in the Dominican Republic that was a representative of RSM International (the accounting firm in US), does it count to fulfill the Experience requirement?

    Thanks

    • Stephanie Ng says:

      Hi Claudia, I think you should be fine with the educational requirements but will need to get an evaluation report for your BA. I would also send in your Master’s transcript (assuming it is also outside of the US) so they can consider the education together. As for the experience, if you would like to count the one in Dominican Republic, then please check out the states that allow non-US-CPA supervisor as verifier of your experience. Take a look at North Dakota. Massachusett’s non-reporting license should work as well.

      https://ipassthecpaexam.com/cpa-experience-requirements/

      Regards, Stephanie

  • Shamsul Alam says:

    Hello,
    I have the following qualificaiton:
    1. 4 years diploma in computer Engineering – 2004
    2. Advance diploma in accounting – 2013
    3. and ACCA qualificaiton -2015

    Also have 3 years work experience in finance and accounting.

    Please suggest, whether i can set for CPA exam and for which state?

    • Stephanie Ng says:

      Hi Shamsul,
      If your diploma has a transcript provided, then it should be ok. A handful of states accept ACCA as extra credits. If you need specific advice, I suggest that you either ask Leslie-Anne for help or get a “undecided jurisdiction” package from NASBA evaluation. Either one should be able to help you with your decision. Regards, Stephanie

      • Nikasha says:

        Hi Stephanie,
        Which handful of states accept ACCA as extra credit hours. Please advice.

        • Stephanie Ng says:

          Hi Nikasha, I don’t feel too comfortable giving you the answer because it’s not black and white, e.g. the state boards look at when you took the ACCA exam because their syllabus has been changing and they may recognize the syllabus in certain years and not the others. It’s really complicated so you need to talk to Leslie-Anne on that. Or, you can go directly for an evaluation report to find out. Regards, Stephanie

  • Svetlana Tretiyak says:

    Hello,

    I am currently CPA candidate with Alaska state, passed three sections and working on the last one. However, I realized now that Alaska requires SSN which I don’t have.
    My FACS evaluation report states that I have completed minimum 150 semester hours and have at leasr 15 semester hours in accounting.
    What states can accept me if I would like to transfer?
    Many thanks in advance.
    Svetlana

  • M.ABDULLAH KHURSHID says:

    Dear Stephanie Ng,

    Kindly guide me as what are the entry requirements & exemptions available if any, to a student who is A.C.C.A affiliate with having B.COM degree 2 years program & having enrolled in ICAEW U.K & A.CM.A PAKISTAN & having 2 to 3 years of audit firm experience.
    Kindly provide me with the detail information as i will be look forward to you in this respect.
    Thank you in an anticipation.

    • Stephanie Ng says:

      Hello, the situation for ACCA + BCOM is similar to those with CA + BCOM, so I am afraid I can’t really help you further. Please seek Leslie-Anne’s advice by clicking on the link above. Regards, Stephanie

  • Bhumi says:

    Hi Stephanie,

    I highly appreciate your efforts in providing guidance to take CPA exams. I have completed BCom (accountancy) and MCom (accountancy) from India. I passed my cpa exams from Colorado Board. Now i am trying to transfer my grades to Kansas State Board and apply for cpa certificate.

    I got my credentials evaluated for Kansas State and they mention i have completed more than 150 semester hours. But within the course specific requirements of 30 accounting semester hours and 42 business and general education course, there are few course against which they have mentioned “No”. Which means i do meet 150 hours requirement, sub category 30 hours requirement and sub category 42 hours requirement but not covering all the courses. Does this “NO” mean i have to take those deficient courses. I am just curious of knowing this before applying to Kansas Board. Please advise.

    Thanks
    Bhumi

    • Stephanie Ng says:

      Hi Bhumi, I guess so… it is quite normal if the state board has a rather strict definition of certain courses. I hope it is easy for you to get that done? Assuming that you live in Kansas, you can take those in community colleges. Regards, Stephanie

  • Manish says:

    Iam a B. Com(Correspondence) and CA. Would i be able to meet the exam requirements..

    • Stephanie Ng says:

      Hi Manish, you have to click on the link and then contact Leslie-Anne to find out. She doesn’t really check my comment section… Regards, Stephanie

  • Anchal says:

    Hi
    I am b.com(75%marks) + CA from India. I want to appear for CPA exams in USA and want to work as a CPA in USA. PLease guide on which state to applly through and about visa requirements too .
    Thanks in advance.
    Anchal

    • Stephanie Ng says:

      Hi Anchal, as mentioned above, please contact Leslie-Anne. This is no simple answer for BCOM + CA. Regards, Stephanie

  • Dipesh says:

    Hey there.
    I am Bcom graduate from India through Gujarat University and now pursuing my Mcom dealing with last semester from the same university.
    I want to inquire to which states I should apply for getting eligible to appear in the CPA examinations.

  • A Rao says:

    Hi…
    My name is A Rao and i am from India, Currently residing in US. I am a qualified CA from Indian Institute of Chartered Accountants and also have a BCom degree from Bangalore University. I have post qualification experience of 7+ yrs with 2 well known MNCs. Prior qualification, i worked under Indian CA for about 5 yrs. (3 yrs as intern candidate and 2 yrs as audit assistant)

    I am interested to do CPA, i have following questions in order to proceed with my studies.
    1. Weather i am eligible to take up CPA course from any states of US
    2. If so, which state will accept the Indian BCOM and CA as an equivalent degree for eligibility to take up CPA
    3. I am currently residing in US and planning to take up job as i have come on L2 VISA. Will i be able to do CPA while working? Is there any mandate that CPA should be full time course?
    4. Is there are sessions conducted such as training or CPA student counselling sessions? If so which institute and where?

    I am desperate to find answers to above questions at the earliest.

    Your timely response is highly appreciated.

    Thanks
    A Rao

    • Stephanie Ng says:

      Hi A Rao,
      Thanks for your note.
      1. Unlike ACCA and CA which is a course in and of itself, CPA is a qualifying exam and they don’t provide any official course. Candidates take commercial courses themselves. Because of it, I suggest that you make sure you are qualified for the exam first, then pick a review course to study.

      2. For BCOM + CA, please seek Leslie-Anne’s assistance. There is no blanket answer and she needs to go through all your credentials before suggesting a state.

      3. Yes you should definitely try to get a job at the same time. Try your best to find one with a CPA supervisor, because you need that to fulfill the experience requirement. on taking CPA exam at the same time, almost everyone I know (in the US at least) take CPA exam with a job. Not a problem at all. Again, it is a qualifying exam.

      4. Most people nowadays take online self-study courses. The exam itself is 100% computerized. There may be live courses offered in community colleges nearby if you prefer that.

      4.

      3.

  • Carmen Kay says:

    Hi,

    I graduated from Rutgers University (New Jersey) with a Finance degree in 2000. I am planning to do a transcript assessment to see how many courses I am missing to fulfill the 150 credit hours. Is there a time limit / date expiration on the courses/credit that I took back at Rutgers if I decide to pursue my CPA in NJ or NY. Please advise. Thank you.

  • sam k says:

    hi this is sam,
    I have passed by b.com from india through regular college with distinction and have done CA -intermediate from the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India.will I be eligible for the CPA exams?

    • Stephanie Ng says:

      Hi Sam, for BCOM + CA there is no general answer and each case has to be reviewed individually. So I am afraid you have to either figure it out using the info in this website, or seek Leslie-Anne’s assistance. Regards, Stephanie

  • Ashraf says:

    Hi Ms. Rogers

    i am CFO with 20 years experience in the financial, accounting and audit fields (3 years from them with Arthur Andersen). i am CIA and CMA and passed 3 parts of the CPA with CA but I lost credit in 2006. i am holder of BA of Accountancy from Cairo University, Egypt during 1994. This was evaluated to 140 semester hours (68 accounting and 72 business related). i am thingking to take the CPA exam again but this time i am keen to get the license as well in order to be working in US. pls advise which state in 2017 will fit my profile in order to sit and practice the CPA there

    Appreciate your support

    Regards

  • Pauls M I says:

    Hai I am a B com graduate with Indian CA qualified in 2001. I have been working with a big 4 firm in India for 10 years in assurance department and currently working as a CFO of a mid size company in UAE. I would like to apply for CPA and appear for exam from UAE. I will feel the challenge of not having 4 years college degree since Bcom is only 3 years. Please advice whether I can overcome the 4 year graduation requirement with Indian CA and experience in relevant field.

  • Seth S. says:

    Ms. Leslie Anne is not as advertised ! She is rude, doesn’t care to respond to emails or phone calls. I am not sure why she’s even considered a “go-to” resource for advisory services for prospective students. My advise for fellow CPA candidates is to stick to their own research and not rely on questionable and unreliable guidance counsellors.

    • Stephanie Ng says:

      Seth, I am sorry to hear your experience, and I respect your opinion, but I don’t risk my reputation by mentioning someone who is that bad, at least not in the eyes of most candidates. Leslie-Anne has been doing this for 15+ years.

      Having said that, if candidates can figure out their own way to get qualified, I agree that it’s the best way to do it, because no one is better in understanding one’s own situation.

  • Yashika Ahluwalia says:

    Hi Leslie,

    I wanted to check what are my options for obtaining CPA license, considering I passed all the sections under CO Board in 2010. I have received a preevaluation from CO Board saying that since I do not have Bachelors from an accredited college I cannot be granted License. I wanted to check what are my options here. I have worked with a bif four for 22 months (March 2014 to December 2015 (1800 hours in Audit) and I am a Chartered Accountant from India. Please help me

    • Stephanie Ng says:

      Hello Yashika, thanks for your note. Leslie doesn’t check my site. She is a professional I respect but we don’t have affiliations. Please contact her through the CPAexcel website as shown in the above. Regards, Stephanie

  • Khalid Rahman says:

    Is it possible to sit for CPA exam if I have Bcom plus CA Inter and a distance mcom from IGNOU university. Do I fulfil requirements of 150 hours credit??

    • Stephanie Ng says:

      Hi Khalid, it depends how the state board considers your long distance MCOM. Please seek Leslie-Anne’s advice. Regards, Stephanie

  • JAMSHID says:

    Hi Leslie,

    I am an Indian B.com plus CMA (IMA-USA) qualified. Please advise on whether I fulfill the 150 credit hours requirement for sitting for the CPA exams.Kindly advise regarding which jurisdiction will be ideal for me in terms of meeting the experience requirement as I am not working under a CPA.

    Best Regards,
    Jamshid

    • Stephanie Ng says:

      Hi Jamshid, unfortunately professional qualifications such as CMA is not counted towards educational requirements. They separate qualifications and exams quite distinctly. Regards, Stephanie

  • Charu says:

    i am an India CA (17 yrs of work experience) with a Bachelors in science (BSC degree). Am i eligible in any state for CPA

    • Stephanie Ng says:

      Hi Charu, please click on the link above to go to Leslie-Anne’s page. She doesn’t check comments here ๐Ÿ˜‰

  • BONY THOMAS says:

    Hi Leslie,

    I have a 3 year Bcom bachelor degree from India, Mahatma Gandhi university . Also , I passed 5 papers in ACCA and I got 32.5 credits from ACCA . Right now am residing in Florida. As per the Joseph Silny evaluation , I got 122.5 credits in total . I came to know that most of the states require 4 year bachelor as minimum req for CPA.I have a question , is it better for me to go for a bachelor from US or go for a master degree from US. I am a permanent resident in US . I am concerned that , if I decided to go for doing bachelor , I still needed to satisfy general requirements where I needed to spent another 3 years. Joseph Silny claimed that my degree is not equivalent to US bachelor degree even though I have 122 credits . Is it possible to go for a masters in accountancy that offers the bridge program with three year bachelor and fulfill 150 credit requirement. Please advise me, which would be the better option and hope you can help me.

    • Stephanie Ng says:

      Hi Bony, Leslie-Anne doesn’t check the comments on this page. We are not affiliated. Please click on the link above and leave a message on her site/page directly. Regards, Stephanie

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