Get Licensed in PA

Now that you've completed your CPA Exam requirements, learn more about the work experience you'll need to apply for your CPA license.

Work and Education Requirements

CPA candidates who graduated college with at least 150 credits must complete one year (1,600 hours) of work experience through employment in government, industry, academia, or public practice within five years of the license application date.

For those who passed at least one part of the CPA Exam before Dec. 31, 2011, other guidelines may apply.

Work Experience

Qualifying work experience includes providing any type of service or advice involving the use of:

  • Accounting
  • Attest
  • Compilation
  • Consulting
  • Financial advisory
  • Management advisory
  • Tax

The caliber of the experience must be satisfactory to the State Board of Accountancy and verified by an individual who is currently licensed to practice as a CPA in Pennsylvania or another jurisdiction.

Education Requirements

Qualifying education requirements to obtain a CPA license:

  • Graduate with a bachelor's degree or higher from an accredited school.
  • At least 24 credits in accounting and auditing, business law, micro or macroeconomics, financial, or tax subjects sanctioned by the Pennsylvania State Board of Accountancy.
  • An additional 12 credits in accounting, auditing, and tax subjects.
  • Total credit hours must equal 150 hours.

Accounting credits can be obtained as part of an undergraduate or graduate degree, or a combination of both levels of study, and do not need to be part of a degree program.

Take CPE

CPA applicants must complete 80 hours of continuing professional education (CPE) within 24 months of application for an initial license.

Candidates are exempt from the CPE requirement during the CPE reporting period in which they completed the exam. Contact the Pennsylvania State Board of Accountancy for further details.

The biennial licensing period in Pennsylvania begins Jan. 1 of even-numbered years and ends Dec. 31 of odd-numbered years.

Learn more about CPE requirements in Pennsylvania.


Application forms to become a CPA are located on the State Board of Accountancy website. The fee in Pennsylvania is $65, and applicants should contact the State Board with specific questions about license application requirements.

Visit to download an application checklist and create an account.

PICPA is here to help!

Professional licensing is regulated by the Pennsylvania State Board of Accountancy. The PICPA is here to support you during this process, whether you’re a new licensee or established in your career.