CPA Exam & Licensing Requirements


Presented by:
Pennsylvania CPA Foundation

Your Guide to the CPA Exam and CPA Licensure in Pennsylvania

CPA Exam Testing Update (as of June 2020)

According to NASBA, the CPA profession is considered an essential service. Prometric has begun to resume testing for CPA candidates at centers where government regulations and guidelines allow.  Social distancing guidelines and other safety measures will be implemented.

Please review the Prometric website for current and future site openings.

Notice to Schedule (NTS) Extensions

Candidates with NTS expiration dates between April 1, 2020 - Dec. 30, 2020, will be extended until Dec. 31, 2020.

Please review NASBA's NTS Extensions.

Exam Credit Extensions

Due to the COVID-19 emergency disaster declaration signed by Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf on March 6, 2020, a waiver was granted of the requirement that CPA candidates must complete all parts of the CPA examination within an 18-month period. Candidates whose exam credits expire during the time of the emergency declaration will be granted an extension which lasts for the duration of the emergency plus an additional 180 days from the end of the emergency. This exam credit extension replaces the 90 day extension that was recently granted to CPA candidates by way of letter from the State Board.

Affected candidates will receive communication from Prometric and the State Board.

NASBA, AICPA, and Prometric have made the decision to invoke an emergency testing period to provide additional testing opportunities. As such, the 2020 Q2 testing window will be extended from June 10, 2020, to June 30, 2020.

Continuous testing for CPA Exam candidates will begin July 1, 2020. Under the new continuous testing model, candidates will have the ability to take the exam year-round, without restriction, other than waiting to receive scores from prior attempts of the same section or when there is a major change to the exam.  

Please use the following resources for more information:


How do you become a CPA in Pennsylvania? Whether you're an accounting student, educator, or professional, the PICPA can help. Follow the steps here to get the information you need to take the CPA Exam in Pennsylvania and to secure your CPA license.

CPA Exam

  1. Graduate
  2. Upon graduation, candidates must meet certain requirements to sit for the CPA Exam.

  3. Prepare
  4. Learn about the fees to take the CPA Exam and develop a plan. 

  5. Apply
  6. Candidates can apply for one, two, three, or all four parts at one time. All parts must be taken within six months of the application date.

  7. Study
  8. CPA Exam sections cover a number of subjects that candidates are expected to understand prior to the test. The four parts consist of auditing and attestation, financial accounting and reporting, regulation, and business environment and concepts.

  9. Schedule and Sit
  10. After receiving a Notice to Schedule (NTS), it is advised to schedule a testing appointment as soon as possible.

Licensing

  1. Pass Exam
  2. To be eligible to apply for a CPA license in Pennsylvania, a candidate must pass all parts of the CPA Exam and fulfill a certain amount of hours of education, work experience, and CPE.

  3. Work Experience
  4. Candidates are required to complete specific hours of work experience through employment in government, industry, academia, or public practice.

  5. Take CPE
  6. CPA applicants must complete CPE within 24 months of application for an initial license. In some cases, passing the CPA Exam can fulfill the CPE requirements to apply for a license.

  7. Apply
  8. Applications for a Pennsylvania CPA license can be found on the State Board of Accountancy's website. Any questions about a CPA license application status should be directed to the State Board.

    Download License Infographic

Download the Guide to Becoming a CPA
Free Accounting Lectures & CPA Exam Prep

Looking for additional help in your accounting classes or as you prepare for the exam? Be sure to check out Professor Farhat's Youtube channel filled with free accounting lectures and lessons!
Overcome the Top 4 CPA Exam Challenges

You will encounter many obstacles on your journey to CPA, such as time management, motivation, cost, and – of course – CPA Exam difficulty. We’re here to help! Join UWorld Roger CPA Review’s Sr. VP of E-Learning, Charlotte Roberts, for this FREE webcast. Watch the full video here!
Work Your Way to CPA Podcasts

WorktoCPA_1400x1400

Becoming a CPA requires ambition, motivation, and quite a bit of dedication.

We are here to help! This podcast series will walk you through the journey of becoming a CPA - starting with how to select a review provider and tips to help you succeed in taking the CPA Exam!

Listen Now 

A Fine Accounting Career vs. a CPA Career

An accounting degree is a smart choice for your future, but becoming a CPA is the best recipe for success!