Build your professional experience.
It’s time to put your education to work. Licensure candidates need about 2,000 working hours verified by a licensed CPA, but check with your jurisdiction as requirements vary. Previously completed internships may count toward your 2,000-hour goal.
Understand the ethics.
Ethical behavior is nonnegotiable, and honesty, objectivity and professional conduct are the foundation of the profession.
CPAs follow rules of professional conduct, standards and regulatory requirements, and the license adds to the trust and respect people have for them.
Apply for the CPA Exam.
To become a CPA, you must pass the Uniform CPA Examination® — the only licensing qualification for accounting and audit professionals in the United States. You can become licensed in any of the 55 jurisdictions.
Here's what you need to do
1. Determine your eligibility.
Check exam requirements pertaining to citizenship, residency and eligibility for international students for your desired jurisdiction, as they vary.
Ensure you know the eligibility requirements within your selected jurisdiction.
2. Submit your testing application.
Once you complete the application, you’ll upload required documentation (for example, college transcripts), pay any fees and hit “Submit.”
Your application will be reviewed.
After the review, you’ll receive a notice to schedule, or NTS, which indicates you can schedule your exam. Quick tip: Pay attention to the expiration date on the NTS — most are valid for only six months.
3. Schedule your exam.
Received your NTS? Time to schedule your exam!
You can go to any test center globally — even if it’s not the jurisdiction in which you want your license.
This is just a snapshot of the process. For a more in-depth look, be sure to review in-depth documentation from the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy (NASBA).