If you hope to obtain CPA certification, you should start planning early in your academic career to determine whether your course of study meets the educational requirements established for licensure in your state. Licensure requirements vary from state to state. In addition to education and examination requirements, ethics and experience requirements must be met in most states before you can be licensed. You must stay abreast of the current requirements of the state in which you will sit for the CPA exam and practice professionally.
To access information about CPA licensure in your state, visit the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy and select your state from the list to access the state board's Web page. For example, on that page, choose Maryland and go to State of Maryland Board of Public Accountancy, then choose Licensing Requirements under the Licensing tab for information on the board-approved curriculum. The state of Maryland requires 150 credit hours of coursework, including 27 credit hours in accounting and 30 hours of required business education coursework, in areas such as ethics, economics, marketing, statistics, finance, and business law. As part of your course planning, you would compare your previously completed undergraduate coursework and anticipated graduate coursework to the required curriculum. If there are deficiencies, you should then plan to take the additional courses as part of your graduate program.
To learn more about the content included in the Uniform CPA Examination and the new computer-based format visit the AICPA's dedicated Web page.
With early planning, you may be prepared to sit for the CPA exam upon completion of your degree and move ahead with licensure without delay.