Equivalence of diplomas or training

If you are a professional or a student from outside Canada and wish to become a CPA in Quebec, you must complete the following five steps: 

1) Obtain the equivalence of a bachelor’s degree recognized in Quebec

To do so, you must undertake the equivalence of diploma process. You must have your education assessed by one of the 13 universities accredited by the Order to find out which undergraduate refresher courses you must pass to obtain the equivalence of a degree. For more information, contact the university where you intend to complete the required prerequisite courses. 

2) Complete the CPA Professional Education Program 

Once you have obtained the equivalence of a bachelor’s degree, you must complete the CPA Professional Education Program (PEP), which is offered through the national program delivered by the Quebec CPA Order or a graduate university program (24 to 30 crédits). 

3) Complete a period of practical experience

Lasting a minimum of 24 months, the period of practical experience is mandatory for all future CPAs. Depending on the experience you acquired outside Canada, part of your practical experience may be recognized. To have your practical experience recognized, you must meet the quality standards of the CPA profession and provide the Order with all the information and documentation required.

4) Pass the Common Final Examination (CFE)

The Common Final Examination (CFE) is the professional examination that all CPA candidates must pass. The CFE is held over a three-day period and offered once a year, in September. Note that two CFE will be exceptionally offered in 2016 (May and September).

5) Pass a French test

To obtain your CPA designation, you must demonstrate that you are proficient in French by passing the French test of the Office québécois de la langue française (OQLF). Certain exemptions apply. For more information about the test, visit the OQLF website.

Obtaining the CPA designation

Once you have completed all of these steps, you may submit an application for a CPA permit to the CPA Order so that you may use the CPA designation. 

If you wish to practice public accountancy, you will also be required to hold a public accountancy (auditor) permit and meet the requirements provided for under the Regulation respecting the public accountancy permit of the Ordre des comptables professionnels agréés du Québec.