Education program for future CPAs: it’s a go!

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Since the unification of the accounting profession in May 2012, the Order has implemented a number of initiatives, including building awareness of the CPA brand. However, an important step still remained, i.e. introducing the new CPA Professional Education Program (PEP), which is now a reality! Starting this spring, students will have access to a rigorous, high-level education program that meets the highest quality standards and is adapted to the needs of businesses, firms and the public sector.

Two pathways provide access to the CPA Professional Education Program (PEP) leading to the CPA designation:

• a full-time university graduate program of 12 to 15 months consisting of 24 to 30 credits offered by universities accredited by the Order;

• a 24-month national, modularized program delivered by the Order and offered through distance learning (e-learning) on a part-time basis by the Order’s university partners.

Depending on what best suits them, students can choose either pathway, which cover the same learning and skills development objectives set out in the CPA Competency Map. Open to holders of a recognized undergraduate degree, both programs are intended to prepare students for the Common Final Exam (CFE), the three-day professional CPA exam.

As part of their path, future CPAs will also have to complete a training period of at least 24 months supervised by a CPA mentor. The training period must cover at least two of the six CPA technical competencies—financial reporting, management accounting, audit and assurance, taxation, strategy and governance, and finance. 

In total, 11 Quebec universities will offer a graduate program to aspiring CPAs beginning in May or September 2014, depending on the university calendars. The national CPA program delivered by the Order will be offered by its three university partners as of September 20, 2014.