CPA Program rules and regulations
CPA Program policies
Academic misconduct policy
This policy details the procedures for identifying, investigating and responding to incidents of academic misconduct
Exam scheduling policy
This policy establishes guidelines and procedures for CPA Program exam scheduling and rescheduling
Reasonable adjustment policy
This policy covers reasonable adjustments that may be made to a study guide or exam conditions offered by CPA Australia
Special Consideration policy
This policy covers eligibility for Special Consideration and the process of applying
Subject cancellations and deferrals policy
This policy establishes guidelines and procedures for subject cancellations and deferrals
Rules and regulations
Please read through the following sections carefully to understand the full list of Rules and Regulations relating to the CPA Program.
Outlined below are the rules and regulations for your CPA Program enrolment. The CPA Program policies mentioned within form part of these rules and regulations:
- Subject deferral and cancellation policy
- Reasonable adjustment policy
- Exam scheduling policy
- Academic misconduct policy
- Special consideration policy
- Enrolments can be completed online via My CPA Program. Candidates must satisfactorily complete full payment of the enrolment fee for a subject before they are enrolled in and undertake that subject and any assessment.
- Candidates can enrol in any available subject as their first enrolment, except for Global Strategy and Leadership. Candidates must have successfully completed all other compulsory subjects of the CPA Program before enrolling into Global Strategy and Leadership.
- Candidates wanting to pursue a career in financial planning, are encouraged to review the Graduate Diploma of Financial Planning course offered by Kaplan Professional, which can be completed alongside the CPA Program. Those who were Associate members on or before 19 August 2019 may be eligible for a subject discount with Kaplan and eligible to receive exemptions for up to three CPA Program subjects. Completion of studies in the area of Australian Taxation, as approved by the Tax Practitioners Board, is also required to register as a tax (financial) adviser. This registration is required to provide financial advice in taxation. If a candidate holds a tax agent registration with the Tax Practitioners Board, they may also meet the requirements to provide taxation advice to clients. Candidates who have not completed prior Australian Taxation studies are recommended to first complete some learning in this area. Further, Australia Taxation – Advanced is also approved by the Tax Practitioner Board.
- If a candidate has previously completed Advanced Taxation prior to Semester 2 2018, they are unable to enrol in Australia Taxation.
- Other than in relation to the Ethics and Governance subject, candidates enrolling must be of Associate or CPA status with current membership and must maintain membership while enrolled in the CPA Program.
- Candidates admitted without undergraduate taxation or auditing qualifications must complete Australia Taxation (or local taxation variant) or Advanced Audit and Assurance in the CPA Program in place of electives. These subjects were previously called Taxation or Advanced Taxation, and Assurance Services and Auditing.
- As of Semester 1 2019 there are two taxation subjects in the CPA Program; Australia Taxation and Australia Taxation – Advanced. Australia Taxation is the default elective for those candidates who have not completed prior studies in taxation and assumes no prior knowledge. If a candidate intends to complete the Australia Taxation – Advanced, we strongly recommend they have previously completed Australian Taxation study prior to enrolling. Candidates wishing to enrol in Australia Taxation – Advanced must do so via phone through their local CPA Australia office. Both subjects will also contribute to part of the taxation education requirements for registration as a Registered Tax Agent (RTA) with the Tax Practitioners Board (TPB). Both subjects will be accepted in an application for a public practice certificate. Candidates who wish to enrol in Malaysia Taxation must do so directly through Sunway TES.
- Failure to maintain current membership will result in the loss of access to all member online facilities including the Members' Handbook, My Online Learning resources and My CPA Program applications – which may significantly impact exam preparation and the ability to access results.
- Personal information may be disclosed to a University Tuition Partner to provide education program results if the candidate is currently enrolled in the CPA Program and an approved embedded postgraduate qualification with the tuition provider.
- Exemptions may be available if candidates have completed prior learning of equivalent content and depth to the CPA Program subjects. Exemptions into CPA Program studies may be granted at any time based on studies that are equivalent in content and depth, except for Global Strategy and Leadership. CPA Australia will recognise and exempt up to a maximum of three CPA Program subjects and deems the ‘knowledge currency’ of subjects to be valid for a period of 10 years.
- Members may only enrol for CPD purposes once they have completed the education component of the CPA Program. They do not need to have completed the experience requirement to be able to enrol for CPD purposes. Members may enrol for CPD purposes even if they have already completed the same subject as part of the education component of their CPA Program. Subjects must be completed in the prescribed order where applicable. To enrol in Digital Finance for CPD purposes, members must enrol over the phone through their local CPA Australia office.
- Candidates must hold a degree-level qualification recognised by CPA Australia and meet the experience requirement in order to advance to CPA Status. Candidates must complete the CPA Program and advance to CPA status within the required timeframe. The maximum period for completion of the CPA Program and advancement to CPA status is determined by the date the candidate first enrolled in the CPA Program and the date they joined CPA Australia as an Associate member:
Join date Timeframe to complete subjects Timeframe to advance to CPA status 1 July 2007 onwards Six years from join date Six years from join date 1 January 2007 - 30 June 2007 Six years from first enrolment Eight years from join date 1 January 2004 - 31 December 2006 Five years from first enrolment Eight years from join date 1 January 2000 - 31 December 2003 Five years from first enrolment Indefinite
- The number of exams a candidate must pass in order to complete the CPA Program is determined by the date they first enrolled as shown below.
Date of first enrolment Total number of subjects Compulsory subjects Semester 2, 2009 onwards Six
- Ethics and Governance
- Strategic Management Accounting
- Financial Reporting
- Global Strategy and Leadership
Semester 1, 2004 to Semester 1, 2009 inclusive Six
- Ethics and Governance (candidates who have completed Reporting and Professional Practice and Corporate Governance and Accountability have met this requirement)
- Global Strategy and Leadership (candidates who have completed Business Strategy and Leadership have met this requirement)
Semester 1, 2000 to Semester 2, 2003 inclusive Five
- Ethics and Governance (candidates who have completed Reporting and Professional Practice and Corporate Governance and Accountability have met this requirement)
- Extensions to complete the CPA Program may result in candidates having to re-sit previously passed subjects or additional subjects, noting CPA Program knowledge currency is set at 10 years.
- Enrolments will be accepted by CPA Australia until the advertised closing dates (see important dates and fees). Australian Eastern Standard Time (AEST) or Australian Eastern Daylight Time (AEDT) applies to all dates.
- Candidates who are members of CPA Australia may enrol in up to three subjects per semester.
- Changes to a different subject will be accepted until the advertised closing date for the respective semester (see important dates and fees). For this reason, study guides won't be dispatched before this date. Candidates are unable to change to a different subject if they have deferred the subject from the prior semester (unless there are extenuating circumstances).
- Upon successful enrolment, a PDF copy of the Study Guide will be available on My Online Learning for all CPA Program subjects (except for Singapore Taxation). Singapore Taxation Study Guides are not available on My Online Learning. Access to all additional learning materials, including an eBook version of the study guide, will be available via My Online Learning from semester start. Candidates are encouraged to refer to the PDF and eBook version of the study materials as the primary resource for their studies.
- Access to Guided Learning is available to all candidates enrolled in a CPA Program subjects (except Singapore Taxation) and made available as per the important dates and fees.
- Access to My Online Learning will be disabled after the exam period and as advertised in the important dates and fees. The 'Ask the Expert' forums within Guided Learning become read-only from the advertised dates.
- Candidates are bound by the Subject Cancellation and Deferral Policy as part of their enrolment into a CPA Program subject.
- Refunds will be issued for cancellation of an enrolment up to the advertised closing date for cancellations (see important dates and fees). No refunds will be issued if the enrolment is cancelled after the first cancellation closing date of the same semester as the original enrolment.
- Candidates are permitted a maximum of two cancellations per subject.
- Deferrals will be accepted up to the advertised closing date for deferrals. A deferral fee will be payable for all deferral applications received by CPA Australia. Exam deferral is to the next semester only. A maximum of two consecutive deferrals will be granted per enrolment. A third deferral may be granted for exceptional circumstances and with supporting documentation. If enrolment in a subject is subsequently cancelled, fees will not be reimbursed. Candidates are unable to defer beyond their advancement date.
- If deferring, it is the candidate's responsibility to retain the study guide. No new study guide will be issued in the following semester, unless the guide content has been updated.
- Once a candidate has cancelled or deferred their enrolment in the subject, all access to My Online learning will be terminated and any scheduled exam cancelled.
- If a candidate defers their enrolment, they will need to wait until exam scheduling opens for the subject in the following semester to schedule their exam.
- A candidate cannot cancel or defer their enrolment if they attend or attempt the exam. If a candidate fails an exam, does not attend an exam, or they are not granted an exam deferral by CPA Australia, they must re-enrol and pay the prescribed fee to continue with that subject. No refund will apply.
- Candidates can apply for reasonable adjustments to study guide and/or exam arrangements by the advertised closing date for the respective semester. The application is subject to an assessment and CPA Australia's Reasonable Adjustment Policy.
- It is the responsibility of the candidate to schedule their exam appointment via My CPA Program before the advertised scheduling closing date, as per CPA Australia's exam scheduling policy, unless the enrolment is for reference purposes only. Candidates are bound by the Exam Scheduling Policy as part of their enrolment into a CPA Program subject.
- CPA Program exams can be scheduled by enrolled candidates as soon as exam scheduling opens for the subject and respective semester. Exam venues, modalities available, and exam appointment dates and times are subject to availability across the exam delivery window. CPA Australia cannot guarantee that the preferred appointment date, time or exam delivery mode will be accommodated.
- If a candidate fails to schedule their own exam before the scheduling closing date, they acknowledge that CPA Australia will schedule an exam appointment on their behalf. CPA Australia will select the closest available exam appointment based on their residential address or may schedule an online proctored exam. The appointment may be in any exam format and on any day during the exam period.
- CPA Australia endeavours to provide all candidates with access to an exam centre within a reasonable distance of their residential address. Reasonable distance will be determined at CPA Australia's discretion. In some circumstances, candidates may be required to travel for a suitable computer-based exam venue or, may choose to take an online proctored exam. If candidates are unable to locate an exam venue within a reasonable distance of their residential address, they must contact CPA Australia before the exam scheduling closing date. If candidates do not contact CPA Australia, they may have to travel extensively to sit their exam in a test centre or may choose to take an online proctored exam.
- Occasionally, due to unforeseen events such as but not limited to natural disasters, extreme weather events, global health pandemics, power outages or connectivity issues, changes to the exam may be required after an exam has been scheduled. Exams may need to be rescheduled to another day and/or time during the exam period. Candidates should, therefore, ensure that they are available to attend exams throughout the entire exam period. In the event an exam may need to be rescheduled, candidates will be contacted via phone or email as provided to CPA Australia.
- The availability of exam venues, exam modalities, exam appointments and exam formats are subject to change at any time at CPA Australia's discretion.
- Candidates applying for Special Consideration, as per the Special Consideration Policy, must do so before the advertised closing date. Applications submitted after this date cannot be accepted. Only applications where all criteria and requirements for supporting documentation have been met will be considered by the Special Consideration Committee. For applications to be reviewed by the Special Consideration Committee, the candidate must have sat their exam and their scaled score must fall within the limited range below the pass mark. If a candidate receives a fail grade and their scaled score sits outside the limited range, their application will not be reviewed by the Special Consideration Committee and their result will not be considered for readjustment.
- Candidates enrolled in a CPA Program subject are bound by the Academic Misconduct Policy. Integrity is a fundamental principle underpinning the profession. Actions by CPA Program candidates, whether members of CPA Australia or not, such as but not limited to plagiarism, cheating, collusion and any other conduct whereby the candidate has sought to obtain an unfair academic advantage are not permitted. These actions may be treated by CPA Australia as academic misconduct. Allegations of academic misconduct will be reviewed by CPA Australia's Programmes and Pathways Unit and the exam results may be withheld pending the outcome of a referral to CPA Australia's Professional Conduct Unit for investigation. Penalties include, but are not limited to, the following:
- forfeiture of membership
- suspension of membership
- lowering of membership status
- exclusion from admission as a member
- requirement to undergo further CPA Program subjects
- a fine
- results withheld
- failure of a subject.
- The CPA Program is a distance education learning program. Candidates must have a valid email address and must check their email regularly. Email is the official way CPA Australia will communicate with candidates and no waivers or consideration will be given if they miss important information. Candidates must have access to the internet for the purposes of receiving updated information throughout the semester and to access study materials.
- It is the candidate's responsibility to provide current personal information to CPA Australia including name, residential address for exam scheduling, mailing address for delivery of the study guide, email address for program and exam information, and contact numbers. If this is not provided and kept up-to-date, the candidate's exam may be scheduled at an inconvenient location, they may be charged a fee for any reschedule requests, their study guide may be sent to an incorrect address and may be charged a re-issue fee, and they may not receive critical information.
- Any additional reference material required for each subject, such as relevant legislation, is outlined in the introductory section of the study guide. The candidate must have access to relevant accounting and auditing standards, professional statements and relevant legislation. This is not supplied as part of the study guide. It is the candidate's responsibility to access these via the standard-setters' or legislation websites. It will be necessary to print the relevant sections for exam purposes.
- CPA Australia will not be accountable for any customs fees or duties imposed by a country or delivery delays due to COVID-19. It is also the candidate's responsibility to provide any country-specific information that is required for customs clearance of the study guide. We will not be able to deliver the study guide to the following countries if candidates do not supply the required information:
- Russia: Please provide a business address, including the business name.
- India: Candidates will be contacted via email after they enrol and asked to provide additional information to ensure clearance from customs.
- Taiwan: Candidates must register their details on the government platform. For more information, refer to the CPA Australia website.
- A replacement fee may be payable if candidate's have received their study guide and subsequently misplaced it or require a replacement study guide for another reason.
- If a candidate successfully completes the exam, they can claim up to 120 Continuing Professional Development (CPD) hours. If they do not sit, or fail the exam, the candidate can claim up to 20 CPD hours. If a candidate enrols for reference purposes only (no exam) they can claim up to 20 CPD hours.
- CPA Australia ensures the integrity of every exam result. Once the exam results are published, they will not be re-examined nor will their exam be re-marked.
- All candidates are bound by CPA Program rules and regulations and terms and conditions, including the non-disclosure agreement and privacy statement, as they are updated from time to time.
- Copyright in study materials is owned by or used under license by CPA Australia. Subject to Part III Division 3 of the Copyright Act 1968 (Cth), the reproduction, publication, adaptation and sale of study material content, without authorisation, is strictly prohibited and may amount to copyright infringement.
Your exam is confidential. CPA Australia owns the rights in the intellectual property, copyright and trademarks used in providing the exam and are protected by law. The exam is made available to you as a candidate, solely for the purpose of your assessment. You are expressly prohibited from disclosing, publishing, reproducing, or transmitting the exam, in whole or in part, in any form or by any means including visual, aural, verbal, written, electronic or mechanical, for any purpose, without the prior express written permission of CPA Australia.
The exam questions and answers are not released or available for viewing due to the secure nature of the exams and process adopted by CPA Australia in establishing passing standards. The personal data which you provided at enrolment will be used to transmit your score to CPA Australia, and for monitoring purposes. Your personal data and exam data will be stored in the Pearson VUE database. CPA Australia reminds you that you have the right to access, delete and modify your personal data. To exercise such right, please contact CPA Australia.
CPA Australia processes assessment, membership and other payments using EFTPOS and online technologies. All transactions processed by CPA Australia meet industry security standards to ensure member details and payments are protected. For more information about our security procedures and payment processes, contact +61 3 9606 9606.
*CPA Australia may accept an application by a non-member to enrol in the Ethics and Governance subject. Acceptance of such an application will be at CPA Australia's absolute discretion and CPA Australia is not required to give any reason for the rejection of any application. Further, for the avoidance of doubt, acceptance of an application by a non-member to enrol in the Ethics and Governance subject is not an indication that the non-member is or will be accepted as a member.
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