Exam scheduling policy
This policy applies to all enrolled candidates of the CPA Program
This policy is also applicable to those who enrol into the CPA Program for continuing professional development (CPD) purposes.
Advertised scheduling dates/period: the dates published on the CPA Australia website that advise of the period in which you can schedule or reschedule an exam independently online.
Auto-scheduling: the process where our exam delivery partner Pearson VUE schedules candidates to an exam appointment if they have not done so before the closing date for exam scheduling. This is based on the remaining availability of appointments.
Computer-based exams: exams conducted via a computer, in an invigilated environment, which requires you answer questions using a keyboard and mouse.
Exam scheduling: booking an exam appointment in the semester that you're enrolled.
Exam rescheduling: changing the date, time or location of a scheduled exam appointment in the semester that you're enrolled.
Extenuating circumstances: any significant, unforeseen and normally short-term matter outside your control and which may result in a major impact on your ability to attend the scheduled exam appointments.
My CPA Program: the system you'll use to schedule and manage your exam appointments.
Online-Proctored Exams: exams conducted online to allow you to take an exam from your home or office using your own device and while being monitored by a remote proctor. All communication with the proctor is to be completed in English.
Paper-based exams: exams conducted using a paper booklet in an invigilated environment and which require you to answer questions in the booklet using either pencil or pen.
Rules and regulations for the CPA Program are on this website.
Exam appointments can be scheduled using My CPA Program once the scheduling period opens. Important CPA Program dates for exam schedules are published on the CPA Australia website.
It is the responsibility of all enrolled candidates to schedule their own exams before the advertised closing date to confirm their preferred exam modality, time, location and date (subject to availability). If a candidate is enrolled in a subject for CPD purposes and does not plan to sit their exam, they will not need to schedule an exam.
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.
All enrolled candidates must be available to sit a CPA Program exam at any time within the exam period for the respective semester, with the exception of Singapore Taxation (this exam will be held on a specified date and time).
If a candidate defers their enrolment to the following semester, they will need to wait until scheduling opens for that semester to schedule an exam.
Once an exam is scheduled, CPA Program candidates will receive a confirmation email from our exam delivery partner, Pearson VUE. Candidates are required to check their name on this confirmation email appears the same as on the identification documents they'll present for admission to the exam. If the names don't match their identification documents, they must contact us immediately to update their details. Candidates won't be admitted to the exam if their registered name doesn't match the name on their ID documents.
We strongly recommended that candidates bring a copy of their exam scheduling confirmation email to the exam.
CPA Australia tries to provide candidates with access to an exam centre within a reasonable distance of their residence. Residential distance will be determined at CPA Australia's discretion. In some circumstances, candidates may be required to travel to a suitable computer-based exam venue or, may choose to take an online proctored exam. If candidates live outside a metropolitan area, they may need to travel to attend an exam venue or sit an online proctored exam from their home or office.
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.
The exam for Singapore Taxation will only be available on a specific date and location.
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. The auto-scheduling process begins once the advertised scheduling closing date has passed. 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.
If an exam appointment is auto-scheduled then it may not be possible for it to be moved to a different time, date, venue or modality.
Changes to exam appointments
Candidates can reschedule their exam appointment for every subject, except Singapore Taxation, at any time before the advertised scheduling closing date. The Singapore Taxation exam can't be rescheduled as it's delivered on a fixed date and location.
If a candidate cancels an exam appointment in order to change to another exam delivery mode, they will be forfeiting that appointment time and they are not guaranteed the same appointment in an alternative format.
The availability of exam venues, exam modalities, exam appointments and exam formats are subject to change at any time at CPA Australia’s discretion.
Due to unforeseen events, such as, but not limited to natural disasters, extreme weather events, power outages, site closures, connectivity issues or global pandemics, CPA Australia may be required to change a candidate’s scheduled exam appointment or make alterations to the exam period. This may result in the candidate’s exam being rescheduled to another day (or new exam window), time, modality or location/venue, subject to availability. Under these circumstances, candidates may need to be rescheduled, and they will be contacted via phone or email.
Candidates should, therefore, ensure that they are available to attend exams throughout the entire exam period.
Online proctored exams
The following applies for candidates scheduling and sitting an Online Proctored Exam:
- Candidates must be sitting from a location that can deliver an Online Proctored exam, noting exams cannot be delivered in Mainland China, Slovenia, Japan, South Korea and OFAC-sanctioned countries.
- Candidates must check their exam confirmation or reminder email from Pearson VUE to confirm their exam date, time and time zone.
- Candidates must access their exam through My CPA Program using their existing credentials (member ID or email address, along with their password).
- It is the candidate’s responsibility when booking an online proctored exam that they ensure they meet the technology, system and room requirements. Failure to meet the requirements may result in the inability to attempt and complete the exam.
- It is the responsibility of the candidate to ensure they have suitable equipment to sit their exam. Candidates must prepare their computer and test their technology several times in the lead up to their exam. Candidates must ensure they test their system on the device they intend to use for the exam and do so from the same room and at the same time as their appointment. A full device check should include the following:
- Complete the Get Your Device Ready Checklist, comparing your computer settings against the recommended technical and system requirements.
- Update any settings that don’t align with the recommendations of the checklist including lock screen or hibernation settings, speaker volume and webcam settings.
- Complete a System Test, which checks your download speeds and microphone and webcam functionality to ensure their device is equipped to launch their exam.
- It is the responsibility of the candidate to prepare their exam room in accordance with these policies:
- Ensure the room is enclosed and private, and free from any disruptions.
- Unplug any additional monitors and unplug any printers or other technological devices.
- Clear workstation within arm’s reach. Remove all material from the workstation, asides from the permitted materials.
- Ensure no other person can see their computer screen, can enter the room or speak to the candidate throughout the exam.
- Candidates are required to present one form of government-issued identification that includes:
- Your full name
- Your date of birth
- A clear photograph
- Candidates must read the Pearson VUE policies and procedures ahead of scheduling and sitting their exam.
- Candidates are permitted to bring the following items into the exam:
- One form of government-issued, valid and current identification.
- A single, silent, standard or scientific calculator that meets the guidelines on the CPA Australia website.
- The study guide and any other printed materials candidates wish to refer to during the exam.
- A clear glass of water.
- Candidates are not permitted to:
- Introduce new materials into their exam area after the check-in process.
- Leave their exam desk or move from the view of their webcam (including leaning down to pick up material).
- Access or use a mobile phone or messaging device. Their mobile phone should only be retrieved in the event of a technical issue where the candidate will be contacted by a proctor.
- Use pen or paper for note-taking.
- Speak, read your exam questions out loud or cover their mouth.
- Wear headphones, AirPods or any type of earpiece or headset.
- Consume food and drinks, chew gum or smoke (aside from their clear glass of water).
- Communicate with others, sit their exam with another person in the room or have another person enter the room during their exam.
- Disclose, publish or reproduce exam content (this is also prohibited after the exam).
Test Centre (Computer-based) Exam
The following applies for candidates scheduling and sitting a Test Centre (Computer-based) Exam:
- Candidates must check their exam confirmation or reminder email from Pearson VUE to confirm their exam date, time and venue.
- Candidates must present two forms of identification, including a:
- Primary ID: which must be government-issued and contain your photograph and signature (for example, your driver’s license or Passport)
- Secondary ID: which must contain either your photograph or signature (for example, a debit or credit card)
- Candidates must review the health and safety requirements on the Pearson VUE website to understand the personal responsibilities when attending a test centre. These will be based on local health guidelines.
- Candidates are permitted to bring the following items into the exam:
- Two forms of valid and current identification.
- A single, silent, standard or scientific calculator, which meets the guidelines on the Test Centre Computer-based Exam page.
- The study guide and any other printed materials candidates wish to refer to throughout their exam.
- Candidates are not permitted to bring the following items into their exam:
- Mobile phones
- Food and drink
- Additional jewellery (unless worn for religious reasons)
If you wish to change an existing exam appointment after the closing date, you must contact us. We can only reschedule exams under extenuating circumstances and if there is availability. Each request for rescheduling due to extenuating circumstances will be reviewed on a case by case basis, however, we can't guarantee we're able to accommodate requests to change exam dates, and you may be offered an exam that's not in your preferred delivery mode.
You'll need to provide supporting documentation when you request to reschedule an exam. This may be doctor's letter or certificate, a solicitor's letter, police reports or other forms of evidence as described under supporting documentation.
Letters or declarations from friends and family can't be accepted.
The list below provides some examples of extenuating circumstances. CPA Australia appreciates that other circumstances may arise which are not listed here. In these cases, you should contact us with all available supporting documentation as outlined above.
Extenuating circumstances may include:
- severe or sudden illness or injury, e.g. hospital admission, serious injury or illness. This excludes minor illness
- a hospital or specialist appointment for serious injury or illness
- severe or sudden illness of a family member, e.g. hospital admission, serious injury or illness. This excludes minor illness
- the loss or bereavement of a close family member or friend
- hardship/trauma, eg if you're a victim of crime or a traffic accident
- military service
- visa issues, cancellations and grants
- relocation to another city or country for at least one month
- attending court
- civil unrest, protests, war or terrorism, including any official warnings issued by government or relevant authorities
- natural disasters or severe weather, including any official warnings issued by government or relevant authorities.
Extenuating circumstances do not include:
- transport issues including heavy traffic, public transport delays or cancellations, roadworks, parking, accommodation issues including renovations and limited availability
- misreading the exam date and time
- work commitments, including short business trips, meetings, workload, promotions, new employment
- personal reasons with no explanation or documentation
- sporting commitments or personal achievements including awards or club meetings
- exam venue scheduled in the wrong location or country if you failed to notify CPA Australia or update contact information before the advised deadlines
- auto-scheduled or self-scheduled to an exam venue that is more than 120km from your home, but within the same country and region or state
- auto-scheduled exams that are not on a convenient date or time
- carer duties or childcare difficulties
- other travel or holidays
- family or personal functions or festivities, including, weddings, engagements, christenings or festivals
- more than one exam scheduled on the same day, or exams scheduled on consecutive days
- medical circumstances without supporting medical documentation or evidence, or which do not relate to the assessment period in question.
On the day of the exam, rescheduling requests due to the following reasons will not be accepted:
- refused admission to the exam due to no identification or insufficient identification
- arriving more than 30 minutes late
- mixing up exam appointments
- bringing the wrong exam reference materials.
Supporting documents should be on letterhead paper, dated and contain the signature (with title) and the contact details of the appropriate professional. Documents must be obtained from an appropriate professional who can evidence your situation. Documents provided without firsthand evidence won't be accepted.
Documents must be in English. If the documentary evidence isn't in English, it must be accompanied by an official certified translation.
Supporting documents may include, but are not limited to:
- a medical certificate signed by a registered practitioner verifying the illness affected you during the period
- a letter from a doctor confirming the bereavement or the impact the bereavement has had on you
- a police or crime report. A crime number on its own isn't acceptable
- an official letter from an immigration office
- signed letter from employer confirming the work relocation and its duration, which must be for more than one month
- official correspondence from a court or tribunal confirming attendance, or, a solicitor's letter detailing the nature and dates of the legal proceedings and the requirement for you to attend court.
- A statutory declaration (a person who intentionally makes a false statement in a statutory declaration may be charged under s.11 of the Statutory Declarations Act 1959).
CPA Australia reserves the right to request additional information or supporting evidence, and to make changes to this policy without prior notice.
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