The CPA Program gives you the skills to stand out in the real world, and the experience you gain along the way helps prepare you for the next stage in your career.

Careers built on accounting and finance knowledge are many and varied. As technology advances, future careers will continue to evolve.

That’s why we’ve reviewed and updated the experience requirement. While our high-quality standards remain unchanged, we have made adjustments to make it simpler for you to claim your experience.

Already enrolled in the practical experience requirement? Find out how the changes affect you.

Meet your experience requirement

To satisfy the experience requirement you’ll need to:

1. Gain your experience

You need to gain 36 months (or its equivalent for part-time work) of relevant experience. For part-time work, you can calculate the full-time equivalent in months by using this formula: (your weekly part-time hours ÷ 35 hours) x months worked = full time equivalent in months.

Experience can be gained at any time – before or during your study, through relevant volunteer work, work experience during university may be eligible, or you may already have sufficient relevant experience. You can also gain your experience by working for a Recognised Employer Partner.

Over the course of your experience, you must demonstrate a minimum of 10 skills across four categories. This must include a minimum of:

  • four technical skills
  • two personal effectiveness skills 
  • two business skills 
  • two leadership skills.

Each role must include at least one technical skill from the skills list to be relevant experience and to count towards Your Experience.

2. Get your experience signed-off

To have your experience signed-off, you'll need to demonstrate the experience and skills you've gained. 

To do this you need to complete an experience claim form (PDF) and have it signed off by a CPA, FCPA or an equivalent full member of an International Federation of Accountants (IFAC) member body. They need to review your experience and sign-off the time period that you’re claiming and the skills that you’ve acquired. 

Remember, each of your roles must include at least one technical skill. 

If you are supported by a mentor who is a CPA, FCPA or IFAC member, they can sign-off your claim. Appointing a mentor is optional, but we encourage our Associate members to do so as a mentor can provide you with guidance and support throughout your CPA Program. 

3. Verify your experience

When your experience claim form (PDF) has been signed-off, you’re ready to submit it to CPA Australia for verification.

We recommend that you submit a claim form when you believe you have completed all time and skills required. If you would like to check your progress you may wish to submit a form earlier, but no more than once a year.