Illinois CPA Requirements


CPA Exam Requirements


Degree Requirement
Semester Hours
Semester Hours Required to Sit for Exam?
Class Requirements
US Citizenship: No
State residency is not required
Full Requirements

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Passing the CPA Exam in Illinois

Illinois (IL) CPA Exam Requirements state that you must be declared eligible for the examination and then licensed by the state. An individual becomes eligible for the CPA exam by meeting specific requirements that are determined by the board of accountancy for their specific jurisdiction. Below are the Illinois CPA Exam requirements:

Education Requirements:

  • Varies based on degree earned (for first time candidates after July 1, 2013): Graduate degree in accounting from an AACSB or ACBSP accredited program, or Graduate degree in business from a AACSB or ACBSP accredited business program with 30 semester hours in accounting including Managerial, Taxation, Financial, Audit and at least two semester credit hours of Research & Analysis or at least a Baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited institution or approved equivalent institution with 30 semester credit hours in accounting including Managerial, Taxation, Financial, Audit and at least two semester credit hours of Research & Analysis.
  • At least 24 semester credit hours in business, including two semester credit hours of Business Communication and three semester credit hours of Business Ethics.
  • Candidates in or about to start the last semester, in which, at its end, will meet the educational requirements will receive “provisional” approval to take the CPA exam. Candidates will have 120 days from the time they take the first exam to submit final transcripts to clear their “provisional status.”

Work Experience:

Gain the necessary work experience and CPE. To become a licensed CPA, you must have one year of full time experience in public accounting or two years of full time work experience in the accounting industry, business, government, or college teaching (must be courses in accounting) or any combination of the above. For work experience in these respective areas to qualify for licensure it must have met the following criteria:

CPA Exam Application Process:

  1. Review the exam requirements
  2. Submit the exam application + enroll in Surgent CPA Review
  3. Request and forward transcripts. Contact any educational institutions attended and request that transcripts be forwarded to CPA Examination Services for their evaluation. If you do not anticipate there being any problems with your application, this is a great time to start studying with Surgent CPA Review.
  4. Pay the exam fees. After receiving the required information, CPA Examination Services will issue your Authorization to Test (ATT) to the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy (NASBA). You will receive a Notice to Schedule (NTS) which is good for six months; however, since every third is non-testing, the NTS covers four testing months.
  5. Schedule your exam. Your NTS allows you to start scheduling your exams. You can sit for the exam parts in any sequence, so you can plan your reviews to coincide with your exam scheduling. The most efficient approach is to sit for two parts in each exam window; however, exam fees paid for parts not taken are not refundable.

Where to Take CPA Exam:

Exam location is scheduled with Prometric and can be set up online at www.prometric.com/cpa.

When to Take CPA Exam

Testing windows include January, February, April, May, July, August, October, and November. Testing is not available during blackout months: March, June, September, and December.