Colorado CPA Exam Requirements

Colorado Exam Requirements

Eligibility for Examination


There is not a residency requirement for the state of Colorado.

On or after July 1, 2015, to be eligible for the examination as a candidate of Colorado, you must have completed a Baccalaureate Degree or higher degree with at least 120 credit hours of higher education that includes the accounting and business courses listed below:

  • At least 27 semester hours of non-duplicative accounting coursework at the undergraduate or graduate level with course grades of C (or equivalent) or higher.
    • Within the 27 semester hours in accounting, 21 semester hours must exclude introductory accounting courses and cover subject areas such as:
      • Accounting Ethics
      • Accounting Information Systems
      • Accounting Research and Analysis
      • Accounting Theory
      • Auditing and Attestation Services
      • Financial Accounting and Reporting of Business Organizations
      • Financial Accounting and Reporting for Government and Not-for-Profit Entities
      • Financial Statement Analysis
      • Fraud Examination
      • Internal Controls and Risk Assessment
      • Managerial or Cost Accounting
      • Taxation
      • Tax Research and Analysis
      • Other areas as approved by the Board
    • The 21 semester hours in accounting must include a 3 semester hour, or more, auditing course concentrating on U.S. GAAS. NOTE: "Concentrating on U.S. GAAS" means that any course content referencing non-U.S. standards is incidental to the course.
  • At least 21 semester hours of non-duplicative coursework in business administration at the undergraduate or graduate level that addresses subject areas such as:
    • Behavior of Organizations, Groups, and Persons
    • Business Communications
    • Business Ethics
    • Business Law
    • Computer Information Systems
    • Economics
    • Finance
    • Legal and Social Environment of Business
    • Management
    • Marketing
    • Quantitative Applications in Business
    • Statistics
    • Other areas as approved by the Board
  • Of the 21 semester hours, no more than 6 semester hours can be in any single subject area. But semester hours in excess of the 6-hour maximum may count toward the total 120 semester hour requirement.
  • Of the 21 semester hours, 12 semester hours must be in courses above the introductory level in business administration.

If you do not have a baccalaureate degree, you may still qualify for the examination as a candidate of Colorado if you have completed at least 120 credit hours of higher education provided you are currently enrolled in a degree program at a college or university that: (1) requires a minimum 150 hours for graduation; and (2) does not offer a Baccalaureate Degree, but instead confers a Masters or higher degree, or offers a Baccalaureate Degree upon completion of a combined degree program.

Course Requirements

  • All courses must be taken at an Accredited Baccalaureate Granting College or: (1) such a college must accept the courses by including them in its official transcript or verify to the Board that it would accept the courses for credit towards graduation; (2) the courses must be acceptable for transfer to such a college pursuant to a transfer articulation agreement approved or accepted by the Colorado Department of Higher Education or what the Board determines to be an equivalent regulatory agency of another jurisdiction; or (3) the Board may accept the findings of an academic credential evaluation provided pursuant to Rule 2.2
  • Your transcript must indicate an accounting program code for accounting courses or you must otherwise demonstrate that the coursework was in accounting.
  • "Introductory accounting courses" means courses such as principles of accounting, accounting and tax software courses, payroll accounting, and other basic accounting courses as determined by the Board. Such courses will not count towards the 21 hour requirement.
  • Business courses must cover one of the areas listed above, but the coursework is not required to be taken within the business or accounting department.
  • Commercial CPA review courses are not acceptable.
  • Correspondence, online courses and CLEP credit are acceptable when you receive credit for the courses at a regionally accredited university. These courses must appear on an official transcript.
  • Education earned at a community college or two-year degree granting institution is acceptable.

Candidates with International Education

If you apply with international education, you are required to provide proof that the audit course completed abroad has a concentration in U.S. GAAS. Along with the evaluation of international education, you must also provide the following:

  1. A letter from the school confirming the audit course has a concentration in US GAAS
  2. The course’s syllabus
  3. The primary textbook used to include the name of the publisher and the authors.


Failure to provide this information will result in an incomplete application.

Please be advised that if you are applying with international education at this time, you are subject to a Colorado State Board of Accountancy Review. In this case, the evaluation process may be extended up to three months.

All educational documents including official school transcripts, SSN Affidavit, course syllabus, textbook used for audit course, or letter from school confirming U.S. GAAS concentration and/or international evaluations with international transcripts are required to be submitted at the time of application. These documents are required to be mailed directly to CPAES from the academic institution or evaluation service.

Education requirements must be met through academic coursework completed at an accredited institution. Professional training is not acceptable toward these requirements. Coursework completed as part of a Chartered Accountant program is considered professional training and is, therefore, not accepted toward the education requirements for the U.S. Uniform CPA Examination.


All first-time applicants are required to pay both an application fee and an examination fee upon submission of the first-time application. All re-examination candidates are required to pay both a registration fee and an examination fee at the time of registration.

You are able to apply for one or more sections of the examination at a time; however, you are advised to only apply for a section of the examination if you are ready to take it within the next six months.

Application fee$150.00

Examination Fees

Auditing and Attestation (AUD)$208.40
Business Environment and Concepts (BEC)$208.40
Financial Accounting and Reporting (FAR)$208.40
Regulation (REG)$208.40

Registration Fees

4 examination sections$75.00
3 examination sections$75.00
2 examination sections$75.00
1 examination section$75.00



800-CPA-EXAM (800-272-3926)
International: (615) 880-4250
M - Th: 8 a.m. - 2 a.m. Eastern
F: 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. Eastern
Fax: (615) 880-4290, Attn: CO Coordinator

Mail: Colorado Coordinator
CPA Examination Services
PO Box 198469
Nashville, Tennessee 37219-8469