Use the information below for the requirements and steps to take the Wisconsin CPA Exam.
Note: The information below and in the downloadable checklist are current as of March 31, 2021.
For a printable version with checkboxes to help you keep track of your progress, click here.
Applicants must complete (cannot be in process) a minimum of 120 credit hours of education leading to a bachelor's or graduate degree to apply for the Uniform CPA Exam, which includes at least 24 semester hours in accounting from an educational institution that is accredited by an agency recognized by the U.S. Secretary of Education at the undergraduate level or 15 semester hours at the graduate level, or an equivalent combination that covers each of the following subject areas:
- Financial accounting
- Cost or managerial accounting
- Accounting information systems
- Through May 31, 2021, the Wisconsin Accounting Examining Board will consider both the AIS and IS requirement satisfied if the applicant has completed at least one information systems course, such as: Accounting Information Systems (AIS); Business Information Systems (BIS); Management Information Systems (MIS); or simply Information Systems (IS).
- Starting June 1, 2021, applicants must complete the AIS course to satisfy the AIS requirement. Completion of the BIS, MIS or IS courses will no longer satisfy the AIS requirement. For additional clarification, the Wisconsin Accounting Examining Board has provided us the following statement:
The AIS requirement became part of the administrative rules effective June 1, 2017. Applicants who completed their degrees prior to that date and applied to sit for the exam before October 1, 2018 were grandfathered in under the old rules. Here is the excerpt from Accy 2.202:
(5) In the course of completing at least 150 semester hours of education, earned a bachelor's or graduate degree in accounting prior to June 1, 2017, from an accounting program or department that is listed by an accrediting agency recognized by the board. This subsection applies only to a candidate who submitted an application for a certified public accountant certificate prior to October 1, 2018.
Since schools cannot change curriculum and degree requirements overnight, we created a "temporary accommodation" in 2019 stating that we would accept any information systems class as satisfaction of both the IS and AIS requirement. When created, that accommodation had an end date of December 31, 2020. We subsequently extended that end date to June 1, 2021, so that any student who was in their final four semesters of completing their degree would not have to change plans and schedules.
We feel ample time has been provided for both schools and students to take the necessary steps to comply with the requirements added in 2017. Going forward, we will continue to apply the accommodation only for candidates who completed their undergraduate or graduate accounting degree prior to June 1, 2021.
Note: A bachelor's degree is not required to apply. The 120 credits must be completed and include the above required classes before applying.
- Credits from a community or technical college not transferred to an accredited institution that offers a bachelor's degree may be accepted toward the requirements if they are earned from an institution of higher education accredited by an accrediting agency that is recognized by the federal department of education.
- The courses covering the subjects of financial accounting, cost or managerial accounting, taxation and auditing would generally be courses taken beyond the introduction accounting course required of every business major.
- Correspondence, CLEP credit, pass/fail grades and online courses are acceptable when you receive credit for the courses at a regionally accredited college or university. These courses must appear on an official transcript.
- Upper division courses are usually taken at the junior or senior undergraduate level.
- CPA review courses are not acceptable.
Note: Wisconsin offers the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy (NASBA) Advisory Evaluation as an optional service. An Advisory Evaluation will identify any academic deficiencies in education before submitting a first-time application for the Uniform CPA Exam.
An official transcript must be submitted from each school attended.
- Credit for courses completed at institutions located outside the U.S. must be transferred to an accredited bachelor's degree-granting institution inside the U.S.
- The degree must be posted on the official transcript.
- Official transcripts submitted electronically must be directly from the institution(s). Some schools do not offer this service. Contact the registrar's office for additional information. If an email address is required for electronic delivery, use email@example.com.
Candidates must create a user account and apply through NASBA.
A nonrefundable fee must be submitted with each application. Candidates may apply for one or more sections of the Uniform CPA Exam at the same time; however, the Notice to Schedule (NTS) will expire after six months. Candidates are recommended to only apply if they are ready to take the section within the next six months.
|4 examination sections||$1,179.96|
|3 examination sections||$930.97|
|2 examination sections||$680.98|
|1 examination section||$430.99|
|4 examination sections||$1,096.96|
|3 examination sections||$846.97|
|2 examination sections||$597.98|
|1 examination section||$347.99|
Note: There is no residency requirement for the state of Wisconsin. The Department of Safety and Professional Services (DSPS) administers Wisconsin's CPA certificate and license. For more information on licensure, see the Wisconsin CPA Certificate & License Checklist.
All four exam sections may be taken individually and in any order, but must be passed within an 18-month period, which begins on the date that the first passed exam section was taken.
- As of July 1, 2020, candidates can test year-round (removing the four testing windows and blackout periods).
- Candidates may retake an exam section once they have received their grades for any previous attempt of the same section.
Note: The ethics exam is administered through DSPS after the license application is submitted and requirements are met.
After completing the steps above, see the Wisconsin CPA Certificate & License Checklist for the requirements and steps to acquire a Wisconsin CPA certificate and license.
NASBA Contact Information
For questions or additional information, please contact NASBA at:
CPA Examination Services