Illinois CPA Exam Requirements

For Candidates in Illinois that have not Taken the Uniform CPA Exam

CPA licenses in the state of Illinois are issued and managed by two separate government entities. The Illinois Board of Examiners is an eleven-member board that assures that applicants academic credentials are in order, provides approval for taking the CPA exam, and issues a CPA certificate upon successful completion of the exam. The Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation handles the licensing of CPA’s after they have successfully earned a certificate. Illinois is a two-tiered state, so a certificate is granted immediately to those who have passed the CPA exam.

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The state of Illinois sets its own requirements for being able to take the CPA exam, but the exam is provided through the NASBA. In order to become a CPA in Illinois, the following requirements must be met:

Education Requirements

A total of 150 semester hours of college credit must be completed in order to take the CPA exam in Illinois. The following three options will fulfill the education requirements for Illinois CPA Exam applicants:

  • Earn a graduate degree with an accounting concentration


  • Earn a graduate degree from an accredited business program with at least:
    • 30 semester hours of upper-level undergraduate accounting; OR
    • 15 semester hours of graduate level accounting

(Courses must cover the subject areas of management accounting, taxation, auditing, and financial accounting)

  • Earn a bachelor’s degree from an accredited business program with at least:
    • 30 semester hours in accounting
      • Must include courses in management accounting, taxation, auditing, and financial accounting
    • 24 semester hours of business courses (not including accounting courses)

Fee Requirements

The following fees must be paid before the CPA exam can be taken:

  • Application Fee (paid directly to the Illinois Board of Examiners)
    • If taking all four exam sections – $120
    • If taking three exam sections – $108
    • If taking two exam sections – $76
    • If taking one exam section – $40
  • Examination Fees (paid to NASBA)
    • Auditing (AUD) – $192.03
    • Financial Accounting and Reporting (FAR) – $192.03
    • Business Environments and Concepts (BEC) – $172.51
    • Regulation (REG) – $172.51

Prometric test centers can be found in the following Illinois cities:

  • Peoria
  • Springfield
  • Champaign
  • Joliet
  • Sycamore
  • Chicago
  • Deerfield

Already passed the CPA Exam and looking for additional licensing requirements in Illinois? – Click Here