CPA Exam Overview

Exam description

Exam time
16 hours combined (exam is taken over the course of four days)

Sections
There are four sections of the exam:

  • Auditing & Attestation
  • Financial Accounting & Reporting
  • Regulation
  • Business Environment & Concepts

It is not necessary to take the entire exam at one time. Sections can be taken in any order.
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Information on each section's content and structure 

Testlets
Each CPA examination section is broken into 5 smaller groups called testlets. Testlets can either be comprised of multiple choice questions, task-based simulations or written communication tasks. Candidates will be able to return to questions and change their responses only within the current testlet.

  • Multiple choice questions - Each exam section contains 2 multiple choice testlets with 31-38 questions per testlet.
  • Task-based simulations - Each exam section contains 2-3 task-based simulation testlets with 2-3 tasks per testlet.
  • Written communication tasks - The Business Environment & Concepts section contains 1 written communication testlet with 3 written tasks.

Exam difficulty
Each CPA exam is different, but all exams are equivalent in terms of difficulty and content. Questions are randomly selected from a pool of available questions specific to the topic and difficulty required.


 

Fees

First-time applicants pay an application fee and examination fees per section. Re-exam candidates pay a registration fee and examination fees per section.

It's not required that you apply for all 4 sections at once. You should apply for as many sections as you feel comfortable taking over a 6-month period. 

Note: If you apply for multiple sections at once, you can schedule each section for a different window.

» View current fees 


 

Applying for the CPA exam

See our information on applying for the CPA exam.


 

Scoring

To pass the CPA exam, you must receive a score of at least 75 in each of the subjects covered by the exam. If you pass the entire exam and comply with all applicable statutes and rules, you will be notified by mail that you have passed. Find out more information about the scoring and re-examination process.


 

For more information

Visit the Uniform CPA Exam's official site for more information and an exam tutorial.


 

Contact directory

Minnesota Board of Accountancy (BOA)
Contact with questions regarding qualification for sitting for the CPA exam or obtaining a CPA certificate.

National Association of State Boards of Accountancy (NASBA)
Approves all applications to take the exam in Minnesota. Requirements and application forms are available online.

Prometric
Find a CPA exam testing center near you.

Uniform CPA Exam site
Review the CPA exam format, see sample questions and read tips about preparing for the exam.