CPA Australia

What is CPA Australia?

Certified Practising Accountant is the professional title used by members of CPA Australia which is a well renowned accounting body. Known as one of the world’s largest accounting bodies, CPA Australia has over 168,000 members in above 100 countries globally along with the support offered by 19 offices.

The main services offered to its members include education, training and development, technical assistance, and advocacy. Here, the employees and members work in unison with national and international bodies to depict the perspectives and issues of the profession to governments, regulators, industries, academia, and the public in general.

With the assistance of MRA, CPA Australia along with ICAI has opened pathways to opportunities for professionals who are just freshers in their accounting careers and also to some more seasoned accountants.

Irrespective of your stage in your career, CPA Australia can give you a firm standing in the market on a global level. Its designation allows the accounting and finance professionals a global platform to interact with peers and also the resources to stay up-to-date with the latest on leadership and global business making it seamless to scale up their international career.

Benefits of CPA designation in Australia

Some of the advantages of acquiring a CPA designation include:

  • Competitive Edge

It is necessary to keep up with the latest changes and advancements in every profession. The subjects offered through the CPA program are high in quality and dynamic and can be implemented practically for business management.

A CPA course offers value not just after attaining the designation, but throughout the course with the training and resources. The subjects help deepen the knowledge about the current scenario in global accounting that equips you to respond to real situations whilst building a promising international career.

  • Hone leadership skills

In today’s ever-changing business scenario, accountants are expected to be dynamic leaders so that they can adopt more effective accounting and financial mechanisms. This requires them to be well versed in the usage of recent software and technologies.

Getting to know about new technologies is one thing, but having the skill to implement them in an organization is a different thing. This is exactly what a CPA Australia qualification teaches you. The knowledge imparted through a CPA program can enhance your peers and aid in building efficient teams. Even though initially, the learning curve might rise slowly, the long-term effects of fruitful leadership will result in enhanced quality and productivity.

  • Find ways to develop your career

The CPA designation is well-known all around the world and is revered a lot in the Asia-Pacific region. Through the CPA program, one can earn the right skill set that is in demand by employers. This program gives deep insight and knowledge of strategic management as well as leadership and communication skills that are crucial for anyone trying to build a career in accounting.

One of the most top-rated benefits of a CPA program is that it offers promising advantages to its members by conducting seminars, conferences, and Continuing Professional Development (CPD) events that help better the knowledge of a professional by connecting distinct accounting professionals.

  • Exchange of knowledge with peers

The major benefit of being a part of the CPA community is that you can get access to Australia’s network of peer professionals. The community gives a space to contemplate and pool knowledge in the areas of accounting and finance while learning to adapt to different business challenges.

The network of CPA Australia is wide and with members working in senior leadership positions and professionals with long-term experience, growth becomes inevitable.

Which skilled occupations are assessed by CPA Australia?

  • CPA has been appointed by the Australian government for skill assessments for the following occupations:
  • Accountant (general) – ANZSCO 221111 skill assessment
  • Corporate Treasurer – ANZSCO 221212 skill assessment
  • External Auditor – ANZSCO 221213 skill assessment
  • Finance Manager – ANZSCO 132211 skill assessment
  • Management Accountant – ANZSCO 221112 skill assessment
  • Taxation Accountant – ANZSCO 221113 skill assessment

CPA Subject Matrix – Educational Standards

To meet the educational standards for any of the occupations, you must have your qualification (with a major in accounting or relevant field) assessed as comparable (in both content and standard) to an Australian Bachelor degree. Your qualification must include adequate coverage of the required core knowledge areas below.

CPA Qualifications Subject Matrix

CPA Qualifications Subject Matrix - 1

CPA English requirements for Migration Skills Assessment

English language proficiency is mandatory for a migration skill assessment from CPA Australia. It can be satisfied in the following ways:

1) Accounting Professional Year Program: If an applicant has completed an Accounting Professional Year Program, they do not need to provide English tests. Instead, they need to provide a copy of the competition certificate and transcript.

2) CPA Cambridge English Advanced (CAE) migration skill assessment requirement:

Minimum 185 in listening, reading, writing, and speaking.

3) IELTS English requirement for CPA Skilled occupation assessment.

Minimum 7 bands in Listening, Reading, Writing, and Speaking in IELTS (International English Language Testing System).

4) PTE Academic CPA migration skill assessment requirement.

65 each in listening, reading, writing, and speaking.

5) TOEFL iBT CPA Migration Skill Assessment requirement.

The following scores are required in Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) iBT for CPA Skill Assessment.

  • Listening 24
  • Reading 24
  • Writing 27
  • Speaking 23

Skill Assessment Checklist

CPA Skill assessments are submitted online, and the following documents are required in most cases to support migration skill assessment.

Migration Skill Assessment Checklist

  • Passport (Photo Page) or National ID Card
  • Proof of name change if applicable.
  • Official academic awards
  • Official academic transcripts including those of any exemptions received.
  • Detailed syllabus for non-accredited CPA qualifications.
  • Professional Body Qualification.
  • Evidence of English Language Proficiency.
  • Third-party authorisation like migration agents acting on clients’ behalf.

Non-Accredited CPA Courses

CPA skill assessments submitted for non-accredited CPA courses must provide curriculum details as below:

  • Exact years of studies.
  • Written in English.
  • Curriculum details should relate to the exact subjects on the transcript. The details should include subject descriptions and should accurately reflect the content covered in each relevant subject related to accounting, finance, and business subjects.


CPA Employment Assessment for Skilled Migration

To claim work experience for additional points for skilled migration visas for the occupations mentioned above can be claimed if the experience is closely related to the occupation.

CPA will assess work experience only if:

  • The experience is closely related to the ANZSCO occupation.
  • The experience is within the last 10 years from the date of the skill assessment application.
  • The experience must have been achieved after completing at least an Australian equivalent bachelor’s degree.
  • Experience should be continuous and paid for at least 20 hours a week.
  • The experience should be at least 1 year and at least 3 months in a role will be required.

CPA Skilled Employment Assessment Checklist

To get work experience assessed at CPA, the following documents are required:

  • An employer-signed testimonial.
  • Payslips
  • Self-written Summary

Employer Testimonial – CPA

An employer-signed testimonial must include the following:

The testimonial must include:

  • The official letterhead of your employer must include the full address, telephone, email, and website address of the business.
  • The person’s name and position authorized to sign your employment reference or testimonial, including their signature. References from colleagues at the same level or below are not acceptable.
  • The direct work email and phone number of the individual writing the reference. Personal contact is not acceptable.
  • Complete the start and end dates of your employment history. Multiple roles within the same organization must be listed separately, with specific start and end dates. Please specify all dates in the following format: DD/MM/YYYY.
  • The duties and responsibilities for each role. These must be written in your employer’s own words and be relevant to daily and monthly tasks/responsibilities. Generic job descriptions or tasks copied from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) occupation definitions won’t be accepted.
  • The employment terms, ie permanent or temporary
  • Your work hours each week
  • Your salary.

Self-Written Summary

CPA uses a self-written summary from the applicant to know the employment claims they want them to assess.

The self-summary must include details of current and past employers’ business names, roles, positions, titles, etc, and specific start and end dates for each position. It should also include the number of working hours a week and salary etc.


To claim work experience for additional points for skilled migration visas from CPA, self-employed applicants must provide a testimonial on their official letterhead and should include:

  • Full Address
  • Telephone Number
  • Email Address
  • Website
  • Specific start and end dates
  • Hours per week
  • Duties and responsibilities
  • Salary

The following documents need to be provided by the self-employed applicant:

  • Copy of official business name registration.
  • Practicing Certificate copy.
  • Tax Returns copy of first, missile, and last year of business operation.
  • References from 2 or more clients on their official letterhead stating the work your business conducted and the start and end date of engagement.

It is very important to know that CPA may request any further documents.

CPA Skill Assessment Fees from 18th July 2023 IN AUD

Below table demonstrates the CPA Skill assessment fees:

Skills assessment $545 $495 $495 $535
Update Application $175 $160 $160 $173
Apply for an assessment under a new ANZSCO code $250 $227 $227 $245
Appeal an assessment outcome $175 $160 $160 $173
Withdraw application $80 $73 $73 $79

What is the processing time for CPA skilled migration assessment?

As per the CPA Australia website, the processing time of migration skill assessments is 60 days if all necessary documents have been submitted.

Accounting Professional Year Program

The Accounting Professional Year Program is a work readiness program approved by the Department of Home Affairs which helps overseas students with an Australian Accounting degree of at least 2 years gain valuable professional experience in an approved Australian workplace.

The Accounting PYP is of 44 weeks and is divided into two parts. 32 weeks of classroom study and a 12-week internship placement with an approved host employer.

CPA-approved Accounting Professional Year Program (PYP) providers:

  • Australian Technical & Management College (ATMC) (Accounting PYP in Melbourne & Sydney).
  • Indus Institute (Accounting PYP in Brisbane, Canberra, Hobart, and Toowoomba).
  • Monash College delivers Accounting PYP in Melbourne.
  • Navitas Professional (Accounting PYP in Adelaide, Brisbane, Canberra, Darwin, Hobart, Melbourne, Perth, and Sydney).
  • Performance Education (Accounting Professional Year Program in Adelaide, Brisbane, Melbourne, and Sydney).
  • Stanley College delivers the Accounting PYP in Perth.

Do I get extra points for completing Accounting Professional Year Program for the visa?

Students who complete Accounting Professional Year get 5 extra points while applying for a skilled migration visa for Australia.