Ohio CPA Experience Requirements [2022]

Ohio CPA Experience Requirements

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To meet the Ohio CPA experience requirements and become a CPA, an applicant will only be able to secure their license depending on either of the following:

  • Two years of accounting experience will be required for CPA licensure if the candidate first sat for the CPA Exam prior to completing 150-semester credits, or
  • Four years of accounting experience is required for CPA licensure for candidates approved under the GMAT.

Experiences will also have to meet the following criteria:

  • Be earned working in a public accounting firm, government, academia or business.
  • Be earned working in Ohio or any other state (experience earned outside of the U.S. must be approved by the board).
  • Be verified by a CPA or a comparably qualified accountant holding an independent auditor credential who is familiar with the candidate’s work and the exact length of the experience.

Summary of Ohio CPA Requirements

Credit Hours to sit for the CPA Exam120
Certificate of Good Moral CharacterYes
Social Security NumberYes
Ohio State ResidencyYes
Bachelor’s DegreeYes
GMAT Minimum Score670
Credit Hours in Accounting courses to sit for the CPA Exam24
Credit Hours in Business courses to sit for the CPA Exam24
Total Credit Hours to receive CPA License150
Work Experience required to receive a CPA License2 – 4 Years
Ethics Exam required to receive a CPA LicenseYes
BCI and FBI Criminal Records CheckYes

Education Requirements

To sit for the Uniform CPA examination, candidates should first meet the exam requirements in Ohio which is an education requirement. The ideal first step to getting the CPA title is to get a Bachelor of Science in Accounting.

It will not only prepare applicants with the necessary coursework required, but it could also help make applicants be well informed about what they will encounter in the CPA exam.

Ohio accepts candidates with 120-semester hour credit to sit for the exam. However, the accountancy board of Ohio does provide educational requirement options. Candidates can choose either of the two educational requirements to complete:

  1. A bachelor’s degree or higher from a regionally accredited college or university. Candidates must complete 150 semester hours in various course subjects that include:
    • 24 semester hours in business subjects
    • 24 semester hours in accounting including at least one course in each:
      • Financial Accounting
      • Management Accounting
      • Auditing with coverage of GAAS (internal auditing may not be used for auditing, but may be used as an elective)
      • Taxation
  2. Achieve a score of 620 or higher on the Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT) completing 24 semester hours in business subjects and 24 semester hours in accounting at the undergraduate level.

Note that 18 semester hours of graduate credit in accounting will qualify as meeting the requirement. The accounting hours must include at least one course in each of the following:

  • Financial Accounting
  • Management Accounting
  • Auditing with coverage of GAAS (internal auditing may not be used for auditing, but may be used as an elective)
  • Taxation

The Accountancy Board of Ohio recognizes credits earned at any school accredited and recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA), as well as schools of business and accounting that hold specialty accreditation from the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB).

Pass the Uniform CPA Examination

The “Uniform CPA Examination”, which is a 4-part exam, is developed by the AICPA – the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and administered by NASBA – the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy.

The Four CPA Exam Sections are:

Auditing and Attestation (AUD)

The Auditing and Attestation (AUD) section of the Uniform CPA Examination (the Exam) tests the essential knowledge and skills a newly licensed CPA must demonstrate when performing audit engagements, attestation engagements or accounting and review service engagements.

Newly licensed CPAs are required to:

  • demonstrate knowledge and skills related to professional responsibilities, including ethics, independence and professional skepticism. Professional skepticism reflects an iterative process that includes a questioning mind and a critical assessment of audit evidence.
  • understand the entity including its operations, information systems (including the use of third-party systems) and its underlying business processes, risks and related internal controls.
  • understand the flow of transactions and underlying data through a business process and its related information systems.

Business Environment and Concepts (BEC)

The Business Environment and Concepts (BEC) section of the Uniform CPA Examination (the Exam) tests knowledge and skills that a newly licensed CPA must demonstrate when performing:

  • Audit, attest, accounting and review services
  • Financial reporting
  • Tax preparation
  • Other professional services

The content areas tested under the BEC section of the Exam encompass five diverse subject areas. These content areas are enterprise risk management, internal controls and business processes, economics, financial management, information technology and operations management.

Financial Accounting and Reporting (FAR)

The Financial Accounting and Reporting (FAR) section of the Uniform CPA Examination (the Exam) assesses the knowledge and skills that a newly licensed CPA must demonstrate in the financial accounting and reporting frameworks used by business entities (public and nonpublic), not-for-profit entities and state and local government entities.

The financial accounting and reporting frameworks that are eligible for assessment within the FAR section of the Exam include the standards and regulations issued by the:

  • Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB)
  • U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (U.S. SEC)
  • American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA)
  • Governmental Accounting Standards Board (GASB)

Regulation (REG)

The Regulation (REG) section of the Uniform CPA Examination (the Exam) tests the knowledge and skills that a newly licensed CPA must demonstrate with respect to:

  • U.S. federal taxation
  • U.S. ethics and professional responsibilities related to tax practice
  • U.S. business law

Tips for Passing the CPA Exam

The CPA exam covers so many topics that you will need to study specifically for each section, usually for 6-8 weeks per section. Even a master’s degree in accounting doesn’t adequately prepare you to just walk in and pass the 4 CPA exams.

You will need a full review course such as Becker, Wiley CPA, Gleim, Roger, etc, and you will need to dedicate several hours a day over the course of months to even have a chance at getting passing scores.

How to Save Yourself MONTHS of Time and Frustration
Keep in mind that the CPA exam is the one part of getting your CPA license that you can control how long it takes. The education and experience requirements take as long as they take, but the CPA exams can take you as little as 6 months, or as long as multiple years… depending on how effective your study process is from the beginning.
Learn how to study strategically so you can save yourself tons of time and retake fees with this free training…

Ethics Exam

A board-approved course in professional standards and responsibilities (PSR), completed within the last year, emphasizes Ohio accountancy law and board rules.

This board-approved course details the Ohio state-specific accountancy board laws. Included are illustrative examples and useful commentary emphasizing the importance of these regulations and their effect on CPAs in Ohio.

In addition, the course reviews the most frequently asked questions regarding experience, CPE requirements, professional ethics, professional standards and responsibilities and more.  

A list of approved courses may be found here.

Candidates are requested and advised to keep all transcripts of aforementioned experiences and exam result documents as the board may contact individuals for further information or request. The candidate’s approver is also advised to keep their copy of the experience forms.

Uniform CPA Exam Fees

All examination candidates in Ohio must pay a first-time or initial application fee. All applications and fees are sent to NASBA’s CPA Examination Services.

Initial Application$180.00
Re-Examination Registration$100.00
Auditing and Attestation (AUD)$226.15
Business Environment and Concepts (BEC)$226.15
Financial Accounting and Reporting (FAR)$226.15
Regulation (REG)$226.15

Criminal Background Check

Ohio CPA candidates are required to get their criminal background checked. It is required to use WebCheck, Ohio’s electronic fingerprint system, to send the fingerprints to the Bureau of Criminal Investigation and Identification (BCI).

This background check will also include an FBI criminal records check. Candidates will need to find a BCI and FBI vendor that participates in National WebCheck and send the fees and fingerprints to the vendor (not to the Accountancy Board of Ohio). It is then the responsibility of the candidate to have the results of the background check sent to the board. Instructions for pursuing this background check are located here.

How to Save Yourself MONTHS of Time and Frustration
Keep in mind that the CPA exam is the one part of getting your CPA license that you can control how long it takes. The education and experience requirements take as long as they take, but the CPA exams can take you as little as 6 months, or as long as multiple years… depending on how effective your study process is from the beginning.
Learn how to study strategically so you can save yourself tons of time and retake fees with this free training…

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