Entering CPAWSB as a Mature Student

Jan 24, 2018

Entry into the CPA Professional Education Program (CPA PEP) typically requires a post- secondary degree and academic prerequisites. However, the School accepts applications for entry into from people who do not have post- secondary degrees, providing they meet additional criteria. Below we share some clarifications regarding mature student entry, application technicalities and additional information.

Do you qualify as a mature student?

A mature student is someone who does not possess a degree but would like to enter CPA PEP. Applicants who are accepted under the mature student criteria have the university degree and/or 120 -credit hours or equivalent of education waived for CPA PEP entry; however, they are still required to complete all CPA prerequisite requirements to be eligible to enroll in CPA PEP.

To determine if you might qualify for entry as a mature student, you will need to review the CPA Practical Experience Requirements (CPA PER) standards as applicants must have at least eight years of relevant full-time experience in any of the CPA technical competency areas (listed below) with any two competency sub-areas developed to at least a Level 1 proficiency:

  • Financial Reporting
  • Audit and Assurance
  • Strategy and Governance
  • Management Accounting
  • Finance
  • Taxation

What do mature students need for their transcript assessment?

Because mature student applicants do not have post- secondary degrees, their work and education history are assessed to determine eligibility to enter CPA PEP. That means applicants need to submit the following for review:

  • Comprehensive resume presenting all current and past work experience, community service and volunteer activities
  • Official transcripts from any university or college courses taken
  • One letter of reference from each of a:
    • Colleague who is a CPA or a member of an international accounting body that has a reciprocity agreement with CPA Canada
    • Personal character reference (not a family member or relative)
  • Experience Verification (EV) Form: outlining accounting practical experience. Much of the form is completed by an employer, usually someone with a CPA designation, or who is familiar with CPA competencies

How long does a mature student application review take?

Mature student applications are reviewed by a CPA Western School of Business committee. Please note that mature student assessments may take up to four-to-six weeks to be completed after CPAWSB receives the documentation.


Sometimes the documentation provided by an applicant is not detailed enough or the information requires further clarification. We recommend applicants ensure the information provided clearly indicates how their work experience satisfies the required eight years of relevant experience and sub-competency proficiency levels and provide specific examples within the comprehensive resume and other supporting documentation.

For inquiries regarding the Mature Student application process and documentation requirements, please visit our website.