Currency of Education and Challenge Exams

Feb 4, 2022
Photo credit: alphaspirit/
When you are preparing to apply to enter CPA PEP and request a transcript assessment from CPAWSB, you might have questions about whether your previously completed courses have met all the requirements to CPA PEP. In this week’s blog post, we focus on the currency of education policy and what that means for courses that were completed 10 years ago.

The National Harmonized Education Policy states: 

For admission to the CPA PEP, candidates should have completed at least one applicable course in each of the CPA competency areas of Financial Reporting, Strategy and Governance, Management Accounting, Audit and Assurance, Finance and Taxation within the last 10 years of application for admission to the CPA PEP.

Essentially, because standards change, if you applied today to CPA PEP, you must have completed at least one of the courses in each CPA competency area within the last ten years to meet the prerequisite education requirements.

The following are frequently asked questions from learners related to the currency of education policy:

1. How are expiry dates for core courses determined? If two courses are required from a post-secondary institution to meet a core prerequisite and I completed one of them over 10 years ago, what does this mean?

At least one course for each prerequisite must be completed within the last 10 years. The expiry date for a core prerequisite is determined based on the latest completion date of these courses.

2. One of my core prerequisites has an expiry date of December 2022, what does this mean?

This prerequisite exemption will be valid until December 2022, or when your transcript assessment expires. When you apply to CPA PEP, we will review all core prerequisite completion dates to ensure your admission eligibility.

Therefore, for this prerequisite exemption to remain valid, you must complete all outstanding prerequisites and apply to CPA PEP before December 2022 or before your transcript assessment expires. If you are unable to enroll in CPA PEP, you will be required to re-take the course or write the challenge exam.

3. My courses for a core prerequisite are now past 10 years and are expired, what do I do?

We strongly recommend retaking the course at the same post-secondary institution or taking the equivalent CPA preparatory core course. 

Alternatively, you can complete the self-assessment tool. If the tool indicates a preliminary result of ‘partial exemption granted’ and you feel adequately prepared after completing the self-assessment, send an email to and request a challenge exam for the equivalent preparatory course. 

If you completed courses internationally or completed courses that are not listed on our transfer credit guides, you will need to complete the self-assessment and provide the course syllabi for review.

4. Can you provide further details about how the challenge exam works?

Please refer to our Challenge exam FAQ for further details. If you are granted a challenge exam and you are unsuccessful, you will need to retake the full course at a post-secondary institution or CPA preparatory core course.

For further assistance regarding the currency of knowledge policy or challenge exams please contact the Transcript Assessment team at 1.866.420.2350 ext. 6003 or by email at