Skip to main content

Beginning of Main Content


CPA Professional Education Program (CPA PEP) | Common Final Examination (CFE)

All the information you need about the CPA PEP and the CFE

The CPA Professional Education Program (CPA PEP) and the Common Final Examination (CFE) Schedule

Refer here for critical deadlines

CPA PEP | CFE Schedule

New: Extended Core 1 Module Pilot – May to September 2018

To better support students’ success in CPA PEP, the CPA profession will be testing an Extended Core 1 module. This pilot* module will be offered as an alternative option to the regular Core 1 module, and students enrolled in one offering will not be able to switch to the other once registered. The Extended Core 1 module is designed to accommodate students who are not able to dedicate the time and effort required in the regular module. The pilot module will comprise the same content and structure but extend approximately twice the duration in order to provide students with additional time to manage the requirements of the module in addition to their personal commitments.

*This is a pilot and may not be offered again in future sessions. The pilot only applies to Core 1 at this time.

The CPA Professional Education Program (CPA PEP) and the Common Final Examination (CFE)

The CPA Professional Education Program (CPA PEP) is the graduate level program that makes up the educational portion of the CPA certification program. The CPA PEP consists of a series of modules culminating in the Common Final Examination (CFE) and is built upon the CPA competency map

CPA PEP Modules

Click here for CPA PEP overview video [Length: 9 minutes]

Core Modules

Core 1 and Core 2 focus on financial accounting and reporting, and management accounting, planning and control.

Elective Modules

Students choose two elective modules. Students wishing to pursue a Public Accounting Licence must select Assurance and Taxation.

Capstone Modules

Capstone Integrative Module (Capstone 1) deepens strategic leadership competencies by using the knowledge acquired in prerequisite and earlier modules in a professional team setting. Students complete a large business case that relates to Day 1 of the CFE.

Capstone Examination Preparation Module (Capstone 2) focuses on preparing students for entry into the profession by applying competencies acquired throughout the CPA program in complex and highly integrative cases. Students develop their enabling competencies in situations that simulate real-life projects and assignments that newly certified CPAs may encounter in their careers.

Enrolling in CPA Professional Education Program (CPA PEP) Modules and Exams

  1. Log in to the CPA Professional Education Program (CPA PEP) portal with your CPA Ontario ID and password.
  2. Students enrolling for the first time will be prompted to complete "D2L CPA PEP enrolment" to gain access to Introduction to CPA PEP. A zero dollar amount will show for this item. Select “continue to checkout” to complete the enrolment. If you have already completed Introduction to CPA PEP, proceed to Step 3.
  3. Pay the applicable fees. Payment options include Visa, MasterCard and electronic funds transfer (EFT). For a list of fees, refer to the Member's Handbook.
  4. An email confirming your enrolment will be sent to you.

Click here to watch the CPA PEP How to Enrol Video [Length: 8 minutes]

Conditional Enrolment

Students should conditionally enrol in a module while waiting for the results of the previous module. However, if the results from the previous module determine that the student is ineligible for the module they have conditionally enrolled in, the student will be removed from that module and any results will be discarded and a refund will be issued.


Students who miss the enrolment window have the option of being placed on a waitlist for a fee. For more information, please see the CPA PEP FAQs.

CPA Professional Education Program (CPA PEP) Course Material, Results and Other Information

Course Material

At least one week prior to the module start date, you will receive an email from Brightspace (D2L), the online learning platform, with your login and password. All the module material will be delivered through Brightspace (D2L), where you also have access to schedules, webinars, discussion boards and other learning tools. Material will be posted three days prior to a module's start date. Should you experience any difficulty with Brightspace (D2L), please contact


Each module includes one weekend classroom workshop (Saturday and Sunday). Core 1 contains an additional weekend orientation workshop. Attendance at the workshops in their entirety is mandatory. Learn more about PEP Workshops.


Examinations are used to measure whether students have acquired the knowledge and developed the skills and competencies expected within the modules and courses. Learn more about CPA PEP Examinations.

Examination Software

CPA Ontario uses Securexam, a special "lockdown" software, for examinations. Students must install, verify and update Securexam as required. Learn more.


CPA PEP examination results are posted on Brightspace (D2L) approximately two weeks after each exam. Students are permitted three attempts per examination; a student who is unsuccessful on their third attempt will be deregistered, as per the Member’s Handbook, Regulation 6-1.

Appeals – CPA PEP Module Examination Results

Students who were unsuccessful in CPA PEP module examinations may request an appeal. Students will be notified if their appeal was successful or unsuccessful — no additional information will be provided.

The fee for each appeal is $195 plus HST. Appeal fees will be refunded if the appeal is successful.

The deadline to submit an appeal is 5 p.m. on July 24, 2018.

To request an appeal, select the appropriate module below:

Withdrawals and Deferrals

Students may withdraw from, or defer, a CPA PEP exam by submitting their request online. Exams may be deferred only once. A fee may be required — refer to the Member’s Handbook, Regulation 4-2. For more information, please refer to the CPA PEP Withdrawals and Deferrals.


For a list of all fees, please refer to the Member’s Handbook, Regulation 4-2.


Refer to the CPA PEP FAQs and the CPA PEP Examination FAQs.

Common Final Examination (CFE)

The CFE is the three-day final exam that caps the education portion of the CPA certification program. Students may attempt the CFE three times.

Enrolment for the 2018 Common Final Examination (CFE) is open for eligible students. Learn more.


The CFE evaluates students on the competencies defined by the Competency Map, which outlines the knowledge, skills and proficiency levels you must have as a Canadian CPA.

Students must demonstrate depth in either Financial Reporting or Management Accounting as well as depth in one of the other technical competency areas (elective depth role). Students also have to demonstrate breadth in all six technical competencies.

Students wishing to pursue a Public Accounting Licence must have passed Assurance and Taxation. Learn more on how to become a Licensed Public Accountant.

How to Enrol

  1. Go to the CFE Enrolment page for examination details.
  2. Log in to the CFE portal.
  3. Follow the prompts to select your elective depth role, location, etc.
  4. Pay the applicable fees.

Click here to watch the CPA PEP How to Enrol Video [Length: 8 minutes]


In 2018 and 2019, the CFE will be offered once in each respective year. The planned dates of the CFE are:

  • 2018: September 12, 13 and 14
  • 2019: September 11, 12 and 13

The decision as to whether to offer one or two CFEs in 2020 and beyond is currently under evaluation.


2018 CFE results will be available on Friday, November 30, 2018 at 10 a.m. Refer to the CPA PEP schedule for the results date.

All successful writers who gave their consent when they enrolled for the CFE will have their names posted on the CPA Ontario website.

CFE papers are the property of CPA Ontario. Under no circumstances will examination papers be returned or made available to a student after being submitted for marking.

Reviews and Reports

Unsuccessful writers may apply online for an appeal and/or a Performance Analysis Report (PAR). Learn more.

Public Announcement

CPA Ontario publishes an ad with the names of all successful writers in the Globe and Mail within a few days of convocation.


Convocation celebrates the achievement of the successful writers. Ceremonies are held in March and November, and invitations are issued six weeks in advance of the celebration.

Admission to Membership

Students who have completed the practical experience requirements in addition to the CFE may be eligible for admission to membership.