Iowa CPA Requirements

How to become a CPA in the state of Iowa…

How to become a CPA in Iowa?

Although the CPA Exam is uniform, each state’s eligibility requirements vary. To sit for the CPA Exam in Iowa, you must meet certain educational and legal criteria. This page contains all the information you need about Iowa’s CPA examination and licensing policies.

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Overview of Iowa Requirements


Semester Units


in Application fees


Hours of Experience


Residency or 

Citizenship Requirements


International Exam Program


Ethics Exam

Iowa CPA requirement details:

Credit Requirements: Iowa CPA Exam applicants must meet one of the following criteria:

  1. Earn a Business Baccalaureate degree with at least 24 credit hours in accounting covering financial accounting, auditing, management accounting, and taxation subjects. 
  2. Earn a Baccalaureate degree with a concentration in Accounting (no specific credit hour requirement). 
  3. Obtain 150 credit hours at a four-year educational intuition, including 24 hours in accounting courses above the elementary level and 24 hours in business-related courses. 

Minimum degree: Baccalaureate in Accounting or Business. 

Additional Requirements: None.

Educational Requirement: At least 150 credit hours are required to obtain Iowa’s CPA license, including at least 24 hours in accounting subject study and 24 hours in business-related fields. 

Experience Requirements: To obtain an Iowa CPA license, one must obtain at least 2,000 hours or the equivalent of experience providing compilation, management advisory, attest, or consulting services in government, academia, industry, or public practice verified by a licensed CPA. 

Ethics Exam: Yes – Iowa CPA license applicants must pass the professional ethics exam by AICPA with at least a 90% success score. 

Social Security Requirements: Yes

Participates in International Exam Program: Yes

Minimum Age: 18 years.

Citizenship: One does not have to be an Iowa permanent resident or U.S. citizen to obtain the CPA license. 

More Requirements: None.

Iowa Board of Accountancy

200 East Grand Avenue, Suite 350

Des Moines, Iowa 50309

(515) 725-9022 x.2

[email protected]

Iowa CPA licensees must renew their permit to practice every three years on June 30.

To renew their license, Iowa CPAs must complete 120 CPE hours in three years, including four hours of accounting ethics study.

To learn more about Iowa’s CPA policy, visit the Iowa Society of Certified Public Accountants or the Iowa Board of Accountancy page. 

A comprehensive guide on Iowa’s CPA examination and licensing requirements can be found in IACPA’s brochure

Note: Read Chapter 542, Public Accountants of Iowa Statutes for a better understanding of the state’s CPA licensing policies.

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