Tennessee CPA Exam & License Requirements

CPA Study Materials Updated: April 1, 2020 You’re our #1 priority.
100% of the time.

We believe everybody should be able to make online purchases with confidence. And while our website doesn’t feature every test prep company or review course in the universe, we’re proud that the advice we offer and the information we provide is accurate, truthful, objective - and entirely free.

So how do we actually make money? It’s simple, our partners compensate us. While this may influence which products we review and write about, and where they show up on the site, it absolutely does not influence our recommendations or guidance, which are formed by hundreds of hours of research and analysis. Check out our partners here.

What’s the bottom line? We’re on your team and are passionate about helping you achieve your career goals, even if it means we don’t make a dime.

Tennessee requires the 150 credit hours to sit for the CPA exam, however, CPA candidates may sit for the exam within 200 days of meeting this requirement. The work experience requirements are quite flexible and can be met by working for 1 year in a number of different industries such as finance, audit, management advisory, tax and consulting.

To be eligible to sit for the CPA exam students must first fulfill these qualifications and requirements:

  1. Minimum age: None
  2. U.S. Residency NOT Required
  3. State Residency NOT required

Education Requirements

  1. Bachelor degree or higher
  2. 150 credit hours, or within 200 days of completion of this requirement
  3. Accounting courses: 24 semester hours with at least 12 hours from upper-division level courses
  4. Business courses: 24 semester hours with at least 12 hours from upper-division level courses. Courses may include business law, algebra, calculus, statistics, probability, economics, finance, management, marketing, computer/information systems, ethics, business communications.

TN CPA License Requirements


  • 150 semester unites
  • Accounting: 30 semester hours with at least 24 from upper-division level

Work Experience

  • At least 2,000 hours of experience earned in no less than 1 year or more than 3 years
  • Qualifying experience includes providing services or advice using accounting, attest, management advisory, financial advisory, tax or consulting skills
  • Employment in industry, government, academia or public practice is acceptable
  • Must have been accrued within the 10 years immediately preceding the application for licensure
  • Licensees who sign reports on financial statements on behalf of a firm must have provided 2 years of experience in the last ten years in compilations, reviews, and audits.

Ethics Exam

  • Passing of the AICPA ethics exam
  • Course costs $149 or $119 for AICPA members
  • Must have completed within 2 years of certification application

Tennessee CPA Exam Fees

The cost to take all four sections of the CPA exam in Tennessee is $743 plus the initial $155 application fee.  The re-examination registration fee varies from $75 – $120 depending on the number of sections you are signing up for.

**Important Note: You should not apply and pay for exam sections that will not be taken within six months because your Notice to Schedule (NTS) in Tennessee expires 6 months after issuance.

Additional CPA Requirements

  1. Pass all 4 sections of the CPA exam with a score of 75% or higher
  2. Complete verified accounting work experience
  3. Pass AICPA Ethics Exam
  4. Fill out and submit all required CPA license application paperwork
  5. Pay the CPA license application fee

TN Exam Information and Resources

Tennessee CPA Exam CandidatesTennessee CPA License Requirements


For more details, please contact:

Tennessee State Board of Accountancy

500 James Robertson Parkway, 2nd Floor
Nashville, TN 37243-1141
Email:[email protected], [email protected]
Phone: 615-741-2550
Fax: 615-532-8800

What’s Next?

Now that you have started the CPA exam application process, your next step is to find a CPA review course that fits your budget, learning style and schedule. It can take several weeks for your application to be processed so don’t waste that valuable time waiting to hear back from your state board. If you start studying now you will get a nice jump start on the material and will be better prepared to pass your first CPA exam!
Surgent CPA Review
  • Pass 80% Faster. Exam ready in 58 hours!
  • Adaptive Learning Technology
  • Top New Product by Accounting Today
Wiley CPAexcel Review
  • Bite-sized Lectures
  • Huge Test Bank with 16,000 MCQ’s
  • Unlimited Course Access
Becker CPA Review
  • Endorsed by the Big 4
  • Adapt 2U A.I. Technology
  • Gameified Learning Options
  • janet
    Posted at 14 July, 2015 21:11 PM Reply

    Bryce,I registered and passed the cpa exams in Iowa but I'm moving to Tennessee. Is it still possible for me to apply for a Tn Cpa license if I get the work experience in Tn?Janet

    • BWelk
      Posted at 29 July, 2015 01:44 AM Reply

      Yes this is possible, check out to learn more about the details.Cheers,Bryce

    • Ethan
      Posted at 3 November, 2014 16:15 PM Reply

      Bryce,I am currently working on my MBA and will graduate in May of 2015. Would you suggest that I start taking the exams while in school or waiting until I graduate?Thanks,Ethan

      • BWelk
        Posted at 9 November, 2014 21:25 PM Reply

        Good question Ethan,I would highly suggest finishing your MBA before taking on the CPA exam. It may be tempting to study for both at the same time but I've seen many people shoot them selves in the foot by doing this because it is much more demanding than people assume it will be.Cheers,Bryce

        • Cap'n Jack, CPA
          Posted at 1 April, 2015 15:07 PM Reply

          Bryce,Coming from a CPA having passed five years ago, studying in school would have been much easier than trying to maintain a work/study/life balance. The accounting field is very demanding on your mind and time (especially if you intend to work in a public accounting environment). I passed all four parts my staff year in a public accounting firm, and it was the absolute worst year of my life... If I had it to do over, I would have taken it while doing my MBA.I know it is now too late for you, but I hope someone else contemplating this, will reconsider. :)Thanks, and good luck Ethan!P.S. There is no better feeling than seeing that final passing score come across the screen!-Cap'n Jack, CPA

        Leave a Reply

        Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

        For security, use of Google's reCAPTCHA service is required which is subject to the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.

        I agree to these terms.