The purpose of continuing professional education is to assist CPAs in maintaining their professional knowledge and competence. Courses selected should be relevant to the practice of the CPA attending them, and should contribute directly to their professional competency to practice public accounting.

There are four categories in which all acceptable subject matter for CPE credit is classified:

  1.  Accounting and Auditing
  2. Technical Business
  3. Behavioral
  4. Ethics

Florida CPAs must complete a total of 80 CPE hours to include at least eight (8) hours in accounting and auditing and at least 4 hours in Board approved ethics every two years.

The accounting and auditing category is narrowly limited to include only courses on accounting and financial reporting  subjects,  professional pronouncements  of authoritative  accounting  principles issued by the standard-setting bodies and any other related subject generally classified within the accounting discipline. Accounting and auditing subjects consist of:

  1.  Accounting-related subjects or courses including, but not limited to, financial accounting (including current authoritative literature in generally accepted accounting principles in the United States and the Pronouncements of the Accounting Principles Board and the Financial Accounting Standards Board), and accounting for specialized industries.
  2. Auditing-related subjects or courses, including, but not limited to, general auditing theory and practice (including current authoritative literature in generally accepted auditing standards in the United States and the Statements on Auditing Standards promulgated by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, auditing for specialized industries (including governmental auditing requirements) and audit applications to computers and information system

Some additional examples of accounting and/or auditing are:

  • Annual updates of accounting and/or auditing
  • Assurance Services that relate to Standards for Attest Engagements
  • Auditing Financial Statements, operations systems and programs
  • Compilation and Review
  • Financial Statement Disclosure
  • Fraud Detection
  • International Accounting
  • Professional Pronouncements (APB, FASB, GAAP, GAAS, GASB, SAS, SSARS)
  • Review of Internal and Management Controls

The  technical  business  category  is  broad,  including  courses  on  taxation,  general  business,  and management advisory services. Technical business subjects consist of:

  • Taxation
  • Management services and management advisory services.
  • General business including, but not limited to, economics, business law, production or operational systems, marketing, finance, quantitative applications in business and business policy, and computers and information systems without audit applications.

Some additional examples of technical business courses are:

  • Accounts payable/Accounts receivable
  • Budgeting and Asset Management
  • Business valuation
  • Computer programming or use of software package (For example – Access, Excel,
  • FRx, Oracle, Peachtree, PeopleSoft, PowerPoint, QuickBooks, Quicken, Word, etc.)
  • Financial planning
  • Fraud Prevention
  • General ledger
  • Law (Business related)
  • Management of an Accounting Practice
  • Pension plan administration
  • Personal Financial Planning
  • Planning and Control Systems
  • Real estate principles
  • Specialized Industries (Banking, Healthcare, Insurance, etc.)
  • Tax shelters and investments

The Behavioral category includes courses on oral and written communications, the social environment of business, and administration of an accounting practice. No more than 20 hours maximum may be reported in behavioral subjects for each reestablishment period. Examples of behavioral subjects are:

  • Effective speaking
  • Employee supervision
  • Human Resources
  • Leadership and motivation
  • Management by objectives
  • Speed reading
  • Time management

Effective with the June 30, 2006 reestablishment period all licensees must take at least four (4) hours of ethics. The provider and ethics course must be approved by the Florida Board of Accountancy to meet this requirement. Click here for a list of approved providers and courses.

The ethics course shall consist of:

  • A review of Chapters 455 and 473, F., and the related administrative rules.
  • The ethics course may include other subjects including but not limited to: ethical conduct, core values and competencies, professional responsibility, responsibility to clients and the public, case studies that require the application of ethics principles, national professional standards and interpretations, and appropriate national issues related to the practice of accounting.

 Certain types of activities DO NOT qualify for CPE credit because they are not directly related to the practice of public accounting or because they are not structured as formal courses. The following DO NOT qualify for CPE credit:

  •  Authorship of books or articles
  • Basic mathematics courses
  • Business meetings and social functions
  • Coffee breaks, meals and registration at seminars
  • Committee service
  • Foreign language courses
  • Instructing or attending elementary accounting or courses equivalent to elementary accounting (whole first year of accounting)
  • Keyboarding

For more detail regarding continuing professional education, click to view Rule 61H1-33.003, F.A.C.

Need Help?

All requests for publications, documents, forms, applications for licenses, permits and other similar certifications can be obtained by contacting the Customer Contact Center.

Roger Scarborough, Director
Division of Certified Public Accounting
240 NW 76th Drive, Suite A
Gainesville, FL 32607

Telephone: 850.487.1395
Facsimile: 352.333.2508