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Professional Ethics Exam for CPAs

Candidates, CPAs licensed Out-of-State and Reissuance

Anyone applying for California CPA licensure for the first time (this includes candidates who have never been licensed anywhere as well as CPAs licensed out-of-state)—and cancelled California licensees applying for reissuance must pass the exam for Professional Ethics for CPAs (PETH). The CalCPA Education Foundation is the exam's only state-designated provider as well as the largest provider of continuing professional education for California CPAs.

The Ethics Exam 411

About the Materials
The material offers comprehensive coverage of the AICPA Code of Professional Conduct and California Accountancy Act and Accounting Rules and Regulations. The almost 300-page course features clear, detailed explanations of the rules that will assist you in answering tough-to-call ethical questions. Please allow approximately 16 hours to read the materials and complete the test. 

About the Exam

  • There are 50 multiple-choice questions.
  • You will have three attempts to pass the exam with a grade of 90% or better, or no more than 5 missed questions.
  • All self-study and PETH exam questions are random. Meaning, exam questions are issued in a random order each time the test is taken.
  • The exam must be completed within a one year from the date of purchase. Please make sure to allow enough time for all three attempts to pass, if needed, within the year.
  • Your test results are valid for two years as you complete all of your licensing requirements for the California Board of Accountancy. 


  • Online grading is included in the price of Professional Ethics for CPAs for both the online and text-based course. It can be accessed via this website by going to “My Account”, “My Online / Self-Study”.
  • You will receive instant results.
  • All passing scores are sent directly from the Education Foundation to the California Board of Accountancy on a weekly basis.

Once You Are a CPA

There is no better place than the CalCPA Education Foundation to fulfill your CPE licensing renewal requirements. We offer more than 800 courses, conferences and webcasts and a host of self-study and online courses.


How to Order

The Professional Ethics for CPAs self-study course and exam are available in both online and text format. CalCPA Candidate members receive an exclusive discount on their purchase of the exam.
  • Purchase online format
    $150.00 for non-members
    $125.00 for members
    (online course will be available under “my account,” dropdown “my self-study”)

  • Purchase text format
    $165.00 for non-members
    $130.00 for members
    (please allow 5-7 business days for delivery, rush shipping is available)
If you have questions about the Ethics Exam, please contact our Member Services team via this online form or (800) 922-5272.

If You Are a Licensed CPA

You will need 4 hours of ethics education each renewal cycle and 2 hours of Regulatory Review every six years to fulfill your PC&E requirement. The Foundation offers both live and self-study/online courses to fulfill your requirement. Search CPE Credit Type=Ethics or Regulatory Review accordingly.