Certified Internal Auditor® (CIA®) Eligibility Requirements
Candidates in the CIA program agree to accept the conditions of the program, including eligibility requirements, exam confidentiality, Code of Ethics, and Continuing Professional Education (CPE), along with other conditions enacted by The IIA's Professional Certification Board (PCB).
CIA candidates must meet the following eligibility requirements for education, character, work experience, and identification. Before a candidate application can be approved, ALL documentation (proof of education, character reference, and identification) must be received and approved by The IIA’s Certification staff.
CIA candidates must hold a 3- or 4-year post-secondary degree (or higher). For further details, please refer to the Certification Candidate Handbook.
- Copy of your degree or official transcripts (If your name has changed since you earned your degree, you must also include your legal name change document.)
- Letter from university confirming degree
- Letter from evaluation services confirming degree level
Important change to the Education Requirement for the CIA: The Global Board of Directors has approved an alternate path to eligibility for the CIA for those candidates who do not possess a Bachelor’s degree from an accredited university.
Candidates may now become eligible for the CIA, subject to approval, who possess:
- Two years post-secondary education and five years verified experience in internal audit or its equivalent, OR
- Seven years verified experience in internal audit or its equivalent.
Download the Certification Education Requirement Exceptions FAQ and Application
Once you have completed the form, please access the Certification Document Upload Portal and upload your form(s) there. (Submit the document type as Educational)
CIA candidates with a 4 year post secondary degree must obtain a minimum of 24 months of internal auditing experience or its equivalent. A Masters degree can substitute for 12 of the required 24 months. Please refer to the Certification Candidate Handbook for more details. A completed Experience Verification Form is required. Candidates may apply to the program and sit for the exam prior to satisfying the professional experience requirement, but will not be certified until all program requirements have been met.
Experience Verification Form
Once you have completed the form, please access the Certification Document Upload Portal and upload your form(s) there. (Submit the document type as Professional Experience.)
Candidates must exhibit high moral and professional character and must submit a Character Reference Form signed by a CIA, CGAP, CCSA, CFSA, CRMA, or the candidate's supervisor.
Character Reference Form
Once you have completed the form, please access the Certification Document Upload Portal and upload your form(s) there. (Submit the document type as Character Reference.)
Proof of Identification
Candidates must provide proof of identification in the form of a copy of the candidate’s official passport or national identity card. These must indicate current status; expired documents will not be accepted. All documents must be scanned and uploaded through the Document Upload Portal in a manner that ensures the photo is clearly legible.
Once you have completed the form, please access the Certification Document Upload Portal and upload your form(s) there. (Submit the document type as Other.)
Supporting Requirement Exemptions
The Professional Certification Board (PCB) has approved work experience and education exemptions for Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) qualified members and an education exemption for U.S. Certified Public Accountant (CPA) active license holders pursuing the CIA certification. The supporting requirement exemptions were granted by the PCB because the experience and education requirements for ACCA members and education requirement for U.S. CPAs meet and/or exceed these requirements for the CIA program.
|Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) Qualified Members
||Education and Work Experience|
|U.S. Certified Public Accountant (CPA) Active License Holders
By completing the appropriate fields indicated on the CIA application, candidates can be considered for these exemptions. CIA applications submitted by ACCA qualified members and U.S. CPA active license holders will be placed into a pending status while certification administrators verify memberships and licenses are active.
ACCA members, please click here to view more information regarding the work experience and education exemptions for the CIA program.
Effective November 2010, the certification program’s eligibility requires candidates to complete the program certification process within four years of application approval. If a candidate has not completed the certification process within four years, all fees and exam parts will be forfeited.
The CIA exam is a non-disclosed examination. Candidates in the program agree to keep the contents of the exam confidential and therefore may not discuss the specific exam content with anyone except The IIA's Certification Department. Unauthorized disclosure of exam material will be considered a breach of the Code of Ethics and could result in disqualification of the candidate or other appropriate censure.
Code of Ethics
CIA candidates agree to abide by the Code of Ethics established by The IIA.
Continuing Professional Education (CPE)
Upon certification, CIAs are required to maintain their knowledge and skills and stay abreast of improvements and current developments by satisfying CPE requirements.
In most cases, you do not have to be a member of The IIA to take the CIA exam or become a CIA, but we encourage you to consider its advantages. There are some countries, however, that do require candidates to be IIA members to take the CIA exam. Candidates in any of the countries listed on the map located at the top right of this page should contact their local institute to verify this requirement.
IIA members receive discounts on CIA review materials and courses and have access to the latest exam preparation resources, networking opportunities, and current CIA news and information.