American Payroll Association The Nation's Leader in Payroll Education
APA certification is a valuable, objective credential that verifies a specified level of payroll knowledge, skill, and ability. Certification helps individuals:
The APA offers two levels of payroll certification.
Taking the certification examinations is voluntary and certification is conferred by the APA Certification Board solely for the purposes stated in the FPC candidate handbook and the CPP candidate handbook.
No single source of information should be considered the sole basis of study for the FPC or CPP examination. A bibliography of suggested materials can be found in the exam candidate handbooks. APA membership is not required to take the FPC or CPP examination.
The FPC is a credential for payroll beginners and service/support professionals with payroll knowledge. There are no payroll experience requirements to take this exam, but individuals must complete an application.
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The CPP is an advanced credential for those with payroll knowledge and experience. Prerequisites are required to take the CPP examination and individuals must complete an application.
Attendees of Payroll 101: Foundations of Payroll Certificate Program and Payroll 201: The Payroll Administration Certificate Program at APA's Learning Centers in Las Vegas and San Antonio have the opportunity to take their respective exam at the end of each course regardless of the exam window.
If you wish to take the exam at the conclusion of APA's Payroll 101 or Payroll 201 course, you must register through the APA's website. The examination fee can also be paid online along with course registration.
If you are unable to pay for the examination online, please contact Membership Services for the registration form. If you have any questions about registration or paying for the exam, please email the Certification Department or call (210) 226-4600.
Register for Payroll 101 and the FPC Exam >
Register for Payroll 201 and the CPP Exam >
The APA administers the FPC and CPP exams at more than 180 locations internationally. For complete registration instructions, fees, and how to find international testing locations, candidates can download the FPC or CPP Candidate Handbook. Examinations are delivered only in English and are based on U.S. federal rules and regulations.
Register for the FPC exam >
Register for the CPP exam >
APA administers the FPC and CPP examinations at all DANTES locations in the United States through Pearson VUE. 100% of the cost of the Fundamental Payroll Certification (FPC) and Certified Payroll Professional (CPP) certification exams are approved for reimbursement to eligible military and certain family members through the G.I. Bill of the Department of Veterans Affairs.
Registration: January 17 - April 21
Exam Window: March 25 - April 22, 2017
Registration: July 11 - October 13
Exam Window: September 17 - October 15, 2016
For all exams administered September 17, 2016 through September 15, 2017, questions should be answered based on federal laws and regulations in effect as of January 1, 2016.
For all exams administered September 16, 2017, through September 15, 2018, questions should be answered based on federal laws and regulations in effect as of January 1, 2017.
Mid-year changes are not reflected on the exam.
Free Webinar: Prepare Yourself for the CPP and FPC Exams
Get the latest information and tips for preparing yourself to take these exams.
Approved Provider Program
Become an approved provider to ensure your educational offerings award Recertification Credit Hours (RCHs).
Obtain an official transcript of the national APA programs you've attended.
Notification / Verification of Designation
For successful candidates that would like the APA to notify their boss of their accomplishment OR for potential and current employers that would like to obtain verification, please complete the request form. Submit all requests to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please allow 2 to 3 weeks for processing.
Phone: (210) 226-4600