Graduate Certificate in Professional Accounting (GCPA)

Graduate Certificate in Professional Accounting (GCPA) Admission Requirements and Application Procedures

About the Graduate Certificate in Professional Accounting (GCPA)

Graduate Certificate (Gr. Cert.) Professional Accounting (24 credits)

The McGill GCPA program at Desautels is an accredited Professional Education Program (PEP) of CPA Quebec. The program is designed to provide students with professional training on the latest CPA concepts and practice-related issues while preparing them to write the national Common Final Examination (CFE). Completion of a PEP and passing the CFE are two of the required components for obtaining the highly respected CPA designation. Combining McGill's international reputation and top professors, McGill's GCPA program ensures that graduates can make professional judgment using financial information in a global business environment.

The GCPA program is intended to allow students to develop professional skills that will be recognized nationally and internationally. The program focuses on the acquisition and integration of in-depth specialized knowledge in fields in which engagements are likely to be entrusted to CPAs. More specifically, the objective of the Graduate Certificate is to develop the technical and enabling skills outlined by CPA Canada and needed for the exercise of professional judgment necessary to solve practical problems related to the practice of professional accounting. Our lecturers are hard-working, dedicated, and motivated to ensure our students succeed in the program.

The GCPA program, coupled with a 24-month recognized training period, provides students with the academic and professional business training, communication and interpersonal skills needed to succeed in a CPA career.

Admission Requirements

Entry to the GCPA program requires a minimum cumulative grade point average (CGPA) of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale. Admission to the program is highly competitive and meeting the minimum requirements does not secure entry into the GCPA program.

Option 1:

Applicants who complete a Canadian Bachelor of Commerce program must complete the following courses, or their equivalents, with minimum grades of B-:

Applicants must also meet the requirements outlined by L'Ordre des comptables professionnels agréés du Québec (OCPAQ) for the university where they obtained their undergraduate degree. Applicants who obtained their undergraduate degree in a different province must also verify the requirements outlined by the CPA Order of that province.

Option 2:

Graduates of programs other than a Canadian Bachelor of Commerce, or graduates with foreign degrees must complete the Diploma (Dip.) Accounting (30 credits) at the School of Continuing Studies and complete additional courses as necessary to satisfy the following 14 prerequisite courses, with minimum grades of B-:

For more information, you may contact the School of Continuing Studies directly:

Application Procedures

Online applications for the GCPA program can be submitted through McGill's online application system. For details please consult Application steps.

See University Regulations & Resources > Graduate > Graduate Admissions and Application Procedures > Application Procedures and the GCPA program website for details about submitting your application.

A deferral of admission may be considered in exceptional cases upon evidence of extenuating circumstances for one year only. A request may be submitted by the student through McGill's Application Management System and evaluated by the GCPA Office.

Time Limits

The program must be completed within three years of admission.

Additional Requirements

The items and clarifications below are additional requirements set by this department:

  • Applicants who have been accepted to the GCPA program are required to make a CAD$300 deposit via McGill's Application Management System when confirming the offer of admission. This fee is non-refundable and will be applied towards the student’s tuition.

Application Dates and Deadlines

Application opening dates are set by Enrolment Services in consultation with Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies (GPS), while application deadlines are set by the Desautels Faculty of Management and may be revised at any time. Applicants must verify all deadlines and documentation requirements well in advance on the appropriate McGill departmental website; please consult the list at

Information on application deadlines is available at

Obtaining a CPA designation

To obtain the CPA designation in Quebec, a student must have:

  1. Completed a Professional Education Program (PEP)
  2. Passed the Common Final Examination (CFE)
  3. Completed a 24-month period of practical experience with an accredited training office (it is the student's responsibility to obtain such employment)
  4. Proof of knowledge of the French language or passed the OQLF French language examination

Once all these criteria have been met, the student will obtain the designation of Chartered Professional Accountant from the OCPAQ.

Further information can be obtained from:

  • Ordre des comptables professionnels agréés du Québec
  • 5, Place Ville Marie, bureau 800
  • Montréal QC H3B 2G2
  • Canada
  • Telephone: 514-288-3256 or 1-800-363-4688 (toll free)
  • Email: info [at]
  • Web:
Taken from Programs, Courses and University Regulations 2023-2024 (last updated Mar. 29, 2023).
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