I Pass the CIA Exam!

CIA Exam Fees Complete Breakdown (plus 2 Hidden Costs)


cia exam fees

Taking the CIA Exam and getting the certification can be a big investment. Check out the CIA exam fees expected for this big project.

CIA Exam Fees Summary

Here is a list of various CIA exam fees (in US dollars) for quick reference. You can find further explanation below.

 Membership type  IIA
 1. Membership fee  $250  —  $40
 2. Application  $115  $230  $65
 3. Exam registration
    Part 1  $280  $395  $230
    Part 2  $230  $345  $180
    Part 3  $230  $345  $180
 Total  $1,105  $1,315  $695

Source: IIA (latest fee effective April 2017)

1. IIA Membership Fee (Optional)

You don’t need to become an IIA member to take the CIA exam, but most do. There are two reasons:

  • Most of them working in internal audit and there are benefits of becoming an IIA member both as a professional and a candidate.
  • The discount on exam fees is big enough as an incentive to join the membership, at least during the year when you register for the exam.

The IIA membership fee varies by location. Assuming you are living in the US:

  • Professional member: $250
  • Government member: $150
  • Educator member: $135
  • Student member (must be full-time student): $40
  • Retired member: $85
  • Life member: $2,100

2. Exam Application and Registration

The application and registration fee is a cost that you must pay in your CIA journey. There are discounts given to IIA member and to those studying or teaching in the University.

(a) IIA Member

  • Annual membership fee: $250 (for professional membership)
  • Application fee: $115
  • Exam registration fee:
    • Part 1: $280
    • Part 2: $230
    • Part 3: $230
  • Total: $250 + $115 + $740 = $1,105

(b) Non IIA Member

  • Application fee: $230
  • Exam registration fee:
    • Part 1: $395
    • Part 2: $345
    • Part 3: $345
  • Total: $1,315

(c) Student Discounts

  • Membership fee: $40
  • Application fee: $65
  • Exam registration fee:
    • Part 1: $230
    • Part 2: $180
    • Part 3: $180
  • Total: $695

Student Discount Criteria

Candidates must be a full-time student in order to enjoy the discount. Full-time student is defined as someone enrolled in at least 12 credit hours for bachelor program, and at least 9 credit hours for master’s degree program.

CIA Exam Costs that are Less Obvious

3. CIA Review Material

The CIA exam review materials could be a considerable cost, ranging from $400 to $900. I am going to write a page on CIA review course comparison with pricing details.

4. Travel and Accommodation

Since there are hundreds of testing centers around the world, the travel and accommodation cost should not be a major expense. However, if you need to travel to a neighboring city or country, the cost should be included in your budget.

Overall CIA Exam Fees for a Typical Candidate

For a IIA member under the professional category, the total cost is $1,100 (exam + membership fees) + $900 (for the most popular review course: Gleim) = Around $2,000.

If you are a student, the cost is around $1,600.

My Thoughts

The cost is comparable to what you can expect for CMA (around $2,500), and a lot more affordable when compared to CPA (around $3,000) and CFA (around $4,500)

The decision whether to go for the CIA or for other accounting certification is how you see their values for the rest of the career.

If you are quite certain to develop your career in internal audit, the CIA certification will likely help in salary level, your standing within the organization and recognition in the field of internal auditing.

In other words, go ahead if CIA has a positive ROI for you!

Finally I have a better qualification. The South African National Diploma is lower than a Degree and thus accepted only locally and Namibia. But with this world-wide recognized certification I can go anywhere, and that is a great feeling.


(Annette is our blogger from Namibia, a country next to South Africa. She got an offer to work in Switzerland 4 months after getting her CIA certification.)

Are You Ready?

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For Your Reference

About the Author Stephanie

I am the author of How to Pass The CPA Exam (published by Wiley) and the publisher of this and several accounting professional exam prep sites.

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  • Jane says:

    Thank you Stephanie for the information

  • Shyamal says:

    I hv enrolled for CIA & wish to pass all the 3 papers before March 17, can you guide me how to go about. Pl be specific on the material, study hours, level of understanding, chronology of papers to be appeared, how to study, attempt tricky questions etc. Appreciate if you can provide quick reply, so that I can take the max adv of weekend. Thanks & Regds

  • dinky says:

    I have done CA (India) and i am in Massachusetts.I want to know the documents required for enrollment and overall cost for me.when can i join the course and locations for enrollment.Thanks.

  • Muhammad says:

    Hi Dear

    This is Muhammad Shoaib with you

    I want CIA certification!

    I am b.comer with 4 years field experience and i want to start from coming june

    please guide me accordingly

  • Bloneva Kemp says:

    Can I still use the ID # from 2003. I am interested in doing part I in November 2017. What is the cost of me doing the exams. I can be reach at [deleted] for further discussion if you are unable to send email.

    • Stephanie says:

      Hi Bloneva,
      I deleted your phone number to protect your privacy… figure no one would actually take the initiative to call you long distance anyway, to be honest 😉
      Since it was 14 years ago, I am not sure if the ID still works. You’ll at least need to pay the CIA program fee and each part’s exam fee.

  • Karan Meswani says:

    Hi Stephanie Madam,
    I am currently working in internal audit department,
    what will be my overall cost of doing CIA?
    What reference materials should be used to easily crack CIA exam?
    Please reply
    Thank you

  • Ali says:


    I am trying to register for CIA part 3 as a Non-IIA member, and it’s giving me a price of $345.00 instead of $300.00
    Could it be that they just increased the exam costs? I’m wondering since no one else said something similar.


  • Vik says:

    Hi Stephanie,

    I work with Internal Audit and involved with Risk Management, Control Framework assessment and regulatory requirements. Is CIA a good course for me. I am not an accountant.

    • Stephanie says:

      Hi Vik,
      Sure! The CIA certification is designed for internal auditors and compliance officers. There will be accounting concepts that you’ll need to learn, but I am quite sure it will be useful to your work. Cheers, Stephanie

  • Syed says:

    Hello Stephanie
    I am trying to register myself for CIA. I have done double masters in finance and economics. Am i eligible for CIA as a student fee structure. Secondly can i appear in all 3 part at the same time. Thirdly for getting CIA certification i only have to pass the papers or is there any other requirements too.

    • Stephanie says:

      Hi Syed,
      If you are a current full-time student, the student discount applies. But it doesn’t apply to graduates (otherwise 99% of us would have been qualified ;D)

      Sure you can take the 3 parts at the same time, although if in case you don’t pass one part, you’ll have to wait for 90 days to take that particular part. Normally, those who say fail Part 1 have the option to take Part 2 without this restriction. You won’t be able to take advantage of this if you take 3 together.

      You’ll have to fulfill the experience requirements as well. Please check out this page: https://ipasstheciaexam.com/cia-exam-requirements/

  • neha says:

    Hi, Im Neha, im into forensic investigation and AML is CIA any kind of useful for me

    • Stephanie says:

      Hi Neha, it sounds like they are relevant, although CIA is more on the accounting / audit side. From what I know there is a specialty certification for AML. Would that be more useful? Stephanie

  • Mky says:

    I’m a student ,master in internal audit in guinea (Africa) can I travel to New york for one week and do this cia exam ? I think it will be good for my forward CV

  • ibtesam riaz says:

    i am a student of mba finance in pakistan i am eligible for this certification or not?

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