CRMA Exam Requirements and Eligibility: Easy to Get Qualified?

The CRMA exam used to have quite a bit of overlap with the CIA exam. However, the CRMA certification requirements changed in mid-2021. Here is the summary for your information, including updates about the CRMA changes.

CRMA Exam Requirements at a Glance

1. Completion of the CIA exam

When the CRMA certificate first started in 2013, candidates had to pass the first section of the three-part CIA exam before they could sit for the CRMA. However, the IIA changed the requirements in mid-2021. And now, professionals can only pursue the IIA CRMA if they are active CIA holders.

Therefore, you need to start the CIA exam program, pass all parts of the exam, and be an active CIA holder before moving to the CRMA.

For the syllabus and tips on passing the CIA exam, please check out this link.

2. Education requirements

The minimum education entry barrier for IIA certifications is an associate’s degree.

However, now that the CRMA changes have been implemented, candidates will first need to pass the CIA exam, meaning that they need to meet the CIA education requirements. You need one of the following to sit for the CRMA after the CRMA 2021 updates:

* At least a bachelor’s degree or higher

* An active Internal Auditor Practitioner designation from the IIA (for info, read this article)

* Or at least five years of internal audit experience

3. Character reference

This should be relatively easy but must be done before submitting your CRMA exam application.

4. Identification requirement

The CRMA certificate also has an identification requirement. Candidates must have a valid form of ID, including an official passport or a national identity card.

CRMA Experience Requirements

Fulfilling the CRMA exam requirements will allow you to take the exam. However, you won’t be able to get the certificate and hold yourself out as a CRMA unless you fulfill the experience requirements as well.

The original CRMA benchmarks required two years of experience in a relevant field. Examples include:

  • Auditing
  • Controls-related business experiences such as risk management, quality assurance, or CSA

But now that the CRMA 2021 changes have gone into effect, candidates will need at least five years of experience. Plus, at least two of those years must be in internal auditing or a closely related work environment. For example, candidates could work in quality assurance, risk management, compliance, audits and assessments, internal or external audits, or internal controls.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Do I need to apply for an IIA membership before applying for this exam?

Similar to the CIA exam, the answer is no for most candidates. You don’t need to be an IIA member to apply to the CRMA program. However, IIA membership has certain benefits, including discounted exam fees and the ability to download certain supplementary study materials.

The one exception is Singapore — you must be a member of IIA-Singapore to take the CRMA exam in this country.

2. Is there a cost to maintain the CRMA certification?

Yes. Please expect to take CPE courses to keep your CRMA certification valid. The CPE requirements are outlined in my article How to Become a CRMA in 3 Months.

For Your Further Reading

Check out our CRMA master page for further information on the CRMA exam requirements.

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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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