CPA vs CA: Which is Better for You?

CA (Chartered Accountant) and CPA (Certified Public Accountant) are outstanding courses for accounting students. Like the other many popular courses, both CPA and CA offer great career opportunities and provide a secure future that is the basic need of students who are enrolling for the accounting courses after their schooling and today we are going to discuss in depth CPA vs CA which one you should choose.?

However, as an accounting student, it may be a tough call when it comes to choosing a better and more reliable course from CPA and CA. If you are also confused about choosing one of these courses and are willing to make the right decision that can help you make a better-earning career, this article will help you compare these courses on the important aspects so that you can make a better choice. SO, spend a few minutes on the article and know which course is better and why?

CPA vs CA: Prerequisites

CPA and CA are both amazing courses for accounting students. And like the other graduate courses, the CA can be done after schooling. Whereas, CPA requires graduation to pursue. So, if you are looking to enroll yourself in the course that you can opt for after your schooling and get eligible for the jobs as early as possible, you can go with CA. Along with the different prerequisites, the time required for the courses is also different. The CPA requires hours of practice under the guidance of a professional CPA. However, after CA, you can easily opt for the job in a firm.

In all, if you were looking for the prerequisites, both CA and CPA are two different level courses. So, you can easily opt for a course according to the college available in your area and other requirements. Additionally, it is a great option to opt for CPA after you have completed CA.


CPA vs CA: Course simplicity

Another important aspect that helps the student to choose a better course is the course simplicity. Often the students opt for a course that is simple and easy to learn. And though both CPA and CA are meant for the accounting students, CA has a more complex course structure than the CPA. As the CA can be a self-sufficient course to work in India and many other countries, you can opt for CA if you are looking to have a secured career, CA can be a worthy course to opt-in. The CPA can be a worthy course if you are looking to work abroad and want to have a simpler course structure.

During CA, you gain knowledge about the Indian GAAP, while on the other hand, CPA allows you to learn about the US GAAP and IFRS.   Many students opt for CPA after completion of CA. However, you can easily do the course along with each other.

CPA vs CA: Institute availability

CPA and CA are great for the students. However, the number of available colleges and universities that provide legit courses are very few. Limited seats and colleges make it extremely hard for the students to get admission to a reputed institute that can help them achieve a better and more successful future. You can opt for the CA institutes in your cities to get into the field. The CA institutes admit the students after their schooling, and if you have potential, you can opt for CPA while working in the firm. That’s the reason why it is extremely essential to choose the institute very carefully while doing CA. Choose the best institute for your according to your qualifications and get enrolled in the best possible institute. In case your city has no good institute where you can get CA course, we will suggest you to opt for the metro cities or state capital where you can get better colleges and institutions for accounting courses.

CPA vs CA: Fee structure

Fee structure often is the most important thing to consider while opting for a course. And this, in India, depends on the college and university you are enrolling into. With different states and cities, the course fee of both CA and CPA varies a lot. And if you are looking to opt for the best college in your city, you may need to pay some extra amount to get the admission. Comparatively, CA is a more expensive course than CPA.  The CA is a 4-year course that needs a yearly fee while on the other hand CPA is a 1-year course that you can easily complete at a much lesser fee. So, if you were looking for a less expensive course, we will suggest you to go with CPA. However, CA is a more worthy choice to go with at the base level. After the course, if you wish to continue learning and enhance your work ability, you can opt for CPA too.

CPA vs CA: Course duration

Now, once you are aware of the course complexity and fee structure, it is time to look for the course duration. The course duration makes sense if you are doing the course as a part-time option and work somewhere to earn your living. So, you must choose a course depending on the duration of completion. Both CA and CPA have different course duration and as they are different level courses, you can opt for them accordingly.

CA is a graduate-level course that requires a 4-5-year duration to complete, depending on the university and college you have opted for. On the other hand, CPA is a single-level examination course that you can easily complete in 1-year. Additionally, the CPA requires a 1-2 year of experience under CPA professionals.  So, both CA and CPA are two different courses and require different duration. Choose accordingly and get a secure future after completion of the course. The CPA is a single level examination that can be complete in a period of 1-year. It has four papers. While on the other hand, the CA is a3-level, four-year course, that has 16 papers.

So, after your schooling, you can choose to enroll yourself in CA from a reputed institute and after the completion, you can opt for CPA if needed.

CPA vs CA: Future perspective

CPA and CA are the courses for the students who are willing to make a good career in accounting. After completing these courses, you can either serve the clients directly by registering your own firm after going through the formalities, or work under a reputed financial firm to have a secured future. Additionally, as the course structure is similar, you won’t have to work hard to complete the course after you have completed one.

The thing here that makes the difference in the future aspects of the courses. As said, the CA can be a better option for the students who are willing to work in India and other countries that have similar accounting algorithm. However, if you are planning to work in the USA or serve international clients, CPA will be an essential thing to go for.

This makes CPA a better option for the students who are willing to earn more and have better stability in their life. After completing CA, you won’t find major difficulties while pursuing a CPA course. The only thing that will require time while doing CPA is the training period. IF you have some acquaintances who can help you get the experience for training under professional CPA, CPA after CA can be a worthy choice to go with.

CPA vs CA: Which one is better?

Talking about career opportunities and salaries, the course CA and CPA both offer amazing options. The difference between the courses is meant only for the students’ preferences. The CA is globally recognized and you can easily work in different countries including India. And if you are looking to live and serve Indian clients, CA will be a perfect choice to go with. However, though CA is recognized across the globe, if you are looking to work abroad and want to follow the country’s standards, the CPA will be a worthy course to opt for. A few countries need accounting people to have CPA to work professionally. So, be sure where you want to work and then choose a better course for yourself.


IN all, choosing CPA and CA can be a time consuming and tidy decision to make. However, if you have correct knowledge about the fields and have a clear mindset, you can easily make a better decision, that won’t only help you to get better future after completion of the course, but also help you earn a better reputation. So, we will suggest you to first complete your CA, and then if you think that you need more specialization, you can opt for the CPA afterward. Additionally, you can do the CPA while working in a firm where you can get the training after the CPA completion and get a better career boost.

Additionally, make sure that you choose a better college or course center that makes it easier to complete the course with the best tutors.

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