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Certified Internal Auditor (CIA) Exam Information

The CIA designation is the only globally accepted certification for internal auditors and remains the standard by which individuals demonstrate their competency and professionalism in the internal auditing field. Since the program’s launch in 1973, it has opened up countless doors of opportunity for practitioners around the world as it communicates their ability to serve as a key player in their organization’s success. Candidates leave the program enriched with educational experience, applicable knowledge, and business tools that can deliver a positive impact in any organization or business environment.

The CIA exam is offered in the following languages: Arabic, Chinese (unsimplified), English, French, German, Hebrew, Indonesian, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish, Turkish, and Thai (available only in Thailand).

The CIA credential can be your key to professional success, opening doors for career opportunities and earning you increased credibility and respect within the profession and your organization.

Ultimately, the CIA designation will:

  • Distinguish you from your peers.
  • Demonstrate your proficiency with internal staff and external clients.
  • Develop your knowledge of best practices in the industry.
  • Demonstrate your proficiency and professionalism.
  • Lay a foundation for continued improvement and advancement.

Earning the CIA designation is a valuable accomplishment and a professional advantage for auditors at all stages of their careers, including chief audit executives, audit managers, audit staff, risk management staff, and also students enrolled in an accounting or other business or financial degree program. To learn more about how Lambers CIA Review can help you, click here to view our product pages.


CIA recipients represent the elite members of the internal audit profession. The following requirements must be met in order to take the exam and become certified:

  • Education: CIA candidates must hold a bachelor’s degree (or higher) or its educational equivalent from an accredited college-level institution.
  • Professional conduct: CIA candidates must provide a character reference from a qualified individual and must agree to abide by The IIA’s Code of Ethics.
  • Experience: CIA candidates must obtain a minimum of two years of internal audit experience or equivalent. Experience is not required before sitting for the exam but is required for certification.

For more information on CIA exam requirements please visit the IIA.

Computer-based Testing

The CIA exam is available through computer-based testing, allowing you to test year-round at more than 500 locations worldwide.

CIA exam costs: Fees include a registration charge of $60 or $30 for students, each of the four parts of the exam cost $70 or $35 for students, and an additional charge for Part 4 admin fee of $70 or $35 for students. IIA membership may reduce fees.

Candidates are able to sit for exams at any IIA-authorized Pearson VUE testing center worldwide, regardless of whether the testing center is located in your hometown or country. To locate the testing centers nearest you, visit the Pearson VUE website. You must apply and register in The IIA’s Certification Candidate Management System (CCMS) prior to scheduling an exam.

CIA Exam Syllabus
Part 1 – Internal Audit Basics

125 questions | 2.5 Hours (150 minutes) Topics tested include:

  • Aspects of mandatory guidance from the IPPF;
  • Internal control and risk concepts;
  • Tools and techniques for conducting internal audit engagements.

Part 2 – Internal Audit Practice

100 questions | 2.0 Hours (120 minutes) Topics tested include:

  • Managing the internal audit function via the strategic and operational role of internal audit and establishing a risk-based plan;
  • Steps to manage individual engagements (planning, supervision, communicating results, and monitoring outcomes);
  • Fraud risks and controls.

Part 3 – Internal Audit Knowledge Elements

100 questions | 2.0 Hours (120 minutes) Topics tested include:

  • Governance and business ethics risk management organizational structure, including business processes and risks
  • Communication; management and leadership principles
  • Information technology and business continuity
  • Financial management
  • Global business environment.