To be eligible to apply for a public practice certificate you must attend a Public Practice Program Intensive and pass the three hour exam for Practice Management, the distance learning component of the Public Practice Program. You can attend an Intensive in the same semester you are enrolled in the distance learning component or after completing the exam.

The Intensive is divided into several topics and interactive sessions, including group exercises. The emphasis is on providing professional services in a practice environment, using technical and communication skills. This component is an excellent opportunity to hear from experienced public practitioners and other experts who present the sessions, and allows candidates to build a network of contacts.

The Intensive is not examined, but attendance is compulsory for completion of the Public Practice Program.

Members who attend the entire Intensive, including the networking component, may claim up to 19 CPD hours.

Intensives are conducted across Australia and in New Zealand at various times throughout the year.

Members should only register to attend an Intensive if they are a CPA or FCPA and they are enrolled in or have passed the distance learning component of the Public Practice Program.



The Public Practice Program consists of the following components:

Distance learning study program

This component introduces you to the major elements relating to setting up and operating a public practice, including the role and responsibilities of a public practitioner in the enhancement of both the quality and efficiency of services they provide. The study program is completed by undertaking an examination.


The course will present and facilitate discussion on topics covered in the distance learning study program and provide the opportunity for practical application and input. CPA Australia expects that your attendance at the course and your exposure to practising members will be reflected in the quality of your business activities in the future.

Intensive component

The Intensive has two main objectives:

  • to complement the distance learning component of the Public Practice Program. The Intensive provides an interactive environment for you to consider, with experienced practitioners who possess appropriate skills and expertise, points that are of special interest to you
  • to provide a forum at which you can:
    • consider practical issues involved in developing a business plan for a professional practice and conducting the practice and, with guidance from experienced practitioners, develop methods for resolving those issues
    • be made aware of CPA Australia’s expectations of you as a practitioner and your role in developing the profession
    • build a professional network

The Intensive is a two-day course that helps achieve CPA Australia’s overall aim of assisting you in attaining the skills, knowledge and professional approach required for public practice.

The course is comprehensive and requires considerable input from you. It is recognised that you have already undertaken a major study program and many examinations to attain your professional qualifications. Accordingly, the course is structured to allow you to gain the knowledge that you believe is most important.

While the course is organised into set areas of discussion, the main aim of the Intensive is to allow you to have exposure to members already in practice. Presenters have been asked to encourage discussion during their sessions, allowing you the opportunity to learn from their experience.


To be eligible to register for an Intensive, you must be a CPA or FCPA and be enrolled in or have passed the distance learning component of the Public Practice Program.

Registration closes 10 working days prior to an Intensive commencement date.

Upon registering, you will be issued with a Confirmation Letter and event overview. Check this information. If there are any discrepancies or you have not received confirmation of registration by 10 working days prior to an Intensive commencement date, call CPA Australia on 1300 737 373. No refunds or date transfers will be processed after this date.


To successfully complete the course you must attend all sessions, including the networking component. Failure to attend all sessions may result in compulsory  attendance at a future Public Practice Program Intensive for any sessions missed.

Arrival and departure times

You should arrive at the course venue no later than 8.15 am on day one. Registration commences at 8.30 am and the first session begins promptly at 8.45 am. The Intensive concludes at approximately 5.00 pm on the second day.