CPA PEP Results | Where To Find Results & Next Steps if You Failed

CPA Canada releases PEP (Core 1, Core 2, electives) results after every semester, usually 2 weeks after the exam is complete, at 12pm EST. Find out if you passed using the link below:

How to Read CPA Exam Transcripts

You’ll receive a transcript. It’ll show “Pass with Distinction”, “Pass”, “Marginal Pass” or “Fail”.

  • Pass with Distinction: This means you passed with top results. Students need to score only Cs and CDs to be here.
  • Pass: This means you passed the module and advance to the next one.
  • Marginal Pass: This is as good as pass. It doesn’t hurt your chances at any of the future modules nor CFE. Marginal Pass means you were close to failing, so make sure to analyze your results and re-focus your efforts.
  • Fail: This means you were unsuccessful, you will need to challenge the exam or re-take the entire module. You have 3 attempts at each module in total. After 3 attempts, you are de-registered from PEP and will need to re-register and start over from Core 1 again. 

Decile ranking

Your transcript may also show a “Decile ranking.” Decile ranking shows ONLY if you failed. If you see N/A, it means you Passed or Marginally Passed.

Decile ranking is a statistical measure that tells students who failed how close they were from passing. For example, decile 1-3 means they were close to passing, while decile 8-10 means they were far. 

Objective format and Case portion

Your transcript will be divided into two parts: (1) Objective format questions, (2) Case portion. 

Objective format means MCQs. For both these MCQs and the case portion, you’ll see the tested competencies (eg: Financial Reporting, Audit, Taxation, etc) and your results.


As you can see above, the transcript will show the 4 grades horizontally:

  • Not competence (NC)
  • Reaching competent (RC)
  • Competent (C)
  • Competent with distinction (CD)

For each grade, you’ll see percentages. These percentages show how the general population of writers did. For example, if 5,000 students wrote Core 1 in your semester, the breakdown will show what percentage scored NC, RC, C and CD. The yellow highlighted box shows where you ended up.

What to Do if You Failed

If you were unsuccessful at your PEP module exam, you can:

  • Option #1: Request review and re-marking
  • Option #2: Challenge the next exam
  • Option #3: Retake the module

#1) Review and re-marking will have your exam re-marked by a senior marker. There are specific deadlines and fees. From my experience, only ~1% of remarks are successful. I don’t recommend this option for most students.

#2) You can challenge the exam where you sit at the next exam without going through the entire module. This is available for 2nd attempts only. If you are unsuccessful again at the 2nd attempt, you must re-take the entire module.

With this option, you should understand your weaknesses, build a study plan and re-write all PCs, IPs and MCQs. It helps to get extra cases and MCQs because you’re already familiar with the module PCs. If you need consultation, feel free to contact me.

#3) You can re-take the module and go through the module again with the help of your facilitator. Similar to #2 above, you should get extra cases / MCQs and build a study plan to ensure you’re on track.


I know failing CPA exams is demotivating. It doesn’t mean you’re not smart or unable to succeed, it means you need a new strategy. Take some time think about your options and decide what you will do differently next time. If you feel you need a coaching program to help you succeed, you can preview some of my free lessons.