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Continuing Education

Canadian Payroll Association Certification Programs


The location where your NAIT courses will be held.


The type of certification (degree, diploma, certificate) you will earn after completing your program.

  • Degree - NAIT offers a number of business degrees and applied science and technology degrees accredited by Alberta Advanced Education.
    Applied degree programs offer a stronger emphasis on practical applications of the concepts learned in the classroom
  • Diplomas & Certificates - These credit programs take 1 or 2 years and lead to government approved and industry-recognized credentials.
  • Journeyman Certificate - Hands-on and expert-led apprenticeship and industry training for skilled trades and technology professionals.
  • Continuing Education/Non-Credit - NAIT offers a wide range of non-credit programs and courses for personal and professional development in a number of interesting and exciting fields. These options are great for people who may be working but are interested in studying as well.

Delivery Options

The flexible schedule options for this course including time of day and full/part-time.

  • Day - Courses taking place between Monday - Friday, before 5 PM.
  • Evening/Weekend - Courses taking place on weekdays from 5 PM or later, or Saturdays and Sundays.
  • Online - Sometimes called "Home Study" or "Computer-Based Learning"
  • Blended - A combination of online and in-class components.
  • Distance - Traditional correspondence format. These courses work best if you can't get to a campus or if your schedule can't accommodate fixed class times

Manage payroll for your organization

The Canadian Payroll Association (CPA) offers the only payroll certifications in Canada: Payroll Compliance Practitioner (PCP) and Certified Payroll Manager (CPM). These programs prepare payroll practitioners to manage the compliance requirements of an organization's annual payroll cycle, deliver clear and reliable payroll information and contribute a payroll perspective to organizational policy and strategy discussions.

Payroll is a fast-growing field; those holding Payroll designations benefit from more opportunities to advance their careers and earning potential. In other words, those with Payroll designations earn higher salaries than those who do not. Check out our full- and part-time course options today.

Potential reference: www.payroll.ca

Hands-on, industry-relevant skills

The PCP and CPM certifications are granted by the Canadian Payroll Association upon successful completion of the required courses and fulfilment of the necessary payroll experience. The passing grade for all courses in the CPA program is a minimum 65%.  This includes non-payroll courses ACCT1115, ACCT1117, ORGB1135 and HRMT3328.

The Payroll Compliance Practitioner (PCP) certification is the foundation for a career in payroll. It provides candidates with the legislative content required to keep an organization compliant throughout the annual payroll cycle, effectively communicate payroll information to all stakeholders, and understand the accounting function as it relates to payroll.

The Certified Payroll Manager (CPM) certification builds on the PCP compliance knowledge by developing seasoned professionals to manage a payroll department. It provides you with the knowledge to make decisions, supervise and manage, and contribute a payroll perspective to organizational policy and strategy discussions.

Learn more about payroll certifications 

Entrance requirements

  1. You must register at NAIT before registering with the Canadian Payroll Association (CPA).
  2. Then register with CPA and pay separate fees for the following courses: CPAY455, CPAY460, CPAY465, CPAY470, CPAY475. To register with the CPA, visit the CPA website at www.payroll.ca

For students to be successful in the program it is strongly recommended you have the equivalent of Math 10C and English 10-1 or 10-2.

If you don’t have the English requirements noted above, the following are considered acceptable levels of English Language Proficiency. 

  • Minimum of 73% on all four sections of NAIT's ESL Assessment Exam
  • IELTS overall score of 6.5 with no band less than 5.0 Learn more about IELTS
  • Successful completion of the University of Alberta’s ESL 140/145 course