Important Dates

  1. Intern Certification Deadline: Sunday, January 14, 2017
  2. Mandatory Refresher: Saturday, January 27, 2018
    Place: TBD
  3. Official Filing Start Date: Monday, January 29, 2018

Getting Started

To prepare for the IRS Certification Exam, volunteers are trained using the Link & Learn Taxes e-Learning provided by the IRS.  Volunteers must take the certification exam every year even if they have been certified before.

  1. Go to http://apps.irs.gov/app/vita/
  2. Click on the “Certification Paths” tab at the top
  3. Select a certification level
    **If this is your first year joining VITA, we expect you to be certified at the “Basic” level only.
  4. Select “Student”
  5. Once you open the course, study all the Course Topics from the list.

The TaxSlayer Practice Lab allows volunteers to prepare tax returns to practice what they have learned in Link & Learn Taxes.

  1. Go to https://vita.taxslayerpro.com/IRSTraining
  2. Enter “TRAINPROWEB” (one word – all caps) in the password box and click on “log in”
  3. Log in with your user id and password
    **If this is your first year joining VITA, you can create an account by clicking on “Create Account”.
  4. Once you logged in, you will be able to use Practice Lab to help you take the certification exam.

You can take the certification exams at: https://www.linklearncertification.com/d/ 

  1. On your left hand side click on “Create Account”
  2. Select Group “VITA Volunteer” and fill out rest of the form to register
  3. You are require to take and pass:
    • 2016 Volunteer Standards of Conduct Exam
    • 2016 Intake and Interview Exam
    • 2016 Basic Exam
  4. Lastly, check the box on the right hand side to sign the Volunteer Agreement electronically.
  5. Email your certifications and your agreement to ucdvita@gmail.com

IMPORTANT!  For Advanced certification level, please take note:
Instructions for taking the courses online

On Link & Learn Taxes, each course is self-contained. If you select the Basic tab it includes just the Basic course.  If you select the Advanced tab it includes Basic,  Advanced lessons.

Instructions for Certification online

You do not need to certify to Basic before testing for Advanced.



Students in VITA will be hosting workshops in November. Interns are required to attend three of the four workshops. Each workshop will consist of different tax law materials.





Workshop I

Monday, November 6, 2017

8:10 PM – 9:00 PM

Olson 207

Workshop II

Thursday, November 10, 2017

8:10 PM – 9:00 PM

Haring 2016

Workshop III

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

8:10PM – 9:00 PM

Haring 2016

Workshop IV


Sunday, November 20, 2017

10:AM – 11:30AM

Haring 2016


  • Workshop I: Basic, Filing Status, Dependency
  • Workshop II: Income, Adjustments, Deductions
  • Workshop III: Credits, Affordable Care Act
  • Workshop IV (MANDATORY): Preparing a Tax Return