PayTrain® Fundamentals gives you the knowledge and skills required for basic payroll processing. Whether you are seeking professional development or studying for the Fundamental Payroll Certification (FPC) exam, PayTrain Fundamentals can help you meet your goals.

Course Materials

PayTrain Fundamentals guides you on your path to success through three key steps. The curriculum is drawn from the FPC exam’s content outline. Comprehensive reading materials are combined with interactive study tools to reinforce what you learn.

Your Current Knowledge
  • Determine your current knowledge with the online assessment.
  • Identify topics for improvement to help guide your studies.
Your Way to Success
  • Read learning modules that cover payroll concepts, recent changes, trends, and best practices.
  • Reinforce your learning with quizzes, calculations, exercises, and flashcards.
  • Review the course content and have fun with module and course games.
Success as a Payroll Professional
  • Build exam-day confidence with a post-test that mimics the FPC exam format and weighting.
  • Score 80% or higher on the post-test to qualify for a certificate of achievement and earn Recertification Credit Hours (RCHs) or Continuing Education Units (CEUs).

Reading Materials

PayTrain Fundamentals course topics include:

  • Module 1: Payroll Concepts
  • Module 2: Calculations of Pay
  • Module 3: Calculations of Deductions and Net Pay
  • Module 4: Fringe Benefits and Other Payments
  • Module 5: Retirement Plans
  • Module 6: Cafeteria Plans
  • Module 7: Payroll Reporting and Employment Taxes
  • Module 8: Record Keeping and Payroll Practices
  • Module 9: Payroll Accounting
  • Module 10: Payroll Management Administration
  • Module 11: Health Benefits
  • Module 12: International Payments

Explore a complete outline of payroll topics covered in PayTrain® Fundamentals.

Each year, PayTrain® Fundamentals is updated with the latest payroll concepts, legislative changes, trends, and best practices. Download the course outline for a complete list of topics covered.

Interactive Study Tools

Key learning components include:

  • Assessment

    • Online assessment helps determine your current knowledge and identify areas for improvement.
  • Calculations

    • Complete calculations for each topic based on scenarios provided.
    • Hints and feedback guide you in developing the calculation and payroll skills.
  • Exercises

    • Complete exercises for each topic based on scenarios provided.
    • Answer a series of questions by filling in a form, completing an entire paycheck calculation, etc.
  • Module Quizzes

    • Check your understanding of the lessons covered in reading modules, calculations, and exercises.
    • Decide whether you need further study or practice on the topic.
  • Flashcards

    • NEW! Printable and online flashcards are both included.
    • Practice learning key terms and concepts reinforcing your knowledge.
  • Glossary

    • Look up key terms from anywhere in the system with the glossary.
    • Use the Search box or browse by letter.
  • Games

    • Engage with the module games for a fun and interactive way of reinforcing material at the end of each module.
    • Review the topics covered by the entire course with the entertaining and challenging course games.
  • Resource Center

    • Additional resources including tax tables, forms and publications mentioned in the modules.
    • Certification information on the PayrollOrg website.
    • Feedback forum for evaluation and suggestions.
    • Payroll updates with legislative changes and new developments.
  • Post Tests

    • Tests are weighted and balanced based on the same percentages as the FPC exam.
    • Includes flag for review, review each item, and time limits, similar to the FPC exam.
  • Reports

    • Track your progress, compare the results of quizzes and pre- and post-tests.
    • View a breakdown of your test scores by module to determine your learning gain.



The 2024 PayTrain® Fundamentals materials cover content tested on the Fall 2024 or Spring 2025 FPC exam. Purchasers of the 2024 materials will have access to the online portion until September 6, 2025.

PayTrain Fundamentals 2024 Pricing


Join PAYO and SAVE
$715 Member Price

Colleague: $875

Non-Member: $1,025


Join PAYO and SAVE
$815 Member Price

Colleague: $975

Non-Member: $1,125

More of a tactile learner? Learning modules are available in print format for an additional fee. You’ll be able to keep the books as a reference manual, with answers to Payroll challenges right at your fingertips.


  • Course includes; comprehensive learning modules (available while logged in via ereader and in optional print format), interactive exercises, quizzes, calculations, and flashcards
  • Anticipate spending approximately 24 hours to complete the PayTrain Fundamentals course
  • Member discounts available


  • Course includes comprehensive learning modules (available while logged in via ereader and in optional print format), interactive exercises, quizzes, calculations, flashcards and online instruction
  • Online instructor provides weekly assignments and feedback
  • Anticipate spending 3 hours/week for 8 weeks to complete the PayTrain Fundamentals course
  • Member discounts available

Taxes are not included in above pricing.
Printed books can be added to your order for an additional $100 plus shipping and taxes.

Join PAYO: Save $270 on PayTrain Fundamentals

Click here or the button below and enter promo code MEMBHLMS to save $35 off an PAYO membership then complete your PayTrain Fundamentals purchase and enter your membership number to activate your $270 discount.

Please note:

The cost of PayTrain Fundamentals does NOT include the FPC exam fee. For details about the FPC exam, visit

International and military purchasers: If you are preparing to take the FPC certification exam at an international testing site or a military testing center before September 2024, please contact Abby Fett to determine which preparation materials to purchase. Email Abby at [email protected] or call +1-888-852-6664 (Monday-Friday, 8 a.m.-5 p.m. CT).