The 20-year-old has enjoyed an extraordinary season, from making the Wasps fly-half jersey his own to displacing Jonny Wilkinson in the England team.
Cipriani is joined on the shortlist for the top prize by London Wasps team-mates Riki Flutey and Paul Sackey plus Bath centre Olly Barkley and Gloucester winger James Simpson-Daniel.
The young player of the year contenders also include Wasps loose-forward James Haskell, newly-capped Leicester back-row Tom Croft and Harlequins duo Chris Robshaw and Danny Care.
Cipriani said: "I'm really humbled to have been nominated alongside such outstanding players in both categories.
"Whilst there is still some unfinished business this season, it has been a remarkable year for me, and to be nominated by my fellow players for these awards is a tremendous honour."
In the 10-year history of the prestigious awards, no player has ever before been nominated in both categories.
The awards will be presented at a gala dinner in London on May 21.
PRA chief executive Damian Hopley said: "There is a lot of excitement about the bright future for English rugby and this is an opportunity for the PRA and rugby supporters to show our thanks and appreciation to the players for their efforts this season and to raise some much-needed funds for deserving player causes."