CAIA Exam Curriculum

Curriculum Overview: The CAIA Charter curriculum consists of two exam levels and is revised regularly to incorporate relevant, practical industry developments, and the latest academic research essential to earning your place in the Portfolio for the Future™. 

Both Levels have been updated for the 2023 exam cycle and each exam reflects content from the 2023 digital or digital + print curriculum only. 

For your convenience, the 2023 digital curriculum package is now INCLUDED with new Candidate registration fees. If you prefer a print version, you may purchase one here.  Please note - since the digital curriculum is automatically part of the registration fee, we are not able to issue a credit if you select to purchase the print version separately.

To get started, explore curriculum details and download the official CAIA Study Guides.

Level I Study Guide       Level II Study Guide

The CAIA curriculum and CAIA study guides are the only preparation materials written and prepared by the CAIA Association and are a CAIA Charter Candidate's best source of study materials!

CAIA Level I 2023 Exam Topics

Professional Standards and Ethics

  • CFA Institute Standards of Practice – Free access available to registered Candidates through login.

Introduction to Alternative Investments

  • What Is an Alternative Investment?
  • The Environment of Alternative Investments
  • Quantitative Foundations
  • Statistical Foundations
  • Financial Economics Foundations
  • Derivatives and Risk-Neutral Valuation
  • Measures of Risk and Performance
  • Alpha, Beta, and Hypothesis Testing

Real Assets

  • Natural Resources and Land
  • Commodities
  • Other Real Assets
  • Real Estate Assets and Debt
  • Real Estate Equity

Private Securities

  • Private Equity Assets
  • Private Equity Funds
  • Private Equity Fund of Funds
  • Evolution of Investing in Private Equity
  • Private Credit and Distressed Debt

Hedge Funds

  • Structure of the Hedge Fund Industry
  • Macro and Managed Futures Funds
  • Event-Driven and Relative Value Hedge Funds
  • Equity Hedge Funds
  • Funds of Hedge Funds

Structured Products

  • Introduction to Structuring
  • Credit Risk and Credit Derivatives
  • CDO Structuring of Credit Risk
  • Equity-Linked Structured Products

CAIA Level II 2023 Exam Topics

Emerging Topics - Free access available to registered Candidates through login.

  • Digital Assets: Blockchain, Bitcoin, and DeFi
  • Private Equity: Sustainable Investing in Private Equity, and Forecasting Returns
  • Portfolio Management: Rebalancing Illiquid Portfolios, Longevity Risk, and Assessing Long Term Performance

Ethics Regulations and ESG

  • Asset Manager Code
  • Recommendations and Guidance
  • Global Regulation
  • ESG and Alternative Investments
  • ESG Analysis and Application


  • Modeling Overview and Interest Rate Models
  • Credit Risk Models
  • Multi-Factor Equity Pricing Models
  • Asset Allocation Processes and the Mean-Variance Model
  • Other Asset Allocation Approaches

Institutional Asset Owners and Investment Policies

  • Types of Asset Owners and the Investment Policy Statement
  • Foundations, and The Endowment Model
  • Pension Fund Portfolio Management
  • Sovereign Wealth Funds
  • Family Offices and the Family Office Model

Risk and Risk Management

  • Cases in Tail Risk
  • Benchmarking and Performance Attribution
  • Liquidity and Funding Risks
  • Hedging, Rebalancing, and Monitoring
  • Risk Measurement, Risk Management, and Risk Systems

Methods for Alternative Investments

  • Valuations and Hedging Using Binomial Trees 
  • Directional Strategies and Methods 
  • Multivariate Empirical Methods and Performance Persistence 
  • Relative Value Methods 
  • Valuation Methods for Private Assets: The Case of Real Estate 

Accessing Alternative Investments

  • Hedge Fund Replication
  • Diversified Access to Hedge Funds
  • Access to Real Estate and Commodities
  • Access through Private Structures
  • The Risk and Performance of Private and Listed Assets

Due Diligence & Selecting Managers

  • Active Management and New Investments
  • Selection of a Fund Manager
  • Investment Process Due Diligence
  • Operational Due Diligence
  • Due Diligence of Terms and Business Activities

Volatility and Complex Strategies

  • Volatility as a Factor Exposure
  • Volatility, Correlation, and Dispersion Products and Strategies
  • Complexity and Structured Products
  • Insurance-Linked and Hybrid Securities
  • Complexity and the Case of Cross-Border Real Estate Investing