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What Is the CAIA® Stackable Credential Program?

By: Kaplan Schweser
January 13, 2021
Skipping Level I of CAIA exam because of the Stackable Credential Pilot

The CAIA® Stackable Credential Program allows eligible candidates with the CFA® charter to bypass Level I of the rigorous two-part Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst (CAIA) exam. The goal is to enable qualified candidates to “stack” their CFA charter knowledge and credentials and move directly to Level II of the CAIA exam. This article explains why CAIA Association is has established this program, how it works, and who is eligible.

Why the CAIA® Stackable Credential Program?

Using knowledge gained from earning one financial credential to help earn another isn’t new. For example, a CFA charterholder is exempt from many of the education requirements for earning the CFP® mark. But, CAIA Association is taking it a step farther with this program by exempting qualified CFA charterholders from Level I of the CAIA exam.

Are you thinking about earning the CAIA charter? Read the free Before You Decide to Sit for the CAIA® Exam eBook.

How Does the CAIA® Stackable Credential Program Work?

The current program is evaluating whether the CFA exams and work experience have enabled CFA charterholders to acquire the knowledge covered in the CAIA Level I curriculum. CAIA Association is studying the results of the program with the goal of understanding the best ways to meet increasing alternative investment education needs, especially for those who have already acquired some of that knowledge.

Up to 500 CFA charterholder candidates are allowed to participate in each exam period. If you are interested, you can apply online. If you meet the eligibility requirements and CAIA Association has space for you, you’ll be approved for the program, and you may register for the Level II exam. If your application is denied, you can apply again for another exam cycle. If the program becomes fully enrolled prior to your application, there is also a waiting list. You can find more information about that list here.

If you’re accepted and you pass Level II of the exam, you then apply for and join CAIA Association, thereby earning the CAIA designation. (Find everything you need to know about earning the CAIA designation here.) You’ll have all the same benefits as those who earned the credential by taking both levels of the exam.

Are You Eligible for the CAIA® Stackable Credential Program?

The eligibility requirements for the program are as follows:

  • No existing CAIA exam history
  • Being a CFA charterholder in good standing
  • A CFA digital badge, verifiable by CAIA Association
  • Applying and registering for the program during CAIA’s exam registration periods

It’s important to note that program participants are not eligible for the CAIA Gateway Scholarship or any other CAIA scholarship program. CAIA Academic Partner faculty who are CFA charterholders should contact CAIA Association for more information regarding their program eligibility.

Want to Learn More?

You can get all the details about the program on CAIA Association’s web page for the program. If you’re accepted in the program, consider increasing your odds of passing with a Level II study preparation package. As a CAIA Stackable Program participant, you are eligible to receive a FREE Kaplan Schweser CAIA Level I package with your purchase of a Level II package. Learn more about this benefit and get started on your studies today.

Or, if you’re interested in earning the CAIA designation the traditional way, our CAIA Level I packages can help you get started.

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