What Is CAIA® Exam Computer-Based Testing Like?

By: Kaplan Schweser
April 8, 2021
CAIA candidate taking the exam in CBT format.

The CAIA® exam is now computer-based and is administered by PearsonVue. So, what is CAIA exam computer-based training like? And what should you expect from a computer-based training (CBT) CAIA exam? This article answers these questions.

Scheduling Your CBT CAIA® Exam

Because there is an exam window rather than one set date, you’ll have to schedule your exam with CAIA Association, but when you take your exam, it will be through a PearsonVue venue. You can schedule your exam here. You will receive a confirmation email when completed.

Neither the CAIA Association nor PearsonVue can guarantee availability of appointments at any test center for any given exam or on a specific date. So, you should schedule appointments as early as possible because exam centers have limited capacity. Appointments are on a first-come, first-served basis. 

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Before Exam Day: Study Materials

Develop a rigorous study plan

A well-thought-out study plan is essential. The study plan should serve as a map through the entire curriculum and should incorporate classes, study notes, practice questions, mock exams, and final review to reinforce the learning process.

CAIA Study Package »

Study the entire curriculum

As we noted above, all topics are fair game for the exam. You must incorporate all topics into your study plan to ensure you are ready for every section of the exam, making sure to utilize practice questions. Practicing what you have learned is essential for knowledge retention and assessment. Do not underestimate the importance of this step in the learning process. Make your mistakes before the actual exam and understand your weaknesses.

Review content to eliminate weak areas

You will also need to build in time to review what you have learned and remediate areas of the curriculum that you have not fully mastered. You want to minimize surprises on exam day, so try your best to simulate the exam. Simulating the exam is also important. The pressure of exam day is a huge factor in your performance. Simulating exam conditions beforehand can reduce your stress during the actual exam and help you assess where additional study would be beneficial.

Attend a review course

Reading the curriculum once is generally not enough. You need to review what you have learned, ideally with an expert in the CAIA curriculum. Even concepts you understand need to be reviewed to ensure you retain the information for the exam. The CAIA exam isn’t an easy task, and it requires a significant commitment of your time and resources. Avoid these common mistakes and give yourself the best chance to succeed with proper planning, structure, and support.

Make Sure You Are Allowed In

Be sure to show up about 30 minutes early for your exam time. It is a good idea to map out where the testing center is and figure out how long it will take you to get there. If you arrive late, you will not be allowed to take the test. 

CAIA Association strongly encourages you to bring as few items as possible on exam day. You’ll be asked to leave whatever you have brought with you in a locker, storage bag, or area at the testing center and you’ll be able to collect it after the exam. 

You are allowed to have a printed confirmation on your desk during, along with an approved ID and calculator. Proctors and security personnel may ask to inspect your belongings at check-in to ensure that prohibited items are not carried into the testing room.

Taking the CBT CAIA Exam Tips

Keep difficult questions for the end

Many exam takers have observed that the last 10 or so questions were low-hanging fruit that can be solved quickly. This can be unfortunate for those who, because of lack of time, cannot manage to get that far and are forced to guess the answers. So it is always better to come back to the difficult questions later on and keep answering the ones you know quickly.

Be quick and alert

Although you might feel you have enough time for each question, keep one thing in mind: the questions are challenging, so you need to be alert and save time to solve the difficult ones.

Look for “easy pickers”

These are the questions that have quick solutions. Solving them first will help you save time for other questions and also increase your chances of clearing the sections.

Watch out for lengthy questions

These questions are filled with words, and they require you to take multiple steps to come to a solution. Decide whether you want it to take these at the beginning of the end.

Have Other Questions about CBT and the CAIA Exam?

Check out CAIA Association’s FAQ page to learn more about what you should expect going into the exam. You can also ensure you are prepared for the computer-based exam with Kaplan’s CAIA study materials. We have study options to suit all learning styles, so get started today.

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