CFA Institute Investment Foundations® Exam Details


CFA Institute Investment Foundations® (formerly known as Claritas®) is a comprehensive global education program intended for all professionals who work in the financial services industry, preferably outside of the investment roles. This certificate will give you a clear understanding of the essentials of the investment industry, as well as your roles and responsibilities within it.

There are no education or experience requirements needed for the CFA Institute Investment Foundations® certificate program, so anyone from Human Resources to Operations to Marketing and Sales can benefit from the program.

By completing the program and earning your certificate, you will accomplish the following:

  • Gain a fundamental framework and knowledge of the investment industry
  • Stand out from the crowd in a competitive global job market
  • Improve your job performance by gaining an understanding of common global industry standards
  • Gain a better understanding of how your role impacts the rest of the business
  • Feel more confident working with your colleagues and clients

The CFA Institute Investment Foundations® certificate program involves the following:

  • Approximately 100 hours of self-study
  • A certificate of knowledge awarded to everyone who passes the exam

To earn the designation, you will take two exams and must score 70% or higher on each.

The Course of Study consists of 20 chapters, organized into seven modules:

  • Module 1: Industry Overview – 5% topic weight
  • Module 2: Ethics and Regulation – 10% topic weight
  • Module 3: Inputs and Tools – 20% topic weight
  • Module 4: Investment Instruments – 20% topic weight
  • Module 5: Industry Structure – 20% topic weight
  • Module 6: Serving Client Needs – 5% topic weight
  • Module 7: Industry Controls – 20% topic weight

Administered in English and online, candidates will take a two-hour, computer-based multiple-choice exam consisting of 120 questions, within 6 months of registering. Preliminary results are provided instantly.

To register for the CFA Institute Investment Foundations® certificate program, visit the CFA Institute website to create an account or log in. After you register, you must schedule your exam appointment within 180 days (approximately 6 months), or your registration will expire.

CFA Institute Investment Foundations® certificate program is free to take.

The CFA Institute Investment Foundations® exam is administered online, allowing you to take the exam from any location.

Note: Exam detail information provided by CFA Institute.

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