Frequently Asked Questions (CFP/CAIA/CFA)

Q: How does your CAIA process work?
A:  For a live class, it is vital that participants do not come to the class "cold."  At the same time, picking things out of a book can be very time consuming. We asked ourselves the following questions:

  • What is the minimum that participants need to know prior to our class?
  • What are the topics that we need to cover in the class?
  • How do we structure our Reinforce and Apply to help assimilate the material and maximize time efficiency?

Our process:

  • We offer you a guide that will delineate (and summarize) what we recommend knowing before the class.  Depending on the individual, this will take between 20-40 hours
  • We spend 2 miserably torturous days :-) covering the material together
  • We carefully structured the follow-up Reinforcing Questions and Apply Questions to help assimilate the material

Q: Why are your CAIA classes only 2 days, while it takes others 3 full days?
A: Simple.  We don't cover everything!  Feedback from our classes overwhelmingly indicate that we should not spend much time on definitional Learning Objectives (LOs).  For example, should we spend 3 minutes of your time explaining what an equity long/short strategy is (LO Level I: 4.10.3.a)?  Probably not.  Should we go over the logic of the distributional aspects of L/S (LO Level I: 4.13.5)?  Absolutely.

Q: What makes your class different from others?
A:  We don't know, as we have never attended any other provider's class. Let us tell you what we do know:

  • We don't use powerpoint slides. True, PPT slides are fantastic to make teachers look good.  Our experience, however, has shown that people don't learn well that way.  Even if things make sense during class, PPT slides are difficult to follow when trying to study.  There is something about writing things down by hand. We will provide you with a specifically-designed handout, which Pierre will be using as well.
  • Using an Elmo device, and soon an IPAD, you will see something like the below image while Pierre is teaching.


  • Upon returning to the office, Pierre's notes will be scanned and made available in the Member's Area of the website. These personalized materials are available for you to review at your own pace.

Q:  Do you offer a Conference Call series?
A:   Not yet.  We may actually never do so.  You can't beat live classes.  We understand that this limits the number of participants who will sign up for our services, as we currently only offer a Live Class.  That is actually part of the goal.  We will not take more than 40 participants for each of the levels for the September CAIA sitting We pride ourseleves on not servicing 48,000 people a year.

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