Prep for the CPWA® Certification Exam

Get detailed study considerations, important instructions, and helpful resources to ensure you are prepared for your CPWA® certification examination.

What's on the CPWA® Certification Exam?

Exam Topics You’ll Need to Know

Understand the exam format, core curriculum topics on the comprehensive exam, and how the topics are weighted.

What to expect

Exam Standards

Learn the rigorous, standards-based process that goes into developing a reliable, valid CPWA® certification exam.

Learn how the exam is developed and scored

CPWA® Certification Exam Prep Resources

Get Started Here

Just like your real-world client work, studying for the CPWA® exam requires information and insights from a variety of resources.

Start here to get a helpful overview of the scope and depth of information you’ll be tested on.


Download the Candidate Handbook

This comprehensive source is your complete guide to exam instructions, policies, scheduling, scoring, and more.

CPWA® candidate handbook

Download the Detailed CPWA® Content Outline

This document provides lists of the curriculum topics you’ll be tested on—annotated with descriptions that provide helpful context to spur further study for each topic area.

CPWA® content outline

Review IWI’s Code of Professional Responsibility

CPWA® certificants are held to the highest standards of ethical and professional conduct. Be sure you understand these principles and the intent behind them.

Code of Professional Responsibility

Schedule Your CPWA® Exam

You must sit for the exam within 90 days of completing your executive education program. If you miss your 90-day window and need to move to the next window, a rescheduling fee will apply.

The CPWA® exam is offered year-round in person through Pearson VUE testing centers or online through ProctorU's Meazure Learning.

The initial exam fee is included in your program application fee. Retake and rescheduling fees are $225 for IWI members and $325 for nonmembers.

CPWA® Accelerator Pack

Designed exclusively for candidates for the CPWA® certification program, this in-depth, self-study course can help you improve your test-taking prowess and build confidence in analyzing and responding to the kind of complex questions you’ll encounter on the exam.

CPWA® Test Preparation and Study Course

Get tips, test-taking skills, and techniques for analyzing test questions with this self-paced course, provided through the IWI Academy.

Unlimited Exam Retakes

Waive retake fees—regularly $225 per attempt—and reduce your stress.

Unplug with Hard Copies of Readings

Mailed free on request—regularly $225 + shipping*

Study Your Way, at Your Pace

Build your own study plan with:

·       60 case studies

·       70 related multiple-choice questions

·       5 branching scenarios with related Q&A and content review

·       27 flash card/matching/sorting activities

·       20 downloadable documents for assistance with study preparation

$595 Available only to CPWA® candidates

Register Now for the CPWA® Accelerator Pack

Your guide—Program Manager Heidi Arsenault—will confirm your registration by email and provide you with instructions to access to the Test Preparation and Study Course. Your access is good a full year from the date you purchase.

*Note: The CPWA® Accelerator Pack is available to purchase only within the first 60-days of the start of the Chicago Booth or Investments & Wealth Institute CPWA® program. Hard-copy materials are printed in black and white and are organized into 4 spiral bound binders of selected readings available in the online self-study program for candidates working through Chicago Booth or Investments & Wealth Institute CPWA® programs. The hard copy materials are not a replacement for the online self-study course.

The CPWA® Accelerator Pack does not include a practice examination. The Investments & Wealth Institute and the CPWA® Certification Commission neither endorse nor recommend any specific test preparation program and make no claim or assurance on the ability of a student to pass the exam as a result of completing the test preparation product.

Calculator Policy

Yes, you can use an accepted financial calculator when taking the CPWA® certification exam.

Policy for calculator use

You are required to clear your financial calculator's memory before the exam.

You are not allowed to bring any notes, including manually programmed formulas, into the testing area. If your calculator has notes, formulas, or other printed information, remove them or cover them with solid color tape. Calculators are subject to inspection by test center staff.

Exam Pass Rates

Most Recent Quarter Pass Rate


First-Time Testers

1/01/2024 – 3/31/2024

Re-Test Rate: 44%

Past 2-Year Pass Rate


First-Time Testers

4/01/2022 – 03/31/2024

Re-Test Rate: 46%

Certificant and Candidate Complaint Process

Have a complaint or concern about Investments & Wealth Institute certification policy, practice, or decisions?

Send your complaint in writing—by email, mail, or fax—to IWI.

Your complaint will be reviewed by an Investments & Wealth Institute management team including its Chief Executive Officer. After review, complaints are forwarded to the appropriate team:

  • Requests to change certification policies go to the volunteer body that has governing authority over the policy in question.

  • Complaints about all other certification activities go to the certification department management team.

  • Complaints unrelated to certification activities go to the Senior Director of Administration and Chief Executive Officer for review and resolution.

Have Questions? Need Help?

Reach out to the IWI Certification Department with any questions about the certification process, eligibility, or learning the curriculum.