Certified Association Executive 

Whether you're ready to take your career to the next level or just looking to check earning the CAE off of your list, you have what it takes to become a Certified Association Executive! The CAE credential is the marker of a committed association professional who has demonstrated the wide range of knowledge essential to manage an association in today’s challenging environment.

With the highest success rate in the nation, we have helped more association professionals become CAEs than any other entity. We offer a process-based approach that incorporates study guides, reading comprehension questions, flashcards, and practice tests. With three different courses, we have an option to fit every level of preparedness.

Full Prep Course

[16 Weeks]

Fall 2024 Dates: Aug 5 - Nov 25

MSAE's CAE Full Prep Course is an in-depth professional development experience, carefully paced to provide a thorough exploration of all eight CAE content domains over 16 weeks. This course includes a detailed study plan, weekly quick key assessments, webinar debriefs and discussion posts, as well as two mini exams and a full, online simulated exam - all with debriefs.

See tab below for details.



Concentrated Course

[8 weeks]

Fall 2024 Dates: Sept 16 - Nov 25

If you have participated in the ASAE Immersion Program or have started the CAE process, this accelerated version of the full course is for you. Condensed to an 8-week period, participants participate in weekly instructor-led webinars, and receive a study plan, test-taking tips, and a 200-question simulated exam with instructor-led debrief.

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CRAM Course

[1 week Intensive]

Fall 2024 Dates: Nov 8 - Nov 25

This is the ideal program for CAE candidates who have taken a preparation course or are taking the CAE exam for a second time. Participants review, discuss key decisions tested in the exam. We recommend that attendees read the Professional Practices of Association Management and MSAE's Terminology and Key Concepts Flash Cards prior to participating.

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CRAM Session

Course Schedule

CRAM Course video calls will be held daily Tuesday - Friday from 2:30-5:00 pm ET. While we recommend live participation whenever possible, all calls are recorded for listening in your own time frame. 


Exam Application


Course Content Start Date Simulated
Dec. 1-14, 2024 Sept. 27, 2024 November 8, 2024
2:30-4:00 pm ET
Nov 12, 2024 Nov 18, 2024
9 am - 6 pm ET

CRAM Features & Format

Candidates who participate in this program will have access to the following:

  • 38 hours of live and video learning with 32 videos in mini-session format, covering key content from the 31 sub-domains of the CAE Content Outline. This format will allow you the flexibility of listening to those topics that you may be struggling with.
  • Four Test-Taking Tip Videos, three foundational videos, and one How to Think Through a CAE Question.
  • 80 Questions with 10 questions focused on each domain. These questions are not included in any of our other CAE products.
  • Live video calls, during which we will review the questions and the logic behind each answer option.
  • The review will offer some enhancements, pulling content from the mini-session videos to demonstrate key concepts. All video calls will be recorded and available to access within 4 hours of the live call events.
  • Access to the simulated final exam of 200 multiple-choice questions in electronic format. The paper exam will also be available, but the electronic version will give you the experience of four hours intently focused on a computer screen.

Course Fees & Registration

  • Registration Fee: $1150

Candidates currently participating in one of our CAE preparation course are eligible for a $400 discount, which will be applied automatically at registration. 

Candidates who have previously participated in one of our CAE preparation course should contact MSAE to receive their promo code for a $300 discount. 

Members of partner allied societies are eligible for a 20% discount. Contact your state/regional society for the discount promo code. 
*only one discount is allowed per registration

Click here to register or view course details for FALL 2024.

Textbooks & Study Materials

Continuing Education Credits

Fall 2024 Course: ****PLEASE NOTE, ASAE's CAE Commission has announced new guidelines for its CAE Registered Provider Program. This MSAE course has been submitted for pre-approval for CAE Credit; total CAE hours will be posted for the Fall 2024 course when approval is received. 

Registered CAE ProviderThe Michigan Society of Association Executives is a CAE Registered Provider. This course meets the requirements for fulfilling the professional development requirements to earn or maintain the Certified Association Executive credential. Every program that we offer that has been approved for CAE credit will clearly identify the number of CAE credits granted for full participation. We will maintain records of your participation in accordance with CAE policies. For more information about the CAE credential or Registered Provider program, please visit www.asaecenter.org/cae

Cancellation Policy

Registration for CAE courses is non-refundable and non-transferable to other registrants. Requests to transfer to a later CAE course must be received within five (5) days of the start of the course or event. Registrants will be charged $50 for the transfer. The new course must occur within one (1) year. It is the responsibility of the registrant to initiate registration for the later course.

Thank You to Our Course Sponsors:

The Full, Concentrated, and CRAM CAE Courses were created and are maintained by Michigan Society of Association Executives. 

MSAE CAE Flashcards

You are Certainly Certifiable!™

Test your knowledge! Can you answer these sample CAE questions?

For over half a century, the Certified Association Executive (CAE) designation remains the symbol for excellence in every facet of association management. The program is designed to elevate professional standards, enhance individual performance, and designate association professionals who demonstrate the knowledge essential to the practice of association management. Those who are currently employed with an association and are looking to move into a chief staff position in the near future should consider this certification.

Self-confidence. 70% of CAE test takers report enhancing knowledge, improving advancement opportunities, and evaluating their status as their motivation.

Value and recognition particularly among board leaders, members, and those involved in hiring nonprofit professionals.

Create connections through a range of CAE-only events and increased volunteer leadership opportunities through the MSAE and ASAE.