During results week, 300 Hours created a set of online tools to help candidates analyze the details of their results. The following part of the analysis, as hinted, is to aggregate the results and draw out some additional conclusions from the overall sample.
Well, many thanks to all who contributed! After some analysis into the sample, here are some additional info that might be interesting to AF-ers.
Firstly, the pass rate of the sample. The pass rate for all submissions is much higher than the overall CFA Level I pass rate - 72%. This is to be expected as there would be a bias towards candidates going the extra mile researching online as well as the skew from AF forum members.
The full details of the analysis may be a bit too lengthy and boring to list here, but the 5 key learnings from the analyses are:
- Strongest subjects. The subjects with the best performance by candidates are Corporate Finance, Equity Investments, Ethics and Financial Reporting & Analysis. So strong, in fact, that in the passing candidates’ sample, almost no candidates scored below 50% in any of those topics. These topics are relative heavyweights as well - together, these subjects comprise about 53% of the exam.
- Weak areas. The pain points for candidates are Derivatives, Economics and Quantitative Methods. This is especially impactful in Economics and Quantitative Methods as they account for 10% and 12% of the exam respectively.
- A key difference between passing and failing candidates is a lack of focus on the heavy-weighted subjects. The drop in quality across failing candidates compared to the passing pool is fairly even, but high-weighting topics decline more than others - a solemn reminder to candidate to make sure to focus on topics with high weighting. A notable exception to this is Ethics - with 15% weighting, it is one of the best-performing topics in the failed candidates sample. Perhaps an effect of the ethic adjustment study tip.
- The MPS is probably 64%. Based on the data so far, the Minimum Passing Score for Level I June 2012 is somewhere between 64% and 68%. It’s likely to be 64%, but more data would be needed to further confirm this.
- The difference between bands is about 8-11 questions. The average percentage difference between bands is about 3-4%. This equates to about 8 to 11 questions in the Level I exam.