Sign up  |  Log in

2020 Curriculum refresh/revamp

A friend of mine attended an external course providers’ workshop a few weeks back and the instructor mentioned that the CFA level 3 curriculum was getting a full refresh/revamp in 2020. The instructor was essentially emphasizing that if you didn’t pass the 2019 exam, there would be little rollover of content for next years exam and therefore you should try your best to pass this time around.

Apparently the last refresh was done ~15 years go.

Has anyone else heard this? or knows of anymore info?

The best just got better. Schweser's upgraded content and redesigned study platform are exactly what you need to pass the Level III exam. Save 10% when you preorder a Premium Package for a limited time.

Yes i heard this from my course lecturer as well. There will be a major revamp especially on individual / private wealth management part.

That’s a very bad news. It means the past AM exams will get even less relevant and we won’t have enough to practice.

And especially private wealth man was not really difficult.

Does it regard all levels or just 3rd?

Just a rumor or a truth?

If I fail and this revamp rumor turns out to be true…I’ll be so devastated. 

It ain't what you don't know that gets you in trouble. It's what you know for sure that just ain't so.

If this is true, this was my first and last attempt. Being a single parent with 2 children, my family suffered enough.

I’m overanxious since I’ve read it.  Gosh I thought I would be facing a year of doing practice of the material I more or less know solidly.

But now?

I mean there are changes each year, I understand equity was totally changed from 2018, but can they change majority of the material?

Private Wealth comes only in Level 3 so they can change what they want, but apart from that (and Institutional) the material is built on level 1 and 2, not?

Have there been major changes in level 1 and 2 materials lately?

Also for wealth management. IPS related stuff should remain kind of the same, not? Insurance, taxation, bequeathing, this should remain quite the same, or not?

I just hope they don’t cancel Derivatives, it was my strongest item. The only one I have no doubts of getting 100%. (Unfortunately low weighted).

They are refreshing the entire cirriculum one topic at a time. FI got refreshed 2018, Equity 2019 and I am sure something in 2020. If you ask me the refresh is needed but people who are writing the new readings are terrible and quality is not very good. Equity and Fixed income were tough reads this year. As an example the BB question in fixed income was a 5-7 page long none sense… i got splitting headache every time i tried to read it… surely they can break it up to more understandable chunks. What makes it worst the authors are so different in their approaches so overlapping topics between subjects can contradict. Another problem is authors are not who make up the exam questions and that really gets people when exam come around. 

They need to get rid of those intro readings that gets covered in more depth in the following readings.

From my perspective, CFAI does not provide students with sufficient practice material and you really need to rely on non-official material to get sufficient practice. Also, as said above, there is quite some difference between how a lecture was written vs. how it was tested. Such method unnecessarily increases difficulty in a wrong way and could cause confusion among candidates.

^ I didn’t downvote you but I will say I disagree. In derivatives for example, interest rate options are very comprehensively covered. They show examples for puts, calls, collars, and caplets/floorlets. Similarly, the curriculum is quite clear in terms of how other derivatives strategies and hedging work, how to value them, when to use them, who’s winning/losing etc. It’s up to us the candidates to learn them and think about them. BBs, EOCs, and TTs are adequate practice, and you also have past exams to review.

Some readings are quite poorly written (FI for example is all over the place and the carry trade stuff is a nightmare). But in general, resorting to third parties is more due to being lazy and looking for short-cuts (I’m not above this btw), than due to shortcomings in the curriculum.

Tactics, by saying practice material I really mean EOCs. Because there is a difference between learning stuff and applying what you have learned. I never said anything negative about reading material. In addition, I find mocks to be somewhat unrealistic and poorly written.

If they could provide EOCs that test every kind of material covered and that could pop up on an exam that would have been awesome. It would reward those who are willing to go an extra mile, while it would reduce number of people who did not pass because they were unlucky (saw some questions they did not practice for, etc.)

N.VanCandidate wrote:

They are refreshing the entire cirriculum one topic at a time. FI got refreshed 2018, Equity 2019 and I am sure something in 2020. If you ask me the refresh is needed but people who are writing the new readings are terrible and quality is not very good. Equity and Fixed income were tough reads this year. As an example the BB question in fixed income was a 5-7 page long none sense… i got splitting headache every time i tried to read it… surely they can break it up to more understandable chunks. What makes it worst the authors are so different in their approaches so overlapping topics between subjects can contradict. Another problem is authors are not who make up the exam questions and that really gets people when exam come around. 

Equity is definitely poorly written. For Equity 2019, till this day I don’t even know what they are trying to get at for the active investing part. Can they do a better job at teaching something meaningful to the next generation of finance professionals (esp. those of us who don’t actually deal with this stuff day to day - we rely on what you tell us, so please don’t screw up).

are these entirely different readings?

It's a long shot, gotta make it.

no GIPS anymore ?

alternative become 2 readings.

currency team up with derivatives, awesome.

"You could not live with your own failure. Where did that bring you? Back to me." (Thanos - Endgame)

Epsilon wrote:

are these entirely different readings?

Yes

jounin83 wrote:

no GIPS anymore ?
alternative become 2 readings.
currency team up with derivatives, awesome.

GIPS now appears to be under Reading #6, with other Ethics readings (instead of Performance Evaluation)

Failing would suck. But then again, if I’d have to redo LIII, I’d prefer to learn new stuff. I know I knew and understood the majority of last year’s curriculum. Redoing all that would just mean practicing test taking, which I find to be a waste of 6 months. But having to redo LIII and going through a revamped curriculum would be a value-adding process. After all, there’s a reason why 13 readings are getting the axe and why so many completely new readings are added. 

If you're the first out the door, that's not called panicking

Codtrawler87 wrote:

Failing would suck. But then again, if I’d have to redo LIII, I’d prefer to learn new stuff. I know I knew and understood the majority of last year’s curriculum. Redoing all that would just mean practicing test taking, which I find to be a waste of 6 months. But having to redo LIII and going through a revamped curriculum would be a value-adding process. After all, there’s a reason why 13 readings are getting the axe and why so many completely new readings are added. 

I feel the same way. If I pass I might even purchase the new materials anyway because, like you said, it has additional value. Fingers crossed I’ll have the option to do it on my own time and not feel the pressure of having to do it for another exam though…

It almost feels unfair how drastically the material changed compared to other candidates who rewrote basically the same test again but had a year to focus on weaker areas. 

Anyways, I noticed that L1 and L2 pass rates were 2-3 percent lower compared to last year. Do you think it will be lower for L3 this time around?

Codtrawler87 wrote:

Failing would suck. But then again, if I’d have to redo LIII, I’d prefer to learn new stuff. I know I knew and understood the majority of last year’s curriculum. Redoing all that would just mean practicing test taking, which I find to be a waste of 6 months. But having to redo LIII and going through a revamped curriculum would be a value-adding process. After all, there’s a reason why 13 readings are getting the axe and why so many completely new readings are added. 

That is a great perspective I didn’t think about. I kept thinking how it would suck if they revamped the curriculum. But it will actually be good.

Pass or fail I learned a lot on this level 3 run. Going through it again partially with new material would be good.

It is like CFA level 4 for the people who fail this year.

Codtrawler87

Good thoughts. But in the case of redo I hope you get the chance to practically use that new stuff of lvl 3 in your job because otherwise who cares about new knowledge by spending another year of stress. What matters the most is three letters sooner than later with your name and end this journey!

If I were in your place, i would have said same things to myself to keep motivated. But reality is spending another year sucks. 

So Good Luck with your results, all of you. I hope you only see CFA with your names this year.

I am a retaker this year and tbh, I did learn more the second time around and I did find it beneficial.

However, if you ask me now, I just want to be done with this once and for all.

Just skimmed through the new LOS. There seems to be a lot ot new stuff. Maybe not brand new but you won’t be able to avoid reading every single page of the new curriculum.

Easy stuff like risk management, trading, perf. evaluation seems to be so different.

Gosh, I’m so angry now, I just can’t set aside this amount of time once again.

On June 16th I thought no big deal if I failed because I’m sure I can do a much better preparation for the exam, but now I’d rather focus on my job for a few years (on top of family), as level 3 material has practically nothing to do with my job (past or future) however interesting it is…

it is not a revamp, 90% or so still the same, they just shuffled the content in different order and added a couple readings that to me looked interesting

The last readings seem to mix togehter risk, trading, and perf. evaluation.

This could open room for totally new questions from new angles. I’m not saying it does not seem interesting, but that’s one thing.

And I’m not happy they touched derivatives.

A quick summary on the changes:

https://youtu.be/xDNsqWUAXi0

mskhan91 wrote:

Codtrawler87

Good thoughts. But in the case of redo I hope you get the chance to practically use that new stuff of lvl 3 in your job because otherwise who cares about new knowledge by spending another year of stress. What matters the most is three letters sooner than later with your name and end this journey!

If I were in your place, i would have said same things to myself to keep motivated. But reality is spending another year sucks. 

So Good Luck with your results, all of you. I hope you only see CFA with your names this year.

I totally agree with this, and will find a way to read the new readings no matter what.
Moreover doing so will always be better if I don’t have to stress for an upcoming exam.