Sign up  |  Log in

How many hours you've spent preparing for each level?

My estimate 

Level 1 : 350 hours 

Level 2 : 550 hours

Level 3 : 800 hours

Total : 1700 hours 

If you weren't successful on your Level III exam, you'll want to be the first to know when Schweser study materials are available for 2020 exams. Sign up below, and we'll notify you as soon as they are available for sale.

Level 1 (Dec 15) probably 150 and winged a pass in the exam.

Went straight into Level 2 June 16 first time round having probably studied 200-250 and failed band 10. In my view 4.5 months is not enough time to master level 2 so when I re-sat (and passed) in June 17 I made sure I did at least 300-350 hours and started earlier.

Hit L3 CFAI curriculum in Sept 18 (took June 2018 off as my daughter was born) and probably did 400+ hours of study/revision/classes etc. left the exam feeling I had been able to give a good account of what I had learnt and that another month of intensive study wouldn’t have changed my result.

Total 150+250+350+400= 1,150hrs

I don’t track how many hrs that I spent for both levels given busy schedule at work. But from what I remember level 2 and level 1 repeat many topics. I studied less than 6 months and passed at the 1st attempt. It depends how fast you master it.

An absolute **** load.

¯\_(ツ)_/¯ It be like that sometimes.

Show down voted post ALBAREGINA -5 points

Level I -   350

Level II -  650

Level III - 750

Whoever tells you that they spent less than 1,000 hours on all three levels and passed all on the first try is either lying or is a genius at which point they should go work for NASA and have no business studying for the CFA (despite the fact that CFA is one of the top intelligence tests in the world).

"Always remember that you are absolutely unique. Just like everyone else. " -Margaret Mead

I never tracked my hours, but I recall starting to study in September for L2 and L3.  I planned to read all the Kaplan books by March and then reread problem topics and my own notes, leaving May up until the exam to just do mocks.

I figure I had to average an hour per day during the week and 4 hours per weekend day.  That amounts to roughly 500 hours for L2 and L3 before accounting for the frenetic last week crash and burn where I significantly upped my hours.  So all in all I’d venture a guess of about 550 hours for each of L2 and L3, respectively.

Level 1 - about 150ish, didn’t start keeping a detailed tracker till L2

Level 2 - 210

Level 3 - 250

Hoping that last one was enough

Well, here is the thing what I have noticed with academics and “higher” level students (Including your’s truly!). Both @ the office and with my fellow students:

We become *******s. We become uptight.  We think that admitting that we put effort into something (important) is a sign of weakness. We think that admitting that we don’t 100% understand what OAS means that you’re less of a human…or worse…failing the CFA exam!

Here is story which has changed my view of CFA Charterholders for good.: in Feb.2016, I sent a polite, well-thought out email to an low-level asset manager whom I respected…whom I wished to be one day. He had completed the CFA program and was/is a current CFA member. I asked the basic questions regarding LVL1 (LVL1 was a big thing for me back then!) etc. His reply was more or less…misleading…or even lame.  He explained me how he has studied 2-3 days before each exam and how easy all 3 exams actually were. Back then, I was rather naive and I didn’t understand what finance was all about. After sitting for the 3rd exam I know he lied big time.  And now, 4-5 yrs later, I have surpassed him in what we would call “career hierarchy”. It dissapoints me to see people who wish to  pump their own tires instead of helping others. 

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.

Level I: about 50 hours => was a rather narrow pass (did it back in 2015 and had several categories between 50-70).

Level II: about 150-175 hours => noticed at the exam that i was clearly over prepared and ended up getting 90th+ percentile in all 10 topics (did it in 2018)

Level III: about 125-150 hours => absolutely smashed the exam and expect a similar result as on level II. 

Total: 325-375 hours. Worth mentioning though that I had done a master degree in finance beforehand which went quite a bit more in depth than the CFA curriculum. Also, these hours were all concentrated in the 2 weeks before the exam in a cram study mode (would take days off from my job and study about 12 hours a day) 

In total (I’m a re-taker) I probably spent 800+ hours.

Never tracked. For level 3 probably about 2hrs/day on average from mid-January to about end of April. Around 3hrs/day on May and June because of mocks etc. So that amounts to roughly (30*3+15) * 2 + 47*3 = 351 hours.

Yes. I took master degree in finance as well back in 2011. It    helped a lot in preparing for level 1 and 2.