300 hours enough for CFA Level 1

Hi, I was wondering if any of you passed the CFA Level 1 exam by studying only the 300 hours needed that are mentioned on the CFA website? Thanks!

I’ll bite. Yes, I and many others on this forum passed with <= 300 hours of study. It tends to be more about quality vs. quantity when it comes to study hours. A lot of comes down to how fast you read, how many notes you take, how many practice questions you plow through, and how many practice exams you take.

I did about 350hrs and passed with flying colours, but it’s important to note that I had considerable studies in the area previously. It really depends on your previous studies and your ability to learn and memorise the material on a first run through. Reading the CFAI Cirriculum (if you take this route which many previous passers have not and just used Stalla/Schweser) takes about 150 hrs (approx.) and final review and mock exams will normally knock off another 50-100 so you’ll get there quite quickly. I am currently studying for III in June 2012 and Level I would be about the only Level that I feel you would get by with on the 300 hr mark for as the others require a fair bit more work.

So glad to know this. I just got the Schweser books and judging from all posts I will be using those and the EOC questions of the CFA material and mock exams. Do you think doing Level 1 in December and then Level 2 the following June is doable? Would just like to minimize the time of what people call “hell”! I do have a background in Economics and Finance. Thanks again!

December - June turnaround is certainly doable (many on this forum has claimed success at this). I myself did June 2009 and then June 2010 and found that I could take the material at a steady pace from August to June and got through but still found myself struggling to grasp some of the material by April 2010. As noted I didn’t have to study intensely so could easily have reduced the time frame but remember that June to June gives you 10 months to study for II and Dec to June gives you 4 months. I did about 500 hrs for II and again got good results matrix (8 >70% and 2 51-70%) but don’t think I could have passed with too many hours less. Assuming that 400 hrs could have got me through, this equates to 100 hrs per month in the Dec June method or about 25hrs/week for the 4 mths. From my perspective this describes “hell” but to others reading this stuff for 10 months could be their “hell”. Many seem to have got through with less time that this but I haven’t seen one yet that passed with great confidence and I think this is what giving yourself the greater turnaround time allows. Hope this helps.

Ok people, never once did the OP mention his/her background, education, or experience. So all these replies are based on random assumptions. We’re not talking community service here, people learn at various speeds and start at different levels. It’s about quality, not hours put in.

Why do people ask these questions? You know the answer is different for everyone. CFAI says 250 is the *minimum*, so just try to study significantly more than that… Even if people here say that 300 is enough, and you fail, are they suddenly wrong? Even if you feel the need to ask this question, why can’t you use the search button? This is why this forum needs to be moderated.

Thanks herrgrunta, greatly appreciated

Palantir, no one is obliging you to reply to my post, if it doesn’t concern you just don’t read it and move on instead of lecturing me!


I learned through osmosis.

depends on your background. I did not measure the number of hours spent but I am sure I spent less than 150 hours (and passed)

greengrape Wrote: ------------------------------------------------------- > I learned through osmosis. +1 And I, through kenosis.

I can assure you if my lady friend studied for 600 hours she would have a tough time passing. That should answer your question.

joelle Wrote: ------------------------------------------------------- > Palantir, no one is obliging you to reply to my > post, if it doesn’t concern you just don’t read it > and move on instead of lecturing me! Palantir brings up a valid point. The question of how many hours is needed comes up ALL THE TIME and I guess once you start seeing the same question over and over, it gets a little annoying, especially when it’s one that is unique to each individual. That much should be obvious.

Maybe there should be a FAQ list for questions like this.

^^ There should be. Personally, I only studied for about 150 hours and passed very easily. That being said, I was an accounting and finance major and had already seen most of the material.

300 hours is not enough. I suggest 301-303. I knew a couple guys who studied 296-298 and barely failed. I would recommend 302.97 hours. That should guarantee a pass. Seriously, I love these arbitrary numbers people throw out. People can pass with 200 hours and fail with 500 hours. It doesn’t freggin matter. If only matters what works for YOU.

I’m 85.7% sure you can pass with 358.75 hours of studying.

i would budget 600