Actual Exam - is it split into sections?

or can one question be a mix of ethics and reporting etc etc.

expect the worst

I doubt they’ll mix ethics with anything else but they can mix up other sections. That said, the exam comes with a cover sheet telling you the order and subject matter of the item sets in that paper. Its just that the ‘Quants’ section might include subject matter from Economics for instance. Generally they won’t go mixing pensions and options pricing in the same item set. Only when there is a natural overlap between topics.

They break it out by section, but last year they threw a pure econ question in the quant section, so keep on your toes!

How many item set were in PM, Alternative and Derivatives?

Is the total number of item sets fixed? Is the number of questions per item set fixed? I haven’t seen any of the exams (real or otherwise) yet.

Yes. There are 20 item sets: 10 am and 10 pm. 6 questions each. 120 total questions. How many of each topic is anyone’s guess.

I just knew that, thanks.

I would recommend that you take a sample/mock in the next week or so to get yourself accustomed to the format. If you use Stalla, then take one of the am exams. I haven’t used the CFAI sample or mock yet, but you could also do one of those as we all get a free one of each (sample and mock). I think one of the difficulties of CFAI exams is that, not only is the material difficult, but the test format changes at each level. Your approach to this is exam is a little different from LI because of the format and you should give yourself time to get ‘acclimated’. Hope that helps.

One more hold my hand question about exam format… Is the order of the item sets completely random or does it roughly follow the curriculum order of Ethics, quant, CF, FRA, etc.? I understand there may only be one item set for a some topics so that could prevent a quant item set (for example) in both the AM and PM, but is that order generally followed, or does it completely jump around? (I’m looking at you Aimee - you are the format guru!)

I’m not Aimee, but I did stay in a Holiday Inn Express last night. I’m pretty sure it follows the curriculum order. I believe each item set will list the topic covered at the top of the page so you can jump to the topic you are most confortable with (anticipating your question?).

Well, in that case, I guess I have to respond!! :slight_smile: If you’re taking the Schweser exams it’s pretty much exactly the same… they start from the lowest numbered study session and work their way up. So, most likely they’ll start with Ethics and work their way though (depending on which topics are being test) to Derivatives or PM. Everything’s labelled pretty clearly so its not really an issue, you know what topic you’re on for each item set.