Any Advice From L2 retakers?

Please excuse me if this topic has been previously covered. I did search the history and did not find anything similar. The question is for people taking the test again. I am surprised and, yes, overwhelmed by the amount of topics covered by the sweiser sample exams, the mock exams as well as the large disparity between the two. Based on your experience and on what you have seen on the sweiser and cfai mock exam, are there topics which you would not expect to see on saturday, or vice versa, anything which you have not seen on those two sources but are making sure you cover or otherwise small stupid or so basic things you kicked yourself for not knowing before?

My studying guiding principle has been to get a basic feel for all of the subjects by reading through the material and focus on the details of concepts and formula applications as I encounter them in the sample test problems. I obviously put more time into the heavier weighteds subjects, but I feel like I start to lose sight of the forest for trees. I obviously cannot nail down the minutae of every formula so I guess what I’m looking for is the balance between tree, branch, leaf, stoma, TVPI and the forest. Hence, any advice based on intuition from your prior experience would be helpful and much appreciated to get back on an even keel. I only have those sample test as a guide to whats important but I have been so focused on them I dont want to miss out on the obvious or waste time on the unlikely or untestable.

Thanks guys and gals

and best wishes

it would be a violation of the standards of professional conduct to answer this question as you’ve asked it.

this said, i have used the EOC questions as a guide. if a reading has many EOC questions, it is probably more likely to show up on the exam than a topic area that has no questions at all. similarly, if you see a similar pattern on your sample exams, that may be indicative of more heavily-tested topics. how many practice tests you did had questions about temporal vs. current rate method, for example? i know many of mine did. this section also had a fair amount of EOC questions. good luck.

I am not a retaker, but they can ask whatever they damn well please. For example, I am expecting them to ask somethign from the new ethics sections (Soft Dollar, Research Objectivity, etc…) but they could ask questiosn from just the first section of ethics which is identical to Level 1. I doubt that they wouldn’t touch this new stuff, but I believe the CFA Institute uses stratified random sampling to choose the LOS’s to be tested. Basically if you want to guess what will/won’t be on it then you better be lucky.

I have not seen many temporal and current method questions on 2011 and 2012 mocks.


The only consensus is: know everything. There’s no gaming this exam like the VWAP method.

I would make sure you on your p’s and q’s on ethics. And by that I mean the standards reading in which CFAI dedicated 64 EOC questions on vs. those 6 EOC questions on soft dollars that all but BS their way on the 2012 mock. It’s harder to fail a person who kills ethics come exam day. Don’t be fooled CFAI’s over weighting of obscure topics on their Mocks.

Shoot I’ve said too much, dont want that PCS catching me writing durty!

Huh, thanks for the heads up on the violation indication. Certainly not what I was shooting for. I was looking for sharing of personal experiences and personal opinions like, I would not expect to see amortizing leases again because we saw plenty of that in L1 or discussing the impact of LIFO,FIFO given how thoroughly it was covered previously and how much new material there is to cover.

I don’t think it’s violation to say that after my first L1 failure one of the things I really worked on for myself was nailing down standard deviation. Such a basic concept throughout the entire material and at times I drew a blank. At any rate, in the spirit of full disclosure , I asked the L3 forum a similar question and they had some good feedback.