Bizarre results - please help

I am wondering if anyone has ever experienced results similar to the scores I posted below. I did not exactly hit a home run in Item Set, but, the scores are not bad. My essay scores are all <50%, and, a modest contradiction to my item set scores. I am assuming my essay scores reflect either a mistake I experienced with either the exam format, or a scoring issue. Does anyone have an experience with retabulation?

Essay** Q# Topic Max Pts <=50% 51%-70% >70% 1 Portfolio Management - Individual 27 * - - 2 Portfolio Management - Individual 9 * - - 3 Portfolio Management - Execution 21 * - - 4 Portfolio Management - Individual 17 * - - 5 Economics 24 * - - 6 Portfolio Management - Institutional 34 * - - 7 Fixed Income Investments 23 - * - 8 Derivatives 13 * - - 9 Derivatives 12 * - - Item Set Q# Topic Max Pts <=50% 51%-70% **>70% - Alternative Investments 18 * - - - Equity Investments 18 - - * - Ethical & Professional Standards 36 - - * - Fixed Income Investments 18 - * - - Portfolio Management 18 * - - - Portfolio Management - Asset Allocation 18 * - - - Portfolio Management - Individual 18 * - - - Portfolio Management - Performance Eval. 18 - - * - Portfolio Management - Risk Management 18 - - * We have divided the group of candidates who did not pass into 10 approximately equal score bands. Your score band below shows how your overall score on the exam compares with the overall scores of candidates who did not pass this exam. Your score band: 3

You had 1 morning section in the mid 50-70 band.

The afternoon scores usually across the board are always higher, given you have a 1/3 chance of guessing the answer

Retab will NOT rescore your morning section. Only add up the scores again to make sure it totals correctly.

Agreed with iteracom. Had a retab done after failing band 10 in 2010 and it didn’t do anything. They won’t regrade, only re-add the results. Sorry for the the bad news, man.

I’m guessing you answered the AM section in the wrong place on the paper.

as far as I know, level III is all about the afternoon session. You seem to have 3 sections that are below 50%? and that may explain why you failed. Your morning session seems to be below average as well with only 1 at 5–70%.

Thanks for commenting iteracom. I do not mean to be argumentative…I am just really dejected with having to accept the disconnect in my scores. I agree the afternoon section has better odds than the morning section. However, the scores I posted show modest comprehension in the item set, and, virtually no comprehension of the essay questions.

Well the bottom band is 0%-50%. So, it is possible you did get half the questions correct, which isn’t so bad.

It’s just the way the score is reported that makes it look like you got everything wrong.

I filled out the boxes, which were below the essay questions. Also, if I ran out of space, I used the lined paper with respect to the question number (at least I thought I did). I did not use the action words/verbs/etc. I wonder if I wrote my answers incorrectly on the answer sheet for the exam booklet.

What boxes below the questions? There are only some sections that have a template, for every other section you have to write your answers only on the lined pages. This was my downfall last year.

“My essay scores are all <50%”

I’m in the same boat jteel, sorry to hear the news. Got demolished in am, to the point where I think I may have answered in the wrong place given how i was scoring on mocks. Does anyone know if CFAI will disclose if answers were written in the wrong area?

I actually got almost the same scores as you - Low pass in 7 of the 9 sections in morning (2 mid pass). Then 4 high passes, 2 mids, and 3 lows in the afternoon. It just doesnt make sense to me. I mean I know for a fact I wasn’t THAT brain dead on the questions in the morning. Low passing on 7 of 9 sessions with no high passes says to me you pretty much had no clue what you were doing the whole time. I KNOW this wasn’t the case for me. Everyone in my office who took L3 and studied with me is completely speechless and confused by my scores… But then again, seems like plenty of people end up in this boat… I suspect we all got burned on some kind of formatting or style of answering. Maybe we put an answer in the wrong place and effectively got zeroes for certain questions… I dont know. But what I do know is that I know I correctly answered more than 50% of the questions in the morning and these results suggest I didnt even know half.

So there really is no way to get them to review your essay portion? I mean it’s subjective… there should be some way to review answers in context.

last year I did quite well in the afternoon and the morning grade, comparatively, was better than yours. But I still failed. So morning session is very important, IMO.

And one last note: I think that is what makes it worse… the fact that there’s no way you can really find out what went so horribly wrong. Again, my results suggest that I had no clue what I was doing in the morning session, when in reality it could’ve just been a matter of a grader not being able to find an answer, or knowing which circled choice to take because I had circled one, x’ed it, circled another, x’ed it, etc… or simply not “liking” the way I wrote an answer in a bullet point or something.

I just don’t like being told “oh you failed…” and not being able to know the circumstances… it’s one thing to simply not know how to solve a problem. But it’s totally separate and NOT INDICATIVE OF KNOWLEDGE OF THE CIRRICULUM to effectively get a question wrong because you said “taxes are an area of concern for this investor” instead of “the investor has a tax constraint” or something along those lines.

Clearly I’m pretty upset about this… I just know there’s no way I truly did that bad in the morning session.

jteel1, did you answer the essay questions on the lined paper provided, or on the page where the questions were written. If you answered on the page where the questions were written, they will not grade anything on those pages. This happened to me last year. Almost all my essay responses were below 50, except for one where most of the points were from a template that I filled out.

I am sorry to hear about the morning demolition stories. I thought the AM section was difficult but I did not believe I was unprepared, comprehensively. I am skeptical of the AM scores I received and plan to contact the CFA Insittute. I would appreciate, for those who received low AM scores, if they could provide their exam testing location. Thank you all for your comments.

Bukcy6225, I provided a majority of my answers on the page where the questions were written. How did you find out that was your issue with the morning session?

I hate to be the bearer of bad news but take my word for it, both myself and Bucky fought this all the way up to the heads of the program, and got nowhere. I don’t like the format, I believe it is counterintuitive and poorly designed, but unfortunately it is their game and we have to play by their rules.

Sorry Bucky. Your answer explains everything. I thought it was safe to place the answers in the boxes on the same page as the questions. Did anyone else have this experience and receive either a positive or negative result?

I don’t think the testing location has any impact on the grading. They really need to improve the answer sheets for the AM. I found myself rewriting the answers because I didn’t realize they had a ‘template’ for the answer on the next page.

You are right ZeroBonus. I was just trying to mine data for any consistency in the location. Apparently, after reading posts from last year, the issue is writing the answers in the boxes provided. We needed to write the answers in the lined paper. Please read the literature below:

CFABLACKBELT Wrote: ——————————————————- > Honestly the way the CFAI set it up is really > stupid IMO. Why not just have templates for all > answer choices? Also, why not provide the sample > exams online in a similar format as the real exam? > That would probably reduce the confusion come > test day. Makes no sense.

CFAI’s official policy is that if you don’t use the template, but rather write them in the lined pages, they will grade it according to the lined pages.

On the Level III exam, I wrote my answer on a lined answer page instead of on the template. Was my answer graded?

CFA Institute grades answers that are written on pages labeled for a specific answer, regardless of whether you used the template provided. You will not be penalized if you did not use the template. Be reminded, however, that you waste valuable time by redrawing a template that is already provided for you. Instructions in bold print immediately following a question will direct you to the page numbers of the template if a template is provided. Candidates should answer on the templates provided and should follow the instructions given in the template. Answers written on the question pages or on the pages marked “Intentionally Left Blank” are not graded.