Can re-use Schweser's Note or not?

Hi, I’m a dummy in Level I June 2009. I’ve just registered and currently starting looking for material to study. After hanging around this forum few days, I found you guys here are very helful and motivated. Would you please help me in these ques: 1. Do you guy know whether we can use the Schweser’s Notes June 2008 for June 2009? Are these two versions significantly different? Can QBank be re-used for practice? 2. If we should buy the new Schweser. which package did you guy use for LI? I don’t know whether Premium Packg is by far advantage than the Essential one? Does “16-Week Online Class” , “Video CDs” and “3-Day Seminar” in Premium Packg worth $300 ($899-$599)? And does “3-Day Seminar Archive”, “2-Day Mock Exam” and “Schweser’s Secret Sauce” in PremiPlus Packg worth $405 ($1304-$899)? 3. If you guy didn’t buy the whole package? What are core products of Schweser you guy bought for LI? 4. Is there any way to save money if want to use Schweser’s? Thank you guy very much.

  1. Have a look on Schweser website to see how many changes CFAI have made. While they’ll naturally talk up the changes it will give you an idea. Personally I wouldn’t use an old copy as I’d be too worried about the changes. Q bank is turned off each year so no chance. 2. Who pays? I did essential with some add ons. How do you like to study, what’s your background? 3. Again depends on how you study, your background and how deep your pockets are. Notes, q bank, both exam books. I know people who like and dislike flashcards. Lots of people think secret sauce is the best thing since sliced bread. I’ve not used it for various reasons (planned to last time but didn’t in the end). I like the cds (but I’m in a minority of about 1 on this). 4. Buy less pay less. Buy more get discount. Don’t use them. Buy early get discount. Get work to pay.

Hi Hurricane, Thanks for your reply. I pay by myself. Of course that my pocket is not so deep. But for me, money is not as important as whether I can have time enough to “consume” all of the material if they’re too much, i.e in PremiPlus Packg. I have background on Banking & Finance, but I think it’s not so strong ('cos I lost the First Class and got only Second-Upper Hon Class for Master Degree in UK) I’m currently working full-time,but not in Financial Sector. So that’s why I scared of losing my knowledge since long time not use it. Also, I think I’m slow reader (since English is not my mothertonge). Ques again: 1. What is “flash card”? 2. What is “Sceret sauce”? What do Schweser’s says in this? exam tips? 3. For CDs. Do they record something like lecture or explanation of the instructors? I mean I can’t imagine how it is. 3. How many exam books are there in a package? Or you guys collect exam books from many previous years?

English is not my mother tongue either and when I took the Level I exam I was in a similar situation as you are now, working full time in non-banking sector etc. I found the best mix in my case was to have the Schweser notes combined with on-line seminar (16 weeks) and the mp3 audio files (on my iPod) and - most importantly - access to the QBank (software with a seemingly infinite database of questions). I also have the flash cards but didn’t use them as much as the other material. (A flash card is a card, like a playing card but larger, with the LOS learning outcome statement on one side and the answer on the flip side. It is handy for studying when commuting to work on the underground and similar cramped-up and noisy places.) The mp3 audio (or CDs) are, basically, a guy reading out loud from the books. That way you can study while commuting to work by car, or in the gym or while going for a walk. The material is rather large so everything helps. I used the mp3 files a lot, found them helpful of reinforcing the material and the rationale for using them is that I’m not fluent in English and although I don’t consider myself to be a slow reader, it’s always easier to take in something that is spoken than something written down - especially if you’re tired. Then you can use both simultaneously and I realise by saying this I come across a total nutcase but it was actually the only way for me to concentrate hard when studying late in the evening as I had to do. In my personal opinion it’s not worth the effort to study from old study material; the curriculum is tough as it is and in my case I was working full time and didn’t have the inclination for trying to track down all changes and go look for alternative sources for the material that had changed since last year. Edited/added: The Secret Sauce is a summary of all the material, a book you use when studying for the exam during the final few weeks. I had that too. And I also had the on-line exams that they sell separately, you might want to consider purchasing them too. Practicing the actual test taking helps a lot, it’s not only a question of knowing the stuff, but also to be able to answer the 240 questions accurately at quite a considerable speed. It’s a test of endurance.

Thanks, MehdiOchre 1. Audio MP3 CD is not included in the package (neither Premiu Pckg or PremPlus Packg), is it? 2. Video CDs is included in the Premi package. If I wanna use this on the way (everyday I travel by underground), but I don’t have the Ipod, can I take the audio files out to save it in my MP3 player? or Video CDs only can be used in a CD Player? I also agree with MehdiOchre that listenning somtimes is easier than reading something, especially when you wanna study late after a long working day. 3. For Schweser Pro (online + download), if we add $25 we’ll have the CD. When we have the CD, can we still can go online, surf net everywhere to download material? 4. MehdiOchre said you take the “online exams which they sold seperatly”. What is this? In list of Schweser’s products, I only see the “Practice Exam Vol I and Vol 2”. Are these the same?

In my experience, the study notes books are all you need. I study better when I read and write than when I listen to tapes. I tend to remember facts on paper better. When I am driving, I am paying attention to driving and cannot focus on the tapes. The online practice exams that Mehdi refers to I believe are the online exams that are sold by the CFA Institute on line. I recommend that you take a few of them. With respect to the 2008 vs. 2009 books. You can get (now, before the CFA Institute takes it down from the web site) the Study Session outline for 2008 and 2009. Compared them. I believe that most everything is the same except for Study Session 10 (major changes) and some small changes here and there. For all LOSs that are exactly the same in 2008 and 2009, you can use the 2008 book. For the few LOSs that are different (if there are fewer than 10% of LOSs that changed), you can use the 2009 notes of a cheaper provider like Analyst Notes or Adar Review. They cost $70-$100. If your company was paying, my recommendation would be different. Practice questions are the most important tool. Forget about the costly and unnecessary flash cards and other stuff (such as the online or in-person classes), and make sure you buy a good package of questions, such as the practice exam book from Schweser. I would laso suggest that getting the 2009 practice exam book is a good idea. Best of luck.