CFAI text necessary?

I am studying from the Schweser notes for almost 2 months now, and i just realized that I am probably missing something thats not in the Schweser notes but in the CFAI text. Would it be same to continue studying the Schweser notes and do the Qbank questions without having the CFAI text?

This December, no. Anytime after, yes. There have been alot of posts here, from veterans and ex-graders, with credible views on CFAI’s anger with Schweser and Stalla pretty much “stealing” there program material. In return, CFAI has become aware of topics less covered in Stalla, etc., and specifically test those areas with greater weight. The CFAI books are larger, longer, and for a reason. Understanding the concepts and materials is not as simple as high school crib notes, or shortened, condensed versions. The CFAI books can also make for good future reference, with the detail that you will probably want.

I agree the official CFAI curriculum will play a more important role going forward, but that the breadth and relatively large number of questions at Level I will allow candidates who only use notes to pass comfortably. Level I consists of 240 questions, of which you can miss about 70 and still pass. If you invest adequate time studying your notes, solving practice problems, taking practice exams, and reviewing in general, I just don’t see how CFAI could possibly throw enough curve-balls at you to make you fail. That being said, you simply have to read and learn the complete ethics section published by CFAI, even Schweser acknowledges this point. Friends of mine passed Level II this year using the Schweser notes alone, but I don’t intend to use this approach and don’t recommend it to others unless they posses an innate talent for this material. Level II consists of 120 questions (20 vignettes, 6 questions each), and the cost of each mistake is clearly higher. If a vignette focuses on a topic you covered only briefly in the notes, it very well may cost you the entire exam. Some folks feel this way about the Treynor-Black vignette this year. In any case, like I said, I think you’re fine at Level I relying on notes alone (except for Ethics and GIPS) provided that you invest an adequate amount of time and effort. Others may disagree.

Many have passed all three levels using Schweser alone; however, many have also failed a level using Schweser. The same can be said for using the CFAI texts. To pass using either you will need to know the material inside and out. I relied solely on the CFAI texts because it made me feel more comfortable knowing that I was studying directly from the material that the exam questions were based on. I also enjoy learning and actually thought the texts were a good read. In summary, it is possible to pass using just Schweser notes. However, I feel that forcing myself to read through the CFAI texts and taking my own notes was very beneficial in thoroughly learning the material.

Hiya, I’m new to all this and thinking of doing CFA1 in december 2008. Initially I decided when I register I will go through schweser and use their material as it is supposedly clearer and more conscise… having read this thread I’m starting to side with the view that CFA material is what we are tested on and CFA material is thus a better way to go particularly for next year. Is the cfa material much more expensive than schweswer ? And do you get the benefits of sample exam questions like schweser offer? I’m just thinking it might be worth getting both sets (a lot of money though I guess!)

Personally, since CFAI has decided to include the curriculum for the very reason of people ‘solely’ relying on condensed study notes, thus somewhat taking away a bit from the program, I feel that CFAI will definitely make more of an effort to screw people over who are only going to be using study notes. There’s a particular page on the CFAI website that i read that makes me VERY wary of solely relying on the notes, and judging by what they said, and also the logical conclusion one should draw by the inclusion of the curriculum, I wouldn’t take my chances. And thus, I will be doing my main studying from the curriculum. Had they not included the curriculum and had I not seen the explicit warning on the CFAI website, i probably would’ve gone just for the schweser notes.