I took the L3 last year and walked out of the exam feeling confident that I would pass. I was shocked to see that I didn’t (and a band 7 to add insult to injury). For those repeating the Level 3 this year, were there any of you who felt that way last year? If so, what are you doing differently this time that makes you feel better about passing this year (if any)? Would appreciate some insight. Thanks.
totally been there. This year, I did the sample exams much earlier and added Qbank. Hopefully, this will work.
Add me to the list. I’m focusing more on CFAI material this year (especially for FI). I have to imagine that the distribution last year was pretty tight, so lots of us who felt good were painfully close. I said it on another thread, the pool of candidates gets more competitive as you move upwards in levels. By LIII you’ve certainly shaken out those candidates not committed and are left with a fairly intelligent group…many of them have seen the test at least once already. I would love to know what % of those who passed were first time vs. retaking.
I always get shocked when I fail. Just kidding Yes, I was shocked after I failed L3 (band 10). Also, there were many people last August that were fuming. For me it took some time to digest the fact. Luck is a factor on the exam day.
I walked out last year thinking it really wasnt all that bad - but was shocked in August. I took the 09 exam a couple weeks ago and I gotta say looking at it now - it was a TOUGH exam. I feel like the 1 think I didn’t account for is that AM kills just about everyone. The key is knocking the PM out of the ballpark - so this year - I’ve been doing lots of QBANK and vignettes found in the end of chapter readings. I feel like if I can do well there, I should be able to squeeze the “Pass”.
Read it on the boards here a few years back - but the wind has to blow the right way sometimes for you to get lucky.
I also walked out feeling relatively confident - certainly better than I felt after L2. Failed band 10, even asked for a remark. Ethics and IPS were the areas that dragged me down, while I did well on most of the other sections. This time I have focused purely on CFAI text, and have done my best to get through the work at a steady, calm pace. But still have to consciously work at staying calm each day and believing that I’ll be successful this time.
Hi, VC_PM - I am in exactly the same boat. Shocked that last year I failed and in Band 7. This year, I’m trying to do as many EOC questions as possible as well as primarily using CFA books for review and not Schweser. I have found that Schweser tends to leave out a bit too much of the qualitative stuff and focus more on formulas which is opposite of Level III. Of course you have to know the formulas, but lots more questions on conceptual stuff. Also, I found Ethics really tricky last year, and for some reason struggled with the IPS stuff which is a huge no-no. I went in feeling very confident about IPS and then scored mediocre on it. If this test was solely multiple choice, I would have concerns at this point. Seems to me that yes, the bands are probably quite narrow and there is likely the most wiggle room on the essay portion because I bet quite a lot people score in the 70% range on the multiple choice. So far, I have scored in the mid-70s on Schweser and got a 70 and 80 on the CFA sample exams, but didn’t get much lower than that last year, so its not really helping with confidence! oh well…only two more week to go.
The only thing worse than getting a Band 7 Fail last year, was telling my wife the result on her birthday. This year I’ve been drilling down on each LOS, from the CFAI texts, a little harder (as opposed to general topics) to cut out the noise. After rereading every topic, I wrote out each LOS and the answer. I’ve also decided to take all of next week off from work to study so I can go morning to night for 10 straight days. I took a week last year but my daughter arrived 5 days before the exam so it doubled as a paternity leave and I only spent about 2 days actually studying. Starting today this is how I am spending each of the next 10 days. 6-9 AM: Take a 3 hr. Practice test 10-12 AM: Grade it 1-6 PM: work EOC questions over again and review notes 6-8:30 PM: Dinner & bed time stories to the kids (4 & 1) 8:30- 11 PM: Make topic flash cards on every question I answered wrong that day & review notes. Best of luck everyone
I failed last year, Band 6. Not very good. The morning session was my downfall - low grades on the Institutional IPS and Monitoring/Rebalancing stuff. I do think there’s some luck involved. Last year, they ask a lot of Econ. questions in the morning and afternoon - where I hadn’t spent much time. Then, there were other topics that I killed myself learning that weren’t even asked. This year I did all the CFAI readings, wrote out bullets for each LOS and did every EOC problem. Figured since Schweser didn’t work well for me last year, was time to change approach…
I wonder now that CFAI publishes the bands if they track how people do over time and if they see people leaving the program if they are under a certain band.
this topic is so dreadful… Can any of you tell how many hours you have put in last year vs this year then?
ndzhai, I think time spent amount of time this year (well over 400 hours) as last year, but allocated differently. The last month was the most important though, because that is when it all came together. This year, more time on specifics of the LOS than the broad topic outlines I favored last year. More time left for practice exams this year, too. I think I took 3 or 4 last year from various providers, and this year I’m taking 9, 8 of which are CFAI issued (my office has collected CFA resources over the years). Especially as we get closer to exam day, I am paying more attention to the wording of the guideline answers CFAI provides so I associate key words with certain topics. For example I took the 2006 test today and noticed that on the pension question CFAI kept using the phrase “duration of liabilities” where I referred to “time horizon”. If I can take a little of the subjectivity out of the written portion I am hopeful I can get a point or 2 more that will ensure I pass.
Band 10 last year. Individual PM and Fixed Income downfall. This year spent much more time on CFAI readings. Focused almost entirely on Schweser last year. Have spent more time this year than last year…I would say about 200 hours at this point. Will spend another 80-100 over the next two weeks. Read every word of CFA text, took notes and just finished reviewing all the highlighted items in the text. Attended the Dallas week Schweser review…very helpful to get the big picture. Remember, Level III is about developing Capital Market Expectations, Developing the IPS, allocating assets in Equity and Debt Investments, utilizing Derivatives and Alternative Investments to adjust risk/return and then using the various Portfolio Monitoring/Measurement techniques. Think I will have done enough work to pass…but who the hell knows.
…but who the hell knows. Truer words have never been spoken.
hawk, very helpful remind for 1st time taker like me! I put in around 400hrs as well. finished schweser reading/video and all 6 practicals. Similar to you, I will focus absolutely on CFAI material, past exams and samples/mocks for the rest of days. As you said, the wording for the morning session is the SINGLE MOST IMPORTANT factor to pass or fail you. sjuhawk Wrote: ------------------------------------------------------- > ndzhai, I think time spent amount of time this > year (well over 400 hours) as last year, but > allocated differently. The last month was the > most important though, because that is when it all > came together. > > This year, more time on specifics of the LOS than > the broad topic outlines I favored last year. > More time left for practice exams this year, too. > I think I took 3 or 4 last year from various > providers, and this year I’m taking 9, 8 of which > are CFAI issued (my office has collected CFA > resources over the years). > > Especially as we get closer to exam day, I am > paying more attention to the wording of the > guideline answers CFAI provides so I associate key > words with certain topics. For example I took the > 2006 test today and noticed that on the pension > question CFAI kept using the phrase “duration of > liabilities” where I referred to “time horizon”. > If I can take a little of the subjectivity out of > the written portion I am hopeful I can get a point > or 2 more that will ensure I pass.
Thanks a lot everyone… I focused heavily on the CFAI materials and past exams this year and am using Shweser only for the practice exams and QBank. It will be interesting (and a very good outcome) if the strategy works. Good luck to you all…
I think it does not matter which materials you use, books or notes. As long as you know the materials well. I use notes for most of time, but my colleague uses books. I feel I am better with the overall picture and he is good at details. I suggests L3 repeaters to use notes if you are quite comfortable with the materials and take extra time to read examples in the books. Some exam questions are close to the example in the books.
i was shocked looking at my results last year… and surprisingly, it was not the AM session that i scored low on but infact the multiple choice! I did the CFAI material last year and i stuck to it this year as well… however, i dont know what to do/practice to get my hang back with multiple choice questions.
Vegas Wrote: ------------------------------------------------------- > > For me it took some time to digest the fact. Luck > is a factor on the exam day. This is very true. Do all you can to limit it, but in the end it is still there.