Last month strategy

Hi guys, I hope everyone is doing okay and studying hard for the December exam!

I, therefore, have a quick question concerning the studying strategy!

I will be finishing all my notes and the CFA curriculum by Sunday, I have been through all then end chapters question and scored between 50% and 80%. By Sunday we will have 4 weeks left until the exam so I am not sure how to organize myself, do you review all the chapter each one and then the question at the end of each chapter until you get over 70% in each. Or do you just do mock until the end and go back an forth between the mock and the curriculum?

My initial plan is to review each chapter, do Qbank for each chapter/section, for 3 weeks until I reach a good band in each and then do mock exam only during the last week, also I will dedicate at least 8 hours per day to study for the next 4 weeks as I do not work anymore !

Also for my background, I have a bachelor in Finance and just graduated from an MSc in Finance,

Any advice would be much appreciated! Cheers from France!

Hello there,

I wouldn’t recommend going through each individual chapter for 3 weeks. You are better off working through as many mock exams as possible. My technique was to take a mock exam, figure out my weakest 2-3 topics, then spend a couple days on each of those weak topics (making flash cards, doing Qbank quizzes and CFAI topic tests) before you take the next mock. I would aim to get these problem topics to at least 70% on the next exam.

Then, I’d repeat this process as I worked through about 8 mock exams in my final month of studying, putting enough individual attention to each weak topic area to get my average up. I didn’t get to a 70%+ average until a the week before the exam.

Hope this helps.


I had this exact same question just over a week ago if you look a little bit further back in the forum topics (Schweser Study Calendar).

I have been following what Ben has suggested to you here and in my post as well. His method has kept me organized and seems to be the best use of my time so far. I am still feeling pretty discouraged due to my scores (Mock 1AM: 60% and Mock 1PM: 62%) with a month to go but I use the results after each mock to pick two topics to dedicate my time to based on my scores in those topics and its overall weight. Hope your having better luck than me! Thanks again Ben for the advice

Rick - glad my advice is helping you. I kept track of everything I did so that it would be useful later on, including helping other people.

Looking back at my practice exams, I got a 59% on May 6th, about a month before the exam. At that point I had taken 3 other practice exams and hit the low 60% range, so getting below 60 all of a sudden was definitely worrisome. That’s when the whole 2-3 topic review technique made all the difference and I saw my scores slowly move to the high-60 range (and eventually hit 70+.)

If you like the organization aspect of it, maybe make a spreadsheet with your exam scores, with a row for each topic. This way you can see how you’re trending and if your studies are making any difference. It’s definitely rewarding seeing the improvements - I assume you’re getting below 50% in some topics? If it’s weighted 10% or above, getting these topics up first will vastly improve your total score.

Feel free to keep posting when you have concerns. Happy to help.

Thank you very much guys for the advice, I will take a mock by the end of the week and keep improving the weak topics from there!