Level III Essay Grading

Does anyone have a clue how CFAI is grading the Essays? Are they looking for special word to give the point. How subjective is it (depending on your grader)? I am even concerned about my bad handwriting! I think in university this was definitely a disadvantage, since your grader can not read that fluently and he get p*ssed off and also is makes a bad overall impression… What do you know about the grading… To me it is at the moment like a big black box. And also what is about regrading… another grader could have a totally different view. Even though I don’t believe the “attack” the gradings of their colleague or don’t they know what the other grader did evaluate?

I think it will remain a big black box. I watched a little of these Schweser videos and the guy there listed bad handwriting as reason why candidates lose points–exactly as you say because the graders get tired. I was horrified last year that I didn’t pass Level 3 and shot off an e-mail to CFA suggesting that maybe my wretched handwriting was a factor and they only said that in virtually every case, they can read the handwriting. Great, but that doesn’t address the more subtle point you raise about the subjective impression. I was shocked again this year at how badly I scored on the IPS questions and indeed the whole morning session. Only my afternoon session pulled me through (and that was exactly my study strategy). I would consider this issue to be a serious problem, but I have no suggestions on how to fight it other than to blow the afternoon session away.

Hmmm, good to know, even if not nice :-/ I think maybe I should also try to enhance my handwriting. normally I NEVER write with my hand… But there is also a trade-off because if I try to write nicely, I will loose time… It’s really a petty that candidates have to care about such thing. Even if I also understand that a bad handwriting is not an asset, but this shouldn’t be a topic of the CFA. Nevertheless, I think there is not much to do about this since this is in human nature and even the mighty CFAI can’t change this. good to know that I still got 9 months to enhance my handwriting :wink: I guess the topic time weighting for this would be far higher than 70% :wink:

i guess you can look at the past sample answers whcih they have given for essay questions and decide on what CFAI look at. the past exams Q&A are available at http://www.cfasuccess.com/cs/files/