Retention / Revision Strategy

Can anybody recommend a strategy to retain the information? I find i perfectly understand most of content but after a few weeks of not going over it i forget small details which result in getting the questions wrong. Thanks

Blunt repetition. Over and over.

Agree with blunt repitition. A few extra things that have worked for me:

  • Super-tight flashcards. Like, 12 concepts per reading at a time, reviewed a few times a day or week, until it’s automatic. I always benefitted from reducing the # of flashcards that were “live” at any time, as well as the # of words per.
  • Re-write a thing in your own words. There’s no law that says you have to regurgitate CFAI (most of the time). Not sure it would ever be tested, but to recall the line between junk and investment grade bonds, I made up, “BB ain’t King”.
  • Give formulas a personality. It sounds dumb, but there’s so damn much. Like, Blume’s adjusted beta … I put the equation on the cover of a blank Judy Blume book. It’s a very simple equation, so it’s more efficient to just it somewhere “in the brain” where it can’t get confused with anything else.
  • Re-build equations in Word/PowerPoint or whatever, adding colour to the key components. E.g., not sure why, but any part of an equation related to dividends I make orange in my revision notes. So, (1-b) would be orange, as obviously would be the numerator in DPS/EPS.

More often than not, deep comprehension seems to be the only way. For a blue box/EOC problem that seems to crystalize a whole reading (like the binomial trees in bonds with options, or Exercise 4 in Swaps), I’ll repeat the problem in super-neat handwriting, then tape it to a wall. i figure I can kind of re-do the problem in 40 seconds or so a few times a week – not as useful as actually re-doing it, but 100 times more efficient. Lets you move on to other stuff.

I use flashcards daily (written so I can understand them) and flip through them a few times during work, rotating through categories. I definately have a lot of formulas memorized this way. Blunt repetition via mocks is my second method. Keep doing questions until your sick of them, then do more.

Thanks guys - very helpful