Hi all, I am starting a Msc in Finance in a few weeks. It is a CFA partner course covering around 70-80% of the CFA curriculum. I plan to sit Level 1 in June 2012. I have 6 exams in Dec and 6 more in mid April with a dissertation due in Aug. Could anyone who has done something like this suggest how i should go about incorporating CFA study and exam prep into that schedule without hurting my Msc results. I have also bought the elan ultimate prep notes. Thanks in advance everyone
I had the same route with Master of Finance covering essentiall the entire CFA curriculum… My suggestion, don’t worry about level 1 at all…in the program, you’ll likely cover the majority of it and come April or so you can start to focus more on the curriculum… With the program, level 1 will be a refresher and everything should still be relatively fresh in your head. If you study hard during the Msc, you won’t need to study for level 1 much…I put in about 75 hours for level 1 and did fine.
Thanks for the reply BuySide. Ooooh that seems a little risky to me, I dont think the course touches Ethics. In that 75 hrs, did you just do questions or how was your time broken down. Also what was your undergrad in (Finance???) , mine was economics. Is starting in January a bad idea? Also the fact i have the elan guide , would you recommend not using the CFAI books at all? Did you use a Prep provider???
Well depends how rigorous your program is…Starting in January is great for those who work full-time…but you’re going to be spending the next year studying all the topics anyway?! Ethics is 15%…personally, I spent maybe 5 hours total with Ethics on both level 1 AND 2…and scored >70…but I feel as though I was just really lucky because most people get bombed by ethics even when they study this topic continuously…so, i don’t recommend what i did. I did mathematical economics in my undergrad…the MFin program covered all of level 1 and 2 perfectly… Starting in January could be a good idea if you just slowly read over all the material while studying for your courses in the MSC program… honestly, level 1 is very easy IF you have a good background…considering you’re spending the next 8 months taking all the courses relevant in CFA curriculum, how could you get any better preparation?? don’t compare yourself to a regular person studying CFA…you will be almost fully prepared without even touching any material. Just need to have an intense prep before the exam for a month or 2 I would NOT recommend CFAI books given you’ll have a great background. Remembering, you’re doing msc in finance… I didn’t do any questions, just reviewed schweser material and formulas…i read over the practice problems though. anyway many people wil tell you otherwise, but if you are smart (and have great grades in uni) , chances are you will find level 1 very achievable given you study hard in the MSC program this year. It would be a bad idea to sacrifice your grades/networking in your program just for level 1 lol…
thanks again for such a comprehensive answer. I suppose I just want it all to go well first time. But as you said the CFA is repeatable and the Msc isnt, but i will be studying hard for the Msc , so hopefully that will be enough to get me throught the CFA Lv 1 too.
Coming from a guy who just finished an MBA and is now working on his MSc in Quant Finance: I passed Level I in June 2011 and found a good 50% - 65% of the CFA material was a refresher of the concepts I learned during undergrad (BS in Statistics with Business Admin minor) and my MBA program. CFA Ethics & Professional Standards was completely new to me since it was CFA’s specific guidance. While I’ve had plenty of course instruction in Accounting, this was the one area where I really had to buckle down and learn the concepts. Accounting is NOT finance, and it’ll take some time to truly understand the spirit of the accounting concepts presented. You don’t have to be a CPA to pass the CFA’s Financial Reporting & Analysis section, but you definitely will have to put in some time on this topic area. You should have plenty of time to study for Level I if you’re sitting for the June 2012 exam! I started in Feb 2011 with about 18 weeks to prep. I was working full-time and doing my MBA in the evenings (3 classes per semester) and was still able to speed though the material pretty quickly. I would suggest starting CFAI readings in December during the break from school so that you can bank extra time to relax during your prep journey. I can’t tell you how many times I sat in a Delta SkyClub lounge here in Atlanta reading CFAI when all I really wanted to do was have a Jack & Coke and enjoy my flight. For more info… Check out my CFA Level II live blog @ http://www.TheGlover.net
Thanks MBAGlover, I reckon i will hit the books during the december break. I just dont want to taken any chances really. Would you advise to read the books in order and to fully read the CFAI books before going near the Prep provider’s material? Would a sensible strategy be, to do the EOC qn’s after the first read through or how would you recommend I solidify my understanding after each reading. thanks again
Hey Chave, Why don’t you take the advice I gave you? Unless you are a poor student, your Msc in Finance should (considering you said it’s a program that covers the majority of the CFA curriculum) prepare you fully for level 1 except for Ethics which is only 15%… During your courses (read your syllabus) you will cover all the topics in MUCH greater detail than CFA and will ultimately realize how easy level 1 is compared to your program…unless your program is garbage. my real advice, take it or leave it, is to stop worrying about level 1 and concentrate FULLY on your masters program. Level 1, and 2, knowledge will come over the course of the next several months in your program…level 2 will obviously require much much more studying, but level 1 is just a recap of undergrad material anyway (and your program will cover most of it)…so seriously, don’t worry about level 1 lol…worry about it come march or something if you doubt your abilities to do well in an exam.
chave Wrote: ------------------------------------------------------- > Thanks MBAGlover, > > I reckon i will hit the books during the december > break. I just dont want to taken any chances > really. Would you advise to read the books in > order and to fully read the CFAI books before > going near the Prep provider’s material? > > Would a sensible strategy be, to do the EOC qn’s > after the first read through or how would you > recommend I solidify my understanding after each > reading. > > thanks again I’m a huge fan of doing the readings in order since you’re going to do a comprehensive review after finishing all of the reading anyway. A lot of people disagree with me on this since Ethics needs to be fresh in your mind for the exam, but I think that doing the readings in order is the best. Also – do the questions at the end of the readings after finishing the reading for that section. If you wait until the end, you’ll have 9million questions to do, and frankly they won’t get done. The questions are awesome because they test your ability to apply what you’ve just read, which is the most important part since you’ll be expected to do the same on the exam.
I agree with BuySide, your first priority should be your classes, ace those first, and just piggyback off that knowledge for the CFA LI. Be sure to study ethics though.
Thank you all for your input, your advice has helped a lot. Best of luck to you all at your endevours!
BuySideWannabe Wrote: ------------------------------------------------------- > Hey Chave, > > Why don’t you take the advice I gave you? > > Unless you are a poor student, your Msc in Finance > should (considering you said it’s a program that > covers the majority of the CFA curriculum) prepare > you fully for level 1 except for Ethics which is > only 15%… > > During your courses (read your syllabus) you will > cover all the topics in MUCH greater detail than > CFA and will ultimately realize how easy level 1 > is compared to your program…unless your program > is garbage. > > my real advice, take it or leave it, is to stop > worrying about level 1 and concentrate FULLY on > your masters program. Level 1, and 2, knowledge > will come over the course of the next several > months in your program…level 2 will obviously > require much much more studying, but level 1 is > just a recap of undergrad material anyway (and > your program will cover most of it)…so > seriously, don’t worry about level 1 lol…worry > about it come march or something if you doubt your > abilities to do well in an exam. BuySide , I am exploring all of the advice incl. yours. I havent made up my mind yet on it and I dont think I will until december break anyways. Hopefully the course standard is very high and I dont need to do too much outside it. Thanks again for your help