Time Management - AM Section

How are you guys managing your time for the AM section?

Personally, I’ve started writing down the time I should be up at the top of every new question. For example, at the beginning of question 2, I’ll put “43m”, meaning question 1 was 43 minutes. At the beginning of question 3, I’ll put “1h10”, meaning question 1 and 2 would be 43 minutes plus 27 minutes for Q2.

I don’t think I’ll be skipping around much, just do questions in order, either I know it or I don’t and move on. So I think this method should work for me.

Any other method you guys have come up with?

Another thing, I completed Schweser Exam 2 AM section yesterday (got a 58%). I finished in 2 hours and I wasn’t exactly rushing. I’ve heard people say that time management is a big concern for AM at L3. Is this just because of Schweser format? Any feedback on real CFAI exam or practice ones?

My strategy so far has been to write the deadline for finishing the question at the top of the question page. So if question 2 has 2 parts, A for 10 minutes and B for 20 minutes and I was starting the question at 10am I’d write 10 (ie 10:10) beside part A and 30 beside part B.

This strategy was working well until i hit a few questions in the middle section of a paper that I couldn’t do and time management went out of the window.

The difficult part is knowing where you are overall. with item sets you can just count the number left to do and multiply by 18 to quickly get an understanding of where you are vs the benchmark. it seems like for level 3 it would be easy to get lost in the heat of the exam stress and end up no finishing. I’ve always done tests in order and have been reluctant to jump around but I think I’ll have to change that for the morning paper so I don’t spend a lot of time trying to crack a question when there are easy questions near the end of the paper.

I’ve done 2 papers so far and have finished both in around 4 hours. I think schweser papers are always quicker though.

Writing down the time or just keeping track on your watch is a great technique. That’s what I did.

If you’re not done with the question when time is up, then MOVE ON to the next question. Race through what you can and come back to the unfinished stuff at the end.

i did something similar and it worked great.

when you start the exam go to the fop of the first question and add the point total for that question to the time you started the mock. then for the next question add the previous value to the number of minutes you have for the next question. this will help you keep track of your progress.

i.e. if you start exam at 2pm and the first question is 25 points,2nd question is 20 points and 3rd question is 10 points then you should be finished the first question at 2:35pm the 2nd question at 2:45 pm and 3rd question at 2:45 pm.

this is good way to keep track of time because if question 1 is 3 parts and the last part is 5 points and your watch says its 2:35pm, you should skip that question and come back to it later instead of wasting more time on a small point question.

this way you move on to a higher point question and have more time to finish those.

imo having a wrist watch and keeping track of time and progress is a must on exam day.

The thing is to devote as many minutes to sub-question as given. I try not to be precise up to 1 minute but basically if question has 5 minutes alloted and I’m stuck 8 it’s better to progress to the next one. Just have in the back of your head the time alloted, don’t foucus on counting minutes more than on the exam itself and we’ll be fine. There are questions that we know and do faster and there are some which take more time. In total the differences are gonna balance out. Unless we know nothing :slight_smile:

Not sure if i’m going to spend time writing how much time i have a the top of the page of every part of every question. seems counterproductive to me. surely that will eat up more time?

i’m hoping that practicing the last 6 years of CFAI am exams will give me the exam technique needed.

I’m not terribly concerned - I’ve now been through three Schweser AM tests and four CFAI AM tests and haven’t once been close to the 180 minute cap. I will continue to do what I’ve been doing though, and that’s keeping a running time at the top of each question (@paul - it’s not time-consuming as it’s basic addition and it serves to keep you on track…good>harm, IMO). Essentially, it’s what Igor said above, but with the correct times (not a jab, igor, sorry).

not every part, just at top of every question. so 10/11 times. if you cant add that in 30 seconds then thats rough.

but make sure u come into the exam with a plan. and a watch

i was finishing mocks with an hour to spare. on exam day i finished with 10 minutes left.

its ckmpletely different and hard to prepare for

Check the amount of questions in the beginning.