Especially for Level 1. I have a Bachelor’s degree in Finance and Accounting and I was wondering if there are other finance majors on this board who passed Level 1 with very minimum studying. What was the least amount of time you spent studying for any exam level? (I guess essentially I am asking the same question that has been asked thousands of times before in various ways; most common “How much time did you spend studying for CFA L1 exam?” but I would like to ask this regardless) Another variation: “Would I pass the CFA L1 exam with less than 50 hours of studying and a BS in Finance/Accounting that was completed only a few months ago?” Thanks, Yours Truly, Mr. Procrastinator
I am a procrastinator as well and covered all the material in undergrad; however, do NOT do this to yourself. You need at least 200 hours of studying to pass if you know this like the back of your hand. The level of detail the exam tests is beyond college level tests. Study the 250hr minimum at least. You don’t want to risk not studying 50 more hours and fail L1, and having to take it again. But hey, if you are taking practice tests and scoring 80% or above, you may be good to go, but I doubt that is the case. I use Stalla and they have practice tests - Schweser also has them. If you score above 80%+ on the sections, I would consider that sufficient - - go from there and study any weak sections, but don’t blindly think you can pass without doing practice exams.
^ second, although I think people have passed in less time. Bleron famously showed up on AF two weeks prior to LI completely unstudied and studied furiously for two weeks and passed with > 70% on all sections. Then he tried that for LII, failed miserably, AFAIK, dropped out of the program. Bleron is a really smart stupid guy with significant industry experience. If you don’t want to learn this stuff, this program is not for you.
Yeah, I still haven’t taken any practice exams but will do so this weekend. I looked at the 7 sections and from what I saw, I would only have to study ethics a little bit. I was thinking about winging Level 1 to validate the “it’s a piece of cake” assumption that I am under about the CFA exam. I just can’t get out of that mindset for some reason.
JoeyDVivre Wrote: ------------------------------------------------------- > ^ second, although I think people have passed in > less time. Bleron famously showed up on AF two > weeks prior to LI completely unstudied and studied > furiously for two weeks and passed with > 70% on > all sections. Then he tried that for LII, failed > miserably, AFAIK, dropped out of the program. > Bleron is a really smart stupid guy with > significant industry experience. If you don’t > want to learn this stuff, this program is not for > you. Its not about learning, its about already being familiar with the topics and assuming that studying will be just a waste of time. May be its the fact that I have a Finance degree is making me believe that this exam is a lot easier than it really might be. May be I need a reality check and if it has to come in the form of me bombing the Level 1 in December, I guess I will have to suck it up and deal with it.
Zero - you have good chances of skating by on lev 1 if you were a finance major. On the flip side, every person I know who went that route crashed crashed and burned on lev 2. Don’t become just another sad statistic.
Assuming studying will be just a waste of time, huh? I am certain that I had more education in this stuff than you when I started and I studied for at least 150 hrs, but I had a Ph.D., had taught a bunch of this stuff, worked in the industry for years, etc… If you don’t change the attitude you will either not show up at the exam or be one of the 2/3 who take the exam who fails it. Think about 1 out of 4 who sign up for the exam pass it and some of those people are complete locks. There is no chance that your attitude gets you through this exam.
yeah i agree with Joey. i have a finance degree BS and with my degree a lot of the material on the CFA is familiar, but you gotta be more than familiar with the material because they do not ask easy questions. right out of school i got all my securities licenses, the CFP, and still had to put in 300 hours of studying to feel comfortable taking level one. this test is harder than any undergrad college final you will have ever taken. i have a feeling you are seriously underestimating the test.
JoeyDVivre Wrote: ------------------------------------------------------- > Assuming studying will be just a waste of time, > huh? I am certain that I had more education in > this stuff than you when I started and I studied > for at least 150 hrs, but I had a Ph.D., had > taught a bunch of this stuff, worked in the > industry for years, etc… If you don’t change the > attitude you will either not show up at the exam > or be one of the 2/3 who take the exam who fails > it. Think about 1 out of 4 who sign up for the > exam pass it and some of those people are complete > locks. There is no chance that your attitude gets > you through this exam. All I know is I want to become a charter holder. I will try the easy way first and if it doesn’t work I can always follow what you guys did. But I will keep you guys posted on what happens to people with an attitude like mine. (Don’t get me wrong. I am not going to go in without any practice or studying.) The only point I am trying to make is: I registered late for the December exam and I might not have the recommended 250-300hrs of studying time available. So I was just asking whether or not a recent Finance grad will be able to pass the exam without breaking a sweat with only about 50 hours of studying? PS: I am Sorry for coming out a little too cocky. I am not saying I am confident about passing, I am just expressing my current attitude towards the exam and my current assumption that taking a couple of finance courses in college is all you need to pass Level 1.
SkipE99 Wrote: ------------------------------------------------------- > i have a feeling you are seriously underestimating > the test. Yes, I believe so, I am. How do I overcome those false pretensions?
I passed Level I with about 110 hours of studying time. Thinking that I would need just a tad more for the next test, I had a similar approach with Level II and started studying about a month and a half before the exam. By the time I realized I didn’t have enough time, it was too late. When the exam finally rolled around, I hadn’t even had a chance to read Book II of Schweser, let alone read any portion of the CFAI curriculum or take any practice exam of any kind. Fortunately, I was already en route to a promotion and had my mind set on leaving my former job to a place where I wouldn’t need the CFA charter. As such, part of my “decision” to study insufficiently for Level II had to do with my having too many other things on my plate, as well as just general moral hazard (my firm was paying for my exam so I didn’t really care). Overall, procrastination is definitely not recommended, whereas practice exams are highly recommended. I don’t think the exams are difficult from the standpoint of intellectual prowess, but insufficient preparation will be a real problem so don’t make the same mistake that I did. (BTW, I’m back on the forum after a brief hiatus. Since last week, I’ve had a chance to reassess a few priorities in my life and don’t expect to be on here nearly as often, but I’ll still chime in every so often whenever I have something useful to contribute.)
good luck but there really is no way you pass with 50 hours of studying. You said something bout not having enough time to study, can you really only afford 27 minutes per day from now until the test?
It’s not too late. I’ve finished the Schweser notes on quant and econ in 2 weeks. I think I’ll finish Schewesr with 3-4 weeks to spare. That leaves time for practice exams and reviewing the CFA books. I don’t have finance background, so my estimate is 200 hours total. I’m sure you can do it in less, but 50 seems way too little. It’s not enough to “know” all the material. On the test you have to recall things very quickly. Remember the opportunity cost of failing. By saving 100 hours you risk losing 100 + time to study a 2nd time (probably 200 hours total). Use your hourly wage and calculate the sharp ratio to be sure of it!
ZeroBonus Wrote: ------------------------------------------------------- > SkipE99 Wrote: > -------------------------------------------------- > ----- > > i have a feeling you are seriously > underestimating > > the test. > > > Yes, I believe so, I am. How do I overcome those > false pretensions? Study for 50 hours and then take Level I. The result will tell you everything you need to know. If you pass there were no false pretentions to overcome in the first place. If you fail, then buckle down and study like the rest of us did.
I am finance and accounting undergrad working in the industry - To gauge your understanding why not just do all the problem sets at the end of the chapters to see what your solid on and what you need work on?
I have an undergrad degree in finance, and I can assure you that the depth and detail of a lot of this material was NOT covered in my degree. Sure I took accounting and learned about fifo/lifo, deferred tax assets, operating versus capital leases, etc. But when it comes to performing all the adjustments for the purpose of analysis? we never learned that… ZeroB: My advice to you? Do a practice exam, or even just the practice problems focusing on the FSA and Economics and see how you do. That should give you an idea.
ZeroBonus Wrote: ------------------------------------------------------- > SkipE99 Wrote: > -------------------------------------------------- > ----- > > i have a feeling you are seriously > underestimating > > the test. > > > Yes, I believe so, I am. How do I overcome those > false pretensions? easy. take a couple of sample/mock cfa exams. if you can score over 70% on your first few tries, you have at least a good chance of passing with 50 hours. you can get these from schweser books or the cfai may even post em. some one may also be willing to email you them if they have them in electronic form. i dont at this time.
Look at it his way. If you pass, you get to sit L2 about 6 months later. If you plug, you only get to sit L2 in a minimum of 18 months time. Why take any unneccessary chances?
Why shoot for the minimum? Do a search on username “mo34”. The man got all >70% on all sections of all levels, except for a “single” little section. The guy has all my respect and I am thankful that not everyone is like him or else making money in finance would be much, much, much harder. His “standards” are what everyone should be “striving for”, (it is totally OK and doesn’t matter if you don’t achieve those standards) both in score and in effort. mo34, you are a huge inspiration to me.
I passed L1 with about 6 weeks of studying with >70% in all but one section. But seriously, luck was on my side and I wouldn’t do this for Level II. I work full time and those 6 weeks were brutal. Level 1 isn’t that deep and you can get away with doing lots of practice questions and not spending much time on the material. Not sure if this will work for Level II.