By Morgan International Staff Writers
Becoming a CFA charterholder is likely to be the longest and most difficult process most candidates have experienced in their educational lives so far. On average, a candidate will study for 300 hours for each level of the exam. This typically takes 6 months bearing in mind that most candidates also have a full time job.
Nailing the exam first time around for each level is far more likely if some straightforward study tips are followed:
Produce a timetable that covers the detail of what you will study and when. You need to fit in approximately 300 hours of study, which will include reading, retention activities, and mock exams. It is useful to build in some additional slack of approximately 5-10% to allow for unexpected events such as being extra busy at work or being unwell.
Consider a professional programme
You may want to undertake review days, or seek more detailed support. Consider what will work for you, do your research, select a provider, and schedule that into your overarching plan.
Find what works for you
We all learn and retain information in different ways. Some candidates may be able to read material once and commit it to memory. Others may need to use flash cards to retain information. Find out what works for you early on and utilise that technique throughout your studies.
Do practice papers in exam conditions
The CFA exam is arduous – prepare for that by undertaking practice papers in exam conditions. I cannot recommend highly enough taking a day out to do the full six hour exam in the two sections, with the set middle break.
Avoid panic cramming
If you have followed the tips above, there will be no need to panic cram. It will not only stress you out, but it may cloud the systematic learning you have undertaken.
If becoming a CFA charterholder was easy, many more people would be pursuing it. To be successful, a methodical approach to study and exam preparation is fundamentally important. For more advice and tips, take a look at our website.