CFA CFA General How important it is to do TIMED exam simulation mock papers

How important it is to do TIMED exam simulation mock papers

  • This topic has 5 replies, 6 voices, and was last updated Jan-18 by Pranav.
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    • surangasa
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      How important it is to do a full day of exam simulation. I find it very difficult to sit in one place for that long for that many mock exam papers. I am thinking of doing just a session per day as the exam approaches.  I just want to hear a concrete answer as to whether doing mock papers session by session is good or not and why? 

      It seams to me that almost all time management skills can be gained by doing it this way as well less the stress of course. 

    • kungpow9960
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      I think it’s fine to break up your first one or two or three practice exams by session. Do a morning session one day, then the afternoon the next or whatever. I always did these initially un-timed and spend the time on the questions I got wrong by looking in the answer key to understand what they’re asking, why I got it wrong, etc. That is extremely beneficial if you do it in a focused manner. Doing one problem set then getting up and getting a snack or something and then coming back to another two or whatever, however, is not as good. You want these to be focused, in depth practice sessions to maximize your time at this point.

      However, I would strongly suggest moving to doing full practice exams by the third or (at latest) fourth exam you attempt. You can decide if you want to do these un-timed or not. I would then say you absolutely should be doing full length practice exams by the end.

      The reason you want to get in the habit of doing the full length exam is that I would argue that a 3 hour exam is fundamentally different from a 6 hour exam. It’s one thing to finish a 3 hour session knowing you’re done for the day. It’s different to get up at 6am on a Saturday, get to the library by 8am, start your session at 9am, end at noon and then return at 1:30pm for a whole other session at 2pm that you also must do well on. Now do that with a bunch of other people who are all going crazy from stress and anxiety. Why would you want exam day to be the first time you’ve ever taken a full length CFA exam if you have the chance to do it beforehand in practice?

      It’s like training for a 10K. Sure, you could probably get by with running some 4 mile runs and then rely on adrenaline to carry you the last 2.2 miles. But if you run several mock 10K races, the actual race day will be more routine.

      Just my two cents. Apply the appropriate discount rate, of course.

    • hairyfairy
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      I think its important to calibrate yourself on two things – how well you manage your time within each session, and how exhausted you’ll feel in the second exam.

      If you’re reasonably sure that you don’t have issues in either then it’s less important then.

    • simply_complex2
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      i agree with hairyfairy, especially in the second point of being exhausted in the second exam. its not possible to see if these factors will affect your performance unless you practice under exam conditions. i didn’t think id feel so tired in the second half of the exam, but i was exhausted and i made most of my mistakes in part two. if you practice under exam conditions you’ll get use to the rigor of the whole six hours. sadly we don’t have the luxury of taking the two sessions of the real exam on different days 🙁

    • PaulAdaptPrep
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      Practice passing instead of practicing answering questions. That’s the way I usually think of it. I’m more of a big vision type person so it works for me.

      When you think of your time as sitting down to practice passing (going through the actual motions/behaviors you need to succeed), it really changes your mindset. It also helps you focus on tactics like strategically skipping time-intensive questions, pacing yourself without being too time-focused, keeping focused despite noise around you (that guy hacking behind you), etc.

    • Pranav
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      i solved only the cfai mocks in a timed manner…took both the sessions back to back and completed within 7 hours…all the other mocks were solved in a practice test sorta manner…you dont really need to solve them all in a timed manner if you are confident about your time management…

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