CFA CFA General Re-Take Advice

Re-Take Advice

  • Author
    Posts
    • Cdelane1
      Participant
      Up
      0
      Down

      Hello All would love some input if i should continue in my pursuit of the CFA. I took Level one in June of 2014 failed in band 8. I completely underestimated the test and did not prepare for it accordingly. I read the Schweser books once took one of the practice tests and focused the majority of my attention on the Q Bank. Did approximately 1400 questions on the qbank. That was the extend on my studying. Received my results and decided to re-take in December 2014, with a completely different attitude. I started studying for the December 2014 in August and re-read all of the Schweser books. Additionally I answered all of the CFA institutes end of reading questions, I did the end of chapter review questions in the Schweser books, took the remaining 5 practice exams from Schweser twice. I would mark the sections and questions I got wrong to go back and re-read the corresponding sections in the Schweser notes book before re-taking it. Additionally i took the practice test offered by the CFA institute and the problems they offer online. I received my results and failed in band 10. Should i go for it a third time? I feel pissed off about the results and really want to re-take it knowing that my efforts were not wasted but I am hesitant because i do not know what I can do improve from the previous go around.

      Q# Topic Max Pts 70%
      – Alternative Investments 8 * – –
      – Corporate Finance 20 – – *
      – Derivatives 12 – * –
      – Economics 24 – * –
      – Equity Investments 24 – – *
      – Ethical & Professional Standards 36 – * –
      – Financial Reporting & Analysis 48 – * –
      – Fixed Income Investments 28 – * –
      – Portfolio Management 12 – – *
      – Quantitative Methods 28 – * –

    • ec_test
      Participant
      Up
      0
      Down

      @Cdelane1‌ – Retake it. You failed with band 10 which means you were closer to passing than most. I know it may get expensive but if you don’t mind sparing a few dollars, you should take it again in June. I am personally a very stubborn person and try to get what I want even when I fail a few times. I always encourage others to do the same. If the CFA means a lot to you, do it again and again until you pass. 

      Oh, and by the way, I failed the Dec 2014, and will enroll in the June 2015 test shortly. 

    • Stuj79
      Participant
      Up
      1
      Down

      I agree with the above, if the CFA is something you want then go for it again. You got over 70% in Corp Finance and equity, so you obviously are up to speed on those two. I would suggest spending more time on the remaining heavily weighted topics such as FRA, FI and QM to drag yourself over the minimum passing score.

      Stuff does get harder in level two, which is something to bear in mind but I have heard stories of people failing level 1 and then going on to pass level two and three first time, so don’t let anyone tell you you can’t do it. Just try your best one more time and see how it goes.

    • blowwow
      Participant
      Up
      3
      Down

      I know someone who failed 4 times but they kept going. but man oh man, your marks show that you just missed it bro and I know it sucks, but hey man I say keep going for it and just practice and practice now. It also seems as if you’ve just used Schweser, and although a lot of people prefer it to the CFA curriculumn I found it very hard to learn from because it doesn’t really explain topics that well and it just summarises formulas. So in a way I found I was just learning formulas and really not understanding what was I was doing with Schweser. If I were you, I would start reading the CFA curriculumn just to get an understanding of the topics, and maybe use Schweser just for summaries of each chapter and practice. Remember the CFA exam is meant to test your understanding and not your ability to churn out similar questions you practiced

    • CFAI_wont_stop_me
      Participant
      Up
      4
      Down

      If it’s important to you then someday u will achieve it smile  I hope that this day will come in June 15′ 
      Good luck and don’t give up!

    • desantol
      Participant
      Up
      0
      Down

      I also failed level 1 and scored in band 10.  Very very disappointing–and I’m in my mid-40s so I’m quite mindful of the time and effort required for the designation at this point in my career.

      I knew, though, that I didn’t pass when I walked out of the exam.  It was just too much of a struggle and it can’t be to pass.  I’m retaking it and focusing on CFA material (I also relied too heavily on Schweser and I just don’t think it’s rigorous enough) and I’m going to devote most of my time to practice exams.  I took 8 before and this time I’m going for 14.  I just refuse to fail it again.  I understand why people give up but I’m not going to quit.  

      On a side note, I am thinking about Elan’s test bank of questions.  I’ve heard they are more difficult.  If anyone has any thoughts on this please weigh in.  And thanks to everyone for staying positive. 

    • simply_complex2
      Participant
      Up
      3
      Down

      If this is something you really want, I would definitely retake it-especially since you were just on the cusp of passing. I know how discouraging it can feel, but don’t let the exam beat you! Also, I agree with @desantol. I used Elan and Schweser mocks, and I found Elan’s exams to be a lot more difficult than Schweser; I would highly recommend their materials. 

    • blowwow
      Participant
      Up
      2
      Down

      @desantol‌ to be honest I was in your exact same situation when I failed level 1 the first time, band 10 as well.Staying positive and not quitting is a great show of character, also it shows it seems as if you know where you went wrong and you’re on the right track to fix your errors. When I failed the first time, I started off studying the topics that gave me the most problems and making sure I got them right second time around. Most people are comfortable studying with schweser only, but for me they didn’t really explain the topics well enough and the summaries were too short, so I don’t think I could get a full understanding of the topics. It sucks for me coz I know I have to work a lot more than a lot of people to pass but it is what it is. Also when you took the past papers, do you think you fully understood the material before taking them, coz past papers are just for more practice and not really for learning anything new. Also I would do  the 2 official CFA mocks they post for free on the website, I found those harder than the actual exam

    • Cdelane1
      Participant
      Up
      4
      Down

      I really appreciate the advice thank a you all for the responses. I just looked into Elan study materials which are significantly cheaper then the other study aids. Two questions regarding the Elan study materials. First being in regards to @simply_complex2‌ usage of Elan exams did you mean their online practice questions? Also another question, do you recommend me updating my study books to the most current version. I looked last night and the CFAI is making changes to the LOS, if so should I get the updated Schwesser notes or go with the Elan version as well as use the books for 2015 provided by the CFAI ?

    • desantol
      Participant
      Up
      4
      Down

      I have yet to register but I’m buying the printed CFA materials this time around and doing all of the EOC questions.  Too much online material doesn’t seem to sink in as well with me and the downloadable CFA books were not that easy to navigate IMHO.  

      If anyone has suggestions as to where other tests can be purchased that would be helpful too.  Otherwise I’m going with Elan for the test bank (they don’t sell separate tests) and (to answer  @blowwow) the CFA mocks which I found (belatedly in my studies) more difficult than Schweser by far.  

      In terms of materials I am curious as to what % of the material changes year to year.  Obviously there are some key things to note but can one really be tripped up by relying to some degree on old materials i.e. Schweser 2014 materials for the June 2015 test?

      And when the CFA institute releases the new mocks if anyone can figure out how to download them as PDFs I’ll be very interested.  Taking them online and reviewing the answers online was terrible.  Thanks all!

    • simply_complex2
      Participant
      Up
      2
      Down

      hi @cdelane1, im referring to both companies’ mock exams. i didnt buy/use schweser’s question bank, but i heard they are more focused on calculations. when i was studying, i used elan’s online practice questions instead of eoc questions since i heard the eoc questions are easier versions of what is actually tested, and the best way i learn is using more difficult questions (this is just me personally though). whether you update the books is up to you. if it was me, i probably would because i would be paranoid of any drastic changes in the curriculam, but im pretty sure im just SUPER paranoid. also, Elan has a policy where you have access to their materials until you pass even if they update it, so that also impacts my opinion on whether i would get new books. i personally didnt use the CFAI books because they were HUGE and i felt like i would get bogged down by the details. i cant speak for schweser notes, but i felt like the Elan notes prepared me increadibly well for the exam and they were very easy to understand. 

Viewing 10 reply threads
  • You must be logged in to reply to this topic.