CFA CFA Level 3 CFAI Old Mock Exams

CFAI Old Mock Exams

  • This topic has 13 replies, 7 voices, and was last updated Apr-18 by mattyc.
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    • kennynarz
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      Has anybody taken any of the old CFA Mock exams that they put out on the CFA Institute Site? I wanted to get everybody’s take on what they think in comparison to Kaplan.  Also, the Institute gives you the “answer guidelines” but they are vague and dont tell you how to score the exam…. Thoughts?

    • jjunior1212
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      I thought the old CFA exams were a bit more straight forward than the Schweser exams. Some of the questions on the Schweser Morning practice exams are really obtuse.

      I haven’t really been scoring my exams, just taking them to see how well I know them and what level of detail the graders are looking for.

    • mattyc
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      Just finished taking the 6 Schwesers and will start the old CFAI tests this weekend.  I’ve heard the older tests are harder than Schweser.

    • desantol
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      Where exactly did you find the old mock exams on the site?  I can only find the current practice test and mock exam.  Any help would be much appreciated!

    • jjunior1212
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      Log in to the CFAI website under Candidate Resources then on the left side of the page in a gray box the heading with STUDY there is a link with Level III Exam Details. You’ll find the 2012, 2013, 2014 essay questions along with answer guides. 

    • kennynarz
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      I’ve taken 5 of the Morning Kaplan exams and I took the 2013 CFAI Morning exam.  I agree that the CFAI was more straightforward.  There seems to be a lot of ambiguity in the Kaplan exams along with implied assumptions that you (unbeknownst to me) are supposed to make.  I think what Kaplan is doing is just trying to throw every possible situation at you just as preparation, to get you thinking on your feet.  Good strategy by them.  But the one CFAI was definitely more straightforward than the Kaplan in my opinion.  Going to finish up the last Kaplan Exam this week and then do the 2014 and 2012 CFAI tests.

    • fabian
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      You can also find them here. There are some older ones not easily available on CFAI:

      Source: http://www.300hours.com/blog/the-last-minute-guide-how-to-cram-for-the-cfa-exa

    • WesMantooth
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      I’ve been taking the old CFAI exams and found the answer keys to be quite helpful in understanding the answer but not so helpful in knowing how much detail to include.

      The rough guide I’ve been using is to base the answer detail I include according to the # of minutes the question is allocated

      I’ve been using the Schweser afternoon exams to complement the CFAI morning exams and have not been scoring well. Not a big fan of the ethics questions in Schweser, they make some strange assumptions sometimes. Which is discouraging, but then I go back to the CFAI EOC Item set questions and do pretty well, which is encouraging…so overall feeling pretty bi polar!

      I wish we had access to more CFAI item set questions…

    • mattyc
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      @wesmantooth did you take the CFAI mock yet?  It says AM/PM but both sections are vignette style.  My plan is to couple those with past AM exams to replicate the structure of the actual test. 

    • ultimatecontrarian
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      After a few years of this crappola I think the Schweser mocks are actually harder. Particularly for level 3, every question is basically a max-difficulty format. 2nd and 3rd derivatives are asked in a single question. The CFAI does this as well, but only once in a while rather than in every question or every topic.

      For instance: “easy” difficulty is being given tobins q and equity q and asked whether overvalued or undervalued or fairly valued (1 concept). medium difficulty is being given the inputs for tobins q with some extra numbers and being asked to calculate the figure (1 calc). Hard difficulty is having to calculate equity q from inputs AND then evaluate the output to get a single right answer (have to know 1 concept and 1 calc). MAXIMUM difficulty is having to work to tobins q from the equity q and then evaluate the tobins q figure (2 calcs and 1 concept). Schweser likes to ask most of the questions like that last one in the mock exams, to get the most bang for the buck when preparing. But it’s a bit frustrating when trying to shoot for a passing score without going overboard on the prep.

      my opinion anyway.

    • jjunior1212
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      @WesMantooth Yeah, I’ve also been using the number of minutes as a guide to how much detail to include since those represent the amount of points for that question.

      I’ve also been trying to key in on command words such “Identify” and “Explain”. Usually just listing a few words for Identify and greater detail for Identify and Explain. 

      @ultimatecontrarian I think that’s pretty much spot on. 

    • WesMantooth
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      @mattyc I haven’t taken the CFA 2015 exam yet, I did not realize the whole thing was vignette style…that seems odd?

      That is a good idea to pair it with older exams to mimic the real thing. I’ll prob do the same! Thanks!

    • kennynarz
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      Ive done 5 of the 6 Full Kaplan Mocks and plan on doing the last one this weekend, in addition to the 2014 CFAI Mock.  That leaves the two CFAI Mock (vignette style) and the 2012 CFAI Morning exam for next weekend.  

      This thread has generated a lot of useful collaboration, I wanted to shift gears for a moment..

      Is everybody timing themselves in the morning session?? I have been trying to stick to the strict tiing, and ive noticed that there is not much time to think in the AM Portion.  You need to move through the questions at a good pace, and if you are stuck on one and need a couple minutes to think about the answer, your likely behind.  

      Whats everybody’s plan for potentially skipping questions to go back later and answer it at the end? I see a lot of places where people say they failed level 3 due to lack of time management in the AM section.  I think my plan will be, if i KNOW that i cannot answer the question in the allotted time, and that if i spend more than a minute thinking and have nothing written down, that i am going to have to come back to it. Seems prudent to get the points you know you can get… Thoughts???

    • mattyc
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      I’ve been timing my practice exams and thus far it hasn’t been a problem for me.  The only time I was cognizant of being behind was the 2014 CFAI essay and I still ended up finishing with 25 mins to spare.  In general the essays usually start with IPS which take the full allotted time or a little longer but there are plenty of questions later on to make up that timing.  Personally I don’t want to skip any questions for fear that I’ll miss something when going back.  I think if I get down to the last 30 mins and I know need to get my points efficiently I would skip to a section of strength to pick up sure points, but other than out of desperation I’m going to stick to the order.

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