AuthorTopic: shortest study time?
wpulman57
@2015-08-24 17:04:30
As a general guideline, what is the shortest amount of time that you could prepare for the test? Has anyone here prepared and passed level 1 in 60 days?
mordja
@2015-09-03 13:59:47
I dont reckon you can give it much less than 90-120 days, but it will depend on your speed of reading and absorbtion.

I just passed level 2 and I have given both levels about 400 hours study (over about 4-5 months), I have used Analyst Notes (level 1 ) and Schweser (level 2), i pretty much dont use the CFA notes any more unless i need context to the summaries provided by the notes, once you get a feel for how it is assessed it is much easier to study for thus faster.
bantoo
@2015-09-05 13:52:27
I do not believe it can be completed in 60 days. It is a very comprehensive course and demands at least 400 to 600 hours of study depending on the degree of the familiarity of the subjects.
Ojomz
@2015-09-29 15:56:19
if its full time, maybe. 10hrs daily will do the magic
sand338
@2015-09-30 10:17:18
only for go through 60 days may be enough if given good amount of time per day (8-10 hpd), however for grasping it you probably need further 60 days further.
otavio
@2015-10-02 15:59:29
Some of the material is stuff others have already learned. For example, there are plenty of NPV, bond yield, IRR, WACC courses in college, plus econ and GDP stuff. Ethics is straight forward. Others who have worked in industry may know other info such as derivatives as well. And obviously statistics is essentially just 1-2 college-level courses.

Theoretically someone who already has background could really pass this within a few weeks of studying.

However most people are doing this because they want to get ahead (I assume), which means they'd need to actually learn and read, practice.

I know of 11 people who studied for "adequate" amounts of time and failed. And also know some people who studied for 2-3 months and passed "with ease." They probably did study 8-10 hours/day.
Moobic
@2015-10-17 01:36:26
Due to some scheduling conflict that was beyond my control, I had an exam on May 12 so I had from May 13 - June 4 to study. I studied 8 -11 hrs a day since I wasn't working. If I had a choice I'd rather do that than spread it out but now I have to work it's proving difficult to study for CFA Level 2 with the same intensity.
Siavosh
@2015-10-25 16:44:06
Is it possible to pass the December CFA Level 1 if someone started from today (25 October)?? I am familiar with the economics section, the quantitative methods section, the derivatives and fixed income section, but nothing else to be honest. Is it possible for someone to learn and pass it in 4 weeks, or am I better off trying to postpone my exam until June due to an 'illness'?
tnilk
@2015-10-26 00:21:34
@Siavosh,

It seems like I have a similar background to yours. I knew quantitatives, fixed income, and derivatives from my education and work experience.

I started in early april this year, and will make my first attempt at level 1 this december.

The financial statement analysis (fsa) has by far been the toughest for me. I had absolutely no knowledge or experience in that section.

I also had to struggle a bit with the ethics, sometimes the questions are tricky. The same goes for the equity valuation.

I can only speak for myself, but if I was to work through fsa and the other sections in just 4 weeks, I would have had to take significant time off work.

If you decide to go for the december exam, my advice would be to prioritize financial statement analysis, ethics, and equity valuation, in that order. A bit of corporate finance and portfolio management would not hurt, but I found those sections to be relatively easy compared to the fsa section. And remember to do as many exercises and mock exams as you can manage.
swt326
@2019-03-08 21:55:46
I passed level 1 after studying 10-12 hrs for about a month. However, this was right after I graduated college with accounting & finance degree and a good amount of quant/regression analysis coursework. I think this also depends on if you're a good test taker.

Level 2 can't be attacked the same way and needs adequate study time even if you have a good background.
mzub
@2019-08-09 13:54:47
I somewhat echo the above comment, but would disagree about L2.

I too studied for about 4-5 weeks right after graduating and passed L1 with ease - also worth noting I too have a finance degree, so the takeaway here is that it's really not difficult to pass L1 in a month or so, so long as you can grind out some long study days and have the background for it.

L2 I attacked the exact same way. I am now working full-time, so I took 3.5 weeks off from work and again just grinded for the entire time, not having done any studying for L2 prior to this. That said, I scored right above the MPS for L2, and significantly above the 90th percentile for L1, so my performance certainly went down. The fact of the matter is, you can pass these exams with only a few weeks prep time, assuming you put in the hours and are smart enough to retain it all.

Hope this is helpful for anyone feeling hopeless in the last few weeks of studying.

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