AuthorTopic: Exam Day Recap
@2017-12-29 12:29:51
Had to take a few days to myself before I posted my recap of the exam. It's always like running on a treadmill for a while, once you get off you almost have to reorient yourself to the real world again.

OK, here's my recap of the exam. I arrived to conference center early to avoid any last minute issues. Was held in local convention center and it had all 3 levels taking exam in same room. I would guesstimate there were over 500 people total.

Two sections for Level 3, not all filled, I would say maybe 75% full. Always amazed at people who register but don't show up.

I was sitting right in front of proctor. HAd my usual gear with me, both BA-II's, lots of pencils and 4 pens I always bring way more than I need for the exam.

AM session starts, I immediately look at the Table of Contents to get a sense of what I was looking at. I immediately see my strong areas are being tested so my confidence grows.

I skipped the 1st question as I knew it's designed to cause candidates to lose time which endangers the rest of the AM session. I immediately hop into a problem I knew well to build up the confidence. I worked back and forth thru the exam and was able to put an answer down for all but 1 question and do a decent review of my answers afterwards. While I know for sure I got some things wrong I hope to get at least partial credit and the fact that some L3 candidates said they didn't finish gives me some hope I did ok in the AM session. Overall it was not as bad as I feared. I had enough knowledge to take stabs at each question which is all you can ask for with those essay questions. I used the entire 3 hours.

Lunch break followed my usual routine. I brought my own lunch and ate it at car. Used the extra time to bone up on topics not covered in AM session. A little harder to drill because it's harder to know what was covered and not covered in terms of the published percentages but you know what was tested and what wasn't so you just focus there. Was feeling decent after the AM session, gave myself a quick pep talk that I was 3 hours away from finishing this for good and went back in. Studied some last minute formulas until I walked in the door so I wouldn't leave anything to chance.

PM session starts and I follow the order of the questions beginning with the Ethics questions. As always, it's easy to eliminate the obviously wrong answer but those last two really make you think thru the scenario again. I think I did OK, but wouldn't be surprised if I got a bad score. Rest of exam was tough but fair I thought. As always, CFAI is GREAT at giving you just enough information to make you think you may be leaving something out or question if the answer was really that easy. They also have a habit of taking a problem YOU JUST KNOW HOW TO SOLVE inside and out and giving it a slight twist so you spend 15 minutes BECAUSE YOU JUST CANNOT GET THIS ONE WRONG. They had one on there that I spent way too much time on. I was able to get thru the rest of the exam in 2 hours and give myself an hour to review and redo some questions I skipped over or guessed at completely. I feel I did ok in the PM session too.

Overall, I feel less confident than I did coming out of Level 1 where I knew I destroyed that exam and more confident coming out of Level 2 where I felt lost and thought I had no shot at passing. I passed both on 1st try so I guess this is a good sign and based on some feedback I heard after the exam maybe the curve will help me.

Since I can't control anything at this point, I'm going to take the summer to spend some time with the kids and plot my next move. I'm happy with my preparation and performance on exam day. I really felt like I was well prepared and mentally this was definitely as relaxed as I've ever felt taking the exam. There was a certain calm and peace I had. Now just need to see what the final results were.

After 3 CFA levels, I have to give them kudos, you don't get this charter easily. These exams are a beast and definitely separate the men from the boys. I'm a better person for having undergone this adventure no matter what the result is.

I'll take some time off from posting and will finally get to working. Hopefully I'll be able to do a final posting showing how I passed all 3 levels on 1st time!

Drop me a line on how you thought the exam was.

CFA Discussion Topic: Exam Day Recap

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I am using your study notes and I know of at least 5 other friends of mine who used it and passed the exam last Dec. Keep up your great work!