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My Learnings On How To Clear The CFA Exams

Updated: Nov 25, 2020



I took up CFA out of sheer interest and willingness to learn about the financial markets. Its been a very fulfilling journey and at the same time it was an uphill task. From my personal experience I can say that being an engineer with no exposure to financial markets, if I can earn the charter, anybody can! All it takes is a lot of dedication; willingness to learn about financial markets and of course a proper plan to approach it.


There are ten subjects in CFA and all ten are tested in all three levels. As candidates you have to prepare well for all the subjects.


Broadly speaking what worked for me was referring to the CFA Institute books alone and solving all their questions and mock exams.Solving questions is most important. A lot of practice is the key to clearing the exam.


I was working full time while doing this certification so taking time out to study was challenging. To overcome this I made a study plan which I knew was practical and feasible with my hectic routine. I started early (six months before every exam) and budgeted 300 hours for each level, of this I kept 50 to 80 hours for revision and practicing questions. On an average I dedicated 2 slots of 45 minutes to an hour every day six days a week. One slot I would read the material and the second slot I dedicated to practicing questions of what theory I read.


CFA exams really test the application of the concepts being taught. Practicing questions helps to develop that approach. There are times when I was not able to follow my plan and found it difficult to get back on track. During such situations having a study pal or a mentor can really help.


This is just a brief about the overall approach to be followed while appearing for the exam. More detailed articles regarding preparation methodology for Level I, Level II & Level III will follow soon. So stay tuned!!


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6 commentaires


Dhrumil Dave
Dhrumil Dave
30 avr. 2021

Dear Ms. Agarwal, I am a registered L1 candidate for Nov'21 and planning to start the preparation. Need some guidance from you as you come from a non-finance background like me and followed the official curriculum only for the preparation.

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paluck agarwal
paluck agarwal
30 avr. 2021
En réponse à

You are right! Its been a while that i wrote. I will try to do that soon. In short consistency is key.

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paluck agarwal
paluck agarwal
24 mai 2020

Thank you Gaurav. I am glad you found this information useful. Once you register for the exam you get access to "Registered Candidate Resources" and here you get Practice Questions and Mock Exams. But these questions are arranged subject wise and can be used as a subject tests after one has finished all readings from that particular subject. For all three levels I solved all examples, end of reading questions and the questions from the website.

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Paluck, this article is very well written, you have kept it short and simple. It is very helpful for people who are preparing for CFA. It will be very helpful if you can suggest some the practice material you used. The curriculum has very limited number of questions on each topic. The End of chapter questions can only be attempted after reading all topics of a reading.

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