CFA Exam Prep Resources: Useful Links For Candidates

CFA Exam Prep Resources: Useful Links For Candidates

Are you preparing for the CFA exam or planning to do so in the near future? Like any dedicated candidate, you’re likely scouring the internet for CFA exam prep resources in readiness for the test. Imagine having all these valuable links consolidated in one place—a time and energy-saving repository of information. It’s all you need when there’s a much to cover within a short time.

Well, someone thought about you and went the extra mile to make your work easier. We’ve done the rigorous task of compiling all the essential links to make your preparation easy. 

Take a moment to explore these links to get the necessary resources for success in your CFA exams.

CFA Scholarships

The CFA Institute provides a wide range of CFA scholarships to allow more candidates to take part in the CFA program. All the scholarships offered by the CFA institute include a waiver on the enrollment fee and a discount on the registration fee. These scholarships are awarded from time to time so that candidates can select from multiple upcoming CFA exam offerings. 

Below are the types of scholarships aspiring candidates can benefit from.

Access Scholarship

The access scholarship targets candidates unable to afford the program fee and who have not yet registered for their next exam. Those granted this scholarship will receive a USD 300 reduction in the registration fee.

Women’s Scholarship

Women interested in becoming CFA charterholders, ineligible for other CFA scholarships, and not yet registered for their next exam, greatly benefit from this scholarship. Those who receive this scholarship get a USD 400 reduction in the registration fee.

Student Scholarship

If you’re currently attending a university affiliated with the CFA program and haven’t registered for their next exam, you qualify for this scholarship. Those in this category who win the scholarship experience a USD 400 reduction in the registration fee.

Professor Scholarship

Are you a full-time college/university professor or administrator/department head teaching a minimum number of credit hours at a qualified institution and not yet registered for your next exam? The professor scholarship is suitable for you. Those awarded get a USD 400 reduction in exam registration.

Regulator Scholarship

If you work in a financial regulation company, central bank, security commission company, or a government entity, you’d be a perfect beneficiary of this scholarship. This is especially true for employees working with entities that are in a program agreement with the CFA Institute. 

CFA Exam Information – Registration Dates, Fees, and Exam Requirements

To get the CFA designation, you must pass all the three exams. As you already know, the CFA Institute administers these exams at different times of the year. You want to be up to date with the necessary information, such as the registration dates, fees, and exam regulations, just to ensure everything is done on time. The CFA Institute updates its website regularly with the most current information to ensure candidates like you don’t miss out on anything. 

CFA Exam Requirements

  • Level I: You must meet all the CFA program enrollment requirements to register for this exam. 
  • Level II: To register for CFA level II, you must pass the CFA level I exam and meet all the program enrollment requirements.
  • Level III: You must pass both CFA level I and II and meet the enrollment requirements to qualify for level III. 

CFA Registration Dates

According to the CFA Institute, the CFA level I is available at least four times a year in February, May, August, and November. The CFA level II is available three times a year in May, August/September, and November. On the other hand, the CFA level III is offered twice a year in February and August/September. The schedules might change at times. Therefore, always keep an eye on the CFA registration dates on the CFA Institute’s website to remain up to date with the changes. 

CFA Exam Fees

For early registration, the CFA program fee is USD 940, while the standard registration fee is USD 1250. However, each candidate pays a one-time fee of USD 350 at the time of enrollment. Keep checking the CFA Institute’s website for updated CFA exam fees to ensure you’re up to date with current rates. 

Career Paths for CFA Charterholders

Becoming a CFA charterholder gives you an edge over the rest of the finance industry. In most cases, with a CFA designation, you stand a chance to work in the capacity of an investment management professional for any firm in the investment and banking industry. 

Typical jobs for CFA charterholders include:

  • Risk analysis and risk manager
  • Portfolio manager
  • Credit analyst
  • Chief investment officer
  • Financial planner
  • Auditor
  • Data scientist

With a CFA designation, there are lots of career paths to explore

CFA Institute Prep Providers

While the CFA Institute offers study support to candidates enrolled in the program, you can benefit from third-party prep providers for adequate preparation. CFA prep providers, like AnalystPrep, offer a wide range of study resources, such as CFA tutoring sessions, video lessons, practice questions, and study notes. 

Not every CFA course provider is a CFA prep provider. While there are many sites offering study materials for the CFA exam, only a few have been approved by the CFA Institute. You can take a look at the list of the CFA Institute prep providers to make the right decision. 

CFA Core Curriculum Topics

Whether you’re just registering for your first CFA exam or enrolling for subsequent levels, it’s important to know what you expect for levels I, II, and III to study effectively. Familiarizing with the CFA core curriculum topics before enrolling for your exam is the best way to get started. All these topics are listed on the CFA Institute’s websites and are constantly updated to reflect new changes in the curriculum. As of now, there are at least ten core curriculum topics cutting across all the CFA exam levels.

CFA exam results and pass rates

When you take the CFA exam, don’t expect a grade for the result. Usually, it’s a either fail or pass along with information on your topic-level performance. Nevertheless, candidates who pass Level III only get the pass or fail and not detailed results. The CFA institute will notify you once your official CFA exam results are available. 

As an aspiring CFA charterholder, it’s important to check CFA pass rates for previous years to take a look at the performances of past candidates. As per the CFA Institute, you can find the CFA exam historical pass rates in the pdf on their website. 

CFA Exam Refund

If you’re submitting an initial registration for the CFA exam, the CFA Institute offers a full refund of your enrollment fee, registration fee, and the taxes applicable within fourteen days. However, it’s worth noting that if a registration is meant to reschedule an exam sitting that you deferred or has been postponed by the CFA Institute, that’s not part of an initial registration.

Before you submit a request for a CFA exam refund, it’s essential to review the refund policy provided by the CFA Institute to see whether you’re eligible. 

CFA Exam Prep Books

Whether you want to dive deep into the CFA curriculum or want to get the basics before enrolling in a CFA program, you can never go wrong if you choose to start with a CFA prep book. With a good prep book, you should be able to review the CFA content extensively, do lots of practice, and go through answer explanations to get into the finer details. 

Most of these CFA exam prep books are available online on sites like Amazon. You can always read through the reviews from past users to see whether a book fits your needs. 

CFA program mock exam 

The CFA Institute offers one mock exam for all registered candidates that mimics the real exam as much as possible. However, this may not be enough for candidates who want more practice to get an exam-like experience before the actual test. To get extra mock papers, go for a prep course provider like AnalystPrep that offers more mock exams to help you assess your confidence and accuracy as you go. 

CFA Exam Calculator

Which exam calculator should you use for your CFA exams? You must have thought about this at some point while studying for your CFA exam. Truth be told, if you get into the exam room with the wrong calculator, you’ll not be allowed to take the exam. Well, only two calculator models are allowed for use during the CFA program exams. 

The two CFA exam calculators include: 

  • Texas Instruments BA II Plus (including BA II Plus Professional)
  • Hewlett Packard 12C (including the HP 12C Platinum, 12C Platinum 25th anniversary edition, 12C 30th anniversary edition, and HP 12C Prestige)

There’s no sharing of calculators during the exams. Therefore, it’s advisable to bring the approved calculator with you on the exam day. 

How to Defer the CFA Exam

If you can’t sit for your scheduled exam, the CFA Institute allows you to move to a new window. Check the deferral request window on their website from time to time. Usually the deferral forms are usually posted four weeks before the start of an exam window. Read more details about how to defer the CFA exam on the CFA Institute website. 

CFA Exam Day Checklist

As you take some time to go through your study materials and practice with exam-style questions, it’s essential to get ready for the exam day. It entails how you’ll get to the test center, what you’ll wear, the items you need to carry, and so much more. That said, you should have your checklist ready many weeks before the exam. Here’s your CFA exam day checklist as per the CFA Institute. 

CFA study materials

The CFA Institute gives candidates access to a variety of study tools and resources to help them prepare for the CFA exams. The study resources include: 

  • Study sessions for all the CFA levels
  • The official program curriculum
  • Practice questions for all the CFA exam levels
  • A mock exam
  • Study tips

In addition to these resources, it’s advisable to get a CFA prep course for additional study materials. 

CFA institute membership

There are two types of CFA institute memberships you can take advantage of. You can either become an affiliate member of the CFA institute or a regular member if you have qualifying work experience in the investment decision-making process. Learn more on how to become a CFA institute member from the CFA institute’s websites. 

These are the most essential links for your journey to becoming a CFA charterholder—they’re the key to your success. While there are additional resources to explore along the way, these are the main ones to kickstart your study journey. More links await as you dive deeper into your preparation. Make your study time productive, and don’t forget to check out AnalystPrep’s comprehensive CFA prep materials. Your success story begins here!

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