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Schweser Practice Exams

@vincentt how are you progressing along with the Schweser practice exams?
I know you are also doing them. Have you started exam 4 yet? Is book 2 really harder than book 1?
I'm thinking I might squeeze in some hardcore revision before I start book 2.

Your thoughts?
If words can be lethal weapons, I must provide them with an arsenal.


  • I'm just finishing exam 3 afternoon paper as we speak, 1 last item set to go and i'm ready to review it.

    Have you done the first 3? How was it?

    If all goes according to plan i'll be starting exam 4 on monday. I thought I'll get some practices with schweser before I do the CFAI ones.
  • I've done progressively better with each exam. I scored a dismal 55% on exam 1 (not that exam 1 was hard but I took a week off from studying and dedicated to job hunting. I was letting the "curve of forgetting" to set in to see how much I could retain without constant reminder). I improved substantially between exams. I found exam three the easiest.

    But I am really good with some topics and can't seem to get a hang of some so my understanding of topics are really uneven and that is driving me crazy.
    If words can be lethal weapons, I must provide them with an arsenal.
  • same here. though my scores (averaging both AM & PM papers) are improving over these 3 practice exams, i still have some papers (e.g. doing poorly on AM but okay on PM) not doing too well.

    In level 1, there are 240 questions and questions are scattered all over, so as long as you cover the whole syllabus reasonably well you'll be ok.

    However, in level 2 since it's based on item sets, i find sometimes you might need a bit of 'luck' to do well. For instance, if the mock has more item sets on your stronger readings (more specific), you'll score better in that paper.

    Have you manage to complete all the EOC questions in the underlying text?
  • @diya @ vincentt are you guys having to guess answers as you go? I'm finding that sometimes I know how to get to the answer but I forgot the steps :(

    Have you guys done the Elan ones?
  • @Alta12 no I haven't used the Elan ones but I've heard they are "more" representative of the exam.

    I try not to guess because that gives me a better idea of how much I know and exactly which topics I don't understand.

    How are you faring with Elan?
    If words can be lethal weapons, I must provide them with an arsenal.
  • @alta12 if I haven't got a clue on the answer at all I would leave it blank so I know I shouldn't get any marks for it.

    Likewise, for questions that I'm not 100% sure but I still think it's the right one I would put a marker on the question number.

    Same goes for the answers, if i'm certain one of it is wrong I would put a cross on it, so when i'm reviewing it, I would know what I think I knew is indeed correct or even for things you are unsure I would underline it and put a question mark so I when I review it I could read up on that.

  • SophieSophie Posts: 1,976 Jr Partner
    Uneven coverage is much better than you think. Then you know you have to study for 1-2 topics specifically. It's worse to be average on all topics!

    Sounds like awesome progress @diya, @vincentt and @alta12!
  • @sophie i'm just worried that an item set with half of the questions covering some very niche sections.

    E.g. asking about the different types of hedge fund's strategies or types of pre and post acquisition defences, etc.
  • @Diya @Vincentt @Sophie I'm struggling with the Schweser ones. I don't seem to have problems doing EOC and Elan Practice questions but the Schweser vignettes is troubling me. Will start Elan mock at the end of this week.

    I am so disheartened right now. Spent 6 months studying and struggling to remember it all.
  • SophieSophie Posts: 1,976 Jr Partner
    Oh don't worry @vincentt, those are probably worse in Level 3 essay questions, cos if you've no clue it's blank and you don't have 1/3 chance of getting it right! you'll remember more in the next 2 weeks...

    @alta12 - Level 2 is the toughest due to sheer amount of material, so you are all going through the same pain. Just keep practising, check (+ understand) why you went wrong, revise those sections, repeat. By definition your score should improve over time if you don't repeat the same mistakes!

    Schweser is quite calculation focused, is that what's troubling you?

  • @vincentt I'm scared of FRA adjustments US GAAP vs IFRS there are so many that they can pull from :(
  • @sophie Thanks! Scored better in Schweser Mock 2 PM but I think that is because they were my stronger areas. I still haven't gone through quant (my weakest area) for the second time. Not sure if I should concede it and concentrate on other topics. And still have to memorise formulas. Totally freaking out!

    Schweser style of presenting information is very different to CFA. For example they present binomial model information very differently :o
  • has anyone tried CFAI's sample exams? I kind of remember them saying that their sample exams should be used before the mock? Are they easier?

    @Alta12 I feel you there, but I think after a working through enough problems you kind of get a feel for it.
    If words can be lethal weapons, I must provide them with an arsenal.
  • @diya just completed the first 5item sets of exam 1 in vol 2, its harder in my opinion.
  • @vincentt which mock/provider are you referring to that is harder?
  • @alta12 schweser practice exam volume 2.
  • @vicentt you are on a roll! Are you doing one mock per day?
  • @alta12 I wish I was quicker, I only manage half a paper or quarter of a full mock (5 item sets) a day including review.

    I'm only able to do a complete paper on a weekend. What about you?
  • @vincentt how much harder? Is it substantially bringing down your mark?
    I think I am going to squeeze a bit more revision before I start the second book.
    If words can be lethal weapons, I must provide them with an arsenal.
  • @diya yeah they make u work harder for something simple and sometimes i don't even know what they are asking for.

    I'm only half way through, doing another 5 today to complete the morning. What are you working on at the moment?
  • @vincentt I was planning on doing my revision but instead I was very unproductive so I started the book 2. I'll finish the first quarter and touch bases with you again and compare notes. I only finished the first item set (ethics) and it was REALLY detailed.

    Which by the way for question 3 I don't understand why Gillis buying a long position in Binaria's currency is wrong. She has no idea that the proposed reform includes and wouldn't the fact a reform is coming be public knowledge? I don't understand why that is an instance of front running...
    If words can be lethal weapons, I must provide them with an arsenal.
  • @diya that ethics question completely abused my brain. The answers are so closed and the text purposely mislead you.

    That's because she's one of the traders in her company and her company specialises in currency trading. So i guess trading on your personal account before your employer and client is wrong.

    Not sure if you still recall one question in Vol 1 that says analyst A spent a couple of days at work researching on a stock and then purchased it in her personal account without telling her employer is wrong too.
  • @diya going through the summaries? I thought of doing some CFAI's EOC (on my weaker areas) after the 4th or 5th schweser's mock, are they easier or tougher compared to schweser's?
  • CFAI EOC questions? Not sure since I haven't done them all. One thing that does annoy me is that not all of CFAI's questions are multiple choice format. CFAI EOC questions are much more difficult than Schweser's EOC questions. I like working through the blue box examples since the solutions are more detailed.

    Which sections are you having difficulties with? Alt. Investment, portfolio management and corporate finance is making me cry.
    If words can be lethal weapons, I must provide them with an arsenal.
  • @vincentt no I am not going through the summaries. I find that I "know" the breath of the topic it is the depth that is troubling me. I just do questions or blue box examples or memorize formulas.
    If words can be lethal weapons, I must provide them with an arsenal.
  • @diya same here, based on my level 1 experience, schweser tends to hit the small concepts whereas the real exam are more towards the understanding of the concept. Not too sure how level 2 is gonna be like.

    I've issues with economics (i don't really like it), some concepts of fixed income, also I'm a little worried on a couple of last readings of some topics (e.g. SS7 on accounts, last reading of economics, etc) where i think it's not the 'big picture' of those topics and i tend to focus less on those. Having done 3 full mocks, I don't think there are many questions on those topics, not sure if it's worth focusing on them via say EOC questions.
  • @vincentt I am finding that even my weaker topics have improved dramatically while doing the first three mock exams. I might finish up with book 2 within a week and a half (depending on how I score) and start with the 2012 exam booklets. I find that there aren't huge differences in the topics and the extra questions will help with my understanding.

    I find that the EOC questions are very detailed. I also have some old sample/mock exams from CFAI. I did a 2012 sample exam and scored decently (>70%) so maybe we are worrying too much?
    If words can be lethal weapons, I must provide them with an arsenal.
  • @diya i have to admit i wasn't as prepared as i was in level 1 when i started the first mock, but that made me learn and refresh the formulas i knew awhile ago but have forgotten.

    The first mock i've only managed to score 52%, the second and third around 65%. Though I know i've improved a lot over the past 1.5 weeks but mock 4 is seriously demoralising. I'm tempted to look at some EOC of my weak areas, still undecided. I'm leaving cfai 2012 and 2013 for next week so by then i should have improved further i hope.
  • @vincentt for the first mock I scored a 55%. and what that is a huge improvement between the first and second mock exam. Good job!

    I've noticed that mock 4 also it taking me longer to get through. They really make you fight for the answer. Which is good (more review) but demoralizing and surely CFAI wouldn't have such convoluted questions on the exam, would they? Actually forget about it being convoluted, I'm worried that if the questions are really that in-depth I might really have a time problem...
    If words can be lethal weapons, I must provide them with an arsenal.
  • @vincentt @diya I'm struggling with quant and portfolio management. I may have to resort to memorising soon. I'm doing one mock every two days and revision in between. It takes me a long time to debrief on the mocks. I may have to speed up next week but I want to make sure I understand the questions I get wrong and for the questions I get right that the reasoning was correct.

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