Written By Team CFI

The Chartered Financial Analyst® (CFA®) course is a graduate-level course established and administered by the CFA Institute, a global organization of investment professionals with roots in the United States. You can strengthen your analytical abilities, gain investing knowledge, and increase your prospects of professional progression as a candidate and later as a CFA charter holder. Disciplined self-study is the best way to explain what you’re in for after you’ve decided to take the CFA test. Starting this year, CFA Institute will begin using computer-based assessments for level I examinations.

Level I of the CFA exam covers ten subjects. It is divided into two 135-minute sessions, each with 90 multiple-choice questions. The level I CFA test is now computer-based test (CBT) starting in 2021. It happens four times in a year i.e. February, May, August, and November.

About the Exam

The CFA Level I exam is the first of three levels of the CFA exam, a renowned financial credential offered by the CFA Institute and held globally. The exam is expensive and difficult, but it is worthwhile.

Eligibility

  • Have a bachelor’s (or equivalent) degree or be in the final year of a bachelor’s degree program
  • Have a valid international passport
  • Be prepared to take the exams in English

CFA Level I Curriculum

The exam focuses on fundamental knowledge and understanding of investment valuation and portfolio management tools and concepts. The course covers 10 subjects and weights of these subjects and broad categories for the Level I test are listed in the table below: 

Topic Exam Weight
Ethical and Professional Standards 15-20%
Quantitative Methods 8-12%
Economics 8-12%
Financial Reporting and Analysis 13-17%
Corporate Issuers / Finance 8-12%
Equity Investments 10-12%
Fixed Income 10-12%
Derivatives 5-8%
Alternative Investments 5-8%
Portfolio Management 5-8%

Level I Computer Based Exam (CBT) Exam Structure

Level I Computer Based Exam (CBT) Exam Structure
Level I Computer Based Exam (CBT) Exam Structure

CFA Level I Exam | Fee Structure – Applicable For 2022 Exams

CFA Level I Fee Structure
CFA Level I Exam | Fee Structure

What career does CFA® prepare you for

Career Options after CFA Program
Career Options after CFA Program

Preparation for CFA Level I : Time Management

On average, 90 seconds should be set aside for each multiple-choice question. It’s possible that you’ll need more or less depending on the questions and your level of familiarity with the subject.

Best Way to Prepare for CFA Level I Exam? Exam for CFA Level I

Studying from a renowned CFA coaching prep institute is the most effective way to prepare for the CFA Level I Exam. The idea is to follow the CFA curriculum for the course and give yourself enough time to master the subject using your preferred study technique. Here are some of the exam-preparation tools that students have ranked as the most useful:

  • CFA Program Curriculum
  • CFA Program Mock Exams
  • CFA Program Topic Tests
  • CFA Prep Video Series Offered by CFI Education
  • CFA Prep Classroom / Live Sessions Offered by CFI Education

Exam Preparation Strategy for the CFA Level I

CFA Level I Tentative Study Plan
CFA Level I Tentative Study Plan
  • Initial 3-4 Months: In the first 3 months, do chapter wise reading and make notes which you can refer later for revision. Also, mark important concepts in the book so when you revisit, you can recall what you studied initially. Finally, do chapter wise questions as well to master the concepts.
  • 5th Month: Start with topic test / mock papers and time your test. First the first 1-2 mocks it is okay if you take little extra time but you need to eventually time the test with 3rd mock and later.
    • Analyze Mocks / Topic Tests: This single part is extremely important for effective preparation. It may take a whole day to analyze a single mock paper and check where you went wrong. See the answers explanations and go back to notes if required.

Helpful Tips for the CFA Level I

  • Solve topic questions / tests to have a good grasp over concepts
  • Master the use of CFA approved calculator
  • Do at least 5-6 mocks before you sit for actual exam. Morning + Evening exam are counted as one exam
  • Timing tests is not mandatory initially; Firstly focus on mastering the concepts then start doing in a stipulated time
  • Have a good study mate and learn from them as well
  • Do not ignore or take “Ethics & Professional Standards” lightly

At the end of it all though, no amount of preparation will suffice if you’re not fully committed to the cause. To know more about how CFI Education can help you prepare for your CFA Level 1 exam, visit our website- www.cfieducation.in.