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Tips To Pass the CFA® Level 1 Exam Over the Summer

a young student preparing for the cfa level I exam

As every CFA candidate knows, passing the CFA Exam requires time, money, and mental fortitude. But if you want to become a Charterholder, you must get started. So, why not consider passing Level 1 of the CFA Exam over the summer?

Passing Level 1 over the summer is challenging but feasible, and if you have the drive and discipline to focus on the task at hand, you can succeed. While it might seem difficult at first, there are many benefits of getting started on your CFA Exam journey now rather than later. Among the most important is that you will be one step closer to achieving your goal of passing the CFA Exam.

Although the overall process might seem daunting, it’s probably easier to focus only on passing the first level instead of worrying about future levels. So, do not procrastinate by being overwhelmed by the unknown and instead get started as soon as you can.

If you want to prepare for the CFA Level 1 Exam in three months while working and/or raising a family, the following suggestions on how to pass the CFA Level 1 Exam over the summer may be helpful:

  1. Envision life after the Charter. Look ahead to how you will feel when you have passed the Level 1 CFA Exam and realize you are one step closer to your goal. Then imagine the feeling when you get to the finish line after passing all three levels—knowing that you’ve earned the Charter and are positioned to advance your career and achieve your goals.
  2. Schedule your exam and stick to a study plan. Scheduling your Level 1 CFA exam will make you accountable for following through and help you create your study plan around your exam date. Once you know when you are taking the exam, you can create a study plan that sets you up for success on test day.
  3. Focus during your dedicated study time. Prioritize your schedule and set aside dedicated time to thoroughly prepare for the Level 1 CFA Exam over the summer. If you happen to be working while studying, see if you can take some days off to study for the exam without the burden of other responsibilities.
    To protect your dedicated study time, tell your family and friends that you will be unavailable for a few months as you prepare intensively for the exam. Most importantly, take advantage of this time to focus on your CFA Exam journey and, ultimately, your career.

If you get overwhelmed by your CFA exam studies—and most candidates will at some point—remember why you decided to embark on this journey in the first place. Imagine walking into work after obtaining the CFA Charter and knowing that the prestigious designation will enhance your career path while affording you instant credibility and the respect of your colleagues and employers alike.

While studying for Level 1, if you need even more inspiration, consider creating a vision board to place in your study area to forecast what your life might look like once you have earned the CFA Charter. Mapping out your future is the most inspiring way to keep you on track over the summer.

Finally, it is critical to note that, as Colin Powell so aptly put, “A dream doesn’t become a reality through magic; it takes sweat, determination, and hard work.” Passing Level 1 of the CFA Exam over the summer is a challenge you can and will conquer if you believe in yourself, put in the hours to study, and set yourself up for success. We wish you the best of luck!


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