Preparing for the Level III CFA® Exam

Level III – the Finish Line is in Sight

You’ve already come a long way in your CFA charter journey. Now it’s time to finish strong. The Level III exam will test your ability to apply everything you learned in Levels I and II to practical, real-life situations.

Previous Knowledge

The knowledge you need to possess prior to preparing for the Level III CFA Program exam is the same knowledge you’ve acquired to this point in preparing for the first two exams. Your exam preparation for Level III will prepare you to complete more complex item sets, and also master the constructed response (essay) portion, which is exclusively a part of the Level III exam.

Level III Curriculum

The topics tested in Level III include:

  • Ethical and Professional Standards
  • Behavioral Finance, Individual Investors, and Institutional Investors
  • Capital Market Expectations
  • Asset Allocation
  • Fixed Income and Equity Portfolio Management
  • Alternative Investments, Risk Management, and the Application of Derivatives
  • Portfolio Execution, Evaluation and Attribution, and Global Investment Performance Standards

How Long it Takes to Study

CFA Institute recommends that you spend an average of 300 hours preparing for each level of the CFA Program exam. According to a 2016 survey, Level III candidates spent an average of 334 hours preparing for the exam.

How to Study

We suggest that candidates follow The Kaplan Way, a three-phase learning strategy: Prepare • Practice • Perform ® . This methodology is the foundation we’ve built Schweser’s CFA Program exam prep products on.

  • In-Person: Attend live classes in select cities, led by CFA charterholders.
  • Online: All the quality of a live class, with convenient online delivery.
  • Self-Study: Comprehensive, flexible, no-frills exam prep package.

Tips and Tools

Trying to find more valuable tips to help you prepare for the Level III CFA Program exam? Look no further.

  • Start your exam prep early. Develop a routine and stick to it.
  • The tools in your review package work best when used together as designed.
  • Check out these free resources specifically designed for Level III candidates.