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CFA® Curriculum and the Examination Structure

The CFA® Programme is continuously updated by practitioners to ensure that what you learn remains relevant in today's finance industry.

The main topic areas and exam weights are:

Topic Area Level I Level II Level III
Ethical and Professional Standards 15% 10% 10%
Quantitative Methods 12% 5-10% 0%
Economics 10% 5-10% 0%
Financial Reporting and Analysis 20% 15-25% 0%
Corporate Finance 8% 5-15% 10%
Total: Investment Tools 50% 30-60% 0%
Equity Investments 10% 20-30% 5-15%
Fixed Income 12% 5-15% 10-20%
Derivatives 5% 5-15% 5-15%
Alternative Investments 3% 5-15% 5-15%
Total: Asset Classes 30% 35-75% 35-45%
Portfolio Management 5% 5-15% 45-55%
Total 100% 100% 100%
Source CFA® Institute  

Exam process

The CFA® examination process requires that you sit and pass three consecutive levels of exam. Level I exams are held in June and December each year with levels II and III only in June.

Each of the exams is a six hour exam though the format changes from level to level.

Level I – Both of the three hour exams will cover all of the level I curriculum areas. In total there are 240 multiple choice questions, each based around the level I Learning Outcome Statements and each offering three choices.

Level II – The level II exam is in 'item-set' form, a different style of multiple choice tests. You will be given 10 'vignettes' – mini case studies – and then have to answer six questions based on that vignette.

Level III – The morning exam at level III is a constructed response test where you have to provide written answers, for example calculating an appropriate asset allocation strategy for a given portfolio and explaining your recommendation. The afternoon paper is in the same format as level II.

Course Information

The CFA® course in London takes place over a period of 3 months:

Level I starts in March 2015

CFA Timetable 2015

CFA Institute does not endorse, promote or warrant the accuracy or quality of the products or services offered by LSBF. CFA Institute, CFA® and Chartered Financial Analyst® are trademarks owned by CFA Institute.

Start in February 2015

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