5-Month CFA Level 2 Study Plan: Intro
New Year is the time of new beginning. If you’re about to face your CFA level 2 exam this year, it’s perfect time to take up your preparation now. Tempted to wait just a little bit longer, a week or a month perhaps? Naaah... Better pull up your sleeves and start right away. Especially that the CFA level 2 exam can be a real tough one.
Below, you will find how to prepare for CFA level 2 using a reliable 5-month CFA level 2 study plan. Our preparation is divided into 5 Study Blocks, each ending with some topics revision. Spaced revision sessions allow to overcome the forgetting curve, which can be quite steep for such a voluminous study content.
Before you go to the details of this study plan, however, take your time to learn a few key issues about the CFA level 2 preparation.
Looking for a specific study schedule?
Choose your JUNE 2020 CFA Study Plan:
Looking for a specific study schedule? Choose your JUNE 2020 CFA Study Plan:
- 2-month L1 Study Plan
- 3-month L1 Study Plan
- 4-month L2 Study Plan
- 4-month L1 Study Plan
- 4.5-month L1 Study+Review Plan
- 5-month L1 Study Plan
- 5-month L2 Study Plan
- 6-month L1 Study Plan
- 7-month L1 Study Plan
- 8-month L1 Study Plan
What Should I Know About CFA Level 2?
First of all, in some aspects CFA level 2 preparation is more difficult compared to level 1. CFA level 2 exam pays great attention to detail and requires analytical skills. Additionally, the format of the exam changes. Now, traditional multiple choice questions are composed into the so-called item sets.
An item set consists of a vignette (approximately one-page long description) + 4 to 6 multiple choice questions (related to the vignette). Every exam session contains 10-15 item sets, which means you have on average 12-18 minutes per one item set. It’s not much when you think of quite lengthy vignettes you must read in order to answer the questions. The vignettes will include tons of data, some of which may prove totally irrelevant.
Another unique thing about CFA level 2 prep is topics. Although there are still 10 topics for level 2 (like for level 1), the weights of the topics change are are given in ranges. This time Equity, Fixed Income, Financial Reporting & Analysis, and Ethics have the greatest weight. For all level 2 topic weights, see the table further below.
What study materials should I use to prepare
for my CFA level 2 exam?
Because of the detailed nature of level 2 exam, it is believed that the CFA Curriculum is the best source of knowledge for level 2 candidates.
We also believe so, and this is why we encourage you to use your CFA Curriculum as much as possible, especially since you’re a 5-month study plan user and still have much preparation time at your disposal.
Still: though the curriculum is the best source of knowledge, it doesn’t mean it’s best for knowledge retention. Particularly during the revision sessions you should also depend on reliable complementary materials. Choose those presenting the curriculum in the most digestive and user-friendly way.
Will I find any interesting
level 2 study materials at Soleadea?
Sure you will, both free and paid.
First, check our Free CFA Study Planner. Inside you will find some free level 2 videos and item sets.
If you like them, you’ll be able to purchase as many as 40+ hours of to-the-point L2 videos and 50 item sets.
Our videos are short but exhaustive and let knowledge sink in. The item sets, which are constructed like exam-type questions (vignette + multiple choice questions), make a perfect practice tool. We strongly believe that doing exam-type questions is a key to success. That’s why it’s important for the tests you do to have the right format.
How To Use CFA Curriculum?
CFA Curriculum presents the study material in diversified ways. Apart from the plain subject-related text, after most of the readings you will also find the so-called end-of-reading questions. Moreover, you can find numerous examples throughout readings. These are perfect for practice and they should be duly analyzed.
Pay attention particularly to those questions that are constructed into item sets to get used to the exam format from the very beginning.
Learn formulas systematically. You can write down the CFA Curriculum formulas and repeat them often. You can also use the shortcut way and get the ready-made CFA level 2 formulas e-book. Also inside our CFA Study Planner, you will find a special Formulas App to practice the formulas on an everyday basis.
Like for level 1, follow the LOSes enumerated before every chapter. Also, make use of the bolded terms and concepts that indicate what you should know after each reading.
L1 vs L2:Exam preparation hints
You had your way of preparing for CFA level 1 exam. If you feel it worked, follow the route.
First, however, apply some constructive criticism to your level 1 preparation. If after thorough analysis you find things you could do better, improve your current studying process.
CFA Level 2 Topic Characteristics
For CFA level 2 topics, exam weights are given in ranges. The most important topics in the exam are Equity, FRA, and Fixed Income (plus, of course, Ethics). For these 4 topics, you can expect even up to 60% questions.
The table below presents the most crucial information on level 2 topics:
|Number of pages in CFA Curriculum||Minimum topic weight||Maximum topic weight||Estimated average number of questions per topic||Topic efficiency|
|Financial Reporting and Analysis||400||10%||15%||16||4.0|
|Fixed Income Investments||309||10%||15%||15||4.9|
The first four columns need no explanation. The last column concerns topic efficiency, which is defined as the number of questions in the exam per 100 pages of the CFA Curriculum:
- E – topic efficiency,
- Q – estimated average number of questions for a topic,
- N – number of pages on a topic in the CFA Curriculum.
For example, if the efficiency for FRA is 4, it means that in the exam you will find about 4 questions per every 100 pages on FRA in the Curriculum.
Taking this criterion into consideration, we can divide the topics into 3 groups:
- High topic efficiency: DI, ETH, FI
- Moderate topic efficiency: ECO, FRA, AI, PM
- Low topic efficiency: CF, EI, QM
The topic efficiency criterion may come in handy if you run out of time and need to reconsider how much you’re going to spend for each topic. Of course, some other variables, like e.g. topic weights, need to be accounted for then as well.
How to Prepare for CFA Level 2?
5-Month Study Plan Detailed
We begin this 5-month CFA level 2 preparation on Monday, 6 January 2020, and end on Friday, 5 June 2020, i.e. the day before the exam. Meanwhile, there's a weekly pause in studying for you to take short holiday. The whole preparation period is divided into 5 Study Blocks, each ending with some topic review sessions:
5-Month CFA Level 2 Study Plan STARTS on 6 January 2020
1st Study Block (6 Jan – 1 Feb)
1st Study Block (6 Jan – 1 Feb)
- Equity Investments
- EI Review
2nd Study Block (2 Feb – 21 Feb)
- Fixed Income
- Derivative Investments
- FI+DI Review
- EI Review
3rd Study Block (22 Feb – 22 March)
- Financial Reporting & Analysis
- Corporate Finance
- FRA+CF Review
- EI+FI+DI Review
suggested dates: 23 – 29 March
4th Study Block (30 March – 24 Apr)
- Quantitative Methods
- Portfolio Management
- QM+PM Review
- EI+FI+DI+FRA+CF Review
5th Study Block (25 Apr – 10 May)
- Alternative Investments
- ECO+AI Review
- Ethics Review
FINAL REVIEW (11 May – 5 June)
END: 5 June 2020
Equity Investments and Ethics are treated exceptionally. You get to revise EI after 4 out of 5 Study Blocks and you read Ethics as the first topic and review it as the last one. Moreover, our Study Planner urges you to review Ethics regularly, which is definitely a good idea with the ethics adjustment being in force
With 5 months to your exam, we think you can surely afford 1 week off studying (when exactly is your choice!). Such a break has 2 functions. On the one hand, it allows you to recharge batteries in the middle of your exam preparation. On the other hand, it motivates you to work hard on the first 6 topics. It’s like an award for those who follow the plan!
We wrap up with 4 weeks of Final Revision to let you really prepare for your CFA test. This should be an intensive month of filling in knowledge gaps and doing lots of mock exams!
5-Month CFA L2 Study Schedule: Topic Deadlines
Your CFA level 2 study schedule + 1 week off studying has been timetabled below. Deadlines are given for all 10 level 2 topics and your topic review sessions:
|Level 2 Topics||June 2020 Exam Deadlines|
|Ethics||10 Jan 2020|
|Equity Investments||28 Jan 2020|
|EI Review 1||1 Feb 2020|
|Fixed Income||9 Feb 2020|
|Derivative Investments||16 Feb 2020|
|FI Review||21 Feb 2020|
|DI Review||21 Feb 2020|
|EI Review 2||21 Feb 2020|
|Financial Reporting and Analysis||3 March 2020|
|Corporate Finance||15 March 2020|
|FRA+CF Review||22 March 2020|
|EI+FI+DI Review||22 March 2020|
|> HOLIDAYS<||29 March 2020|
|Quantitative Methods||8 Apr 2020|
|Portfolio Management||15 Apr 2020|
|QM+PM Review||24 Apr 2020|
|EI+FI+DI+FRA+CF Review||24 Apr 2020|
|Economics||30 Apr 2020|
|Alternative Investments||8 May 2020|
|ECO+AI Review||10 May 2020|
|Ethics Summary||10 May 2020|
|Final Review||5 June 2020|
If you set up your personalized study plan,
the deadlines will get adjusted.
See below your 5-month L2 study plan screens:
All Weeks That’s where you can view all the weeks of your CFA exam prep to see how much you’ve done and how much is still ahead of you.
Current Week You will be asked to focus on your current week of studying. You will know what to study, when to study, and how much to study. At the end of the week, your hard work will be evaluated (hit the ‘Sum Up’ button).