Practicing CFA mock exams is one of the best ways to prepare and study for the chartered financial analyst exam. Working practice exams help test your understanding of the exam concepts and get you familiar with the layout and structure of the exam.
Knowing the layout and structure of the exam is extremely important. The last thing that you want on your exam day is to have an unwanted surprise when you open the testing software and find out you don’t know how to navigate through it. You don’t need any additional stress on your exam day. You want to be comfortable knowing how the testing program works.
Although understanding the layout is important, the biggest advantage to practicing CFA mock exams is that you work on your test taking skills. Practicing exam questions in a real exam environment will help you understand how questions are asked, what answers actually mean, and how to manage your time.
It’s no wonder why more than 75% of CFA candidates use mock exams to prepare for the real thing!
Let’s take a look at a few different practice exams, their pros and cons, and how you can use them to prepare for your CFA exam.
Quick Look at CFA Practice Test Reviews and Rankings
- 1 Quick Look at CFA Practice Test Reviews and Rankings
- 2 2018’s Top CFA Exam Test Banks Below:
- 3 Top 5 CFA Mock Exam Benefits and Testing Advantages
- 4 How Many CFA Mock Exams Should I Take?
Here’s a list of the top CFA exam simulations on the market today.
2018’s Top CFA Exam Test Banks Below:
Here are the best CFA mock exams to help you practice for the test and become a chartered financial analyst.
Wiley CFA Test Bank
Wiley CFA review offers practice test banks for both Level I and Level II exams with mock exams. Both of these test banks can be purchased with the full review course or separately as a study aid. The Level I test bank includes 4,000+ practice questions, while the Level II test bank includes 1,200+ practice questions. Both levels include two full-length mock exams that are accessible on your desktop or mobile device. This is more than any other CFA mock exam provider!
The Wiley CFA exam simulator looks and feels like the real CFA exam software. This lets you get familiar with the exam structure, so you won’t be surprised on exam day.
The questions themselves are similar to the style and format of the questions on the actual exam. This is a key resource because understanding the wording in the exam questions is sometimes half the battle of answering the questions correctly.
Wiley CFA also gives you detailed solutions for each question, so you can understand what answer is correct and why. This feature is probably the biggest help in preparing for the exam.
In both Levels, Wiley offers a custom quiz planner that allows you to make custom quizzes that target topics or subjects that you need to work on more. This is a great feature.
Adapt Prep CFA Test Bank
Adapt Prep CFA offers test banks for all three levels of the CFA exam. Adapt Prep is pretty customizable in that you can purchase each of these test banks as stand alone products, with the video lectures, or with a full CFA review course.
The Level I test bank includes more than 2,500 practice questions. The Level II bank includes over 1,000 questions, and the Level III question bank includes over 600 questions and 11 practice essays. All of these options are mobile friendly!
Adapt Prep CFA utilizes a custom exam engine to give you the ability to create custom quizzes based on topics. They don’t offer a standard mock exam. Instead, you use their software to build your own mock exam. This means you could make it long enough to emulate the real test or you could make your quizzes shorter to speed up your study time.
Depending on what package you get, Adapt Prep also includes video solutions to some of the main exam topics and an advanced analytics system to track your answers, study progress, and areas you need to work on.
AppTuto CFA Mock Exams
AppTuto CFA offers test banks for both CFA Level I and Level II candidates. Offering more than 3,500 practice questions, their test bank platform is designed to help you target areas that you need to study more.
The AppTuto custom quiz creator is a little more customizable than other courses. It allows you to create a custom quiz from exam topics, readings from the textbook, formulas, and even question difficulty.
This gives you the ability to create any type of quiz you want. You can study specific topics like a set of formulas or a broad topic covered in a section of the text. You can also adjust the grading weight on your practice quizzes, so they reflect the same weight as the actual exam.
The AppTuto CFA test bank doesn’t include a standard mock exam. You are allowed to make your own with their custom quiz generator. This gives you the option of creating a full mock exam or a partial one.
Analyst Prep CFA Practice Tests
Analyst Prep offers CFA mock exams for Level I candidates. Their 3,000-question test bank is made up of original Analyst Prep questions. This means that the exam experts at Analyst Prep wrote these questions specifically to help you understand the key topics on the exam. None of these questions have appeared on past exams.
The test bank allows you to create custom quizzes along and use their performance tracking features. Their Premium and Gold packages come with 8 PDF mock exams that you can download or print out to take anywhere!
The Analyst Prep software also has come cool features that allow you to compare your score with other candidates, ask tutors questions about the materials, and access formula sheets and comprehensive study notes.
Top 5 CFA Mock Exam Benefits and Testing Advantages
There are a ton of reasons why you should study using mock exams. The main reason is they just work. Candidates who use them are way better prepared than candidates who don’t. It’s just a fact!
That being said, let’s check out some specific ways mock exams help prepare you for the real exam.
Understand Exam Structure and Format
Knowing how the exam is structured and how the exam software and interface is formatted is important on any computerized exam. You want to make sure you know how to navigate through each question and each section, so you don’t get stuck somewhere and have to waste valuable time figuring how to navigate the exam when you should be focused on answering questions.
Mock CFA exams are designed to emulate the real exam. Thus, the software they use looks and feels like the actual exam. Using these exams to practice with will make you familiar with the exam and you will feel right at home when you sit down to take the real thing with no surprises!
Understand the Exam Topics
Practicing quizzes and multiple-questions will help you think through the exam topics and understand the concepts. This form of active studying is way more beneficial than simply watching a lecture or reading a textbook.
Plus, there are a lot of different topics covered on the exam and not all of them are covered equally. Mock exams will help you understand what topics are emphasized more on the exam and which ones appear less frequently.
This will help you focus your study sessions on the more important topics instead of wasting your time studying things that will either not appear on the exam or be weighted very little.
Practice Test-Taking Strategies
Working practice problems have many benefits beyond helping you learn the concepts on the exam. Simply knowing the exam topics isn’t enough to pass. You have to be able to use your knowledge to problem solve and make decisions about solutions.
Understanding how questions are asked and how answers are phrased plays a big role in how well you will do on the exam. The more practice questions you go through, the better you will become at reading exam questions and being about to quickly pin point the correct answer.
Improve Time Management
Time management is a HUGE problem for many CFA candidates. Spending too much time on questions could mean the difference between finishing the exam early or rushing through it and answering a large percentage of questions wrong.
Working mock exams will help you work on your time management, so you will have enough time to think through each question and come up with a solution without breaking the clock.
Reduce Stress, Improve Performance
Believe it or not, stress is a big reason why people fail the exam. It totally makes sense though. It’s just like a musician with stage freight or an athlete with nerves. Test takers don’t perform well when they are under stress.
If you are completely stressed out going into the exam, you probably won’t be able to think clearly and perform as well as you should. Practicing exams will help prepare you for the exam like a rehearsal performance. When you go into the real thing, you will be ready and relatively stress free. 🙂
How Many CFA Mock Exams Should I Take?
There’s no real set number on how many practice exams you need to take in order to be prepared for the exam, but more is always better than fewer. I would much rather be over prepared for the exam than under prepared.
That being said, most CFA review courses recommend that you take at least 6-7 mock exams before your exam date. I think this is a good number because it gives you enough experience and knowledge of the exam to be prepared on your exam day.
Since most prep course providers don’t offer that many different exams in their materials, you can either take the same ones multiple times or get two different test banks, so you have access to 6+ different full-length exams. Both are great strategies.