CFA Program Levels
The Program is divided into three integrated levels of study, namely, Levels I, II and III. There is one examination in each level, and candidates are given 6 hours to complete each written examination. Candidates must pass the examination before progressing to the next level.
This level tests candidates on knowledge and its comprehension, with emphasis on tools and inputs relating to investment valuation. The CFA Institute Code of Ethics and Standards of Professional Conduct is a focal point at Level I. The examination has 240 multiple-choice questions.
Analysis and application are emphasized, with a focus on asset valuation. The examination consists of 20 item sets, 10 in the morning session of the examination and 10 in the afternoon session. Item sets are sometimes called “mini-cases”. Each item set on the CFA examination consists of a vignette (or case statement) and six multiple-choice questions.
Core study areas of Level III involve the synthesis of information from Levels I and II. This final examination includes 12-15 essay questions and item-set questions.