View Full Version : Course 8 study time
Just curious, has anyone passed new SOA Course 8 first time with about 4.5 months' study?
12-18-2001, 09:01 PM
ask us after the 11th of January.
12-19-2001, 08:35 AM
I passed it first time with about 3 months studying. But I decided to take a somewhat radical approach and not do any of the reading. Just started with the Actex and memorized as much as I could. I read a couple of passages from the reading when the Actex summary didn't make sense. I was counting on the idea that I would get most of the high- and mid-level concepts (where most of the points are awarded) but wouldn't get much of the detail down. I squeeked by with a 6 and felt lucky to have gotten that since I thought I had earned a 4. (But I think that if the bulk of the points come from the high-level concepts, the comfort level comes with the details) It's definitely not a strategy that would work for everyone and with 4 1/2 months I wouldn't even consider trying it. That's really quite a lot of time.
[Are you planning ahead for next time or just trying to worry yourself to death over this past november?]
Urysohn, I am just trying to plan ahead. I won't take it until fall-03 the earliest. I am not going to worry my beautiful head big, just want to be more prepared.
12-19-2001, 01:14 PM
Essentially almost everyone who passed November 00 did it in that kind of time frame, because of the late availability of the syllabus and study notes that year.
Depending on how you study, I'd say 4.5 months is feasible. (Of course, I'll know better on January 11.)
Minevar, thanks for the input. It's very encouraging.
I have been hearing from coworkers how overwhelming the quantity of material is for Course 8 and how impossible it is to do it well even with one year's time frame. Now that you shed the light on it, I will definitely give it a shot. I guess it's not that impossible if you really want to do it.
12-19-2001, 03:19 PM
On 2001-12-19 08:35, urysohn wrote:
I passed it first time with about 3 months studying.
Which track was it?
I would think some tracks would require
more time to digest than others.
12-19-2001, 04:18 PM
Your co-workers are right - the amount of material is incredibly daunting. So much so, that it is even more important on 8 to know as much about everything as possible, because they can only test a small portion of the material in one 6-hour session. (Your risk of choosing the wrong material to skip is far greater. The proof is left to the student as an exercise.)
At the same time, IF you are dedicated, 4-5 months is quite feasible. IMO (in hindsight)a key is to move up each step of your normal progression schedule by 2 - 5 weeks in order to be sure you have mastered and memorized the material. Depending on your past patterns, you may also find you need to spend more time per day.
Let me explain - in all other past exams, I finished my final iteration of review 3 weeks before the exam and spent 2 weeks simply drilling myself on facts and the last week drilling my lists / mnemonics / formulae and making 1 - 2 passes through the material. For Course 8, the volume is so great that just to write out (my secondary learning style is kinesthetic) all of the lists /formulae once through would have taken somewhere in the neighborhood of 10 hours - assuming that I didn't spend much recall time on any of them, which was a retention level I never actually achieved. (For other fellowship courses, I could do the same process in 2-3 hours by the end of the week.) So, although I left myself 2 weeks (8-10 study hours per day those last few weeks - just like in the past) for drilling, I found I should have spent probably twice that time. (Or maybe more - January 11 will tell.) Similarly, I decided to move to this last phase according to my schedule, but I wasn't as comfortable as I have been in the past with my mastery level or with the thouroghness of my penultimate review, so I wish I'd spent more time on that phase. (See a theme here?)
At the same time, IMO study time effectiveness is an inversefunction of the elapsed time until the exam. (Again, the proof is left to the student, as is the derivation of the function. Discuss amongst yourselves.) [E.g., one hour 1 month before the exam may be worth 6 hours six months before the exam.] Therefore, DEPENDING ON YOUR PERSONAL LEARNING STYLES AND STUDY HABITS, starting a year before the exam may be way too early. Personally, I started for Course 8 in May, 2001, but didn't really start dedicating myself to it until mid-July. (January 11 will tell.)
Enough of my study philosophy. If you want to learn more please send a # 10 SASE. :lol:
<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: Minerva on 2001-12-19 16:20 ]</font>
Minerva, I appreciate your opinions as much as the effort and time you put into the response. It's very valuable to me. It does help me to be realistic at the same time of being optmistic. Thanks a lot. And truly, good luck on Jan.11. Let me know if you will still remember and would like to after the result is released.
12-19-2001, 07:55 PM
Jen, for what it's worth I began studying in the first week of July. I took 8-Finance and had just taken Course 6, which was a good preparation. (And it was a nice morale boost in my second or third week of studying to learn I'd passed that one.) Like Minerva, I have a need to write everything down in order to learn it. I had used JAM for Courses 5 and 6, which has a detailed outine and a condensed outline. For 8-F, the Actex is the only available study guide and it is not nearly so useful as JAM. I wrote my own detailed and condensed outlines; but I did not have the time to memorise as fully as I would have wished. I have no idea if I passed or not. I'm inclined to think not, but I'm happy to let you know on/after 11th Jan.
let me add that I am impressed that you are mentally planning for fall 2003. Good luck to you.
Thanks for the advice, Silvers. I hope you've passed too.
01-16-2002, 03:37 PM
01-16-2002, 04:33 PM
since Minerva bumped...I did not pass. This is my first failure, and I attribute it to 3 causes:
1) the obvious --- I did not study enough;
2)course 8 is a very hard exam; and
3)september 11th. I live in New York and lost a friend of a friend, and I spent much time comforting my friend, and I think I ultimately lost about two weeks of studying and also lost some focus, which all contribute to the first reason which I listed.
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