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  #1  
Old 05-01-2017, 09:40 PM
Dle3 Dle3 is offline
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Default P Exam Timing

Does anyone have any opinions on if the exam is easier in certain months?? I've taken it 3 times already, and pretty much willing to try anything to pass.

I took it once in September with no preparation and got a 3, but I thought with proper preparation I could have passed.

The other two times I took in July (received a 5 each time), both I thought were much more difficult than any practice exams I took.
- For the last exam I worked up to a 7.4 earned level on Coaching Actuaries.

I would like to take it again because I do not want the time and effort to have gone to waste, but it will be my last attempt either way.

I just want to know if you guys have any idea on if the tests are easier at certain points of the year.

Thanks in advance!!
**open to other words of advice as well, anything helps!!***
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  #2  
Old 05-01-2017, 11:05 PM
Shakeela Shakeela is offline
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Hey! I totally understand your frustration - I failed P the first couple times too and it can be very demotivating.

I don't think that trying to pass based on the month is a very good strategy. There likely isn't a particular month where the exam will be easier but either way this won't be a sustainable strategy for future exams so it is best to learn what you need to do to pass exams rather than hope for good timing.

So since you have an earned level of 7.4 I would certainly say that you are able to understand the material so that isn't the problem.

Also, with a 5 you are SO close that I'm sure you can do this.

What do you think is holding you back?
- do you run out of time?
- do you get nervous during the test and can't think as clearly as you could at home?
- are you really good at certain questions and do really terribly at others?
- do you find that you're coming up with answers that aren't exact on the exam so you just pick the closest one?
- do you make a lot of calculation errors?

If you really think about it, you can likely determine what your weak points are. Once you figure that out I can surely help you to improve in that area so that you can pass the next time.

Brea-Nicole
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  #3  
Old 05-02-2017, 01:28 AM
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Vanylla Vanylla is offline
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Self-assessment is the best way to go.

If it would be any use to you, an ex-colleague tipped me to avoid taking the prelims during Fall (from September to December). Why? Certainly not because the exam itself is harder then (apparently, it's due to the volume and quality of the test takers). If you ask me, it's as reliable as an urban legend. However, I did pass my first three prelims every winter (January to March), after failing my first sittings the season before (obviously, I never followed the advice).

PS. BTW, I'm not from North America so my situation is quite different. Over here, the actuary job market is not really saturated, and students/employees are not expected to pass more than one exam every year.
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  #4  
Old 05-02-2017, 02:00 AM
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I don't think aiming for the "easiest" sitting is a good long term strategy for this career path. I'd focus more on understanding the material as opposed to seeing the same ADAPT questions so many times you memorize how to solve them. Have you tried using another source of problems for experience with different wording? ACTEX manual or even TIA?
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Old 05-02-2017, 03:40 PM
Dle3 Dle3 is offline
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Default Is it too late now?

So my entire goal throughout college was to become an actuary. I majored in stats and then got a masters in finance. I'm working full time now, I hadn't even considered the job market.

Is the job market very saturated in that even if I do manage to pass this exam it will be difficult to find a job until I pass most of them?

Also, do they just keep getting more difficult as if I am having this much trouble with the first one it will only be more difficult?

Thanks again
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  #6  
Old 05-02-2017, 04:51 PM
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redearedslider redearedslider is offline
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Yes they get harder and you'll need to pass at least 2, probably 3 to find a job because the EL market is saturated. I'd go as far as to say if you don't find passing P and FM easy after putting in a reasonable amount of study time, you should look for another career. They get much much much harder
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  #7  
Old 05-02-2017, 10:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by redearedslider View Post
Yes they get harder and you'll need to pass at least 2, probably 3 to find a job because the EL market is saturated. I'd go as far as to say if you don't find passing P and FM easy after putting in a reasonable amount of study time, you should look for another career. They get much much much harder
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  #8  
Old 05-03-2017, 12:32 AM
Shakeela Shakeela is offline
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They do get more difficult but that doesn't mean that you can't pass them. Exam P is a new experience and a new kind of test than you've ever written before. Once you figure out what you need to do to pass this one a lot of the same strategies can be applied to later exams too. I failed exam P twice before passing - and I'm nearing fellowship now.

It is a competitive job market but it depends on more than just your exams. It also depends on your experience, communication skills and your personality. So since most job candidates have a similar number of exams when applying to entry level jobs it often comes down to these other factors which I don't know much about based on your posts.

After you've passed Exam P, you could consider looking for internships that will help you to expand your knowledge and experience while at the same time studying for FM. That would make you a higher quality candidate for entry level jobs.
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