All financial professionals who wish to work in investment banking are first required to pass FINRA licensing exams. These include the Securities Industry Essentials (SIE) exam, a Series 79 exam, and will need a sponsorship from a self-regulatory agency or member firm which can register you with the FINRA. If you are looking to prepare for the FINRA exams, here are some of the best strategies to keep in mind.
Create a Study Plan
When it comes to preparing for the FINRA exams, the best thing you can do to start is create a study plan that you can stick to. You’ll need to spend between 80 to 100 hours studying if you have a financial background and around 150 hours if you don’t. Make sure that you create a study plan that allows you to get in all the hours that you need, but ensure that you don’t overdo it. The human brain can only retain so much content at once, so make sure you give yourself time to take breaks and ruminate on the lesson you are learning.
Be sure to create this routine as soon as possible so that you can retain as much as possible by making your lessons a habit. Starting as early as possible will also ensure that you have plenty of time to thoroughly learn everything that you need to without worrying about cramming or missing out on important concepts.
Take Advantage of Practice Questions and Exams
Practice questions and exams can be one of the best tools to use to help you prepare for your FINRA exams. Because there are many different types of questions in the actual exams, by preparing with practice questions, you can help identify areas where you are stronger or weaker, making it easier to plan for what you need to spend more time studying.
Practice exams differ from questions because they are much closer to the real exams, and many provide diagnostic feedback that can be quite beneficial. Many of these tests are also updated to include the newest regulations, and if you score well on these tests there is a good likelihood that you will score well on the current FINRA licensing exams.
Stay Calm On the Day of Your Exam
When it comes time to actually take your FINRA licensing exams, anxiety can easily get the best of anyone, no matter how much they know the material. This is why it is important to try and get a good night’s rest beforehand and focus on staying as calm as possible. During the exam, try to only focus on the questions one at a time to ensure that you don’t end up confusing yourself or worrying too much about an upcoming question.
Taking your FINRA licensing exams can be stressful, but with the right preparation and a calm attitude, you can set yourself up for success and pass with the best scores possible.