Wiley CFA / Elan Guides

Elan Guides has been re-branded as Wiley CFA Exam Review Products, but the content is still based on the Elan Guides. Please note that Wiley offers a 10% discount on CFA products for Financial Exam Academy readers. You can obtain this discount by applying FEA as your coupon code (Please note that this coupon code cannot be combined with any other offers/coupons).

Please have a look at this product availability schedule if you want to stay on top of when the various components of the study pack are scheduled to be updated for the June 2016 exam:

Why Wiley CFA / Elan Guides:

Bite-Sized Lessons:

Wiley CFA’s so-called Bite-Sized Lessons℠ chunks the curriculum into manageable 30-45 min lessons that you can realistically fit into a busy schedule. They are designed to provide an active learning environment with a constant focus on question practice helping you to learn and recall the curriculum at will.

No Expiration:

A key benefit of the Wiley CFA program is that the course has no expiration date for each level. You basically pay one fee, and then they offer that you can use it until you pass that level. They will supply you with all online content and software upgrades for as long as you want.

This is in my view a great benefit as it enables you to sign up well in advance of the time you were planning to sit the first test to familiarize yourself with the content. The built in performance metrics will also give you a clue if you are truly ready to take the exam. So in theory you could postpone the test if you are not ready. This does not really work in practice though as you would probably have signed up for the test and paid the exam fee way before you figure out whether you are ready or not. So the way I see it the built in performance metrics are instead a useful gauge to figure out if you need to study harder to pass the test.

Wiley CFA also provides access to subject-expert professors. So if you are stuck on a certain question you can reach out for guidance.

Quality Content/Instructors

The Wiley CFA Exam Review Products were introduced in 2010 under the Elan Guides brand name, and as such they remains the “new kid on the block” compared to some of the incumbent study providers. The study material however is top-notch. Try running a simple Google search for terms like “elan guides vs schweser” and have a read about what pops up (The Wiley brand was just introduced in 2014, but it is just a re-branding of the same Elan Guides products). Elan Guides have got a solid line-up of video lecturers, authors and course mentors. I will not get into a discussion about which video lecturer is the best, as it is clearly going to be a subjective assessment based on personal preferences, but the level of teaching is unquestionable of a very high quality.

Study on the Go

The study program is optimized for tablet. So you can study the bite-sized lessons on the go. The system is integrated and synchronized so you can pick it up where you left it on another device if you get disturbed in the middle of a lesson.

Wiley CFA. Self Study Pack


The LOS Tracker

The LOS Tracker is a very simple yet super effective tool, which tells you exactly where every single learning outcome statement is covered in the underlying curriculum. If you are following my 21 week study plan for the CFA level 1 exam you will know why this is valuable. When you are building your flash cards you will be able to instantly figure out where each particular LOS resides in the curriculum.

Wiley CFA. LOS Tracker.png

Color Coded Analysis

The study guide has got little neat features like color coded financial statements. Basically when financial statements are explained they make use of intuitive color coding to guide you so you don’t get lost in the swarm of numbers. It sounds like an insignificant detail but it does really make a difference in making the explanations easier to follow.

Wiley CFA. Color Coded Analysis

Lecture Videos

The study program contains lecture videos covering every single LOS in the curriculum. Video learning is not for everyone. Personally I find it more relaxing to watch instructional videos than reading, but there is probably a risk that I relax a little too much and don’t remember everything. That said many people prefer video learning and Wiley does a great job of making the videos visually engaging.

Wiley CFA. Lecture Videos


CFA Level 1 Self Study Course – 2016

This package is great value. You’ll get access to the following core study content at a much reduced price:

  • Study guides (ebook or print) covering every LOS
  • 1500+ diagnostics questions
  • Adaptive exam planner & personalized study schedule (this is new)
  • 2 full-length mock exams
  • 500+ more test bank questions
  • Last but not least: Free updates and upgrades until you pass

If you are still in university, please look out for any potential student discounts. At the time of writing Wiley CFA offers a 20% discount to actively enrolled full-time and part-time students (Please note that this discount cannot be combined with the 10% FEA discount coupon).

If you just want one of these study aids you can also opt to buy either the study guides or practice questions separately. You can also buy some of the premium study aids including the formula sheets, lecture videos, virtual class room access and online mentoring as a standalone add-on.

(Please note that this package does not include the Final Review, Virtual Classroom, Online Mentoring and Lecture Videos).

Platinum CFA Level 1 Review Course –  2016

This program was launched on 9 February 2015 essentially bringing the Elan Guides content on to Wiley’s leading e-learning platform.
This is Wiley’s most comprehensive offering including:

  • Study guides (ebook or print) covering every LOS
  • 1500+ diagnostics questions
  • Adaptive exam planner & personalized study schedule (this is new)
  • 3 full-length mock exams
  • 500+ more test bank questions
  • Bite-Sized Lecture Videos
  • Professional Online Mentoring
  • Virtual Classroom Series
  • Formula Sheets
  • Final Review Seminar
  • Mock Exam Seminar
  • 11th Hour Guide
  • Last but not least: Free updates and upgrades until you pass

Wiley CFA. Platinum CFA Review Course

You can compare all of the different Wiley CFA Exam Review Products at this link.

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