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CFA® Program Candidate Checklist

In addition to studying for the exam, you also need to prepare for exam day – getting to the test center, getting in, what to wear, and so on. Here's a high-level timeline.

Download a clickable version of the checklist

Several Months Prior to Exam Day

During the Month Prior to Exam Day

  • Plan your travel route to the test center on exam day. (What will the traffic be like on exam day? Is there road construction or other events which could impact your travel time?)
  • Confirm the name in your CFA Institute account matches the name on your international travel passport.
  • Make sure you know all the testing policies; violating any CFA Program rules, regulations, or policies may lead to suspension or termination of your candidacy.
  • Review the Rules of Procedure (PDF).

Paper-based exam candidates only

  • Review and print your exam admission ticket on clean, blank paper. Special instructions may be available for your test center (login required).
  • If the name on your exam admission ticket does not match exactly the name on your passport, update your name in your CFA Institute account. (After the name change has been processed, you will need to reprint your ticket.)
  • See if there are special instructions regarding your test center (e.g., travel or parking information).
  • Preview the instructions for filling out your answer sheets (PDF). (They will also be provided at the test center on exam day.)

During the Week Prior to Exam Day

  • What to wear on exam day? There is no dress code, but temperatures at test centers can vary. Plan to wear layers of clothing (e.g., a sweater) so you can be comfortable.
  • What are you going to eat on exam day? Snacks and water are not allowed in the testing room and there are no breaks until an exam session has ended. Please plan accordingly and check your test center special instructions for possible information regarding food options during the lunch break.

On Exam Day

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