OK, I’ll admit it up front: not all of these are frequently asked questions.
Most people ask no questions at all.
A couple of these questions are real questions asked by real candidates; I’ll let you try to determine which they are.
Here’s what many of these really are: questions I hope that people would ask before plunking down their hard-earned to get access to my articles, exams, Survivor’s Guide, and so on.
Q. It’s 2023; why do you have only 2022 exams available?
A. Two of the 2023 exams are available, with the rest coming soon. If you buy a 2022 exam package, you’ll get access to the 2022 exam(s) (whose questions are still relevant, just not in the 2023 format) as well as the 2023 exams as they become available. However, once the 2023 exams are all finished, all of the 2022 exams will disappear forever, so you’re better off buying now.
Q. I paid for my product/subscription, but I still can’t access the articles/exams/whatever; it keeps telling me that I have to buy another subscription. What’s going on?
A. There are a few possibilities. One is something odd in WordPress that I’m trying to get fixed. If you follow these steps it should work fine:
- Log in through LOG IN at the top of the page, or through the Meta box in the lower right corner of the page; do not log in through REGISTRATION; it’ll foul things up for some reason.
- Be sure that you’re logging in using your username, not your e-mail address. I’m not sure why it lets you log in with your e-mail address, but that fouls things up, too.
- When you log in, be sure to tick the Remember Me box. This seems to be really, really important.
- When you land on the Profile page, click on Financial Exam Help 123 in the upper left corner.
A second possibility is that you have more than one username. (Seriously: this has happened more than once. I’ve had candidates who have registered two or three times, purchased things under each username, then cannot figure out why they don’t see all of their purchases.)
The last possibility is that although PayPal recorded your purchase, it didn’t communicate it to my website. I think that it’s something wonky in the e-commerce plugin that I’m using (not by choice, but that’s a story for another day), which we’re working to replace.
If you tried the login fix, above, and you’re certain that you haven’t more than one username, and you’re still having a problem accessing something, please e-mail me immediately. I’ll get on it right away and get it straightened out. Most of the time I’ll have it fixed within the hour. The main reasons it may take a little longer are that when you e-mail me I’m either in a tutoring session or an exam marking session, in which case I’ll be on it as soon as that’s finished, or else I’m asleep because you’ve e-mailed me in the wee hours here in California, in which case I’ll be on it as soon as I wake up, run through my e-mails, and feed the squalling cats (and the dog, who’s nice enough not to squall). Please don’t lodge a complaint with PayPal as that will simply result in it taking more time as I have to deal with them. I really do take customer service seriously, and I will address any problems you have as soon as I possibly can (bearing the cats in mind, of course).
Q. Do you cover the entire curriculum at each Level?
A. Not even close. I cover areas where I have found candidates often have difficulties, areas where I have seen other providers fall woefully short in providing clear explanations, and areas where I believe that I can provide unique, useful insight. I also cover areas I enjoy: I have to get something out of this, after all.
Q. Are you an approved prep provider for CFA Institute?
A. No, I’m not. To be an approved prep provider, you have to cover the entire CFA curriculum, which, as I mentioned above, I have chosen not to do. There are many areas where other prep providers (or the CFA curriculum) provide good coverage; I want to focus on the areas where candidates need the most help, rather than spend my time on well tilled ground.
Q. What do I do if I don’t understand something in the curriculum, but you don’t have an article on it?
A. Send me an e-mail and ask me to write an article. Many of my best articles have come directly from candidates’ requests. I tend to handle requests first, because I know that I’m adding value that way.
Q. What’s the best way to use your site in conjunction with the CFA Institute materials or third-party materials?
A. Read those materials first. If there’s something you just don’t understand, come here to see if I have an article on that topic. If so: great! If not, shoot me an e-mail requesting an article.
Q. What do I do if I find an error in one of your articles?
A. Send me an e-mail describing the error and the article in which it appears. I’ll check it as quickly as I can and make appropriate edits.
Q. What if I subscribe and later find that you don’t cover as many topics as I’d hoped? Can I get my money back?
A. Alas, no. First, there should be no question about the topics I cover: the list of all current and all proposed articles is available for anyone to browse, so there is no valid argument that you didn’t know what you were getting for your investment. Second, if I allow refunds, there’s nothing to stop unscrupulous candidates from subscribing, copying all of the articles, and then demanding a refund. I have to protect my intellectual property.
Q. Are you really as good as people say?
A. Probably not; people tend to exaggerate, especially when their stress has been relieved. But I’m still pretty good.
Q. Are you really a magician?