Good luck on LPM this spring!

As you probably know, the spring 2020 LPM syllabus is exactly the same as the fall 2019 syllabus. Even though there were many changes to the syllabus effective fall 2019, we worked very hard last sitting to get all those updates in place. Therefore, everything is 100% ready for you this spring as well.

Today we updated a few key dates in the Quick Start guide in the Introduction section and also added the SOA exam registration deadline to the study schedule. Make sure those dates are on your calendar! 

Good luck, and please let us know if you have any questions. 

Solutions to various Tiller reinsurance questions added

As you probably know, the Tiller reinsurance material on the new LPM syllabus has also been on the LFV syllabus for a number of years. Today we added TIA solutions to various past Tiller reinsurance questions to the course. You can find them on the SOA Exams tab under APM, QFI, and LFV Exam Discussion > TIA solutions for various Tiller reinsurance questions from past LFV exams.

As a reminder, please use the Analysis of Past Exams spreadsheet posted in the Supplementary and Review Material section to locate past problems that are still on syllabus. 

Condensed outline posted

The complete condensed outline (CO) has been posted in the Supplementary and Review Material section of the course. The CO is essentially a hybrid of the detailed study manual, video lesson handouts, and flashcards. The level of detail is closest to the detail found in the flashcards, but the format is in more of a traditional outline, much like the detailed study manual (only with half the pages). There is no requirement to use the CO, and many people prefer flashcards to an outline format. It’s just another option for you, and in a more typical sitting, it would have been posted much earlier.

This is also the final planned update to the course for fall 2019. Phew! It’s been quite a ride since learning about the dramatic changes that affected the LPM syllabus this year, but our LPM course is in great shape at this point, and I’m happy we were able to deliver a comprehensive package not only for those studying for the fall exam but also those who are starting to prep for the spring exam. 

If you have any questions at all, please let us know.

More drill problems released

Today we posted 20 multi-part drill problems in Section E. This is the final drill problem update for fall 2019, and there are now well over 100 distinct, TIA-unique multi-part drill problems available in the LPM course (over 240 sub-questions). This is in addition to the full length 5-hour practice exam we posted recently and also in addition to the nearly 100 quizzes and hands-on tasks found throughout the video lessons. Our goal has always been to provide as much hands-on practice as possible, and we are happy we’ve been able to deliver so much this sitting despite the significant syllabus changes that occurred.

5-hour practice exam available

As promised, we have posted a full 5-hour practice exam in the Supplementary and Review Material section of the LPM online course. This exam contains all TIA-unique questions and has been calibrated to cover the new LPM syllabus as evenly as possible. This practice exam should not be interpreted as a prediction of what the actual fall 2019 exam should look like, but it should give you valuable practice working a full exam—especially if you do so under exam conditions. We’ve separated the questions into 3-hour morning and 2-hour afternoon sections, just like you will see on exam day. I recommend working this practice exam sometime in the coming weeks to practice time management and firm up any concepts tested.

Quick update on remaining items

As of right now, there are 3 more critical updates we are working on just as fast as we can. We are working on these items in this order:

  1. 5-hour practice exam (all TIA-unique problems). Even though there are 100s of past sub-questions from published SOA papers that are still relevant, there are no fully intact 5-hour SOA papers (AM + PM sessions). Creating a realistic 5-hour practice exam is a priority because we want you to have a full practice exam to work under exam conditions before the real exam. This practice exam will feature questions across the entire current syllabus.
  2. Section E drill problems. These should be available soon after the practice exam. All other sections’ drill problems have already been posted.
  3. Condensed outline for all sections. While our surveys show that most people favor flashcards over a condensed outline, we have always provided a CO as well. This will be released soon after the remaining drill problems. 

As you probably know, in a more typical sitting, all of these items would have been released much sooner, but the ripple effects of the very large LPM syllabus changes have carried throughout this entire sitting. Thank you for your patience as we’ve rebuilt our LPM online course. Rest assured our prioritization of each item is intended to provide the greatest number for the greatest amount of our customers. 

Analysis of Past Exams spreadsheet available

At long last, the Analysis of Past Exams spreadsheet in the Supplementary Materials section has been fully updated! This was a major revision to our spreadsheet because of all the syllabus changes that took place for this first sitting of LPM.

We’ve taken the opportunity to review hundreds of past questions across multiple FSA tracks (from ILA to QFI) to find as many relevant past problems as possible. We’ve also organized published SOA exams from different exam “eras” on the SOA Exams tab of the course so that you don’t have to individually download all of those PDFs from the SOA’s site. 

The purpose of the Analysis of Past Exams spreadsheet is to break down every relevant exam question going back to the early 2000s. There are currently over 350 individual sub-questions (about 50 hours in point value) still on syllabus. This is way more than the average person can (or should) work, but one way to use it is to look for problems from specific readings (e.g. calculation type problems).

In addition to breaking down past questions to the sub-question level, along with point value, question type (verbal vs. calculation), source reading, and topic, the new version of the spreadsheet also shows problems by lesson. In other words, we’ve included a layout of our LPM course and mapped relevant problems to each lesson. This is just another perspective that you can use to reference past SOA problems as you progress through the course.

Just be careful with your time. Sometimes I see people spend weeks and weeks working these older exam problems. While there are certainly many relevant questions in those older exams, the problem is that you will end up spending many hours practicing a fairly small percentage of the current syllabus, which is quite different from past syllabi.

Another pitfall to avoid: Do NOT use this spreadsheet as a prediction tool for future exams. The testing frequency of past readings is highly biased toward readings that have been on the syllabi the longest. Some readings have been on the ILA syllabi for over a decade, while MANY others have been added only in the last year.

Also, please remember that we have solutions for many past problems posted on the SOA Exams tab of the online seminar. 

First batch of drill problems posted

Today we posted over 30 multi-part drill problems in Section A. Other sections will roll out in the next two weeks. The first page of the drill problem set provides more details about the purpose of these practice problems and how to use them.

One new “feature” in our drill problems this year is more “critique” questions. “Critique” questions have become more popular on exams and are very difficult. While I believe it is impossible to consistently get every critique question right, I think there is a lot of value in just getting used to the format. By increasing your exposure to this format of question early on, we hope to make you more comfortable with critique questions in the exam room. 


All flashcards available

Flashcards in both the printable PDF versions and Review app for iOS and Android are available for all sections as of today.

The PDF versions are located in the Supplementary and Review Material section. The card count and card content is the same for both the mobile apps and PDF versions. The PDF versions also include instructions for printing when you download them.