HKSI Examination Format and Tips

Get to know what you are facing before you start preparing the exam.

HKSI Examination Format and Tips

It is important to fully understand the examination format of HKSI examinations before we go through the study manual. This article will share some tips that will help you to prepare for your exam with maximum efficiency.


What is the examination format

As you may aware, all the examinations in HKSI come in Multiple Choice Questions (MCQ) format. But you might not know that the MC questions appear very differently to what you have seen from the official HKSI practice questions. The practice questions in the HKSI official website are relatively easy. In reality, the real examination MC questions appear in a way that you have multiple options to choose from and you’re required to select the right answer with examples as below:

A. I & II


C. I & II & III

D. II & III & IV

This is a lot more difficult than what you might imagine as the method of elimination will not work well in such case.


Can I take the exam without preparation?

The simple answer is no. While you might be very experienced in your field, the examination is designed in a way that even fresh graduates might score a distinction. A lot of the content requires memorization and, in some questions, figures and exact numbers will be tested. For some papers which focuses on regulatory guidelines, the questions are set in a way very tricky that all answer choices look very similar. If you have not done a lot of preparation in memorizing the regulations, you will find it very difficult to differentiate the answers.

What is the passing rate

HKSI reveals the passing rate for a different paper. It is around 50% passing rate for most of the exams. You may refer to the latest passing rate here:

HKSI Licensing Examination pass rate


How to prepare the HKSI exams

We have mentioned enough background and examination format. For what our readers concerns the most is how you can save your time and maximize your efficiency in the preparation.

Studying the HKSI official study manuals can be one of the ways given you have enough time. Unless you have already taken the exam before, otherwise, it is rather difficult for you to know what sort of questions and area will be tested. Per our years of experience, roughly 30-40% of the questions require memorization on either figures or keywords. The exam is designed in a way that it is very confusing to most of the candidate who have just read the study manuals a couple of times.

Study by taking practice questions will put your brain into proactive state rather than reactive state in reading study manual


How much time do I need to spend for the preparation

While it is different from candidate to candidate, we recommend spending at least 120 hours of time for each paper of study.


I am a veteran in the field, can I take the exam without reading the study materials?

Questions that require common sense in the HKSI LE exams are not very common. As mentioned earlier, at least 30-40% of the questions require memorization of figures and keywords. Practical questions and situational questions would still test a candidate experience and knowledge in understanding the core concepts of the paper.
After all, HKSI strives to maintain the reputation of their exams paper. Therefore, they will not let candidate to be able to pass the examination without reading the study materials especially those important guidelines and figures.


Stop wasting your efforts and time in study group and forum

There are some candidates who used to spend their time in study group and forum for exchange idea and information about the examinations. It is not a very bad idea if you have more than sufficient time for your preparation. However, if you have limited and would like to complete this examination as soon as possible, the short-cut way is to read through the study material and do our quizzes. This is the fastest and efficient way to grasp the key points of the HKSI examinations in order to pass the examinations.

For you additional information, we normally do not recommend candidates to acquire information from the study group and forum. It is because the information there could be very likely outdated and they are not verified. Especially the HKSI continuously update its study guide. The information in this study group and forum could be outdated which induce you to give a wrong answer during the examination.


Read the question twice before you select the answer

There is a lot of hints and tricky areas in the question sets. We strongly recommend you to read the question twice before you look into the answer. Very often, the statement alone is correct but it can be a wrong answer as the question is not correlated to the answer.


Practice Quizzes or Study Guide?

The answer to this question is both are very crucial. While the study guide will help you to grasp the content of each chapter, the quizzes facilitate and test your understanding of the said topic. When you are tested and found that you gave a wrong answer, you will have a more in-depth understanding on the topic.

In our quizzes, once you submitted your answer, we will give you an explanation for each of the question. This can help you to refresh your memory of the study guide that you studied before.

On the other hand, our quizzes are designed in a way that is very similar to those of HKSI. Same as HKSI, the Multiple Choice answers of some questions are very similar to each other in order to trick the candidates. Therefore, it is important for a candidate to practice more to prevent yourself from being tricked by these confusing questions.


Spend Sufficient Time To Study

Common sense it might seem, but many candidates have not allocated a sufficient amount of time to study. Do take at least 5 sets of quizzes and hit 70% of correctness before you take the examination. While the amount of time required varies for different candidates, do make sure you have covered all the topics in the exam

Tilly Conway

Tilly Conway

Tilly worked in various financial conglomerate. She is now the Senior Exam Specialist in HKSIDataBase

Learn How To Increase HKSI Exam Pass Rate For Free

[newsletter_signup_form id=3]