How to Pass the Series 65

Instructor: Shelby Golden
This article discusses how to prepare for success on the Series 65 exam. Get ready to pass this test by checking out these tips and study opportunities.

Tips for Passing the Series 65 Exam

Complete Online Courses

You can get started preparing to pass the Series 65 Exam through online refresher courses. offers self-paced courses that allow you to review the principles tested on the exam, including:

The information in these courses is presented through short, easy-to-follow video lessons that can be watched anywhere and at any time. You'll have access to interactive quizzes that allow you to monitor your understanding of these subjects. You can even contact experts in the financial field with any questions you have.

Know What's On the Exam

Reviewing study guides that summarize all the concepts you'll be asked about on the exam can help you know what to expect on test day. You can find study guides and outlines on the North American Securities Administrators Association website, which offers the exam. These guides can help you prepare to answer questions about the following concepts:

  • Economic concepts, financial reporting, quantitative methods and risk types
  • Cash and cash equivalents
  • Fixed income, equity, derivative and trading securities
  • Pooled and alternative investments
  • Insurance products
  • Clients and client profiles
  • Capital Market Theory and portfolio management
  • Taxes and ERISA
  • Retirement plans, special accounts and performance measures
  • Securities Acts, ethical practices and fiduciary duties

Review Your Notes

Look over any textbooks and notes you kept from your investment and finance classes as you prepare for this exam. Reading your own notes can help you better recall the subject matter found on this exam. You might also want to prepare flashcards using the info from your classes to help you quickly review common test concepts.

Scoring Info for the Series 65

The Series 65 exam asks a total of 140 questions, but ten of those questions won't count towards your total score. You'll need to answer 94 questions (out of the 130 scorable questions) correctly in order to earn a passing score on the exam.

You'll see your unofficial exam results as soon as you finish the exam. Results include whether you passed or failed and how you scored on each section of the exam. Official results are generally available within three days after you take the exam.

Scheduling Your Exam

In order to schedule your exam and become registered with the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), you'll need to fill out a form. Different forms are available depending on if you work for a FINRA-registered firm or a non-FINRA firm. Either you or your firm can schedule your exam and pay the exam fee. After you've registered, you'll need to take the exam within 120 days at an approved testing site. The FINRA website offers a list of testing centers by area.

Rescheduling or Cancelling an Exam

You can reschedule your exam, if you have a conflict, but you'll need to do so ten days in advance if you don't want to pay a fee. The FINRA website offers a cancellation schedule on its website to help you determine how soon you need to cancel or reschedule to avoid a fee.

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