Best SIE Exam Prep Courses

Knopman offers the best SIE exam prep course

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The best SIE exam prep courses can help prepare financial professionals to pass the SIE, or Securities Industry Essentials, exam. This exam, offered by FINRA, consists of 75 multiple-choice questions and requires a passing score of 70 or higher. Though it’s considered introductory-level, it can be quite challenging to experienced and newer candidates alike.

To help you decide which companies offer the best SIE exam prep courses, we have compiled a list of the best options, which takes into account each company’s course structure, pricing, and the resources offered throughout the course. It also considers factors such as average pass rates and whether any pass guarantees are offered to students.

The Best SIE Exam Prep Courses in 2021

Best Overall : Knopman

Knopman Marks

 Knopman Marks

Why We Chose It: With a range of included study tools, class options, multiple practice exams, and up to a year of course access, Knopman and its impressive pass rate get our nod for best overall prep course.

Pros
  • Up to a year of course access

  • 98% pass rate

  • Mobile app allows for studying on the go

  • Large digital flashcard bank and four practice exams

Cons
  • One of the pricier courses

  • Live classes and review sessions only offered with add-on package

  • Returns within 30 days are subject to a restocking/administrative fee

The Knopman Marks SIE prep course is a trusted, flexible program designed for both self-paced and online learners alike. The cost for the basic course is $250; if you’d like to add the optional All Access pass, it’s an additional $225 (bringing the total to $475). 

The basic course offers a textbook or e-book, training center access, 23 hours of video lectures, 1,100 digital flashcards, an online question bank, and an iOS mobile app that allows you to download content and study offline. You’ll also be given benchmark and diagnostic exams along the way. You’ll have access to the course for a year or until you pass your exam, whichever comes first.

If you add the All Access pass, you’ll also receive unlimited access to instructor-led classes, live Q&A sessions, a group onboarding call, and the ability to choose a blended course option (on-demand lectures plus faculty-led, live lectures). 

Currently, Knopman Marks boasts a 98% pass rate among students. There is no pass guarantee offered, but they do provide refunds for 30 days after course purchase (which may be subject to administrative fees).

Knopman Marks also offers Series 6, Series 52, Series 99, Series 57, Series 7, and Series 79 courses. If you want to combine your SIE course with one of these series courses, you can opt for a discounted bundle package.

Best for In-Person Learning : Securities Training Corporation (STC)

Securities Training Corporation

 Securities Training Corporation

Why We Chose It: Securities Training Corporation, or STC, offers live virtual options as well as recorded live (self-paced) or in-person classes, all with the STC pass guarantee and competitive price tag.

Pros
  • Pass guarantee

  • 24/7 tech support

  • Access to instructor hotline

  • Packages start at just $109

Cons
  • Only six months’ access to course

  • Refunds are limited and subject to administrative fee

  • Live options require the highest package

Based in New York, Securities Training Corporation (STC) has been helping individuals pass their licensing exams in all 50 states and provides a wide range of courses for a variety of exams.

The SIE exam prep course through STC has three packages to choose from, ranging from $109 to $249 in price. All three tiers offer the STC Pass Guarantee, which allows you to retake the course if you don’t pass the first time, as well as limited refunds within the first 30 days (subject to a 10% administrative fee). All three packages also provide on-demand lectures, digital flashcards, access to an instructor hotline, 24/7 tech support, and six months of access to the course.

The highest-price package option also includes live Q&A sessions along with the ability to choose between live virtual, recorded live virtual (self-paced), or in-person classes. STC boasts a 95% first-time pass rate as well.

Best Variety of Study Resources : Kaplan

 KAPLAN

 KAPLAN

Why We Chose It: The Kaplan SIE prep course has a range of study tools and resources to fit your needs and learning styles.

Pros
  • On-demand or live classes

  • Pass guarantee

  • Packages range from $99 to $229

Cons
  • Some options are non-refundable

  • Only one practice exam in basic package

  • No in-person class option

A trusted name in the world of finance, Kaplan has been offering educational resources since 1970. The company’s SIE exam prep courses provide a variety of study resources and materials to meet your needs, no matter how you prefer to learn and at what pace. 

Kaplan’s SIE courses come in three package options ranging from $99 to $229. All three packages include a question bank, study calendar, performance tracker, and practice exam. The middle (Essential) and top tier (Premium) packages include midterm and checkpoint exams as well as a voice library. And if you opt for the Premium package, you’ll also have the option of an instructor-led class as well as access to class notes, InstructorLink, and a mastery exam.

Kaplan does not post an SIE exam pass rate for its students. The company does, however, offer a retake guarantee. If you don’t pass your exam, you can access and complete the course again.

Best Self-Paced Course : Securities Institute of America (SIA)

Securities Institute of America

 Securities Institute of America

Why We Chose It: With a high pass rate, excellent resources, and a competitive price tag, the SIE program from SIA earns our pick for the best self-paced course.

Pros
  • Very affordable program

  • Money-back guarantee

  • Range of tools and resources to choose from

Cons
  • Less online content than other programs

  • Only six months of access

  • Lower pass rate than some competitors

The Securities Institute of America (SIA) offers an SIE exam prep course that’s excellent for self-paced learners and busy students everywhere. This course, which costs only $99, includes a 1,100-question test bank, multiple practice exams, and the option for printed/physical textbooks or e-books.

SIA has a 90% SIE exam pass rate, which isn’t low but is lower than most of the other companies mentioned here. It does have a money-back guarantee, though, which means that you can get a refund and/or retake your course if you don’t pass the exam.

You’ll get access to 15 hours of online video lectures with SIA and unlimited course access for six months. If you need additional help, the company also has SIE exam tutors available; the average score increase after working with one of these tutors is 10 points.

SIA offers 21 other courses in addition to the SIE exam prep and has been in business since 1996.

Best for Student Support : Training Consultants

Training Consultants

Training Consultants

Why We Chose It: Whether you prefer to communicate with instructors via phone or online, Training Consultants makes it easy to ask questions or get personalized help for up to six months.

Pros
  • Access instructors by phone or online

  • Digital and hardcopy textbooks

  • 27 total lecture hours available

  • Section, chapter, and overall practice exams included

Cons
  • Courses are only online

  • Access is limited to six months

  • Refunds only offered up to 30 days

Founded in 1979, Training Consultants has been helping finance professionals pass their securities exams for over 40 years. They offer 14 total exam courses to choose from, including the SIE; if you need another course as well, you can opt for one of the SIE bundles that include either the Series 6, Series 7, or Series 99. 

The SIE course is simple and to the point, as you only have one package/pricing option to choose from.

The SIE exam prep course through Training Consultants runs $149 and is online only. It includes digital and hardcopy versions of the textbook, exams after each section and chapter, four practice exams, online flashcards, and an impressive 27 hours of online lectures. Customers get access for up to six months, and phone and online access to instructors is offered. 

If you’re interested in a refund or return, they are allowed for up to 30 days after purchase. Beyond that, requests are not accepted.

Best Value : Achievable

Achievable

  Achievable

Why We Chose It: Beyond an impressive pass rate and some big-name clientele, Achievable’s SIE prep course is our choice for the best value by offering the lowest-cost program on this list.

Pros
  • 98.2% success rate

  • Course only costs $74

  • Full year of course access

  • Money-back guarantee if you don’t pass

  • Both iOS and Android apps offered

Cons
  • No lectures

  • No classroom content

  • Only offers online textbook/e-book 

  • No tutoring services

  • Limited courses

The SIE exam prep course through Achievable is probably the one with the least frills on this list, but it’s also our choice for the best value. At only $74, it’s less than a fourth of what some of the other companies charge. Plus, Achievable boasts a 98.2% success rate.

With the SIE prep course, you’ll get one full year of access to their online course. There are no lectures or classroom content, and video content is very limited, but you will get an online textbook and unlimited practice exams. If you’re interested in studying on the go, you can download the iOS or Android app to access your content from anywhere and even download it for when you don’t have internet access.

If you need to take other courses in addition to the SIE, the company offers “substantial discounts'' for loyalty. These are limited, though. As far as other FINRA exams go, Achievable only offers courses for Series 7 and Series 63.

If you need help, there are no tutoring services or instructor contact options. However, you can call or text Achievable with any questions you may have.

Final Verdict

Each of these SIE exam prep courses is worth considering, depending on how you prefer to learn and the factors most important to you. For instance, Achievable is a great choice if you’re looking to self-pace and keeping costs low is your biggest concern. If being able to talk to instructors or choose in-classroom learning is most important, STC is the best choice.

Ideally, you’ll want to choose a company with a great SIE exam pass rate, a money-back guarantee, and the types of materials and course structure that resonate with you most. Just remember, the course that works best for you may not be the right choice for your colleague, and vice versa.

Compare the Best SIE Exam Prep Courses

Course Course Format Individual Tutoring Available? Cost Pass Rate
Knopman Best Overall Live virtual, on-demand, and a blended option Yes $250 to $475 98%
Securities Training Corporation (STC) Best for In-Person Learning Live virtual, recorded live virtual (self-paced), or in-person classes Yes $109 to $249 95%
Kaplan Best Variety of Study Resources Self-paced or live virtual (no in-person option) Yes $99 to $229 Not posted
Securities Institute of America
Best Self-Paced Course
Online video lectures Yes $99 90%
Training Consultants Best for Student Support Online resource and video access for six months No $149 Not posted
Achievable Best Value Online only No $74 98.2%

FAQs

What Is the SIE Exam? 

The Securities Industry Essentials, or SIE, exam, is a FINRA-administered exam designed to test the knowledge of prospective securities industry professionals. It evaluates their knowledge and understanding of concepts such as regulatory agencies, prohibited practices, products and their risks, and market structures.

The SIE exam is open to anyone over the age of 18. Your test results are valid for four years and firm association/sponsorship is not required to sit for the exam.

How Much Do SIE Exam Prep Courses Cost?

Depending on the type of course you prefer and the resources you need, SIE exam prep courses can run anywhere from $74 to $475 in cost. 

Are SIE Exam Prep Courses Worth It? 

The average pass rate for the SIE exam is around 75%; many of the top prep courses, however, boast pass rates well into the mid-90s. With practice exams, digital flashcards, question banks, and even tutoring resources, prep courses can make taking the SIE exam easier and more successful than you may realize.

How Long Does an SIE Exam Prep Course Take? 

There are many self-paced options when it comes to SIE exam prep courses, so it’s up to you how long it takes to complete the program. In general, though, an SIE exam prep course takes a few months to complete. Many programs also offer access to the course materials for six to 12 months, so you can go back and review or study further before sitting for your exam.

Is the SIE Exam Difficult to Pass?

The exam involves 75 multiple-choice questions of varying difficulty, administered over a one-hour and 45-minute period. According to FINRA, the average pass rate for the SIE exam is around 74%. Many top-rated prep courses, however, have average pass rates of 90% or higher for their students.

Methodology 

We looked at the SIE exam prep courses offered by more than a dozen different companies to choose the ones we considered to be the best. This involved looking at factors such as price and average pass rate, as well as accessibility options for the content and how long students were given to work through the course. We also considered the resources offered by each course in addition to the optional services (like individual tutoring) made available. 

All of our top choices offer self-paced and/or virtual learning, competitive pricing, above-average pass rates, and a refund policy of some kind.