Study tips for the California Life Agent Exam

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Study tips for the California Life Agent Exam

Post by Tenkamenin » Mon May 14, 2007 10:38 pm

I took the California Life Agent Exam twice and did not pass, I'm pretty bummed about the that.

My preparation:

I took the 52 hr course. I studied by reading the online book on the website, there are no practice exams just some quizzes which I didn't find to be helpful.

Is the secret to passing these exams working these workbooks practice tests? If so which one would you recommend because I would hope to pass this exam sometime soon.


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Life Exam

Post by VenbrookSteve » Tue May 15, 2007 1:35 pm

Where are you in Ca?

I would suggest going to and using their online learning for questions to study for the test.

Taking the prelicensing classes online make it extremely difficult to pass the test. There is value in a live teacher explaining the concepts.

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Post by Tenkamenin » Tue May 15, 2007 3:21 pm

Thanks for the response, I'm in Northridge in Southern California.

I realized that just reading the online book is not good enough, you actually have to work these sample tests to get an idea on how to answer them on the exam.

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life test

Post by tedster1973 » Tue Jun 05, 2007 4:08 pm

take the review class by mike russ at He's very good and have a very high pass rate

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Post by SouthernCalAgent » Tue Oct 09, 2007 4:33 pm

Sorry for the late post but maybe the information will help someone else.

Mike Russ schools are great as are their crash courses. I went to Mike Russ for my P&C license as the company I worked for used them. However, I just passed my Life Agent test by studying online using Kaplan. I used them both for the Life class as well as study questions and practice tests.

I passed the test last week after studying 4 extra hours over the 40 hour class course. There was 50 people taking the test and 11 passed. It isn't that they have alot of mathematical questions or situation type questions. They pretty much require you to pick the 'best' answer. There could be two good answers but they want the 'best' one.

Read the question and before you even look for an answer look for the answers you can eliminate. Most are pretty obvious. Like discussing health benefits but some answers pertain to life policies only. Then you will have the answer or only 2 to choose from.

Once I completed the test I went back through each question to make sure I had chosen what I believed was the best answer. I changed about 8. I then went back to all of the ones where you are looking for the answer that is wrong. When the question says all of these BUT or EXCEPT. Sometimes those are easy for you to get mixed up on. I changed about 3 of those.

Normally when I take tests I finish quickly and always go with my first choice. However, for this one I just felt like I needed to go back and re-read the questions and see if my answer made the most sense. I think that helped. They won't tell you the number of right questions so you really don't know how well you did.

Hoepfully you have already passed it!

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Mike Russ

Post by mike40829 » Mon Oct 15, 2007 12:19 pm

I would also recommend mike russ schools. I completed both life and P&C courses there and passed both exams on the first attempt. Give the training school in Anaheim a try when I was there thy had very knowledgeable instructors.

Best of luck!

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Re: Study tips for the California Life Agent Exam

Post by willhenry » Tue Jan 13, 2009 9:28 pm

I also failed the California State Exam for Life Health and Disability, 150 question test with Ethics & Codes. 3 hour limit.

I also failed twice, today was my second time. The irony of both exams having the same final score of 53% is not encouraging. After spending hours taking several pratice tests through the online course and achieving 90-100% prectiles I was confident I would do better the 2nd time and/or pass.

I don't recommend online course work or pratice test, according to the representative at MIKE RUSS SCHOOL, he
stated that their online pratice test only cycles through 200 questions compared to the actual State exam which cycles through about 1000 questions.

I don't know if it's true but I will be getting a refund for what I paid to take the online course and apply it to pay for the LIVE classroom course instead plus a free crash course prep class before my next atempt.

Since then I've been searching the web for more information about these exams and found this website, I can tell you it's a relief to my EGO to find out that others are having similar experiences.

Blam it on the online curriculum. I know!

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Re: Study tips for the California Life Agent Exam

Post by hhrchevy » Wed Jan 14, 2009 12:45 pm

As a facilitator of an on-line course for property and casualty and soon to be for life and health I can tell you the State exams are difficult but on-line learning can be the way to go. As our students go through their curriculum there are tests throughout the text. Every time the student takes one I get her/his score the same time s/he does. This prompts me (if someone fails) to go into action to provide another review course (I develope other ways to teach the same concepts) and oftentimes another examination (t/f, fill in the blanks, etc). I also tell them if they saw something on the module exam that they are "fuzzy" with to email me with their concerns. Then, I will custom-make an aide for studying that particular area. Then they take the module exam again and 90% of the time the questions do not pose a problem for them. This helps them at the time of their confusion and helps me as I update our material/examinations for future students.

I find that most students do get the material as they read it, but faced with a multiple choice test question the "distracter" (wrong) selections throw them off course because they either over analyze the question or see some "buzz" word that makes them think they missed something in the text.

To be sure the State exams are not easy, but some of the test developers think they are because they have the answer right in front of them when they are reviewing the exam overall. I think test developers should have to answer the exam questions, not piecemeal, not with the answers in front of them, but as an insurance producer candidate before signing off on the exam.

I see the original comment was made in May of 2007 and hopefully that person has now passed the examination. But the problem has not gone away. On-line courses get a bad rap and should not if done with care and correctly!!!

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Re: Study tips for the California Life Agent Exam

Post by InsMgmt » Wed Jan 14, 2009 7:30 pm


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Re: Study tips for the California Life Agent Exam

Post by jackolive » Tue Mar 08, 2011 1:48 am

I took that test about 5 years ago. I know exactly what you're going through. It's not the difficulty of the test as much as the problem in collecting information and practicing the material. You should somehow contact people who'd just recently done it and copy from them.

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Re: Study tips for the California Life Agent Exam

Post by PMReview » Mon Apr 11, 2011 2:26 pm

This is an old post/question but I thought I would reply. Hopefully, it will help someone:

State insurance exams can be very difficult. Learning from a book or classroom is sometimes not enough. I would suggest going to an online training company to build on the foundation you already have.

(Full disclosure - I work for the company but it is a great source of information)

PMReview is a leading insurance education and test preparation supplier for the state-required Life, Health, and Annuities license exams. The PMReview, along with PMReview Schools, will help you and your team prepare for each state's license exam with our exceptional ONLINE learning tools.

We offer an 800-Question and Answer Practice exam with explanations everyone can understand. We also have an 8-Hour, Online, Crash Course as well as a 4-Day Review class with live instructors. The Practice Test is state-specific. That means all the questions are for California only (in this case). However, we do offer the practice test for EVERY STATE. The online classes are industry specific and are a great value to all students, nationwide, as a learning tool.

We have had great success with new agents (and agents returning to the industry) using our online tools in addition to the training platforms their companies already have set up. We would love to help.

Go to to see how we can help you pass the state insurance exam.

Good luck in your studies! - Build a Foundation of Insurance Education

Insurance License Training - State Specific - Life, Health, Annuity Practice Exams and Online Classes.

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Re: Study tips for the California Life Agent Exam

Post by tomwarren » Wed Apr 13, 2011 2:40 am

Thanks so much for the authors of books Bisys Exam Prep. I used this book only to study the California Life Agent exam and I made my first attempt at January 28, 2010. I also used flash cards and a guide for the CA insurance law study that I bought the banks to with this book.

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Re: Study tips for the California Life Agent Exam

Post by Osidebbqfan » Sat Jul 16, 2011 10:43 am

I am in the same boat as a number of you who have written in regarding I initially registered online to take the 52 hour Life Agent (Life Only and A&H) combo course and completed the requirements, easy enough. However, when I initially registered three was a first time pass guarantee. Just this past week they have changed the rules where you also need to have purchased the Study Hall, and contrary to what they teach in the class, Ethics, they are not holding to their promise. The Study Hall purchase was never part of the agreement when I registered.

I did not pass the exam yesterday. I do not feel so bad in that just in line behind me were three young women who have taken their Life Agent course through and did not pass either. As a matter of fact, the one in the middle was taking the exam for the third time.

When I was interviewing for insurance companies in the San Diego area, State Farm, Farmers, AFLAC, and a few independents had nothing good to say about, and did not recommend them at all. But I had already paid for the course, and was studying to finish my requirements. All of the recruiters or even agency owners recommend Mike Russ, and basically stated that I would not pass just using

The so called Help Desk took over five hours to get back to me regarding a web site issue.

All in all, I would not recommend them to anyone! You get what you pay for.

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Re: Study tips for the California Life Agent Exam

Post by financialeducator » Fri Jul 22, 2011 4:55 pm

I can help you on passing your exam.

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Re: Study tips for the California Life Agent Exam

Post by chizcurlz » Thu Aug 04, 2011 5:06 am

If you wish to start you career as a Life Insurance Agent, you are required to take an Insurance pre-licensing exam. This course consists of 40 hours of General Insurance courses and 12 Hours Professional Ethics course. Some providers offer this package with free PDFs and software as preparatory exams. This exam covers topics like insurance coverage on human lives, endowments, annuities, accidental death, disability income, sickness, bodily injury, Care coverage, as well as Long Term Care insurance. After you get licensed, you must need to take Continuing Education for Insurance for your renewal every two years.

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