CFP Education

CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™, CFP® Certification

At the College for Financial Planning®—a Kaplan Company, which created the country’s first financial planning credential in the industry, the CFP® certification, we are proud to provide CFP® education that prepares our students to be the best financial planners in the industry. Our seven-course program provides students with the opportunity to put what they learn into practice, and even qualifies for credit toward our Master of Science in Personal Financial Planning. Successful completion of the program results in eligibility to sit for the CFP® exam, which our graduates consistently pass at 3 to 6 percentage points higher than the national average.  Since the March 2012 exam (when CFP Board revised the exam blueprint), more than 15,500 CFP® certificants have come from the College’s program.

View more information about our programs in the College Catalog.

Length
8 modules per course, with the exception of FP512, which has 6.

Recommended study time
750 to 1,000 hours

Level of coursework
Graduate

Articulation
Successful completion of the program qualifies toward 15 credits* in the Master of Science in Personal Financial Planning

Program Courses

Graduate-level (0 academic credits); Prerequisite(s): none

This course examines basic financial planning concepts for developing client relationships; gathering, analyzing and evaluating financial documents, statements and other information; developing and communicating relevant recommendations to clients; implementing recommendations through the use of a financial planning team; and monitoring the financial plan on a periodic basis, all within CFP Board professional and regulatory standards. Students will develop a pragmatic perspective of the field of financial planning as they learn to analyze personal financial statements, understand time value of money concepts, explore education funding techniques, advise clients regarding the management of debt, apply behavioral finance concepts, gain an understanding of federal and state regulatory requirements, learn the ethical environment of financial planning and integrate the legal and economic aspects of financial planning within a practice.

Graduate-level (3 academic credits); Prerequisite(s): none

This course explores fundamental insurance, annuity, and employee benefit concepts and products. Students will gain knowledge of the principles of risk and insurance; learn how to analyze and evaluate risk exposures; and understand the concepts of personal and business insurance for life, health, disability, long-term care and property insurance. Students will also develop perspectives regarding the integration of social insurance (e.g. Medicare, workers compensation)within the framework of financial planning. Equity-based compensation, nonqualified deferred compensation and other employee benefits will also be presented and discussed.

Graduate-level (3 academic credits); Prerequisite(s): none

This course examines the characteristics, uses and taxation of investment vehicles: stocks, bonds, cash and cash equivalents, promissory notes, guaranteed investment contracts, real estate, and alternative investments. Students will also develop an understanding of the various types of risk: systematic and unsystematic, purchasing power, interest rate, business, and financial risk. Students are introduced to quantitative investment concepts, measures of investment returns, bond and stock valuation concepts, investment theory, portfolio development and analysis, investment strategies, asset allocation, and asset pricing models.

Graduate-level (3 academic credits); Prerequisite(s): none

This course focuses on income tax fundamentals and calculations, tax accounting, characteristics and income taxation of business entities, basis, depreciation and cost recovery concepts. The impact of the alternative minimum tax (AMT), passive activity, at-risk rules, charitable contributions and charitable deductions on a client’s financial plan is also studied. Students will gain an understanding of the tax consequences of like-kind exchanges and the disposition of property, and will learn how the loss of a spouse through death or divorce affects a client’s tax status.

Graduate-level (3 academic credits); Prerequisite(s): none

Students will be exposed to retirement needs analyses, types and characteristics of retirement plans, qualified plan rules and options, and provisions of tax-advantaged plans. The effects of ERISA on retirement plans is examined and the impact of Social Security on a client’s retirement plan is also discussed. Students will gain an understanding of plan distribution options, rules, alternatives and taxation, and will also explore key factors affecting plan selection for businesses and investment considerations for retirement plans.

Graduate-level (3 academic credits); Prerequisite(s): none

This course analyzes the various techniques and strategies used in developing estate plans based on client criteria and needs. Property titling, property transfer at death, gifting strategies, and sources of estate liquidity are discussed. Students will also gain insight on wills, probate, and the types, uses and taxation of trusts during estate planning.

Graduate-level (0 academic credits); Prerequisite(s): none

 

Students participate in a case analysis and evaluation in which the following major areas of financial planning are integrated:

  • General Financial Planning Principles, Professional Conduct, and Regulation
  • Risk Management, Insurance, and Employee Benefits Planning
  • Investment Planning
  • Income Tax Planning
  • Retirement Savings and Income Planning
  • Estate Planning

CFP® Exam Prep Review

After completing their CFP Board Registered program, students can prepare and practice for the CFP® exam through our comprehensive Exam Prep Review program, helping align your test-taking skills with the objective of the exam

Free CFP® Certification Resources

Whether you are a prospective or current student, our free resources, including informational webinars, are designed to help you understand the CFP® certification process and study more effectively so that you can achieve your goal of passing the CFP® exam.