Certified Financial Planner Certification Course

March 19, 2019 - March 17, 2020
Early Registration Ends:
March 6, 2019
Terry Executive Education Center 3475 Lenox Road, Atlanta, GA 30326 and online


One of the best ways to show that you are a serious financial planner is to earn your CFP® designation, which requires completion of a certified education program. The Terry College of Business offers one of the best options for meeting the education requirement and preparing for the demands of the CFP® Certification Examination. Terry is registered with the CFP® Board of Standards, Inc., which administers the exam.

Designed for professionals in the brokerage, insurance, accounting, banking, and related industries, the CFP® Traditional Class program format consists of six academic courses, including a Capstone/Case Study. Offered in a blended format, this 12 month program meets every other week face-to-face from 6:00 pm to 9:00 pm at the Terry Executive Education Center. Online assessments and attendance during the alternating weeks are a required and evaluated part of the program.

Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards Inc. owns the certification marks CFP®, CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ and CFP® (with flame design) in the U.S., which it awards to individuals who successfully complete CFP Board's initial and ongoing certification requirements.

Fundamentals of Financial Planning and Insurance

This course introduces participants to the theory and practice of financial planning. It provides an overview of the financial planning process and offers guidance for managing a client's risks while achieving goals through savings and investments. Topics include life, health, disability, and long-term care as well as property, Social Security, and personal liability insurance. In addition, the course covers time value of money and education and retirement funding. A financial calculator, such as an HP 12C or 10BII, is required.

Participants will be able to:

  • Perform time value of money calculations by understanding the underlying concepts and utilizing technology.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the inter-relatedness of insurance, investments, retirement planning, income tax, and estate planning in the financial planning process and how the changing economic environment affects that process.
  • Identify and quantify the financial objectives of a client through evaluation of financial statements and other data.
  • Assess deficiencies, recommend corrections, and develop and maintain a financial plan.
  • Articulate the code of ethics and professional responsibility to which practitioners must adhere.
  • Communicate the concepts of risk assessment in a manner understandable to clients.
  • Address the broad range of insurance instruments and how they may be evaluated and employed to manage the risk of loss of income and risks associated with property ownership and legal liabilities.
  • Incorporate insurance into a client's overall financial plan.
  • Articulate the ethical aspects of insurance advising.

Investment Planning

This course introduces concepts regarding modern portfolio theory, risk reduction, debt and equity securities, derivatives (including options and futures contracts), and asset allocation strategies. Participants will learn how to determine a client's risk tolerance and select appropriate assets based on the assessed risk tolerance and the client's goals.

Participants will be able to:

  • Assess a client's risk tolerance and exposure to determine which investments provide the best approach to reach objectives of the client's financial plan.
  • Demonstrate a working knowledge of common stock and fixed income securities and the variety of ways these instruments may be analyzed.
  • Apply knowledge of riskier vehicles such as options, commodities, and financial futures to assess a financial plan.
  • Utilize a wide range of resources to evaluate various investment vehicles and strategies.
  • Employ the concepts of portfolio planning and management to provide diversification to a client's portfolio with sensitivity to tax considerations.
  • Apply the principles of taxation of investment vehicles to a financial plan.
  • Articulate the ethical aspects of investment advising.

Income Tax Planning

Focusing on the taxation of individuals, sole proprietorships, C-corporations, S-corporations, partnerships, and LLCs, this course provides detailed coverage of gross income inclusions and exclusions, deductions before and after adjusted gross income, and tax credits. In addition, participants will learn planning techniques for taxation avoidance and minimization strategies.

Participants will be able to:

  • Access and apply the resources that are required to meet the challenge of annual changes to the tax code.
  • Articulate income taxation fundamentals as well as tax consequences and computations.
  • Identify options available to individuals and business owners for reducing their tax burdens while preserving their wealth accumulation strategies.
  • Articulate the ethical and legal implications of tax advising.

Retirement and Employee Benefits

In this course, participants receive a comprehensive overview of qualified (defined benefit, profit share, and 401(k) plans) and non-qualified (deferred compensation, incentive stock options, and employee stock purchase plans) retirement plans, other tax-advantaged plans (SIMPLE, Roth, and traditional IRAs), and employee benefits. This course also presents an overview of the Social Security, disability, and health care programs such as Medicare.

Participants will be able to:

  • Define and differentiate between the types of plans that can be developed.
  • Analyze a client's financial health and develop the most advantageous retirement and employee benefit options to meet the long-term needs expressed in the overall financial plan.
  • Identify the needs and objectives of businesses to determine the best design for their employee retirement and benefit plans.

Estate Planning

This course provides professionals with an introduction to wills, trusts, the probate process, and the taxation of estates. Course participants also will learn the tax implications of gifts and bequests during lifetime and at death. The approach provides participants with taxation avoidance and minimization techniques useful in planning a client's estate.

Participants will be able to:

  • Demonstrate a working knowledge of wills, trusts, and estates.
  • Demonstrate a working knowledge of the concepts of risk management, insurance, portfolio management, retirement planning, and taxation and how they are synthesized in the estate and gift tax planning process.
  • Analyze and evaluate a client's financial and non-financial status and goals in order to develop, communicate, and implement the most advantageous estate and gift tax plan.

Capstone/Case Study

This Capstone course in Financial Planning is designed to help students integrate their knowledge of the financial planning subject areas. This course will be structured as a casework course and the cases used will closely reflect the types of cases they may encounter both as financial planners and as part of their CFP® Certification Examination.

Participants will be able to:

  • Integrate financial planning subject areas into the development of comprehensive financial plans and financial planning recommendations
  • Demonstrate the ability to analyze, synthesize, and evaluate personal financial situations
  • Prioritize goals and determine the feasibility of achieving these goals

What is CFP® Certification?

CFP® Certification is a nationally and internationally recognized professional certification offered through the CFP Board. Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards Inc. awards the CFP® and CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ certification to individuals who fulfill initial and ongoing certification requirements:

  1. Satisfy the educational requirements
  2. Three to five years of work experience in a financial planning field
  3. Pass the CFP® Certification Examination
  4. Compliance with CFP Board's Code of Ethics and Professional Responsibility
  5. Continuing education and recertification

Why is the CFP® Certification Requirements Important?

When selecting a financial planner, it's important to remember that not all financial planners are "certified". Anyone can call themselves a "financial planner". Only those who have gone through the certification process by the CFP Board can display the CFP® certification marks. The CFP® certification provides a great sense of security by allowing only those who meet the requirements the right to use the CFP® certification marks.

What is required to obtain a CFP® certification?

To obtain the CFP® certification, there are the four E's: Education, Examination, Experience and Ethics.

EDUCATION: In order to receive the CFP® designation, you have to master the topics covered in the following areas:

  • Fundamentals/Insurance Planning
  • Investment Planning
  • Income Tax Planning
  • Retirement Planning
  • Estate Planning

Bachelor's Degree Requirement: A bachelor's degree in any discipline is required in order to obtain the CFP® designation. This is not a requirement in to be eligible to take the CFP® Certification Examination and does not have to be obtained before sitting for the exam or fulfilling the work experience. You have five years from the date you pass the CFP® exam in order to satisfy the bachelor's degree requirement. The UGA CFP® program is a graduate level program, however, a bachelor's degree is not required in order to apply.

EXAMINATION: CFP® practitioners must pass a comprehensive two-day, 10-hour CFP® Certification Examination that tests their ability to apply financial planning knowledge in an integrated format. You will be eligible to apply for the CFP® Certification Examination after successfully completing the educational requirement. The CFP® Examination is given three times a year. The fee for the exam is $595 and must be paid in full by the application deadline.

EXPERIENCE: CFP® professionals must have three years minimum experience in the financial planning process prior to earning the right to use the CFP® certification marks. This experience may be obtained before or up to 5 years after the exam.

ETHICS: As a final step to certification, CFP® practitioners agree to abide by a strict code of professional conduct, known as CFP Board's Code of Ethics and Professional Responsibility.

Additional information can be found at www.cfp.net

Do you have any requirements prior to enrolling?

Yes, a Bachelor's degree is highly recommended but not required. Also an application via our website located here.

Do you offer Review Courses?

The University of Georgia, Terry College of Business does not offer an overall review for the national comprehensive CFP® Certification Examination, but nationally known companies offer reviews in Atlanta:

  • Keir Educational Resources offer review materials and courses. www.keirsuccess.com
  • Zahn intensive review uses a special classroom book designed by Ken Zahn. You may contact them directly at www.kenzahn.com
  • The Dalton Review comprehensive CFP® review. For more information go to www.thedaltonreview.com

Please note that there are fees associated with these programs.

How much study time outside of class should I expect?

The answer to this question varies, however, we recommend that for every hour spent in the classroom prepare to spend 2-3 hours outside of the classroom studying.

Do you accept the Hope Scholarship?

No, the Hope Scholarship and other financial aid programs such as the Pell Grant and Stafford Loans are only available to students attending for-credit courses which lead to a degree or other academic credentials. Certificate programs are not eligible for these kinds of scholarships.

Do you offer financial assistance for VA funding or military personnel?

At this time we are not able to offer financial assistance for military personnel enrolling in our traditional program.

Do I need to fill out the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid)?

No, the FAFSA is used only for degree programs.

Are continuing education loans available for non-credit classes?

Yes, students may choose to apply for private loans.

Can I start a class while I am waiting for my loan to be approved?

No, but we will be happy to charge your credit card for the cost of the class and refund the same card when the loan money arrives.

I have been laid off from my job. Are there other options available for me?

You may be eligible through Workforce Investment Act funding. For WIA information, visit the one-stop workforce center serving your area.

The CFP® Program provided me with the educational foundation -

needed to not only pass the CFP® Board exam, but also to deliver sound comprehensive financial advice to my wealth management clients.

Gregory B. Binney, CFP®, First Vice President — Client Advisor, Private Wealth Management, SunTrust Bank

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Andrew Harbour
  • Bachelor of Science in Business from Taylor University
  • Currently Senior Vice President — Wealth Management and Senior Portfolio Manager with The Peachtree Group at Morgan Stanley Smith Barney