Is there life beyond the Advanced Diploma?
Last updated on September 25th, 2019 at 4:33 am
So you’ve slogged away through the CII Diploma in Regulated Financial Planning and then decided to keep on going. You then worked hard to achieve the CII Advanced Diploma in Financial Planning. What now? Time for a well-earned rest? Or are you keen to just keep on going? What are the options?
Holding the Advanced Diploma already puts you ahead of others who achieved Level 4 and then stopped. However, here at Brand Financial Training, we’re hearing more regularly from Advanced Diploma holders who want to continue with their studies but don’t know where to go next.
Numerous Pathways Available
Some would argue that further qualifications and study is unnecessary and that having the Advanced Diploma and Chartered on your CV is all you need, but everyone is different, and there are numerous pathways that your career can take. Certainly, there is no requirement for anybody to keep going after achieving the Advanced Diploma, but if you have enjoyed your studies so far and want to increase your breadth and depth of knowledge further, then gaining a Degree or Masters Degree is a great move forward and can only be a positive entry on your CV.
There are options available, and for many, this means looking at graduate and postgraduate degree courses. Thankfully you don’t have to put on your best student-y clothes or start hanging out in the student’s union (although for some that may be a welcome change of scenery). There are many options including distance learning, distance learning with workshops as well as attending courses in person either full or part-time. If you hold the Advanced Diploma, you can also be fast-tracked which is of great importance to time-strapped professionals in financial services.
There are many options available, but we’ve taken a look at a few below to give you an idea of what’s on offer.
BA in Financial Services at Edinburgh Napier University
Edinburgh Napier University offers a distance learning BA in Financial Services which requires 1 year’s part-time study for holders of the Advanced Diploma with relevant work experience. You also have options in terms of when to start with intakes in January and September each year. The BA focuses on finance and the financial services sector, alongside business skills that can be used in any profession. Example modules are monetary theory and policy, marketing financial services, management of financial institutions and regulatory risk management.
MSc in Wealth Management at Cass Business School at City University
If you’re keen on gaining a Masters degree, then the Cass Business School at City University offers the MSc in Wealth Management which focusses on the financial planning needs of the wealth management sector. The course covers the theory of finance, portfolio management, alternative investments and structured products amongst others. As you need to be able to attend in person, you need to be in or near London. Additionally, you need to be working full-time as well as have passed CII J10, R01 and four of the six AF exams including AF5 in order to be accepted. The course is part-time for 12-15 months and starts in September each year.
MSc in Financial Planning and Business Management at Manchester Metropolitan University
A distance learning option (with single day workshops in Manchester) is offered by Manchester Metropolitan University. Their MSc in Financial Planning and Business Management is part-time and studies financial planning concepts, theories and models, and engagement in applied research. Study can last between 11 and 15 months starting in either September or February.You've finished your Advanced Diploma in Financial Planning - what next? Here are some options. Click To Tweet
MSc in Finance at University of Leicester
Another distance learning option is the MSc in Finance offered by the University of Leicester. You can study full or part-time over 2 to 2 ½ years starting in February, May, August or November each year. The course covers concepts of finance and the role of financial management in a variety of organisations and sectors looking at financial analysis and investment, financial statements, strategic financial management and more.
MBA at University of Leicester
Finally, for those who are looking to gain an MBA (Masters of Business Administration) then the University of Leicester also offers an MBA via distance learning which can be gained part-time over 2 to 4 years starting in February, June or October each year. As well as the general learning that an MBA provides, you can also specialise in finance.
So if you’re considering progressing your qualifications further, it’s definitely worth looking at these options, but also be aware that other options are available. They’re not for everyone. For many, they will be viewed as an unnecessary step too far, but for others, it’ll be another opportunity to learn and grow, as well as provide an extra element to your CV.
Over to You…
Have you thought of studying beyond the Advanced Diploma level?