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Warning! Your CII Study Text Isn’t Correct!

Warning! Your CII Study Text Isn’t Correct!

I hope that got your attention because the issue of updates to CII exam syllabuses and study texts is so important.  Here’s something that many CII exam candidates don’t realise – just because you have the CII study text doesn’t mean what’s in there will remain the same for the examinable year.

The lack of awareness of updates to the CII study text came to my attention in spades recently when we started hearing from customers with regards Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT).  The thresholds and rates for SDLT changed “in the real world” on 4 December 2014.  They have been examined by the CII from 2 March 2015.  This is in line with their general rule that legislative and industry changes will not be examined earlier than 3 months after they come into effect.  However, many candidates were simply assuming that the rates in their study text were the rates that would be examined.  Our resources were, correctly, using the new rates so there was a discrepancy between the candidate’s study text (which they thought was up-to-date) and our resources.  So we received complaints saying that our resources were incorrect.  In fact, the candidates had not kept up-to-date with the syllabus changes and had been studying the wrong thresholds and rates.  A bit of a shock if you turn up to the exam and find different numbers in the questions!  This affected many exams including CF6, ER1, R07 and R03.

How to find the updates on the CII web site

I do have sympathy with exam candidates.  It isn’t made abundantly clear by the CII that they need to check the CII website for updates to the study text, and the updates themselves are a real pain to get to.  For example, for CF6 (a good example where SDLT is concerned) you have to navigate to the CF6 exam which is at


CII Unit Updates

and then click on ‘Learning solutions update’ in the right hand side bar.

This brings up a pop-up window with a list of updates to the study text which you can download and print out.


CII Learning Solutions UpdateIf you click on ‘Qualification update’ in the right hand side bar, this brings up a pop-up window and, in this example, if you scroll down you find the information about SDLT and when the new rates are examined – bit of a challenge to print out that pop-up screen though.

CII Qualification Update

We check for CII text updates every month

Here at Brand Financial Training, we know how important it is that candidates are studying using up-to-date information.  We ourselves check for updates to every single exam every month and update our resources accordingly.  When you order a resource, we also send you an email specifically advising you to check our updates page on a regular basis at for information about updates to our resources.  These include updates resulting from changes to the CII study text.  But we’re not daft, and we know that this is something that is probably forgotten about 30 seconds after you’ve read it.

How will you remember to check for updates?

And that’s the problem.  How do you remember to check the CII website for updates to your exam syllabus and study text?

As the lack of awareness about changes to the CII syllabus and study text within an examinable year concerns us, we’re now going to start publishing a list of study text changes to our blog every month, along with which of our learning resources have been updated as a result of any changes (so best subscribe to our blog using the box in the top right hand corner to ensure you don’t miss any updates).  Our aim is to help you pass your exam, and if we can assist you by bringing your attention to CII syllabus and study text updates then we will do that!

Regardless, please do ensure that you check the CII website on a regular basis to ensure you have all the up-to-date information for your exam.  You will need to go to and navigate to your exam.

Over to You…

Have you had any bad experiences with out-of-date study texts?   Have you sat in an exam and been confused?

Click here to find out more about the resources we offer to help you pass your CII exams.