Bryant University's Online CFP® curriculum has been refined over 15 years. Students are familiarized with essential topics in the Introduction to Financial Planning course. Those topics are then developed and mastered in the 5 core education courses. Students then prove their command of the Financial Planning Process in the Financial Planning Capstone Course.


Introduction to Financial Planning

Bryant's Introductory course lays the necessary groundwork for your Certified Financial Planning® education. You will develop a thorough understanding of the tools required to build your successful career by taking a broad look at the entire financial planning process. The course introduces several important topics, including time value of money, accounting, statistics, and economics.

What's covered?

Financial Planning Basics

  • The Financial Planning Process
  • Life Cycle Planning
  • Time Value of Money
  • Personal Financial Statements and Budgeting
  • Emergency Fund Planning
  • Credit and Debt Management
  • Buying vs. Leasing
  • Educational Funding
  • Monetary Settlements and Special Circumstances 
  • CFP® Board's Code of Ethics and Practice Standards   
  • CFP® Board's Disciplinary Rules and Procedures

Foundations of Business

  • Basic Economic Concepts
  • Business Law
  • Function, Purpose and Regulation of Financial Institutions
  • Financial Services Industry Regulation Requirements

Practice Questions: Over 550

Required Books & Materials:

  • General Principles of Financial Planning, by Jack C. Keir
  • Keir's Guide for Your Financial Calculator, by Jack C. Keir
  • HP12C Financial Calculator



Insurance Planning and Risk Management

The first core content course addresses life, disability, and medical insurance. Begin by learning the basics of each available contract type. Learn to efficiently read insurance proposals, and finally learning how insurance rates are developed and how life insurance is used to meet client goals. Property and casualty insurance, including homeowners', liability and auto insurance, along with group life and health insurance plans are all covered in depth.

What's covered?

  • Principles of Insurance
  • Evaluation and Analysis of Risk Exposures   
  • Legal Aspects of Insurance
  • Property and Casualty Insurance
  • General Business Liability
  • Health Insurance
  • Disability Income Insurance
  • Long-Term Care Insurance
  • Life Insurance
  • Viatical Settlements
  • Insurance Needs
  • Taxation of Insurance
  • Insurance Policy Selection
  • Insurance Company Selection

Practice Questions: Over 380

Required Book: Insurance Planning Textbook, by Jack C. Keir



Investment Planning

The Investment Planning course examines the fundamental investment principles employed by advisors as they seek to accumulate wealth for their clients. Mastery of these principles is key, because it's this wealth that ultimately allows clients to realize their long term financial planning goals.

You will study effective investment planning strategies, including...

What's covered?

  • Fixed Income Securities
  • Equities
  • Pooled Investments
  • Derivatives, Insurance Securities and Other Investments   
  • Investment Risks
  • Measures of Investment Returns
  • Time Influence on Valuation
  • Valuation of Bonds and Stocks
  • Portfolio Management and Measurements
  • Formula Investing and Investment Strategies
  • Asset Allocation and Portfolio Diversification
  • Efficient Market Theory
  • Asset Pricing Models
  • Buying and Selling Securities
  • Hedging and Option Strategies
  • Tax Efficient Investing
  • Taxation of Investment Vehicles

Practice Questions: Over 480

Required Book: Investment Planning, by Jack C. Keir



Tax Planning

The Tax Planning course explores the impact of state and Federal taxation on different business types including sole proprietorships, partnerships and corporations. You will develop a strong knowledge base regarding the tax-related aspects of investments, insurance, annuities and securities. You'll be introduced to other special tax considerations, including charitable giving, the sale of assets and more.

What's covered?

  • Income Tax Law Fundamentals
  • Gross Income
  • Income Tax Calculations
  • Tax Characteristics of Entities
  • Basis
  • Cost Recovery Concepts
  • Tax Consequences on Sale of Assets
  • Like-Kind Exchanges and Involuntary Conversions   
  • Income Taxation of Trusts and Estates
  • Passive Activity
  • Charitable Contributions and Deductions
  • Tax Implications of Changing Circumstances
  • Tax Accounting Methods
  • Tax Compliance
  • Alternative Minimum Tax
  • Tax Management Techniques

Practice Questions: Over 430

Required Book: Income Tax Planning, by Jack C. Keir



Retirement Planning and Employee Benefits

The retirement planning component of this course examines tax-deferred retirement plans, IRAs and nonqualified plans. You will learn how to conduct a retirement needs analysis and how to plan, implement and monitor both individual and business-sponsored retirement plans. Furthermore, you'll learn which regulatory issues surround retirement planning and benefits, and how tax issues impact these decisions. The employee benefits component of the course considers Social Security and Medicare, civil service systems and group insurance policies.

What's covered?

  • Retirement Needs Analysis
  • Qualified Retirement Plans
  • Non-Qualified Plans
  • Government 457 Plans
  • Other Tax-Advantaged Retirement Plans
  • Investment Considerations for Retirement Plans   
  • Distribution Rules, Alternatives and Taxation
  • Plan Selection for Businesses
  • Employee Benefit Plans
  • Employer/Employee Insurance Arrangements
  • Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid
  • Regulatory Considerations

Practice Questions: Over 450

Required Book: Retirement Planning, Jack C. Keir



Estate Planning

The final core content course teaches strategies which either maximize the value of your client's estate or eliminate uncertainties over the administration of your client's probate. To maximize the value, techniques to reduce tax impacts on transfers of wealth are covered, including gift, estate and generation-skipping transfer taxes at both the state and Federal levels. Non-tax aspects of estate planning, including the estate planning process, wills, trusts, durable powers of attorney, powers of appointment, and probate procedure are also studied.

What's covered?

  • Overview of Estate Planning
  • Forms of Property Ownership
  • Gifting
  • Gross Estate
  • Estate Tax Calculations
  • Generation-Skipping Transfer Tax   
  • Estate Planning Documents
  • Probate Process
  • Trusts
  • Charitable Gifting
  • Business Planning
  • Miscellaneous Planning
  • Estate Planning Process

Practice Questions: Over 385

Required Book: Estate Planning, by Jack C. Keir



Financial Planning Capstone Course

The Capstone course is where students prove their command of the Financial Planning Process. Students apply the knowledge they have collected throughout the previous six courses as they develop a comprehensive financial plan that adheres to specific client objectives and CFP® Board's Financial Planning Practice Standards. Industry leading financial planning software is made available throughout the duration of the Capstone course.

How does the Capstone work?

The Capstone Course is divided into 3 stages.

Stage One reviews content from the previous six courses and is completed with a passing score on the Stage One quiz.

Stage Two introduces 4 case studies and is completed with passing scores on each of the 4 case study assignments. 

Stage Three is where everything you have learned comes together. You will prepare a thorough financial plan that considers both the specific objectives of the case's subjects and CFP® Board's Financial Planning Practice Standards. You are free to create the plan on software that's provided to you through the program or on any other software that you have feel comfortable with. Once created, you upload both your plan and a 20 to 30 minute audio defense of the plan's various elements directly to the learning platform.  

Required Book: Financial Plan Development Textbook by Jack C. Keir




Learn about the many Features & Benefits of Bryant's online CFP® curriculum.