A financial planner helps private individuals and businesses plan and manage their finances to achieve certain goals. Financial planners have to take into account things like cash flow, risk management, insurance planning, tax planning, estate planning and investment planning, as well as local and international inflation rates and economic forecasts.
Australia abounds with opportunities to study financial planning, both in university and college classrooms and via accredited online courses.
Financial Planning Courses in Australia
- Kaplan Professional specialises in vocational and higher education in financial services in Australia. Kaplan offers students at its Sydney, Brisbane, Melbourne and Perth campuses two financial planning courses: Graduate Diploma of Financial Planning and Master of Applied Finance. Kaplan’s financial planning certificate, diploma and degree courses are also available online.
- Deakin University, based in Melbourne, offers a Bachelor of Commerce (major in Financial Planning) degree that is accredited by the Financial Planning Association (FPA) of Australia, which means that upon completion of the course, students can enter the Certified Financial Planner education program and become a professional CFP. Deakin offers several undergraduate degrees with financial planning majors (Bachelor of Business Information Systems) and Bachelor of Arts degrees with financial planning courses (BA of Management). The university also offers postgraduate courses such as Master of Financial Planning, Graduate Diploma of Financial Planning and Graduate Certificate of Financial Planning.
- The Australian Institute of Financial Services and Accounting (AIFA) provides a range of financial qualifications online, including financial planning, accounting, bookkeeping and mortgage/finance broking and management.
- The University of Melbourne’s Graduate School of Business and Economics offers a Master of Applied Finance program that includes courses suitable for financial planning. It’s ideally suited for qualified financial planners who want to bulk up their financial services qualifications.
Financial Planning Associations in Australia
- The Financial Planning Association (FPA) is held in very high regard by financial planners in Australia and throughout the world. Its role is to ensure that financial planners maintain high standards of professionalism through its Certified Financial Planner award that is recognised as the highest certification to which financial planning professionals in Australia can aspire. It also liaises with the Australian government on matters affecting financial policies and regulations and encourages its members to participate in on-going financial planning training and development.
- The Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards (CFO Board) establishes and maintains professional financial planning standards, establishes and maintains ethical standards and codes of conduct, and increases public awareness of personal and corporate financial planning services.