Financial Designations: Possible Gateways to CFP® Education for Diverse Professionals?

23 Pages Posted: 8 Nov 2021

See all articles by David Mannaioni

David Mannaioni

College for Financial Planning

Aman Sunder

College for Financial Planning

Rebecca Henderson

College for Financial Planning

Date Written: May 13, 2021

Abstract

This study found a robust case for promoting specific financial designations before attempting the Certified Financial PlannerTM (CFP®) education to improve diversity in the financial planning profession. Financial designations are lower-cost and shorter (taking just 3-4 months to complete) than the CFP® education program, which typically takes at least one year to complete before attempting the CFP® exam. Yet, the study found that higher grades in financial designation courses predicted higher grades in the CFP® education program, with significant and surprising differences in diversity statistics. For example, the College for Financial Planning’s financial designation course Foundations in Financial PlanningSM (FFPN) enrolled far more women than men. Knowing that better grades in designation programs, such as FFPN, can predict better performance in the CFP® education program can provide self-doubting students a high degree of confidence. One weakness of this study was the presence of unobserved "ability" of the students, in that students who performed better would do better in any program regardless. However, the study still has high predictive power, telling us that all students, irrespective of gender or race, who do well while "testing the waters” in a designation program are likely to do well in the CFP® education program. Encouraging women and people of color to pursue a professional designation could lead to more women and people of color entering the CFP® education program and ultimately joining the ranks of CFP® certificants

Keywords: financial planning, financial education, professional designations

JEL Classification: D14, I21

Suggested Citation

Mannaioni, David and Sunder, Aman and Henderson, Rebecca, Financial Designations: Possible Gateways to CFP® Education for Diverse Professionals? (May 13, 2021). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3956742 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3956742

David Mannaioni (Contact Author)

College for Financial Planning ( email )

8000 East Maplewood Ave
Suite 200
Greenwood Village, CO 80111
United States
3032204911 (Phone)
80112 (Fax)

Aman Sunder

College for Financial Planning ( email )

9000 E. Nichols Ave
STE 200
Centennial, CO 80112
United States
7853176604 (Phone)

Rebecca Henderson

College for Financial Planning ( email )

9000 E Nichols Avenue
Suite 200
Centennial, CO 80112
United States

HOME PAGE: http://cffpinfo.com

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