Certificate in Financial Planning

Offered by the Von Allmen School of Accountancy and Department of Finance and Quantitative Methods, this online certificate program is the first offered in the state of Kentucky. Students who successfully complete the program are eligible to sit for the CFP Certification Exam, an essential step in preparation for a career as a financial planning professional.

Curriculum & Course Approval

The program is comprised of six courses (18 credit hours). The certificate will be issued upon completion of all six courses.

The program is open to the following:

  • Current students of all majors
  • Current CPAs or other working professionals
  • Individuals interested in pursuing a career in financial planning

    **All applicants must have a minimum of 60 undergraduate credit hours.

Course Schedule

Financial Planning for Professionals (ACC 356)
This course provides an overview of the financial planning process. Topics include:

  • Regulator issues and ethics
  • Education planning and funding
  • Time-value-of-money concepts
  • Financial planning applications
  • Regulatory issues
  • Legal and economic environment for financial planning

Tax Planning for Financial Planning Professionals (ACC 357)
This course examines the federal income tax system with particular reference to the taxation of individuals. Topics include:

  • Gross income, exclusions from gross income
  • Deductions
  • Tax credits
  • Capital gains and losses
  • Taxation of life insurance
  • Taxation of annuities
  • Entity taxation of partnerships, LLCs, corporations and proprietorships

Investment Planning (FIN 357)
This course covers various aspects of investments and their application to financial planning. Topics include:

  • Characteristics, uses and taxation of investment vehicles
  • Types of investment risk
  • Quantitative investment concepts
  • Measures of investment returns
  • Asset allocation and portfolio diversification
  • Bond and stock valuation concepts
  • Portfolio development and analysis
  • Investment strategies
  • Alternative investments

Risk, Insurance and Retirement Planning (FIN 358)
This course discusses key topics in risk management and insurance. Topics include:

  • Types of retirement plans
  • Qualified plans (SEPs, SIMPLEs and 403(b) plans) and additional options
  • Individual retirement planning including IRAs and Roth IRAs, social security benefits, saving for retirement and planning for retirement plan distributions
  • Analysis and evaluation of risk exposures and insurance needs
  • Insurance policy and company selection
  • Health insurance, health care cost management, disability income and long‐term care insurance
  • Individual life insurance and business uses of insurance
  • Property and casualty insurance

Estate Planning (ACC 457)
This course provides a basic understanding of the estate and gift tax system. Topics include:

  • Nature, valuation transfer, administration and taxation of property
  • Gratuitous transfers of property outright or with trusts, wills and powers of appointment
  • Use of the marital deduction
  • Valuation of assets
  • Buy-sell agreements
  • Client interviews and fact finding
  • Ethical standards
  • Development of personal estate plans

Capstone: Financial Plan Development (FIN 359)
This course requires the student to demonstrate the ability to integrate and apply knowledge of financial planning topics, as received through the curricula. Upon completing the course, the student will be able to:

  • Effectively formulate and communicate the financial plan
  • Analyze personal financial situations, evaluating clients’ objectives, needs and values to develop an appropriate strategy within the financial plan
  • Demonstrate logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of various approaches to specific problem
  • Evaluate the impact of economic, political, and regulatory issues with regard to the financial plan
  • Apply the CFP board financial planning practice standards to the financial planning process.

*This program has been approved by the Certified Financial Planner (CFP) Board of Standards as a CFP Board Registered Program, and fulfills the Education requirement for the CFP Certification Exam. Please note that a college degree is required to take the exam.


To use VA Chapter Benefits, courses must be taken for academic credit. Visit www.uky.edu/veterans for more information.

Ready to Apply?

More Information

For more information on the Certificate in Personal Financial Planning, please contact:

Cynthia Vines
Associate Professor, The Von Allmen School of Accountancy
Director, Certificate in Financial Planning Program

Gatton College of Business and Economics
(859) 257-4675 | cvines@uky.edu

Wendy Liu
Director of Undergraduate Studies - Finance
Senior Lecturer, Finance and Quantitative Methods

Gatton College of Business and Economics
(859) 257-7651| wendy.liu@uky.edu