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FAQs

Continuing Professional Development (CPD)

Does CFA UK recognise CPD undertaken with other organisations?

Yes, the CFA UK recognises many forms of CPD, undertaken with itself and other professional bodies and organisations. Appropriate CPD activities may include:

  • Attending live events
  • Studying for qualifications
  • Reading and reviewing content
  • Contributing to the profession

 

What is structured learning?

Structured learning? means that the activity must have the following features:

  • Stated learning outcomes
  • Verifiable content
  • Confirmation of attendance/engagement

Structured learning is, most typically, courses, seminars or events but may also include e-learning, webcasts or distance learning where engagement can be verified.

 

What is unstructured learning?

'Unstructured learning' may include reading books or journals or viewing webcasts which are relevant to job roles but where engagement or comprehension has not been verified in a structured way.

 

What is Continuing Professional Development (CPD)?

Continuing Professional Development (CPD), also known as Continuing Education (CE) represents a set of learning activities which contribute to the knowledge and experience required for professional success. 

CPD assists to maintain and develop current, relevant professional skills in an ever-changing economic environment.

Typically, CPD does not expand to product or service training and research.

 

Is CPD compulsory?

There is no compulsory CPD requirement associated with belonging to CFA UK.

Members who provide investment advice to private (retail) clients and practice in scope of the FCA's Retail Distribution Review (RDR) require an annual Statement of Professional Standing (SPS) from CFA UK.

If you fall within this category, you must undertake and log an annual minimum of 35 hours of CPD activity.

 

How is CPD monitored?

A minimum of 10% of all members who apply for an SPS will have their CPD records audited annually* 

It is the responsibility of the individual member to decide if CPD activities are appropriate for logging and for RDR compliance.

Members must independently track their CPD and plan in advance to meet the annual requirement.

* The CPD logging requirement begins in 2013, meaning 35 hours must be logged before an SPS can be issued effective from 1 January 2014.

 

How can CFA UK support me with CPD?

CPD content including webcasts, podcasts, articles, books and CPD Certificate Programmes can be found in our online Knowledge Centre.

CPD audit process

How is CPD monitored?

A minimum of 10% of all members who apply for an SPS will have their CPD records audited annually* 

It is the responsibility of the individual member to decide if CPD activities are appropriate for logging and for RDR compliance.

Members must independently track their CPD and plan in advance to meet the annual requirement.

* The CPD logging requirement begins in 2013, meaning 35 hours must be logged before an SPS can be issued effective from 1 January 2014.

 

How am I audited?

Members selected for audit will receive notification via email, or in writing, which may request the submission of a portfolio of ?evidence?. This may include certificates of attendance or contact details for organisations with which CPD has been undertaken with.

Portfolios will be reviewed by CFA UK and members will be notified of results in writing.

Please note: CFA UK will continue to process an individual member's SPS during the audit period. CPD audit failure will normally result in an issued SPS being cancelled.

 

What happens if I fail an audit?

Members will be notified via email or in writing of the result of CFA UKs audit. 

Members will be given the opportunity to appeal once results have been received.

CPD audit failure will normally result in an issued SPS being cancelled.

Logging CPD

What is structured learning?

'Structured learning' means that the activity must have the following features:

  • Stated learning outcomes
  • Verifiable content
  • Confirmation of attendance/engagement

Structured learning is, most typically, courses, seminars or events but may also include e-learning, webcasts or distance learning where engagement can be verified.

 

What is unstructured learning?

'Unstructured learning' may include reading books or journals or viewing webcasts which are relevant to job roles but where engagement or comprehension has not been verified in a structured way.

 

Can my employer view my CPD log?

No, however active CFA UK members can access their CPD records via the secure member area. 

A report of CPD activities can be downloaded in PDF or csv format should you need evidence your logged CPD.

 

How do I log my CPD?

Active CFA UK members can record CPD activities in their CPD log, which can be found in our online Knowledge Centre.

Events hosted by CFA UK will automatically appear in member CPD logs.

 

I already log my CPD with the CFA Institute. Do I need to log CPD with CFA UK?

Members of both the CFA UK and CFA Institute can continue to log CPD activities with the CFA Institute, or choose to log using CFA UK?s logging tool, accessed in the secure member area.

For regulatory purposes, members requiring an SPS must submit theur CPD log with their SPS application. If your CPD is logged via CFA UK we will be able to access this, if logged externally this must be provided with the application.

Statement of Professional Standing (SPS)

How much does an SPS cost?

SPS is currently free to all active members of CFA UK, provided that the application is received prior to 31 October each year. CFA UK does not issue SPS to non-members. SPS application made after 31 October may be subject to an administration charge.

 

How frequently do I need to obtain an SPS?

SPS is valid for 12 months and needs to be renewed on an annual basis.

 

What type of SPS do I need?

CFA UK are able to issue three types of SPS:

  • Securities and Derivatives
  • Securities
  • Derivatives

If you require an SPS for Packaged Products you will need to contact one of the other FCA-Accredited Bodies who may be able to assist you.

 

What qualifications are required for an SPS?

The FCA's list of Appropriate Qualifications features the current (level 4) Investment Management Certificate (IMC) in combination with CFA Level I.

Other RDR routes include the former (level 3 ? passed before September 2010) IMC with CFA Level I completed with a CPD gapfill arrangement.

RDR CPD gapfill is non-examined structured learning that is CFA Society of the UK February 2012 approved to fill the gaps between older examinations and the new content required by the RDR.

There is a concession for those with all three levels of the CFA, who only need take the first Unit of the IMC.

The Institute of Investment Management and Research (IIMR) Associate Examinations (ASIP designation) may also be used for RDR compliance with a more substantial CPD gapfill.

IMC (level 4) Unit 1 & 2 + CFA Level I
IMC (level 4) Unit 1 + CFA Level III
IMC (level 3) Unit 1&2 + CFA Level I + IMC CPD gapfill
IMC (level 3) Unit 1 + CFA Level III + IMC CPD gapfill
ASIP + ASIP CPD gapfill

CFA UK already holds examination records on all these qualifications. For members who require SPS, records will be reviewed and RDR qualification status established. 

For any other qualification combinations please contact SPS@cfauk.org with details of these.

 

What are the requirements for obtaining an SPS?

A number of conditions must be met before we will issue an SPS.

  • You must hold the correct RDR-approved qualifications;
  • You must adhere to either the CFA Institute or CFA UK Code of Ethics and Standards of Professional Conduct and remain a member ?in good standing? as a practitioner;
  • You must be an active member of CFA UK;
  • You have an active FCA CF30 registration number, or are certifiedas 'fit and proper' by your firm;
  • You must have completed a minimum of 35 hours of CPD in the previous 12 months;
  • You agree to the SPS terms and conditions;
  • You comply with the FCA's Statemements of Principle and Code of Practice for Approved Persons (APER), or with the FCA's Code of Conduct (COCON), whichever is relevant to your role.

 

When do I need to submit my SPS application?

The cut-off date for SPS applications is October 31st each year. Applications submitted after 31 October may incur a fee and CFA UK cannot guarantee that the SPS will be issued by January 1st of the following year.

 

When will I receive my SPS?

Once CFA UK has determined you are RDR qualified and have met the requirements for issuing an SPS, CFA UK will email you to notify you that your SPS will be issued.

Appropriate Qualifications

Do I need an Appropriate Qualification to do my job?

An activity that is shown in Training and Competence (TC) Appendix 4 and is subject to exam requirements. Ultimately, it will be the job you do rather than the job title that determines which activity is relevant. Some jobs cross over more than one activity, so you'll need to hold qualifications for each activity listed.

 

What are the Appropriate Qualifications?

The FCA's Appropriate Qualifications Tables appears in Appendix 4.1.1 of the Training and Competence (TC) sourcebook and show which qualifications are suitable for which activities and the extent to which those qualification meets qualification requirement.

The key to reading this is as follows:

  1. Identify the activities you undertake in your job.
  2. Identify the qualification(s) you hold or are studying for.
  3. Identify the extent to which those qualifications meet the requirements.

 

Which qualification is appropriate for the activity I undertake in my job?

The FCA's Appropriate Qualifications Tables appears in Appendix 4.1.1 of the Training and Competence (TC) sourcebook and show which qualifications are suitable for which activities and the extent to which those qualification meets qualification requirement.

The key to reading this is as follows:

  1. Identify the activities you undertake in your job.
  2. Identify the qualification(s) you hold or are studying for.
  3. Identify the extent to which those qualifications meet the requirements.

 

How does the FCA define retail clients?

A retail client is defined by the FCA (in COBS 3.4.1) as a client who is not a professional client or an eligible counterparty.

 

How do I find out which level of the IMC I have?

  • Prior to September 2010 the IMC was a level 3 qualification.
  • After September 2010 the IMC has been a level 4 qualification.

If you are unsure of when you took your IMC, please email verifications@cfauk.org with your full name, date of birth, and the approximate date of your examinations.

 

I hold the IMC at level 3, what else do I have to do to become RDR qualified?

IMC level 3 holders need to complete a ?gap fill? course, plus CFA Program Level I.

More information regarding RDR requirements is available on the CFA UK website.

 

How can I upgrade my level 3 IMC to a level 4 IMC?

It is not possible to upgrade a qualification from one level to the next.

IMC level 3 holders need to complete a ?gap fill? course, plus CFA Program Level I.

This is not the same as saying you are ?level 4 qualified?, but you would meet the RDR qualification requirements.

More information regarding RDR requirements is available on the CFA UK website.

 

I hold the IMC at level 4, what else do I have to do to become RDR qualified?

IMC level 4 holders need to complete CFA Program Level I.

More information regarding RDR requirements is available on the CFA UK website.

 

I hold CFA Level I, what else do I have to do to become RDR qualified?

CFA Level I holders need to complete IMC level 4.

More information regarding RDR requirements is available on the CFA UK website.

 

What does 'Other qualifications that meet specialist standards?' mean?

IMC level 4 holders may apply for a Statement of Professional Standing if also hold exams from other bodies which meet the specialist standards Securities and / or Derivatives in full.

CFA UK recognises the following qualifications and modules from the Chartered Institute of Securities & Investment (CISI):

-          Derivatives (Investment Advice Diploma)

-          Securities (Investment Advice Diploma)

-          Investment Advice Diploma

 

Can I use my CFA Level I to get exemption from IMC Unit 2 and still be RDR qualified?

  • CFA Program Level I or II can be used for exemption from IMC Unit 2 providing no advice to retail (private) investors is undertaken
  • CFA Program Level III can be used for exemption from IMC Unit 2 (including those who advise retail (private) investors)

For the full details, please see our Exemptions Policy Page

 

Can I use my CFA Level II get exemption from IMC Unit 2 and still be RDR qualified?

No.

  • CFA Level I or II can be used for exemption from IMC Unit 2 providing no advice to retail (private) investors is undertaken
  • CFA Level III can be used for exemption from IMC Unit 2 (including those who advise retail (private) investors)

For the full details, please see our Exemptions Policy Page

 

Can I use my CFA Level III to get exemption from IMC Unit 2 and still be RDR qualified?

Yes.

  • CFA Level I or II can be used for exemption from IMC Unit 2 providing no advice to retail (private) investors is undertaken
  • CFA Level III can be used for exemption from IMC Unit 2 (including those who advise retail (private) investors)

For the full details, please see our Exemptions Policy Page

 

How do I prove to my employer/prospective employers that I am RDR qualified?

The FCA stipulates that all private (retail) client advisers in the UK gain an annually issued certificate called the Statement of Professional Standing (SPS).

The SPS certificate is a paper document that confirms the advisor has met specific qualification requirements, adheres to a recognised code of ethics and has completed at least 35 hours of continuing professional development (CPD). All retail advisers will need an SPS from 1 January 2013.

CFA UK is an FCA Accredited Body responsible for checking individual advisers have met the necessary requirements each year, and for issuing the SPS.

*Please note: The RDR recognises two distinct categories of adviser ? advisers in ?packaged products? and advisers in ?securities and derivatives?. CFA UK can only support members who advise in securities and derivatives.

Apply for a Statement of Professional Standing.

For questions regarding Statements of Professional Standing, email sps@cfauk.org

 

I have a CF30 (Customer function) registration, does this make me RDR qualified already?

No.  CF30 (Customer function) registration covers a number of different activities.  It does not make you RDR qualified on its own.  Therefore there is no CF30 qualification.

 

How do I become CF30 (Customer function) registered?

Typically this is something that your employer will do for you.  Please contact the FCA on how to register as an individual.

UK: 0845 606 9966 (call rates may vary)
From abroad: +44 20 7066 1000
Email: fcc@fca.org.uk

CPD Checklist Document