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  7. »FAQs for PHP Graduate Certificate programs

Frequently Asked Questions

Question: Would I be a good distance student?


Course materials, tests and case studies are all completed through the K-State Online course management system. Some courses have supplemental materials on videos or CDs, and others may require phone conferencing. Students interact with faculty and one another through email, phone conferencing and the Internet classroom, but complete courses in their free time.

See the system requirements for K-State Online.

There is no way to differentiate a degree obtained via distance learning from an on-campus degree.

Read tips on how to succeed in an online course.

Question: Is this program flexible enough to fit my busy schedule?


Kansas State University’s Personal Financial Planning graduate certificate program allows you to earn your certificate entirely online, without interrupting your job or relocating. Through the flexibility of Internet-based study, you can make the program fit your schedule, while still learning from respected faculty at a distinguished university.

Question: How many students are in each cohort?


For the duration of the program, you will work with a knowledgeable faculty mentor — a Ph.D. and CFP® certificant — and a cohort of up to 25 professional peers. Having the same mentor and classmates throughout your courses will enable you to develop relationships and find the support you need as your prepare for your financial planning career.

Question: What if I decide to pursue the master’s degree in the future?


All 18 credit hours are fully transferable into our 36-hour master's degree. If you decide at a later date to complete the master's, you will have up to six years from the time you begin the certificate program to finish your degree.

Question: What steps do I take to become a Certified Financial Planner?


The CFP Board administers the CFP® certification process which identifies those individuals who have been authorized to use the CFP® marks. This process identifies to the public that each certificant has met rigorous professional standards and has agreed to adhere to the principles of integrity, objectivity, competence, fairness, confidentiality, professionalism and diligence when dealing with clients.

To become certified, candidates are required to meet four initial certification requirements known as the four E’s:

Question: When will I be qualified to sit for the CFP® Certification Examination?


Upon completion of the CFP Board-Registered certificate program, you will be eligible to sit for the CFP® Certification Examination. The series of six courses ends approximately four months prior to a scheduled CFP® Certification examination. CFP Board has said most certificants do best when taking the exam two to six months after completing a program.

Note that you should plan to spend additional time for review and synthesis of material prior to taking the Examination.

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