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Chartered Financial Consultant®

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Best For

Financial professionals desiring comprehensive financial planning knowledge.


<18 Months


Study the curriculum at your own pace, engage through virtual office hours, and receive support from the nation’s preeminent retirement planning thought leaders. Learn about Personal Pathway®

100% Virtual


Starting at  

Save $1,000 on full program with promo code CHFCFALL23*

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Enroll Now and Save

Financial Planning for Today’s Complexities at a Reduced Rate

With essential competencies and a focus on modern and niche financial planning strategies delivered by today’s foremost thought leaders, ChFC® is the education you need to meet each moment with confidence. Enroll by 12/15 and save $1,000 on our full eight-course program!

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Admissions Requirements

There are no prerequisite courses required to begin the ChFC® Program (other than a high school diploma or equivalent), but at least three years of experience in financial planning or a related profession is required to use the designation. 

To receive the ChFC® designation, you must: 

  1. Successfully complete the eight required courses and final exam 
  2. Agree to comply with The American College Code of Ethics and Procedures

Participation in the annual Professional Recertification Program (PRP) is required to maintain the designation.

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Tuition & Scholarships

Program tuition can be paid on a per-course basis, or packaged together at a reduced rate. Tuition covers your course fees, final exam, and course materials, including: 

  • Downloadable content for easy following 
  • Video lectures and expert interviews 
  • Practice exams and assessment questions 

Individual course: $895  
Case-study course (HS 333): $1,095  
Contemporary Applications in Financial Planning (HS 347): $1,595 
Eight-course package: $4,895 until 12/15 with promo code CHFCFALL23*

8-course package: $5,895 (additional packages available for review during enrollment) 

Scholarship opportunities for active-duty military personnel, veterans, and spouses, African American financial professionals, women, and other qualifying groups are available. Discover scholarship opportunities.


What You'll Learn

The ChFC® Program offers comprehensive education in the essentials of financial planning, including insurance, taxation, retirement, and estate planning. It also addresses advanced areas such as behavioral finance, non-traditional family structures, and small business planning. 

Your learning outcomes include: 

  • The basics of financial planning and risk management 
  • Income tax strategies for individuals, small businesses, corporations, and more 
  • Retirement planning, investing, and estate planning strategies for success 
  • Special needs planning, gift planning and inheritance, insurance, and more
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Course Delivery

Study the eight-course curriculum at your own pace, engage through virtual office hours, and receive support from the nation’s preeminent academics and thought leaders and our academic advising team. 

Our best-in-class program features: 

  • Focus on modern and niche financial planning to broaden your professional and practice reach 
  • Elite faculty of nationally-recognized academics and researchers in financial planning 
  • Modern e-learning with Personal Pathway®, allowing you to choose a flexible or more structured learning model
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Why Become a ChFC®?


Of ChFC® designation holders earn more on average than those without the designation.1


Of client-facing field leaders are more likely to hold a ChFC® designation.2


Professionals have earned the well-recognized, well-regarded ChFC® designation.

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The ChFC® is Right For You If:

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You Want to Go Beyond the Basics

Get Specialized Planning Knowledge for Diverse Clients

Client situations are increasingly complicated. Our practical program gives you the planning skills on a variety of topics to serve today’s diverse client needs.

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You Want to Earn Dual Designations

Earn Two Valued Certifications at Once!

By completing our eight-course ChFC® Program, you’re qualified to sit for the CFP® exam, doubling the value of your education.

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You Want to Build on Your Knowledge

Enhance Your Learning Outcomes

Obtain planning skills that will take your financial advice to the next level with courses focused on case studies and real-life situations. Course sharing is available for CFP® certificants and CLU® designees.

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Inside the ChFC® Program

HS 300 Fundamentals of Financial Planning

Provides an overview of the financial planning process. 

Upon completion of this course, you’ll be able to: 

  • Demonstrate an understanding of and apply the steps of the financial planning process
  • Differentiate between various communication techniques used by advisors 
  • Utilize the various financial planning approaches to provide actionable recommendations 
  • Review personal financial statements and perform financial statement analysis 
  • Build a foundation in quantitative techniques and basic economic concepts 
  • Apply education planning and funding techniques to help clients achieve their goals 
  • Review and apply the ethics of personal financial planning within various frameworks

HS 311 Fundamentals of Insurance Planning

Focuses on the role of planning for risk management needs. 

Upon completion of this course, you’ll be able to: 

  • Demonstrate an understanding of the basic concepts and principles of risk management 
  • Compare and contrast the different health insurance options available 
  • Differentiate among the various types of life insurance 
  • Discuss principles of disability income insurance, long-term care, and annuities 
  • Identify the sources and uses of homeowners, property, and liability insurance 
  • Identify sources of identity theft and utilize debt management techniques 
  • Demonstrate an understanding of social insurance programs like Social Security

HS 321 Fundamentals of Income Taxation

Examines the federal income tax system with particular emphasis on the taxation of individuals.

Upon completion of this course, you’ll be able to:

  • Demonstrate an understanding of federal income taxation
  • Compare taxation of income generated from personal and investment activities
  • Explain the taxation of income and expenses generated from different activities
  • Understand and apply the fundamentals of deductions against adjusted gross income
  • Identify different types of tax credits and tax deductions
  • Demonstrate an understanding of how basis is determined
  • Identify the tax advantages that certain types of business assets receive
  • Explain how provisions in the tax code allow for tax avoidance and tax deferral
  • Explain the complexities of the passive activity loss rules and alternative minimum tax
  • Compare and contrast the tax consequences of distributions from business entities

HS 326 Planning for Retirement Needs

Focuses on helping businesses and individuals plan for retirement.

Upon completion of this course, you’ll be able to:

  • Analyze the factors affecting retirement planning
  • Understand the fundamental principles of qualified plans
  • Compare and contrast the various types of qualified pension plans
  • Compare and contrast profit sharing plans, stock bonus plans, and ESOPs
  • Understand the tax treatment of distributions from qualified plans
  • Describe the steps involved to manage a qualified plan
  • Discuss the advantages, limitations, and taxation of IRAs and SEPs
  • Compare and contrast SIMPLE, 403(b), and 457 retirement plans
  • Discuss the taxation of nonqualified plans and Social Security claiming strategies
  • Compare and contrast employee fringe and group benefits

HS 328 Investments

Learn about the principles of investments and their application to financial planning.

Upon completion of this course, you’ll be able to:

  • Understand the institutional framework surrounding investments
  • Measure investment returns using various methodologies
  • Apply the modern portfolio theory framework to the task of managing portfolios
  • Evaluate portfolio performance using attribution and ratio analysis
  • Understand how fixed income securities function
  • Compare and contrast the various types of equity securities 
  • Evaluate the factors that can affect the performance expectations of equity securities
  • Identify the features of valuing securities using absolute and relative valuation models
  • Identify the features of investment companies and evaluate fund selection techniques
  • Compare and contrast the features of derivative securities

HS 330 Fundamentals of Estate Planning

Covers various aspects of estate and gift tax planning processes.

Upon completion of this course, you’ll be able to:

  • Identify the steps in the estate planning and probate processes
  • Identify and describe the basic estate planning documents
  • Compare and contrast the most common types of property titling
  • Understand and apply the fundamentals of the gift tax system
  • Identify and classify different trust arrangements
  • Understand and apply the fundamentals of the generation-skipping transfer tax system
  • Compare and contrast advanced charitable planning strategies
  • Understand and apply the fundamentals of the estate tax
  • Demonstrate the advantages of using life insurance in estate planning

HS 333 Personal Financial Planning: Comprehensive

Applies students' knowledge and skill set in personal financial planning techniques to a comprehensive case study. 

Upon completion of this course, you’ll be able to: 

  • Bring together elements from all of the previous foundation courses to synthesize and apply knowledge of the financial planning process, insurance, taxation, investments, retirement, and estate planning through the delivery of a comprehensive financial plan

HS 347 Contemporary Applications in Financial Plan

Examines the unique challenges associated with comprehensive financial planning through case studies on all aspects of planning. 

Upon completion of this course, you’ll be able to: 

  • Construct financial plans encompassing: estate planning; special needs; divorce; business succession; behavioral finance; financial plan development; and retirement planning
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The level of detail in The College’s ChFC® courses is impressive. I found the courses relevant, engaging, and challenging, and they improved my understanding of the financial planning challenges my clients face daily and the solutions they need.

James Crunden, ChFC®

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The ChFC® sets you apart as a professional. It lets your clients know that you are in it for the long run. It tells the world that you are interested in being the best.

Thomas J. O'Haren, ChFC®, CLU®

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The ChFC® gives you more professional credibility, even with other advisors, CPAs, and attorneys. When they see the designation, they know you've done your homework and you know what you're talking about.

Daniel A. White, ChFC®

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Which Program Is Right For You?

Save time with a quick view of how our ChFC® Program compares to our CFP® Certification Education Program.

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Which Program Is Right For You?

Save time with a quick view of how our ChFC® Program compares to our CFP® Certification Education Program.

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CFP® Certification Education Program

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Chartered Financial Consultant®


CFP Board of Standards

The American College of Financial Services



8 (CFP® Certification Education Program + one additional course)


Bachelor’s degree

High school diploma or equivalent


Foundational financial planning knowledge

Comprehensive planning knowledge for diverse client needs


$4,675 (CFP® Certification Education Program)

$5,895 (full program)
$1,595 (additional case study course for CFP® Certification Education Program completers)


Yes (CFP Board conducts three times annually)

Not required


CFP Board Fiduciary Standard

The American College Code of Ethics

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Structured or Flexible? You Decide

Personal Pathway®

You get to decide which learning model works best for you. Choose from a more structured study path guiding you from week to week or a flexible learning format allowing you to study at your own pace and potentially take your exam faster.

Learn More
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Learn from the Leaders in Financial Planning Today

Chet R. Bennetts


Assistant Professor, Financial Planning, Larry R. Pike Chair for Insurance and Investments, and Program Director, ChFC® and CFP® Certification Education Programs

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Michael Finke

Michael Finke


Professor of Wealth Management, WMCP® Program Director, Director for the Granum Center for Financial Security, Frank M. Engle Distinguished Chair in Economic Security

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Steve Parrish


Adjunct Professor of Advanced Planning, Co-Director of the American College Center for Retirement Income

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Kevin Lynch

MBA, CFP® (Emeritus), ChFC®, CLU®, RHU®, REBC®, CASL®, CAP®, CLF®, LUTCF®, FSS, RICP®, AEP®, ChSNC®

Assistant Professor, CFP® and ChFC®, Clark/Bardes Endowed Chair in Retirement Planning and Non-Qualified Deferred Compensation

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Thomas M. Brinker, Jr.


Adjunct Professor of Taxation and Special Needs Planning
ChSNC® Program Director

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Sophia Duffy

Sophia Duffy


Associate Professor of Business Planning

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Cydney F. Albert


Adjunct Professor of Insurance Planning

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Christopher Coles


Adjunct Professor

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Ruthann Driscoll


Adjunct Professor

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Zipporah Evania


Adjunct Professor of Retirement Planning

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Ray Fallen


Adjunct Professor of Taxation and Insurance

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James Karthaus


Assistant Professor of Financial Planning, CFP® Certification Education and ChFC® Programs

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Mark McLennon


Adjunct Professor of Business Planning

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Kimberly Turner


Adjunct Professor of Financial Planning

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Audrey Snell


Assistant Professor, Academics

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Steven H. Steidinger


Adjunct Professor, ChFC® Program

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Andrew M. Zumwalt


Adjunct Professor of Taxation

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There’s Even More to Explore

Download the Brochure

Read more about the ChFC®

Access the Program Demo

Hear from a peer, a professor, and take a tour

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Learn at The College

See our full list of designation, certification, and degree programs

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ChFC® Program FAQs

You only need a high school diploma or the equivalent to begin the program. However, in order to be awarded and use the designation, you must have at least three years of experience in financial planning or a related profession. For more information, view Admissions Requirements above.

You will have 10 weeks to complete all required course requirements then a four-week exam window to schedule, prepare for and take your exam.

Studying in the Chartered Financial Consultant® (ChFC®) and CFP® Certification Education Programs with The College lets you work toward two prestigious professional achievements simultaneously – saving you time and money to maximize your knowledge ROI. The programs share a common core curriculum with the structure and flexibility of our Personal Pathway® learning experience to allow you to choose your path to success. You can learn more about the benefits of taking both programs

For those holding the CFP® certification, it’s easy to transfer your existing credit to our programs and enable an accelerated path to ChFC®. By filling out our Transfer of Credit (TOC) form, students may complete the ChFC® Program with only one additional course: HS 347. You can complete the TOC form in My Learning Hub.

While The College’s CLU®, ChFC®, and CFP® Certification Education Programs offer different educational outcomes and areas of specialization, shared courses make it easy to grow in expertise and work toward completing multiple programs at once. The three programs share several common core courses, and all electives available in the CLU® Program are also part of the CFP® Certification Education Program and ChFC® Program. By earning the CLU® designation, you are six courses away from earning your ChFC® and five courses away from completing the CFP® Certification Education Program. Use this comparison chart to learn more about how you can expand your opportunities most efficiently.


0 *Promotion code CHFCFALL23 is only eligible for the designation program listed above. Promotion can only be applied to an 8-course ChFC® package. Promotion cannot be applied to single courses and cannot be combined with any other promotion, company savings, company direct payments, or applied to previous purchases.