Degree qualified advisers still alarmed by FASEA pathways

A number of financial planners with degree qualifications have expressed dismay at the Financial Adviser Standards and Ethics Authority’s (FASEA’s) released of its final FPS001 Education Pathways policy, confirming the maximum requirements for new entrants.

In feedback received by Money Management, planners have complained that FASEA is still failing to recognise significant degree qualifications with the result that they will be forced to return to study to obtain a sanctioned degree.

The feedback comes as both the Association of Financial Advisers (AFA) and the Financial Planning Association (FPA) has sought to continue consultations around achieving a more facilitative approach.

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The FASEA announcement, released late yesterday, states that under the policy the maximum requirement for a new entrant will be an approved bachelor degree of 24 subjects and for an existing adviser will be a graduate diploma of eight subjects.

It said the minimum requirements for a new entrant will be an approved graduate diploma of eight subjects and for an existing adviser will be one subject being FASEA’s bridging course – the FASEA Code of Ethics and Code Monitoring Bodies.

The announcement said the amount of education an adviser will be required to undertake will depend on the amount of education they already have.

“Recognition of prior learning will be available for an advanced diploma of financial planning (including the historical eight course Diploma of Financial Planning), completion of approved coursework to attain a designation and completion of relevant degree subjects.”

FASEA also confirmed its intention to update the Corporations (Relevant Providers Degrees, Qualifications and Courses Standard) Determination 2018 on a regular basis to add further approved historical degrees, new programs and courses pursuant to its accreditation process.

It said the consultation process had afforded FASEA the opportunity to refine the pathways such that:

  • Financial planning (including financial advice areas of superannuation, retirement, insurance and estate planning) and investments (including investments such as shares, derivatives, foreign exchange and options) had been added as relevant degree subjects; and
  • Advisers holding a non-relevant degree who have completed between 4 and 7 of the relevant degree knowledge areas would be awarded two credits as recognition of prior learning.

Detail of the FASEA policy statement can be found here:

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Im 40 years old. Run my own business and have 2 staff members. I have a mortgage on my home and a loan that i took out to aquire a book of business. I have a Commerce/Arts degree from Melbourne University and have done the first 4 units of Diploma of Financial services. Ive done over 400 hours of CPD training and various other specalist courses.

I have 2 young children and all my spare time is spent with them.

How am i (and the rest of us) supposed to find time away from real life to go back to university to study something which will be totally worthless to my professional life, will teach me nothing and put the added stress of the risk of losing my ability to do my job because of your short sightedness.

I am 100% certain that the public servants who dreamed up these educational requirements have never lived in the real world. Im sure that they can find time out of their work week to study. Its pretty easy to find time out when your work load consists of replying to one email a day and sitting around on your high chair waiting for the clock to tick over so you get paid time in leiu.

In the real world we have busineses to run, staff to pay, clients to see and compliance rubbish to wade through.

I havent been studying for over 15 years and have no wish to start again. Can you guys please release some courses in India or another country with lax educational standards so we can buy these qualifications from the overseas university and get on with what we have been doing for the last 15 years.

Also, how is CFP (the highest qualification worldwide) not recognised as sufficient?

Its it better just to change my title from Financial Adviser to Money Coach and keep on doing exactly what i currently do, just without fact finds/know your client, without SOA's and without the BID duties which currently apply to advisers?

You guys have to get real FASEA is asking for you to study a 8 unit graduate diploma which can be studied part time 1 unit per semester, that can be completed before the 2024 deadline. Are you really saying you can’t study 1 unit online whilst working, stop acting like this is some unachievable requirement for people with business and families.
We need to have higher standards in this industry not lower especially with all the scandals that have been exposed in the royal commission and before it

I think you have missed the point completely. People are outraged as they already have degrees and other qualifications plus ongoing education and experience and still not enough. I would suggest Medical Dr's would so survive the same process as FASEA as many would find their Degree was completed 30 years ago and things are not the same now as 30 years ago.

Do you not see this point or have you not read up on the details?

Is the original poster here really the type of adviser that needs to be upskilled to lift the standard of advisers Nathan? He already holds a degree in commerce and a DFP, why shouldn't he be frustrated at the prospect of spending another $20,000 on education that isn't necessary for him to continue delivering services he has been providing for years? The content of the GradDipFP is the same content delivered in the diploma level courses but assessed at a higher standard. I don't disagree that some advisers should grin and bear it to get up to a level that differentiates them from under- or unqualified advisers, but I don't think that this guy's circumstances are typical of the sort of people the profession is hoping to weed out.

I have a bachelors degree in accounting and finance. Also been working as adviser for 15 yrs with perfect history. Have adfp, specialist smsf and gearing accreditations from universities as well as mortgage broking course. Still not good enough apparently... Fasea is a poor joke and the fpa has not done its job once again in representing advisers interests.

FASEA are hopelessly useless.
The Liberal Government has killed off Small Business in this country well and for sure.

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