Is it time to consider a career as a financial planning professional?

This CFP Board-registered certificate program is a step in achieving the CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ certification. Upon successful completion of this 18-unit program, participants will be awarded an SDSU Executive Financial Planner Advanced Certificate, and will be eligible to sit for the CFP board exam.

Who Should Apply — Do you meet one of these criteria?

  • Financial services firm employees with client contact experience
  • Attorneys, CPAs, Enrolled Agents, and CFAs
  • Accountants and financial professionals
  • Candidates with advanced degrees in business

Fully accredited by the AACSB International, the College of Business Administration conveniently offers the Executive Financial Planner program. Students pursuing further graduate studies may apply units from this certificate toward the Master of Science degree in Financial and Tax Planning.

Certificate Requirements
Applicants eligible for the Executive Financial Planner program should have a bachelor's degree and two or more years of experience in the fields of financial services, finance, law, or accounting. Others will be considered on a case-by-case basis. To be admitted to the program, candidates must meet the departmental and university admission requirements. Students who earn the certificate will complete 18 units of coursework including FIN 522, FIN 590, FIN 651, FIN 657, FIN 705, and ACCT 503.

SDSU offers three CFP Board-registered financial planning programs that qualify graduates to sit for the CFP Board's comprehensive exam. In addition to the six-course (18 unit) program described here, students may also qualify for the CFP Board exam by earning either of the following on-campus degrees:

  • B.S. in Financial Services with a Certificate in Personal Financial Planning
  • M.S. with a Concentration in Financial and Tax Planning

How to Apply
Visit SDSU's Personal Financial Planning website at, select Executive Financial Planner, and download the application form. Send the completed application form to Program Director Thomas Warschauer, Ph.D., CFP®, at before the next class. One three-unit certificate class taken prior to matriculation may be transferable to the Executive Financial Planner Advanced Certificate program. Please contact Professor Warschauer for more information.

In order to earn an advanced certificate or master's degree, you must apply and be admitted to SDSU. For more information, please contact the Division of Graduate Affairs at, visit or call (619) 594-5213.

CFP LogoThis CFP Board-registered certificate program is a step in achieving the CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ certification.

Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards Inc. owns the certification marks CFP®,CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ and federally registered CFP® (with flame design) in the U.S., which it awards to individuals who successfully complete the CFP Board's initial and ongoing certification requirements.

The program provided me with an opportunity to get an amazing education and designation, while I still could produce at my current employment.
~ Adam Shaw, SDSU Financial Planning student


2018 Spring2018 Summer2018 Fall
FIN 0522 Individual Insurance Management

Economic, legal, social, and ethical considerations of individual, business and group insurance including life, health, property, and liability insurance. Risk exposure and policy analysis.

Course Date(s)

Lynn Buchholz
2018 Spring
FIN 0590 Personal Financial Planning Practicum

Preparation of family financial plans using comprehensive cases and/or real financial data. Financial planning software. Counseling and communication skills, behavioral finance, client psychology, practice standards, discipline and ethics.

Course Date(s)
March 22 - June 7
Dana Lee Parks
2018 Spring
FIN 0657 Financial and Retirement Planning

Decision-making process and theory of individual financial needs. Retirement planning including Social Security. Education planning. Financial strategies that aid in meeting family goals.

Course Date(s)
March 27 - June 19
Dana Lee Parks