Financial Advisors Get Ready for New CFP Exam

Posted by adaniels in Blog on March 16, 2012

There is a new examination for those financial advisors who want to be certified financial planners, and says that it’s causing a little anxiety among test takers. The new exam, from the CFP Board of Standards, will be given for the first time on March 16 and 17. 

The CFP is in the same format as the previous version of the exam – 285 multiple-choice questions in a two-day time period, with case studies and scenarios as part of the test. But there is a new philosophy behind the exam. Steven Barkley, CFP’s Director of Examinations, told, “It’s really a move from recognition and rote memorization to requiring some higher cognitive functioning.,” He said that “our goal is to make the exam more representative of what practitioners do.” The agency also stresses that despite the changes, the test is the same degree of difficulty as the previous CFP exam.

Financial advisor Ryan Whiteman is taking the test this week. He said he thought the new exam would deal more with working with clients. “Many times (clients) don’t necessarily know what they want,” Whiteman said, “and they present you with all this information and it’s up to you to make something of it.”

In an attempt to alleviate concerns over the test, the CFP released a few sample questions for the new exam which reflect real-life scenarios that financial advisors may have to deal with. published the questions, which had to deal with issues like whether an advisor could talk to a client’s family member about the client (not without permission) and how to advise a client where to get more cash for to expand her business (in that case, taking on a partner is recommended.)

Written by Lisa Swan


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