Chartered Insurance Institute  

CII U-turns on all-in exam deals after industry backlash

CII U-turns on all-in exam deals after industry backlash

The Chartered Insurance Institute has U-turned on its decision to introduce "all-inclusive packages" for exams.

The trade body had introduced changes which meant that when signing up to take a CII exam individuals would also get a study text and access to the CII's online study tool, RevisionMate, at a discounted rate.

Candidates could only sign-up for the exam alone and not receive the study text if they were taking a resit or if they already owned the study text.

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But following criticism of this move, the CII has said it will now allow exam entry to be purchased separately to the combined package again while it consults with its wider membership and other "key stakeholders".

Simon Graham, the CII's learning and assessment director, said the body was "never too big" to listen to valid feedback.

He said: "We initially launched the new discounted package in response to a significant member trend, whilst at the same time taking the opportunity to incorporate additional features such as a study planner and tips, access to a student discussion forum, quiz questions, exam guides and a free eBook version of the study text for use on a smartphone or tablet - via RevisionMate - to all learners/students.

"Combining the study text and exam is standard practice across many professional bodies, both within financial services and other sectors.

"We believe it offers a concise, convenient, one-stop solution and have successfully applied it to several of our new unit launches over the last few years.

"However, we appreciate that in this instance, it has not received the reception we had expected. In such situations, we are always prepared to take on board member feedback or complaints to allow us time to reconsider as appropriate."

Mr Graham said the CII would engage with those people and organisations which had contacted it to discuss their concerns.

He said the option to buy the exam without or alongside the combined package would be in place by the end of February, giving people plenty of time to enter for the April exam session.

The change will affect the Diploma in Regulated Financial Planning units (R01-6) and the Advanced Diploma in Financial Planning units (AF1-4).

Under the changes, candidates would only be able to sign-up for the exam alone and not receive the study text if they were taking a resit or if they already own the study text.

The packages vary in cost between £90 for CII members for the Award in Financial Planning to £265 for members for the Advanced Diploma in Financial Planning.

damian.fantato@ft.com