Course Title: Applications in Financial Planning

Part A: Course Overview

Course Title: Applications in Financial Planning

Credit Points: 24

Course Code




Learning Mode

Teaching Period(s)


City Campus


625H Economics, Finance & Marketing

Distance / Correspondence

Course Coordinator: Warren McKeown

Course Coordinator Phone: +61 3

Course Coordinator Email:

Pre-requisite Courses and Assumed Knowledge and Capabilities

You should have met the prerequisite studies before commencement of this course. The required courses are: BAFI 1096, ECON 1111, BAFI 1097, JUST 1076 and JUST 1075.

Course Description

Overview of the course
The development of appropriate and relevant financial advice for clients requires the integration of a range of skills and a substantial body of current knowledge and understanding. This course is divided into two parts: a core and two specialist modules. The core will be covered in the first seven weeks and the two modules will commence in week eight.
Overall, the course adopts a case study approach, designed to apply the expertise and knowledge gained in the other courses of the Masters program. It aims to develop your ability to identify and research issues, consider and evaluate possible alternatives and produce detailed reports in the form of personal financial advice suitable for presentation to clients. The course will guide students to a number of relevant resources, including Internet websites, but the list will not be inclusive and students will be encouraged to complement these with extensive investigation of their own. The course may be viewed as "guided research" and as a precursor to the Research Topic course by development and acquisition of research skills.
The course has been registered with ASIC for the purposes of Policy Statement 146 to meet generic knowledge and skills and specialist knowledge of superannuation, managed investments and financial planning. The Insurance module has been registered for those students who wish to satisfy PS 146 for specialist Insurance knowledge.

Objectives/Learning Outcomes/Capability Development


At the conclusion of this course, you should be able to:
source, analyse and evaluate relevant information, communicating it to clients and other professionals succinctly and unambiguously
identify financial planning problems and issues and, drawing on resources including the knowledge gained from other courses in the program, research and propose alternatives and support recommended solutions
work effectively within defined time frames to meet agreed outcomes
have developed your written presentation skills so that the financial plans and reports you prepare are detailed but succinct, effective and coherent
use your knowledge and understanding of the legislative and regulatory framework which impacts on financial planning to ensure that all file notes, reports, solutions, financial plans and other communications prepared for clients and other professionals meet the highest professional standards
develop a distinct awareness of the need to maintain a rigorous process for maintaining up-to-date knowledge and an awareness of current issues relating to the financial planning process, and reflect this in all course participation and submissions
justify your recommendations and opinions and defend them to your peers
discuss ethical issues which concern the financial planning industry.

Overview of Learning Activities

In the core section, there are three case studies to be considered over the first seven weeks of this semester. You will be required to prepare detailed answers in response to the issues contained in each case study as directed. Where you do not have any direct knowledge of an issue, it will be your task to undertake research in order to address those issues to a professional financial planner standard.
It is important to apply yourself to a fairly tight time schedule in order to complete the assigned tasks. You should not hesitate to ask questions or seek direction.
During the period of the core studies, students will be asked to select two of the available modules. These will be conducted on a case study approach similarly to the core case studies. The electives may be conducted by external consultants.

Overview of Learning Resources

Overview of Assessment

To study this course, the Master in Financial Planning program has been prepared for independent study, and uses methodology appropriate for distance learning. The main study resources in this course are the materials in earlier courses, the recommended texts, supplemented with recommended Internet references. Students are expected to undertake substantial further investigation. You are encouraged to use the Discussion Board to discuss ideas with other students. This approach is designed to develop both research and presentation skills, as well as equip you for the practice of financial planning.

Although you will be required to consider all the issues in each case study, you may be required to only write detailed notes about certain items as directed by the lecturer. Students will receive a copy of a suggested answer/report and comments from the lecturer and/or other consultants by way of the student Discussion Board or on return of written assignments.
By the end of the semester you will have a complete set of answers to the case studies. Full instructions will appear online for each case study. All work undertaken in the course is part of the final assessment. Working through the course should foster the following attributes:
communication skills: your reading, research and analysis will form the basis for developing appropriate case study solutions. Through the process of transforming this into a wriiten advice which can be understood by clients, you will develop your ability to communicate complex, detailed issues clearly and succinctly
knowledge: in the process of reading and discussion, you will increase your knowledge and have a greater appreciation of the complex and continually changing environment which demands that knowledge is constantly updated and enhanced
creativity: this course, like all others in the Masters program, will encourage you to enhance your problem-solving skills and use your extensive understanding and knowledge to develop more creative solutions to financial planning problems
critical skills: the course will require you to be critical of the regulations and legislation affecting financial planning. You are not expected to accept that this is always correct and, during the course, you will have the opportunity to discuss various issues with other students and explore possible options and alternatives
responsibility: in this and other courses in the Masters program, you will be reminded of the legal obligations of professionals and the link with ethical considerations. You will incorporate expected standards of ethics and professional conduct into all your work for this course
employability: by completing this course you will be enhancing your skills as a professional adviser which will make you more valuable as an employee or principal in running your business. It will open up other opportunities for you in the financial services industry and give you a competitive advantage over other financial advisers
leadership: by giving presentations and discussing issues with fellow students and fellow professionals via Internet activities during the course, you can develop confidence, leadership and articulation skills. These skills will be developed through the presentation of the case study reports.