The Master of Science in Advanced Financial Planning and Taxation is an innovative degree designed for financial planners who have already passed the CFP® examination and who wish to reinforce key planning skills, increase their expertise in the critical areas of taxation or estate planning, and add the academic weight of a graduate certificate and a master’s degree to their professional credentials. Partnering with the nationally known Golden Gate Bruce F. Braden School of Taxation, GGU’s financial planning program permits students to build on their CFP® background and move directly into advanced study in the field. This degree program is particularly well-suited for new or more experienced planners who aim to take their careers to a higher level.
Student Learning Outcomes
Graduates of the MS in advanced financial planning program will demonstrate the following skills and capabilities:
- Interpersonal skills necessary to maintain successful client relationship and to work effectively with colleagues, individually or in teams
- The quantitative, analytical, and technical skills needed to address complex financial situations
- The ability to apply their knowledge to real-world problems in financial planning
- Knowledge of the principles of managing a financial planning practice
- Knowledge of the legal and regulatory environment in which financial planning occurs and familiarity with relevant licensing, reporting and compliance requirements
Graduates with a concentration in Financial Life Planning will demonstrate the following skills and capabilities:
- Advanced interviewing skills for uncovering client history, vision, and values.
- Identify specific client behavioral biases and heuristics and adapt advice accordingly.
- Advanced coaching skills for helping clients affect positive change and achieve goals.
- Apply research on client trust and relationship commitment to develop and sustain highly-functional client relationships.
- Apply research on the impact of money scripts to facilitate better financial health for clients.
Graduates with a concentration in Taxation or Estate Planning will demonstrate the following skills and capabilities:
- Knowledge of essential tax principles and doctrines, including, but not limited to the following; and be able to critically apply these principles to practical situations:
- Common law
- Claim of right
- Assignment of income
- Constructive receipt
- Related party transactions
- Gross income
- Tax benefit rule
- The ability to identify tax issues, to research these issues, and to communicate effectively the results orally and in writing
Requirements for the Master of Science in Advanced Financial Planning
The MS in advanced financial planning and taxation (MS FPT) is a 10-course degree built around the Graduate Certificate in Taxation or the Graduate Certificate in Estate Planning, depending on the student’s concentration (see p. 56-57 for more information about these certificates). The degree requires completion of 30 units of advanced program coursework, with a cumulative grade-point average of 3.00 (B) or better in courses taken at Golden Gate. Courses carry three semester units of credit unless otherwise noted. All course prerequisites must be satisfied prior to enrolling in a given course; prerequisites are indicated in the section “Course Descriptions.” Applicants to this program must possess an undergraduate degree from an accredited college or university and have passed the Certified Financial Planner® examination at the time of admission. No foundation courses are required for this degree; passage of the CFP® examination provides adequate evidence of appropriate preparation for advanced study in financial planning and taxation.
Business Proficiency Requirement
Students admitted to this program are required to possess an understanding of U.S. business practices equivalent to BUS 201 Economic and Regulatory Essentials of U.S. Business . This requirement must be completed in your first term, and you must have completed this requirement no later than your first nine units at GGU. A grade of C- or better is required for BUS 201 . However, graduate students must maintain a 3.00 (B) cumulative grade point average to remain in good standing.
Graduate Writing Proficiency Requirement
Students are expected to possess a level of writing skill and knowledge equivalent to ENGL 201 . Students may meet this requirement by satisfying one of the screening criteria. For further information, refer to our website. https://www.ggu.edu/shared-content/enrollment/proficiency-requirements/#graduate-writing-proficiency
Advanced Program - 30 units