Body of Knowledge Outline | Preparation Approach | Exam Prep Tools
Exam Body of Knowledge Outline
The PFP Body of Knowledge outline is also the Content Specification Outline for the PFS exam and has been developed through various sources to provide a framework of the knowledge that personal financial service practitioners should possess. It is divided into twelve major topical areas that form the comprehensive body of knowledge that will be tested on the PFS Exam. The last update is December 2016, announced in January 2017, and is first tested on the July 2017 PFS exam.
It is important to note that you will be better-prepared for the exam if you use the education and exam review resources referenced within the outline and not just rely upon individual experience.
For more information, review the PFP Body of Knowledge
a PDF document of the PFP Body of Knowledge.
Exam Preparation Approach
The key to passing the exam is a combination of education outlined in the body of knowledge and application of this knowledge in relevant work experience in personal financial planning. Accordingly, the amount and type of exam preparation will depend on your prior knowledge and work experience in these areas. To assist in exam preparation, the AICPA offers the following:
For experienced CPAs:
Our recommendation is to complete the self-study review course with an abridged review of all areas, refreshing your knowledge and identifying areas that need more in-depth education.
For less experienced CPAs:
Our recommendation is to start with the in-depth education courses in those areas in which you clearly have not had prior experience. Follow this up with the self-study PFS Exam review course.
Regardless of the path you take, the PFP Boot Camp can serve as your final review in a classroom setting (in-person or online) of all topics on the body of knowledge for the exam.
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Exam Preparation Tools
In-Person PFP Boot Camp
This class covers all areas in the PFP body of knowledge (income tax, estate, retirement, investment and insurance planning) in a systematic and highly engaging approach. It will help attendees focus their exam preparation on those areas where the most effort is needed. Even if you are not taking the PFS Exam, it is a great overview on how all areas of personal financial planning work together to meet your client’s needs. These classes are held each June and December before the exam enabling you to sit for the PFS Exam soon after taking the class.
Register for Upcoming In-Person Boot Camps:
— This is a fast-paced class, and attendees are highly encouraged to complete the self-study PFS Exam Review Course as advance preparation for this class (however, it is required to qualify for the sponsorship reimbursement).
Costs & discounts available:
- $776 for PFP Section members ($100 savings)
- $876 for AICPA, Tax Section and state society members
- $1,095 for non-members
- Apply for the PFS Exam Sponsorship and qualify for an additional $600 reimbursement after sitting for the PFS Exam (requires PFP Section membership).
Online Virtual PFP Boot Camp
Join a virtual group study with a rebroadcast of the PFP Boot Camp with 20 hours of CPE. If you purchase these classes, but cannot attend on the live date (for CPE credit), the archived recording will be available to you on-demand (with no CPE credit).
Upcoming PFP Virtual Boot Camp Dates
For those that do not need the CPE and want to experience the PFP Boot Camp on your own time, we also offer the PFP Boot Camp as an on-demand recording of all seven sessions.
In partnership with Keir Education Resources, this course will give a PFS Exam candidate an overview of the relevant topics in a variety of formats to help prepare for the PFS Exam. The course contains: