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Undergraduate Certificate in
Financial Planning

Program at a Glance


Financial Planning


Hybrid, Online

Total Units


Fall ’24 Final Application Deadline

August 11

Program Overview

The Undergraduate Certificate in Financial Planning is designed for students who are interested in understanding the complex and comprehensive nature of personal finance. Students will learn all aspects of the financial life cycle, allowing them to develop their own financial plan or begin a journey to become professional financial planners, investment advisers, or money managers. Personal finance is a broad and rapidly-growing field with many career opportunities. This course of study satisfies the educational requirements necessary for the premier Certified Financial Planner™ designation.

Admission Requirements

  • Undergraduate certificate program applicants must submit official transcripts documenting that they have been awarded the equivalent of high school diplomas from approved institutions. Students who have earned 12 semester units or 18 quarter units or more from regionally accredited U.S. institutions must submit complete official transcripts detailing this coursework.
  • Certificate students must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents.
  • Official test score reports or other proof of fulfillment of GGU’s English Language Proficiency Admission Requirement are required for all applicants whose native language is not English.

Please note that some courses taken as part of certificate programs will have prerequisites. These prerequisites must be satisfied (through transfer of equivalent coursework or through taking the courses at Golden Gate) before the certificate courses can be completed.

See Certificate Program Admission Policies and Undergraduate Transfer Credit Policies for more information.


All courses must be completed at Golden Gate University with a cumulative grade-point average (GPA) of 3.00 (“B” average) or better in courses taken at Golden Gate University that are applicable to the program’s requirements.

Course prerequisites are indicated in the course description for each course and must be satisfied prior to enrolling in a given course. Prerequisites may be satisfied through transfer of equivalent coursework from external institutions or by taking the courses at GGU.

The seven courses that make up the Financial Planning Undergraduate Certificate also comprise much of the core of the MS degree in financial planning. Thus, students who complete the certificate program need only three additional courses (as well as any foundation courses that may be required) in order to complete the MS degree. Students should speak with the director of the financial planning program about this exciting opportunity.

Learning Outcomes

Students who successfully complete this certificate program will gain:

  • The skills and knowledge of personal financial planning that are represented in the full range of topics covered by the CFP™ examination.
  • Interpersonal skills necessary to maintain successful client relationships 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 legal and regulatory environment in which financial planning occurs and familiarity with relevant licensing, reporting, and compliance requirements.
  • The ability to recognize the ethical dilemmas that may arise in financial planning practice and familiarity with appropriate responses to those dilemmas, as reflected in the CFP™ Board’s Code of Ethics and Professional Responsibility.
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