Master of Financial Planning (T3 2020)

Postgraduate coursework

Apply for Deakin's Master of Financial Planning and learn how to put theory into practice by developing feasible financial planning solutions for clients.

This is the Trimester 3, 2020 version of this course.

The Trimester 3 teaching period starts from 9 November 2020.

Applications for this course close 6 November 2020.

Key facts

English language requirements

IELTS - Overall score of 6.5 (with no band score less than 6) or equivalent


1.5 years full-time or part-time equivalent

Current Deakin Students

To access your official course details for the year you started your degree, please visit the handbook

Course information

Designed to meet the requirements of Australia’s new financial planning standards body, the Master of Financial Planning trains you to provide innovative financial planning solutions by combining ethical decision-making with modern financial advice strategies.

The finance industry is changing. Ready to secure your future with a degree that meets new requirements while empowering you to build a more successful career? 

Recent changes to the Australian finance industry require financial planners to meet new education standards set by the Financial Adviser Standards and Ethics Authority (FASEA). What does this mean for current and aspiring financial planners? If you want to provide financial advice beyond 2026, you’ll need to complete a FASEA-approved course like Deakin’s Master of Financial Planning.

But this course is more than just a pathway towards becoming a registered financial planner. You’ll take your financial planning skills and knowledge to new levels, allowing you to provide better solutions for your clients and making you more valuable to employers.

Broaden your understanding of investment management in relation to different asset classes and get hands-on experience constructing, managing and evaluating portfolios using the key principles of modern portfolio theory. Apply, analyse and relate these principles throughout projects that simulate real industry scenarios, better preparing you for tomorrow’s financial planning challenges.

You’ll be introduced to superannuation and retirement planning, focusing on current trends and the framework in which the industry operates. Take your knowledge even further by examining issues relating to:

  • superannuation contributions
  • the different types of superannuation funds
  • rules relating to the taxation and accessing of benefits
  • alternative retirement income stream products
  • strategies designed to enhance superannuation
  • retirement income benefits.

The Master of Financial Planning teaches you how to apply advanced principles to meet client needs and the technical skills needed to utilise the latest digital tools. Importantly, it also places a strong emphasis on the professional responsibilities of the modern financial planner, both in an ethical and compliance sense. Industry reforms have created an increased demand for ethical decision-makers, putting Deakin graduates in a strong position to stand out from the pack.

Better still, you’ll be learning alongside industry-active teachers who are leaders in the field. Build relationships with your teachers. Get constructive feedback on industry expectations. Take your career forward.

Read More

Course structure

The Master of Financial Planning is typically a 12 credit point course but this is dependent on your entry point. The exact number of credit points you study depends on how much credit you receive as recognition of prior learning (RPL) - your professional experience and previous qualifications - which can save you time and money, but may be limited by the FASEA education standards.

To complete the Master of Financial Planning, students must attain a total of 12 credit points consisting of 11 credit points of core units and 1 credit points of elective units chosen from a specified list, plus completion of the compulsory 0-credit point units, MAI010 Academic Integrity and MAA071 Pre-Term: Getting to Grips with Postgraduate Study. Most units (think of units as 'subjects') are equal to 1 credit point.

Students are introduced to research tools and techniques in core units of the course where they learn analytic skills and the practical application of those skills in professional contexts. They must also complete advanced level units and a capstone unit that require them to integrate the skills learnt over their course of study and produce applied pieces of research with reference to prevailing literature.
Students are required to meet the University’s academic progress and conduct requirements.


Core units


Elective units


Total units

Core units

  • Estate Planning and Risk Management Strategies
  • Superannuation and Retirement Planning
  • Financial Behaviour and Decision Making *
  • Financial Planning and Economic Fundamentals
  • Professional Research and Analysis
  • Ethics for Financial Services *
  • Investments and Portfolio Management
  • Principles of Income Tax Law
  • Business Law
  • Financial Advice Regulation *
  • *MAI and MLI codes denote Intensive versions of the units.

    Core Capstone Unit:

  • Financial Planning Development
  • Compulsory 0-credit point units

    To be completed in the first trimester of study:-

  • Academic Integrity (0 credit points)
  • Pre-Term: Getting to Grips with Postgraduate Study (0 credit points)
  • Elective units

    Plus a 1 credit point elective unit from:

  • Administration of Trusts and Estates *
  • Financial Markets
  • Property and Real Estate Context
  • Accounting
  • Industry Based Learning
  • Internship
  • *Students who successfully complete MAA747 Administration of Trusts and Estates as their elective unit with the Master of Financial Planning will meet the Australian educational requirements of the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners (STEP).

    Or another postgraduate unit with prior written approval of the Course Director

    When considering elective units, students are advised that Deakin University has entered into a partnership with the Financial Planning Association (FPA) to embed the CFP® Certification Program into the Master of Financial Planning.
    This means that students may be eligible to enrol into the CFP® Certification Unit as their elective unit option (completion of eight core units* and Course Director approval is required). Students will undertake the CFP® Certification unit through the FPA and upon successful completion, will be able to apply for Recognition of Prior Learning to count towards their elective unit (with Course Director approval).

    *eight core units required to be completed:

    MAA745 Financial Planning and Economic Fundamentals, MAA700 Estate Planning and Risk Management Strategies, MAA719 Superannuation and Retirement Planning, MLC714/MLI714 Financial Advice Regulations, MAA769/MAI769 Ethics for Financial Services, MLC703 Principles of Income Tax Law, MAA727 Financial Planning Development, MAF707 Investments and Portfolio Management

    Key information

    Award granted
    Master of Financial Planning

    2020 course information

    Deakin code
    CRICOS code?
    Higher Degree Coursework (Masters and Doctorates)
    Approval status
    This course is approved by the University under the Higher Education Standards Framework.
    Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF) recognition
    The award conferred upon completion is recognised in the Australian Qualifications Framework at Level 9.

    Campuses by intake

    Campus availability varies per trimester. This means that a course offered in Trimester 1 may not be offered in the same location for Trimester 2 or 3. Read more to learn where this course will be offered throughout the year.

    Trimester 1 - March

    • Start date: March
    • Available at:
      • Burwood (Melbourne)
      • Cloud Campus

    Trimester 2 - July

    • Start date: July
    • Available at:
      • Burwood (Melbourne)
      • Cloud Campus

    Trimester 3 - November

    • Start date: November
    • Available at:
      • Cloud Campus

    Please note: This course is only available for part-time study in Trimester 3

    Additional course information

    Course duration - additional information
    Course duration may be affected by delays in completing course requirements, such as accessing or completing work placements.

    Mandatory student checks

    Units which contain work integrated learning, a community placement or interaction with the community may require a police check, working with children check or other check. These requirements will be detailed in unit guides upon enrolment.


    As a student in the Faculty of Business and Law, you can expect to participate in a range of teaching activities each week. This could include classes, seminars, practicals and online interaction. You can refer to the individual unit details in the course structure for more information. You will also need to study and complete assessment tasks in your own time.

    Participation requirements

    Units in this course may have participation requirements that include compulsory placements, work-based training, community-based learning or collaborative research training arrangements.

    Placement can occur at any time, including during the standard holiday breaks listed here:

    Reasonable adjustments to participation and other course requirements will be made for students with a disability. Click here for more information.

    Work experience

    This course provides students the opportunity to complete one or more elective work integrated learning units.

    More information: WIL Programs

    Entry requirements

    Entry information

    Deakin University offers admission to postgraduate courses through a number of Admission categories.

    In all categories of admission, selection is based primarily on academic merit as indicated by an applicant's previous academic record.

    All applicants must meet the minimum English language requirements.

    Admission is based on:

    • Bachelor degree or higher in a related discipline*, or
    • Bachelor degree or higher in any discipline, plus two years relevant work experience^, or
    • Evidence of academic capability judged to be equivalent.

    *A ‘related discipline' is a Business discipline.  

    ^ Relevant work experience is determined as working within a financial services role or within the financial services sector.

    Please note that meeting the minimum admission requirements does not guarantee selection, which is based on merit, likelihood of success and availability of places in the course.

    For more information on the Admission Criteria and Selection (Higher Education Courses) Policy visit Deakin Policy Library.

    IELTS / English language requirements

    Please note that English language requirements exist for entry to this course and you will be required to meet the English language level requirement that is applicable in the year of your commencement of studies.

    It is the students’ responsibility to ensure that she/he has the required IELTS score to register with any external accredited courses.

    Recognition of prior learning

    The University aims to provide students with as much credit as possible for approved prior study or informal learning which exceeds the normal entrance requirements for the course and is within the constraints of the course regulations. Students are required to complete a minimum of one-third of the course at Deakin University, or four credit points, whichever is the greater. In the case of certificates, including graduate certificates, a minimum of two credit points within the course must be completed at Deakin.

    You can also refer to the Recognition of Prior Learning System which outlines the credit that may be granted towards a Deakin University degree and how to apply for credit.

    Fees and scholarships

    Fee information

    Estimated tuition fee - full-fee paying place

    Fees and charges vary depending on your course, your fee category and the year you started. To find out about the fees and charges that apply to you, visit

    Scholarship options

    A Deakin scholarship might change your life. If you've got something special to offer Deakin – or you just need the financial help to get you here – we may have a scholarship opportunity for you.

    Search or browse through our scholarships

    Postgraduate bursary

    If you’re a Deakin alumnus commencing a postgraduate award course, you may be eligible to receive a 15% reduction per unit on your enrolment fees. Your Immediate Family Members may also be eligible to apply for this bursary.

    Learn more about Deakin’s 15% postgraduate bursary

    Apply now

    How to apply

    Apply through Deakin

    Applications can be made directly to the University through StudyLink Connect - Deakin University's International Student Application Service. For information on the application process and closing dates, see the How to apply web page. Please note that closing dates may vary for individual courses.

    Deakin International office or Deakin representative

    Fill out the application form and submit to a Deakin International office or take your application form to a Deakin representative for assistance

    Need more information on how to apply?

    For information on the application process and closing dates, see the How to apply webpage
    If you’re still having problems, please contact Deakin International for assistance.

    Entry pathways

    	If you have a Bachelor degree in the same discipline, you may be eligible for credit for 4 credit points (units), which means you need to complete 1.5 years full time, or part-time equivalent (12 credit points) If you have a Bachelor degree in any discipline AND 5 years of relevant work experience, you may be eligible for credit for 4 credit points (units), which means you need to complete 1.5 years full time, or part-time equivalent (12 credit points)

    Tap image to expand

    *A shorter course duration is available to students entering from a same discipline background. A 'same discipline' award for this course is a Bachelor degree in a Business discipline with a major sequence in Accounting, Financial Planning and/or Finance.

    ^ Relevant work experience is determined as business experience either in a financial planning role or in a managerial position with business oversight responsibilities in a financial planning related field, such as superannuation consulting, estate planning, tax advisory, financial consulting, funds management, banking.

    Alternative exits

    Why choose Deakin

    Career outcomes

    From 1 January 2019, FASEA’s new education standards come into place and, by 1 January 2024, all financial planners will need an approved qualification. These reforms have created an increased demand for registered financial planners with a high-level understanding of what it means to provide responsible advise.

    The Master of Financial Planning is approved by FASEA, ensuring Deakin students graduate with the right qualification and skills to take advantage of this demand.

    Whether you’re currently working in the industry or looking to move into a financial planning role, you’ll be prepared to excel in a variety of positions, including:

    • financial adviser
    • insurance adviser
    • business development manager
    • superannuation consultant
    • portfolio analyst
    • personal financial planner
    • investment banker
    • paraplanner
    • claims administrator
    • compliance manager
    • risk adviser

    Professional recognition

    The Master of Financial Planning is a FASEA-approved course, for the purposes of the approved degree pathway making it a recognised pathway towards becoming a registered financial planner.

    Graduates will satisfy the education standards prescribed by FASEA to be able to provide financial advice in Australia, subject to meeting other registration requirements prescribed by FASEA (including completion of a Professional Year for Provisional Relevant Providers and passing a National Adviser Exam).

    Deakin University has entered into a partnership with the Financial Planning Association (FPA) to embed the CFP® Certification Program into the Master of Financial Planning.

    Students who complete the final unit of the Financial Planning Association of Australia (FPA)’s CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER® (CFP®) Certification Program as their elective option within the Master of Financial Planning will meet the education requirements to obtain this professional designation upon graduating.

    Once the industry experience requirements of the CFP® Certification Program have been satisfied, students will be eligible to apply for the CFP® designation.

    Graduates will be eligible for entry into the Fellow Chartered Financial Practitioner (FChFP) designation offered by the Association of Financial Advisers (AFA). Completing the Master of Financial Planning provides advanced standing into this program.

    Students who successfully complete MAA747 Administration of Trusts and Estates as their elective unit with the Master of Financial Planning will meet the Australian educational requirements of the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners (STEP).

    The MFP also allows students to meet the education requirements of the Tax Agent Services Act (TASA) as a tax (financial) adviser following completion of Principles of Income Tax Law and Business Law units approved by the Tax Practitioners Board (TPB).

    Note: Students should consult with the Financial Planning Association or the Association of Financial Advisers and their websites for confirmation of professional recognition and to ensure that they are not required to undertake additional units.

    Course learning outcomes

    Deakin's graduate learning outcomes describe the knowledge and capabilities graduates can demonstrate at the completion of their course. These outcomes mean that regardless of the Deakin course you undertake, you can rest assured your degree will teach you the skills and professional attributes that employers value. They'll set you up to learn and work effectively in the future.

    Graduate Learning Outcome Course Learning Outcome
    Discipline specific knowledge and capabilities Apply an advanced and integrated knowledge about the financial planning development process for clients requiring financial planning advice of varying degrees of complexity and contexts.
    Communication Demonstrate advanced interpersonal and networking skills to communicate persuasively with clients to gather and interpret personal data and transmit knowledge to clients through the preparation and presentation of financial plans including financial goal achievement and risk minimisation.
    Digital literacy Select and apply appropriate digital technology to find, use, manage and persuasively disseminate complex wealth creation and risk minimisation knowledge and ideas to both clients and professional colleagues.
    Critical thinking Systematically and critically analyse, synthesise, evaluate and transform a range of complex information on wealth creation and risk minimisation to create personalised and contextualised financial plans for clients.
    Problem solving With creativity and autonomy, systematically develop strategies for wealth creation and risk minimisation for individuals by critically evaluating methods of inquiry, action planning and/or problem solving thereby generating innovative and contextualised solutions for financial goal achievement.
    Self-management Demonstrate advanced skills to work and learn independently, for taking responsibility for continuing professional development, personal actions and to critically reflect and analyse own personal motivations, aspirations and actions.
    Teamwork Lead and be accountable for the strategic management of group or team learning and outputs, demonstrating initiative in professional contexts and the ability to actively facilitate a positive team environment and to be open to working with and learning from others from different disciplines and backgrounds
    Global citizenship Engage ethically, professionally and productively in work, professional and the global contexts including with diverse communities and cultures, in a manner reflective of a critical understanding of ethical principles, a systematic knowledge of professional codes of conduct and an understanding of various worldviews and the complexity of elements important to members of other cultures.