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Financial education qualifications Level 3 Diploma in Financial Studies (DipFS)

New registrations accepted up until November 2023. Registrations for continuing students having achieved CeFS accepted until November 2024. No delivery of qualification in academic year 2025/26 and beyond.

The DipFS is for students who have already achieved the Certificate in Financial Studies (CeFS). The course enables them to develop and enhance the knowledge and skills they gained in achieving the CeFS by applying them to the wider financial environment.

Why study the Diploma in Financial Studies?

About the qualification

As an Applied General qualification, the DipFS is mainly designed for students aged 16 to 19. It provides an in-depth exploration of the important concepts of financial education and how to apply them in achieving longer-term financial stability.

The DipFS builds on the skills and knowledge students gained when completing the Certificate in Financial Studies (CeFS). It extends these to include areas such as sustainability in the wider financial services system, and the long-term effect of debt.

As with the Certificate in Financial Studies (CeFS) this qualification can further develop a greater understanding of financial planning, to support entry to university on finance and banking courses and a wide range of other disciplines. It also supports progression to a wide range of entry level occupations within finance, ensuring that learners understand the sector and a have range of transferable skills and knowledge.

The DipFS prepares students for further study by developing their core skills of independent thinking, critical analysis and evaluation, verbal communication (through classroom discussion) and written communication. DipFS is included in the 16-19 Applied General Performance Tables, has been accredited by Ofqual at Level 3 and is part of the Regulated Qualifications Framework.

Read the DipFS Qualification Specification

Unit information

DipFS consists of four mandatory units. The recommended Guided Learning Hours (GLH) for an average student studying DipFS is 374 hours.

Total Qualification Time (TQT) is a prediction of the total time the typical student may need to complete the course. TQT consists of two elements, Guided Learning Hours (GLH) and all other hours. The DipFS (QN600/8551/4) has a TQT of 600 and is split between GLH of 374 and other hours of 226.

What progression does our DipFS qualification offer?

The financially-related content of DipFS serves as a strong grounding for undergraduate study within finance and business-related disciplines, with many students going on to study accounting, business, finance and banking.

The skills developed and enhanced during the course provide valuable study skills appropriate for these disciplines and others, and students have pursued a wide range of other undergraduate courses following this qualification.

Financial education is also supportive of the personal and financial skills that underpin clear decisions about progression options and life as an undergraduate. The qualification carries the maximum UCAS points available which can be counted towards university applications.


All four units can be assessed by paper based examination or by the LIBF e-test electronic testing system.

Each unit is assessed through a combination of Multiple Choice Questions (Part A) and a written paper (Part B).

Unit 1 and Unit 2

  • Part A: 35 multiple choice questions in a 45-minute examination.

  • Part B: pre-release case study requiring essay responses in a 105-minute examination.

  • Part B will also assess spelling, punctuation and grammar (SPAG) through the essay responses.

Unit 3 and Unit 4

  • Part A: 35 multiple choice questions in a 1-hour examination.

  • Part B: pre-release case study requiring essay responses in a 2-hour examination.

  • Part B will also assess spelling, punctuation and grammar (SPAG) through the essay responses.


If you're interested in registering for DipFS please complete a centre agreement form and return it via email to fcexams@libf.ac.uk.


per student

The price includes:

  • One resit permitted for each component of each unit (no additional fee for each resit)

  • Comprehensive teaching and student resources accessible with a password

  • Centre Approval

  • Full, detailed textbook for every student and teacher for both units

  • Dedicated Relationship Manager support.

This qualification is included in DfE 16 - 18 Performance Tables.

Please note - DipFS is only available after passing Unit 1 and 2 CeFS.

Course requirements

Applicants need to be satisfied of their ability to study, in English and Maths, at this level.

Students must study and complete CeFS before studying DipFS.


The overall qualification will be graded A* - E. To achieve a pass, students must pass Part A and Part B in all four units and achieve a pass of 40% of the Uniform Mark Scheme (UMS). Units will be graded with pass/fail only.

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