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Certificate in Financial Studies (CeFS)

The Certificate in Financial Studies (CeFS) has been designed to provide students the core disciplines of financial capability.

About the qualification


Learners are encouraged to become responsible borrowers, sensible savers, and have an appreciation of the need for financial planning throughout their life.  Its purpose is to prepare students for further study through the development of the core skills of critical analysis and evaluation, synthesis, verbal communication (through classroom discussion) and written communication.

CeFS is included in the 16-19 Applied General Performance Tables and has been accredited by Ofqual at Level 3 and is part of the Regulated Qualifications Framework (RQF).


What progression does our CeFS qualification offer?

The skills and knowledge developed in CeFS can be extended by taking two further units to form LIBF Level 3 Diploma in Financial Studies (DipFS), or by other options for Further or Higher Education study.
CeFS offers maximum 70 UCAS points which can contribute to your university entry.

The transferable skills developed are also valuable for further study in unrelated disciplines and the financial capability content and skills support students in making informed decisions about the value of personal, employment and study options and budgeting whilst studying.

View letters of support received from UK Higher Education Institutions.


Unit 1 – Financial Capability for the Immediate and Short Term

Students will gain an appreciation of why money is important through focusing on what money is; attitudes to it; and how it can affect life choices.

Unit 2 – Financial Capability for the Medium and Long Term (FCML)

Students will gain the ability to plan and manage their financial needs in the medium and long-term, with particular reference to the importance of the need to budget for future aspirations and life events.

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 CeFS (QN 600/8537/X) has a TQT of 300 and is split between GLH of 187 and other hours of 113.


Both units will be assessed by paper-based examination or via 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).

A total of 200 marks are available from both units comprising 100 marks per unit.

Part A: 35 multiple choice questions in a 45-minute examination.
Part B: pre-release case study requiring essay responses to 5 questions in a 105-minute examination. 

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


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


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All the information you need about our suite of Financial Capability qualifications.