December 18, 2018
The education pathways for existing advisers proposed by FASEA need to take into greater consideration the experience of older advisers as well as any Continuing Professional Development (CPD) they have attained, according to the AFA.
The Association made the recommendation as part of a submission responding to FASEA’s Standards Blueprint, which was released in mid-November, and closed for consultation at the end of last week (see: FASEA Releases Updated Education, Exam Guidelines).
The AFA labelled the development procedure for the education pathways was an “…incredibly drawn out, and in many ways particularly discomforting process” that should not result in people going backwards at its conclusion.
“Unfortunately, the announcements by FASEA appeared to deliver exactly this outcome for…experienced older advisers who joined the profession before the recognised advanced courses emerged and who don’t otherwise hold the ADFP (or equivalent) or a professional designation,” the submission stated.
The AFA noted that older advisers had been told by higher education providers they would receive at least two credits for experience but the FASEA announcement about the removal of any discretion for education providers to apply Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) had removed those credits.
…the development procedure for the education pathways was an “…incredibly drawn out, and in many ways particularly discomforting process”
“This is a particularly important point that needs to be addressed. This is the group of advisers where there is the greatest risk of a mass exodus and these changes have only made it more difficult,” the submission noted, adding that current student numbers will not replace the number of advisers considering retirement due to the new education standards.
In the submission, the AFA pointed out that FASEA had not addressed a key part of the Explanatory Memorandum to the Professional Standards legislation that required the recognition of experience, via the means of recognising older and lower level courses, and CPD that had been undertaken.
The Association recommended that CPD training should be recognised to the start of the current FSRA licensing regime, which commenced during 2003, and that any formal and informal courses undertaken by older advisers earlier in their careers could be recognised for CPD purposes through the allocation of credit based on years of experience.
The submission proposed that advisers with 15 years’ experience or more should receive three credits, those with 10 or more years should receive two credits, and those with between five and 10 year’s experience would receive one credit.
“It should also be noted that there is no credit for the completion of Diplomas (other than the eight subject DFP), and therefore the inclusion of an experience credit is a straight forward way to recognise the study that these advisers have already undertaken at the Diploma level,” the submission stated.
It also called for the recognition of Graduate Certificates and Graduate Diplomas undertaken by advisers in recent years stating the RPL at present is limited to the ADFP and professional designations and “..it is not immediately apparent how such advisers can ensure they have appropriate access to RPL for these previous AQF 8 studies”.