Masters in Financial Planning Online Programs

Online Masters in Financial Planning programs provide in-depth courses around money matters such as investments, insurance and retirement. Students could also gain useful analytic and interpersonal skills which could help build client networks and help them with wealth management.

written by Rana Waxman

Online Masters in Financial Planning: Basics

Online Masters in Financial Planning programs could enable at-work professionals to study the techniques and tools to help others manage their personal finances. Most programs cover a series of compulsory courses with some freedom to tailor electives around career goals.

For instance, several masters in financial planning online programs are registered with Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards Inc. These tend to have curricula that follow guidelines in terms of course content.

As a result, they could provide successful candidates with the requisite education to sit for the CFP® Certification Examination. Both a masters degree and certification could boost one’s chances of advancement. i


The BLS states that certifications could enhance a personal financial advisor’s reputation and may help bring in new clients.i

While course lists vary, distance learners are often exposed to current financial software, and topics such as taxation, insurance and estate planning. A final project where students design a financial plan for a hypothetical client may help synthesize knowledge and help participants develop confidence in their abilities.

How to Apply to Online Financial Planning Masters Programs

Application details do vary, so a good rule of thumb is to look out for school-specific standards. A Bachelors degree is a common minimum requirement, though some programs may suggest a certain undergrad major and/or minimum GPA.

Apart from transcripts, fee, and completed (online) form, applicants may need to forward test scores, essays, and letters of recommendation.

Types of Masters in Financial Planning Online Degrees

There are several types of Masters in Financial Planning online degrees to have on the radar. Perhaps you strive to advise high-net-worth individuals and corporations. Or, you want to explore the behavioral side of finance.

Compare Online Masters in Finance Programs
DegreeSample Core Topics

Online MSFP – Master of Science in Financial Planning

Professional Financial Planning Practice
Investments and Capital Accumulation
Benefits, Compensation and Retirement Plans
Trusts, Gifts, and Estate Plans
Financial Planning Processes
Federal Taxation of Income

Online MBA – Financial Planning

Applied Management Theory
Ethics and Law
Decisions and Business Communication
Accounting and Finance for Managers
Business Economics
Marketing Management
Financial Planning Courses

Online MSF – Financial Planning

Corporate Finance
Financial Markets
Investment Management
Financial Planning

Online Master of Arts in Law – Wealth Management/Financial Planning

Contract Law
Estate Planning
American Legal System and Writing
Financial Planning
Survey of Taxation

You prefer a broader business program? Whatever your objectives are, keep them in mind as you read through course descriptions.

Online Master of Science in Financial Planning

An online Master of Science in Financial Planning (MSFP) could present a highly focused and in-depth curriculum for those who want to understand professional financial planning.

In some MSFP programs, students are asked to complete about 30-credits, most of which are devoted to core topics, and the rest to electives. Beyond technical and analytic skills, course plans are frequently infused with the ethics behind advising others how to reach their financial goals.

Online Master of Science in Finance – Financial Planning

An online Master of Science in Finance (MSF) could provide students with advanced technical knowledge and skills in a range of financial areas, and, more narrowly, in financial planning. Graduates could come away with a firm grasp of how to identify risk and create a plan to minimize downsides.

In some online MSF programs, students may be asked to complete up to about 56 credits, of which the bulk is devoted to core courses, and the rest, to electives. Core topics might help participants learn how to ethically apply financial theory to guide organizational decisions, as well as how to accurately report information.

An emphasis in financial planning could help students cultivate their ability to analyze investment opportunities and manage portfolios (e.g. stocks, bonds). Participants might also study the various ways to make savvy decisions about financial situations.

Where an online MSF – FP program is CFP Board-Registered, graduates may need to successfully complete the MSF then register for and pass further courses to prepare for the CFP exam.

Online Master of Business Administration – Financial Planning

An online Master of Business Administration is a professional management-oriented program where students could select a financial planning emphasis. One of the hallmarks of an MBA is that participants might develop an ability to ethically craft solutions and strategies for complex business concerns.

Applicants to a MBA program may come to their program with work experience, and a CFP license, or might look for MBA -CFP programs in order to prepare to take the CFP exam. Because of these multiple options, there could be some variance in required course work.

In some online MBA- FP programs, students may be required to complete about 36 credits. Of these, a number of core courses relate to business and management, while others could form the body of the concentration. A final action research project might be required.

Around this core, financial planning-focused coursework could expose students to foundational topics. Students might start out with a course where they study the CFP code of ethics and concepts such as financial and cash flow statements, and financing strategies.

Then a MBA program could veer into more focused FP topics such as how to develop a financial plan. See more suggested topics in the table above and refer to individual programs for the course list.

Online Master of Arts in Law – Wealth Management/Financial Planning

An online Master of Arts in Law with a focus in Wealth Management & Financial Planning might help students prepare to sit for the CFP exam. As a MA student, participants might have to conduct research and build information literacy.

In tandem with courses in legal thought and graduate writing, students could learn about insurance law, professional conduct, taxation, and financial and portfolio analysis.

In some MA –Wealth Management/ Financial Planning online programs, students might be expected to complete about 30 credits of required courses.


A capstone in financial planning might be required.

Why Earn a Masters Degree in Financial Planning Online?

Do you have a busy schedule? Would you prefer to study financial planning completely at your own pace? Are you longing to study with a cohort but just can’t swing the commute? Online Masters in Financial Planning programs actually come in various formats that might address these issues and concerns.

Some programs are fully online, with no set log-in times. There may be deadlines for assignments, modules to complete and online discussion threads to contribute to, but essentially, they are flexible. Students access courses when they are able.

Other hybrid programs (partner school Bentley University is one example) give the classroom a modern overhaul. Hybrid classrooms may be equipped with video cameras and sophisticated microphones that may deliver a highly interactive experience to online learners. Basically, students are taking class in real-time but from a remote location.

Find an Online Masters in Financial Planning Program

Easily read about online MSFP, MSF-FP, MA-FP and MBA-FP programs. Compare them with your aims to make your choice(s). Then, use the on-page form right away to contact schools and get started.


  • Some of the nation’s most affordable tuition rates, from a private, nonprofit, NEASC accredited university
  • Qualified students with 2.5 GPA and up may receive up to $20K in grants & scholarships
  • Multiple term start dates throughout the year. 24/7 online classroom access
  • Purdue University Global

  • Northcentral University

  • Campbellsville University

  • Liberty University Online

  • Indiana Wesleyan University

  • Montana State University - Bozeman

  • California Lutheran University

  • Johns Hopkins University

  • Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University

  • Kansas State University