IFS DipFA Coursework July 2016 A Five Point Guide to get you started…

Ok, so you’ve looked at your Coursework questions…what next?courses-image

First thing is to try and get your head around the main report question.  You need to consider how to draft a business report aimed at the MD of a company that has almost no employee benefits and wants to introduce an Auto-Enrolment pension, plus other potential benefits.  Think about what do you want to know about, and also what do they need to know about?  The question is very helpful here as it lists several points of required information for you.

Second, think about the structure of the report.  Based on my experience, a lot of candidates struggle here.  The Executive Summary has thrown some people.  You can search online for a simple “how to” on this.

Here’s a link I found to a really helpful detailed explanation of what a good executive summary should look like.  

Then think about having a report title, some chapters (with chapter headings!), and work out what each chapter will cover.  Tidy up at the end with a neat summary.

Third think about references.  The referencing has been massively simplified by the IFS, and the new approach is a welcome change of direction, as it will help candidates focus on the actual work rather then spend hours trying to format a full academic bibliography.  But you still need references!  Best to think about this as you go along…

Fourth, think about technical knowledge.  What do you know about stakeholder pensions?  Auto-enrolment?  Employee Benefits?  Costs?  Tax implications for the employer?  Tax implications for the employee?  Bound to be some areas you don’t know much about – best get studying!

Five, when going on to the short answer questions, remember they do not need referencing, or long introductions.  Most short questions in the Coursework can be covered using bullet points or short sentences.  They are called short questions for a reason!

Need more help?

If you are looking for more help, you can consider the Futuretrend online DipFA Coursework course, which I am running, and / or also the IFS tutors as well if you are signed up for them.

Good Luck!

Paul Davis, BA (Hons), Cert. Mgmt (Open), Dip. PFS,

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