CSI offers 15 certificates, four designations and a fellowship—all meeting the high standards commonly set by organizations like the International Standards Organization (ISO) internationally and regulators’ regulatory requirements introduced in Canada and the United States.

What is a Certificate?

A certificate program focuses on providing education/training and uses assessments to confirm the successful achievement of the learning objectives or outcomes of the education or training. It usually focuses on a specific area of skill or expertise. Upon completion of the final assessment, which may be a formal/proctored examination, the individual is awarded a certificate and a digital badge that confirms successful completion of the certificate program. It confirms that an individual has knowledge or capabilities at the point in time of being tested, but it does not confirm that the individual has ongoing knowledge or competency after the date of receiving the certificate. It does not require an annual renewal or continuing education to keep the certificate current.


What is a Designation?

The primary focus of a professional designation is the assessment and demonstration of competence, experience and ethical behaviour in the application of the competencies. All CSI designation programs require educational requirements to be met prior to the assessment for certification purposes. The certification status is granted on a time-limited basis and subject to renewal—including continuing education and other maintenance requirements. Designations usually use letters after one’s name to denote the achievement of pre-determined standards, skills or competencies. However, if the individual does not agree to maintain the standards and update their knowledge, the granting organization can revoke the right to use the letters.


What is a Fellowship?

Every industry has leaders: individuals who set precedents for the standards of excellence and then exceed them. Those who bring true value to their work by constantly seeking knowledge and real-world insights, and who are in tune with the nuances of their industry.  The primary focus of a Fellowship program is to recognize these individuals who have demonstrated unparalleled leadership, ethical behaviour, integrity, commitment and dedication to their clients and the industry.

The Fellow of CSI (FCSI®) requires financial services specialist expertise (through the holding of a recognized designation), experience and ethics components to be met along with ongoing contributions to the financial services industry in order to maintain the Fellowship. The Fellowship status is granted on a time-limited basis and subject to recommitment on an annual basis. If the individual does not maintain the high standards of the fellowship, CSI has the right to revoke the right to use the letters.


Why earn a CSI Certificate, Designation or Fellowship?

  • Provides government, corporations, private firms, courts, and the consumer with a definitive minimum standard of experience and/or education for financial services professionals.
  • Fosters broader recognition of financial services professionals as well-educated, ethical and experienced and acting in the best interest of the client.
  • Assists organizations and individuals in maintaining a competitive edge by showing clients that the organization and the individuals they hire have the skills and knowledge to perform effectively in their jobs.
  • Helps individuals to maintain and develop their professionalism. Earning a certificate or designation shows that an individual is willing to take ownership of their professional development and career progression.
  • Provides “transferable credentials” within the industry and, at times, recognized internationally.