Learning Path

The learning pathways for the CIWM have changed. CSI will continue to recognize the historical pathway to CIWM for students who have completed the CIWM learning path courses by May 8, 2019, but has introduced a new pathway which will be the standard route going forward.

Historical Pathway

CIWM Paths
CIWM Paths

New Pathway


Pre-requisite requirements

There are no pre-requisites to enroll in any of the courses within the Dealing With High Net Worth Clients Program. Enrolment is open to anyone.

To be eligible however for enrolment in the CIWM Certification Exam, candidates must meet the pre-requisite requirements and complete the Dealing with High Net Worth Clients Program.

  • The pre-requisite requirements for registration in the CIWM Certification Exam:
    • Candidates must hold either a Financial Planning (PFP, CFP, CLU or IQPF) or Investment Management (CIM or CFA) designation, or
    • have completed CSI's Wealth Management Essentials (WME) Course

Dealing with High Net Worth Clients Program

The new pathway to the CIWM designation includes a wide variety of courses focused on the knowledge and skills required of an advisor dealing with high net worth clients. It offers a modularized structure that makes the curriculum bite-sized, accessible and flexible for learners. It also provides recognition of a student's prior learning.

The modular structure allows learners to select topics most relevant to their needs. In addition, learners will be able to incrementally earn multi-jurisdictional CE credits, micro-certificates (represented by digital badges), course completions and certificates while working towards completing the internationally recognized CIWM designation.

The new CIWM learning path is formally called the Dealing with High Net Worth Clients Program and it consists of 5 on line courses (assessments are on line as well) as follows:

Recognition of Prior Learning

As candidates for the CIWM have generally been in the industry for at least several years, they likely will already have taken parts of the curriculum through other course offerings. As such, another feature of the CIWM Learning Path is recognition of prior learning. Please see the following table to identify courses that are considered equivalent to the courses within the Dealing with High Net Worth Clients Program.


Course Exempted CSI Course that gives exemption CSI Certificate that gives exemption External certification that gives exemption*

Retirement Planning for High Net Worth Clients

Advanced Retirement and Estate Planning Strategies

Certificate in Retirement Strategy


Advanced Retirement Management Strategies



Investment Strategies for High Net Worth Clients

Advanced Investment Strategies

Certificate in Advanced Investment Advice

Chartered Financial Analyst

Investment Management Techniques



Estate Planning for High Net Worth Clients

Advanced Retirement and Estate Planning Strategies

Certificate in Estate Planning and Trust Strategy

Chartered Life Underwriter

Advanced Estate Planning and Trust Strategies


Trust and Estate Practitioner

External Designation Recognitions are subject to CSI's External Designation Recognition policy and fee.

To assist you in determining your CIWM learning path, please use the following tool.

Individuals who have completed recognized wealth management courses from educational providers other than CSI can apply for course exemptions. Use the Exemption Request Form to apply for a course exemption.

Course providers that would like to have their programs assessed for approval as an educational route to the CIWM should contact CSI.


As prior learning achievements are recognized, CSI has created this tool that will help you determine your exact learning path to the CIWM given any pre-requisites prior learning you have already completed.

CIWM Examinations
and Other Requirements

Examination : Students who have completed the CIWM learning path by May 8, 2019 will have the option of completing the SW360 or the new CIWM Certification Exam. Students who complete the CIWM Learning Path after May 8, 2019 are subject to the CIWM Certification Exam.

Experience : Candidates applying for the CIWM designation must have at least 3 years of experience working directly with or in support of the wealth management needs of retail clients.

Code of Ethics : When applying for the CIWM you must commit to the CIWM Code of Ethics.

Trademarks : You are also required to agree to the terms of the CIWM Certification Mark Licence Agreement,
which grants you the right to use the CIWM trademarks in your own marketing.

Application/Licence : The initial application fee is $275 and includes your licence fee for the year.

To maintain your CIWM designation in good standing, you must:

Learn more about CIWM Maintenance Requirements

CSI holds itself to the highest standards of honesty, transparency and fairness when dealings with clients, students, designation holders and regulators.
We are committed to ensuring impartiality in carrying out our CIWM certification activities (e.g., certification examination results and other decisions related to granting designations). We actively manage conflicts of interest to ensure objectivity.
Learn more about the appeals policies and processes for certification examinations.
To appeal other certification decisions please email us.