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At CSI, the well-being of our valued learners and staff is our highest priority. Learn more about our response to COVID-19 and changes to our exam delivery format.

Chief Compliance Officers Qualifying Examination (CCO)


A Proactive Approach To Compliance

The CCO delivers a broad knowledge of regulations and best practices concerning compliance issues. You'll learn how to assess compliance risk and how to develop and implement proactive systems and controls for company operation. 

What will you learn by taking the CCO?

  • The role of compliance and the regulatory environment
  • Risk management
  • Ethics
  • Formal compliance structure
  • Industry processes
  • Policies and procedures
  • Monitoring and recordkeeping
  • Client complaints and investigations
  • Registration
  • Trading
  • Introducing & carrying broker relationships
  • Relationships with regulators
  • Investment banking and trade desk compliance

How will you learn?

CSI offers several options to help you learn at your own pace in the style that suits you best. You can access the course materials through your computer, laptop, tablet, or phone. For those who prefer the printed page, they are also available in textbook form.

What are the benefits of learning online?

CSI's online learning system helps you meet your study goals. You'll benefit from:

  • Textbook readings available in PDF and printed format
  • Review questions for each chapter so that you can assess your progress
  • Learning objectives that keep you focused
  • Reflective questions to help guide your studies through each chapter
  • Annual course updates to ensure you're learning the most current and up-to-date practical material in your studies
  • Assistance from CSI's academic support specialists

What You'll Learn

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Topics covered in this chapter are:

  • Compliance Overview

  • Creating a Culture of Compliance

  • Roles of Key Internal Players

  • Balancing Revenue Interests with Compliance Risks

Topics covered in this chapter are:

  • Overview of a Formal Compliance Structure

  • Roles and Responsibilities

  • Creating a Senior-Level Compliance Structure

  • Key Skills of a Chief Compliance Officer

  • Relationships with Regulators and Self-Regulatory Organizations

  • Relationships to Line Management, Executive Management, and the Board

  • Relationships with External Parties

  • Compliance Department Organization

  • Compliance Governance Document

Topics covered in this chapter are:

  • Overview of the Regulatory Environment

  • Principle-Based Regulation

  • Key Legislation and Players in Securities Regulation

  • The Criminal Code of Canada

  • Civil and Common Law Obligations and Liabilities

Topics covered in this chapter are:

  • Risk Management overview

  • General Types of Risk

  • A Risk-Based Approach to Compliance

  • Risk-Based Models and Methodologies

  • Risk Controls

Topics covered in this chapter are:

  • Overview of Leadership

  • Leadership Theory

  • Soft Skills of Leadership

  • Demonstrating Leadership

Topics covered in this chapter are:

  • Overview of Ethics

  • Ethics and Public Trust

  • Ethics and Professionalism

  • Ethics and Industry Regulations

  • Ethics in the Organization

  • Understanding Ethical Dilemmas

  • Resolving Ethical Dilemmas

Topics covered in this chapter are:

  • Overview of Policies and Procedures

  • Developing and Amending Policies and Procedures

  • Writing and Formatting Policies and Procedures

  • Disseminating Policies and Procedures

  • Implementing Policies and Procedures

Topics covered in this chapter are:

  • Overview of Monitoring and Surveillance

  • Establishing Monitoring and Surveillance Systems

  • Formal Monitoring Techniques

  • Monitoring a System’s Effectiveness

  • Key Control Points

Topics covered in this chapter are:

  • Documentation

  • Advertising, Sales Literature, and Correspondence

  • Recordkeeping Requirements

  • Client Relationship Model

  • Dealing With Seniors and Other Vulnerable Clients

  • Equity and Mutual Fund Trading and Settlement

  • Funds and Securities Movements

  • Capital Requirements

  • Prospectus and Prospectus-Exempt Distributions

Topics covered in this chapter are:

  • General Procedures Required for Recordkeeping

  • Regulatory Recordkeeping Requirements

  • Record Retention and Accessibility

Topics covered in this chapter are:

  • Overview of Client Complaints

  • Types of Complaints

  • Preventing Complaints

  • Handling Complaints

  • Alternative Dispute Resolution

  • Civil Litigation

Topics covered in this chapter are:

  • Overview of Registration

  • Individual Registration and Approval, and Related Proficiency Requirements

  • The National Registration Database

  • IIROC Registration Hearing Procedures

  • Jurisdictional Registration Issues

Topics covered in this chapter are:

  • Overview of Trading Desk Supervision

  • The Basic Framework

  • Securities Legislation

  • Supervision of Trading

  • Equity Sales and Trading Department: Compliance and Supervision Programs

  • Fixed Income Sales and Trading Departments: Compliance and Supervision

  • Order Entry and Trading

  • Specific Considerations in Trading Supervision and Compliance

  • Criminal Trading Offences

Topics covered in this chapter are:

  • Institutional Businesses

  • Investment Banking

  • Underwriting Due Diligence

  • The Research Department

  • Financial Engineering

Topics covered in this chapter are:

  • Internal Investigations

  • External Investigations

  • Investigations by Other Legal and Regulatory Authorities

  • Handling External Investigations

Topics covered in this chapter are:

  • Overview of Reporting Requirements

  • Reporting to Management and the Board of Directors

  • Other Reporting Obligations

What are the approximate hours of study?

Approximate Hours of Study**
Hours of Study 50 - 60 hours

** In order to provide some guidance to course participants as to the length of time it will take to be sufficiently prepared to write the final examination, CSI has prepared this estimate of the number of hours an average participant could possibly expect to spend studying for a course. Please note that these are only recommended hours of study developed based on research and our course content, however, this does not mean that some students with exceptional backgrounds would not take less time than recommended or that students with no background at all in finance or economics would not take longer than the maximum.

EXAM STRUCTURE (weightings are approximate)
The Role of Compliance and Formal Compliance Structure 15%
Canada's Regulatory Environment and Basic Securities Law 13%
CCO Skill Requirements 21%
Implementation of Skills 39%
Regulatory Investigations and Reporting 12%
Exams 1
Exam Format Proctored (remote or in person at a test centre)
Exam Length 3 Hours
Question Format Multiple Choice
Questions Per Exam 100
Attempts Allowed Per Exam 3*
Passing Grade 60% (Per Exam)
Assignments None
Enrolment Period 1 year†

On successful completion of this course you will be able to download a Notice of Course Completion available through your student profile. This will remain on your profile as formal confirmation of course completion.

CSI will mail you a wall certificate within 4 - 6 weeks of course completion. Frames to display your certificate are available. Please ensure that your First and Last Name on your profile match your First and Last Name on your Government Issued Photo identification - this will ensure you receive an accurate certificate.

CSI will be pleased to issue an Honors Certificate to all student who obtain a final course mark of 85% or higher.

* The first attempt is included in the course enrolment fee. Further attempts incur fees.

†Please note: Access to your online materials will close 2 weeks after successful course completion or course expiry (whichever comes first). This course can be extended by 1 year provided you have not exceeded the attempts allowed  for each exam. You can view CSI extension fees here . Your enrolment period can only be extended one time.

Continuing Education (CE) Credits

Click the links below or the buttons at the top of the page on the right side to access CE accreditation information. To search for specific course information, press Ctrl + F and then enter the course name to search the document for the information you are interested in.

National/Provincial (Excluding Quebec)
Download CE Chart (PDF, 163 kb)

Quebec (IQPF/CSF)
Download IQPF/CSF Chart (PDF, 182 kb)

Please note: While CSI makes every effort to ensure that the information is up-to-date, we are unfortunately unable to fully guarantee its accuracy. The information listed in the charts above may be subject to change.

For details on the organizations and other information on CE Credits listed in the above charts, please click here.