American Institute Revamps CPCU Program

May 1, 2002

The American Institute for CPCU has just announced major changes in its Chartered Property Casualty Underwriter (CPCUÒ) professional designation program. Starting in the summer of 2002, the CPCU program will

Require students to concentrate in either commercial or personal insurance.

Have an enhanced financial services focus with the introduction of a new Financial Services Institutions course and a new Personal Financial Planning course.

Consist of eight rather than ten courses and national examinations.

Allow waivers for law degrees and MBA degrees.

In addition to passing the eight national exams, candidates for the CPCU designation must meet the American Institute’s ethics and industry experience requirements, just as they did under the old program.

Terrie E. Troxel, Ph.D., CPCU, CLU, Institute president and CEO, introduced the new program, saying, “This year, on the 60th anniversary of the CPCU designation, we are unveiling a new CPCU curriculum for a new marketplace. Specialization, a global economy, the convergence of property-casualty insurance with financial services, and the growth of the alternative risk transfer market have changed the world in which we work. With those sweeping changes come new professional development needs. Our new CPCU curriculum is based on extensive market research and discussions with senior industry leaders. It is designed to meet the evolving needs of business and personal insurance consumers.”

The courses in the new CPCU curriculum are as follows:

Foundation courses (which must be taken by all candidates):

CPCU 510 Foundations of Risk Management, Insurance, and Professionalism CPCU 520 Insurance Operations and Regulation
CPCU 530 The Legal Environment of Risk Management and Insurance
CPCU 540 Business and Financial Analysis for Risk Management and Insurance Professionals
CPCU 560 Financial Services Institutions

Commercial and Personal Concentrations. Students must take either the Commercial or Personal Concentration (three courses).

Commercial Concentration courses:

CPCU 551 Commercial Property Risk Management and Insurance
CPCU 552 Commercial Liability Risk Management and Insurance
CPCU 553 Survey of Personal Risk Management, Insurance, and Financial Planning

Personal Concentration courses:

CPCU 555 Personal Risk Management and Property-Liability Insurance
CPCU 556 Personal Financial Planning
CPCU 557 Survey of Commercial Risk Management and Insurance

Students may take the courses and exams in any order.

Textbooks and course guides (workbooks) for the new courses will be available for purchase this September. The first exams for the new courses will be given in the February 15 – March 15, 2003, testing window and in subsequent testing windows (May 15 – June 15, August 15 – September 15, and November 15 – December 15).

In giving details of the new CPCU program, James J. Markham, J.D., CPCU, AIC, the American Institute’s senior vice president in charge of curriculum, said: “Our structuring the new CPCU program along commercial and personal lines recognizes that most people work in one of these two major areas of specialization in the property-casualty business. Our addition of the Financial Services Institutions course and the Personal Financial Planning course reflects the blurring of lines between insurance and financial services in business today. These changes require CPCU candidates to develop a more comprehensive knowledge of how risk management and insurance fit into the total financial needs of their customers.”

Markham explained the broadening of waivers in the new curriculum as follows: “For many years, we have waived certain CPCU exams for people who have earned other designations such as CLU, ChFC, and CFP. We have decided it is also reasonable to waive the legal exam for someone holding a law degree from an ABA-approved law school or for any person admitted to a state bar. In addition, we will waive the CPCU 540 exam for people who have earned an MBA degree from certain accredited schools.”

This is a transitional year for students already involved in the CPCU program, according to Markham. “Students who take their last exam in our May-June 2002 testing window will complete under the current CPCU curriculum and attend our conferment ceremony in Orlando in October,” explained Markham. “All other CPCU candidates-and students starting the program—will earn the designation under the new eight-part curriculum. We will continue to offer CPCU courses 1 – 9 through the end of this year. All of them will earn credit under the new curriculum,” he said.

The current CPCU exams will earn credit for the following exams in the new curriculum:

CPCU 1 (Ethics, Insurance Perspectives and CPCU 510 Insurance Contract Analysis)
CPCU 2 (Personal Insurance and Risk CPCU 553 (commercial) and CPCU 555 (personal) Management)
CPCU 3 (Commercial Property Insurance and CPCU 551 Risk Management) CPCU 4 (Commercial Liability Insurance and CPCU 552 Risk Management) CPCU 5 (Insurance Operations) CPCU 520
CPCU 6 (The Legal Environment) CPCU 530
CPCU 7 (Management) CPCU 560
CPCU 8 (Accounting and Finance for CPCU 540 Insurance Professionals)
CPCU 9 (Economics) CPCU 560

CPCU 10 was not a stand-alone course but a Related Studies requirement that could be satisfied by passing one or more specified insurance-related exams.

For more information about the new eight-part CPCU curriculum, visit the American Institute’s Web site, Or contact a Customer Service representative: 1-800-644-2101 (phone), 1-610-640-9576 (fax), (e-mail).

Topics Property Risk Management

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