Financial Services Professional (CFA) - Work Based Project: Creating Impact

Module description

This module offers a synoptic integration of the learning of the whole programme into a practical project related to the business that the apprentice occupies within the financial services industry. Investment Banking is the creation of capital for corporate, government and financial institution clients/customers, through the provision of capital markets and financing solutions. Additionally, Investment Banking involves the provision of investment advice, trading and post-trade services to professional investors across a range of financial instruments. Typically, at this level the role involves providing technical/specialist support to those in direct trading and senior client/customer advisory roles, in addition to providing some day-to-day trade support to clients/customers.

Having consulted across the organisation and identified an improvement opportunity, process improvement or service enhancement need, you will scope, plan and develop a significant business improvement project. Demonstrating wider consideration of the financial services industry and its global, economic and environmental context, you will research the opportunities and limitations within your idea. Using analytic skills, you will involve your department in the evaluation and exploration of the idea, ensuring objective and inclusive consultation is undertaken. The project will only move forward with the backing of line management and therefore your skills of persuasion and influence will be paramount in securing stakeholder commitment. Higher level skills such as resource planning and business analysis underpin the project and offer apprentices the opportunity to implement and reflect upon own knowledge, skills and behaviour

Full module specification

Module title:Financial Services Professional (CFA) - Work Based Project: Creating Impact
Module code:BEF3209DA
Module level:3
Academic year:2019/0
Module lecturers:
Module credit:45
ECTS value:






Duration of module: Duration (weeks) - term 1:


Duration (weeks) - term 2:


Duration (weeks) - term 3:


Module aims

This module is a part of the formal process of portfolio building in which you are required to evidence the knowledge skills and behaviours set out in the level 6, degree apprenticeship standards for the Financial Services Professional. The personal development that you undertake and the activities, assignments and reflections that you produce all offer material for your final EPA project and professional portfolio.

ILO: Module-specific skills

  • 1. Assess a problem from multiple angles to ensure all relevant issues are considered, engage with critical thinking tools to evaluate and analyse complex situations. Respond appropriately to unexpected events. Apply critical thinking to discern between available options.
  • 2. Critically reflect upon professional practice to identify, evaluate and modify own behaviours. Compile, manage and edit a portfolio of evidence in support of own progression against the relevant Degree Apprentice learning objectives.
  • 3. Identify opportunities for application of new knowledge, using skills of analysis and persuasion to develop project proposal.

ILO: Discipline-specific skills

  • 4. Effectively undertake complex financial modelling and research and analysis using appropriate tools keep up to date with sector relevant legal/regulatory changes, and alert others to the implications where necessary. Have a sound understanding of reporting and accounting principles. Have a good understanding of primary and secondary markets and market structures.
  • 5. Identify and provide flexible and innovative solutions, integrating products and excellent service as appropriate to own role, in order to support client/customers and meet own best interests. Use trading and risk management tools, under supervision. Deliver technical advice to clients/customer and implement product solutions.
  • 6. Lead and/or contribute to development of specific changes through to implementation – this may include projects wider than own role. Create innovative and enterprising solutions to business needs, whilst understanding relevant boundaries e.g. financial services regulations.

ILO: Personal and key skills

  • 7. Professional impact: Take the initiative to meet challenging individual and team performance measures in line with organisation policy, Values, standards and sector relevant regulatory requirements. Identify and communicate risks to the relevant management or compliance personnel within the organisation, understanding and following the appropriate company process to address. Deliver projects as required.
  • 8. Adaptability: Adapt positively to changing work priorities and patterns and is flexible to the needs of the organisation. Engage and network proactively with Client/customers and colleagues, including senior management, as required, to deliver business outcomes. Respond well to change.
  • 9. Communication: Build/maintain strong positive working relationships with Clients/colleagues/suppliers as appropriate. Take a leadership role in the team when appropriate.
  • 10. Motivation: Contribute to the development of strategic and operational plans for own area. Manage and reports on progress of specific elements of this in own area of responsibility. Visible role model, and coaches others where appropriate. Follow and promote appropriate organisational procedures and policies. Demonstrate a curious and questioning approach in own work.
  • 11. Integrity: Be truthful, sincere and trustworthy in own actions. Handle tasks with thoroughness and accuracy. Maintain appropriate confidentiality. Follow and promote appropriate organisational procedures and policies.

Learning activities and teaching methods (given in hours of study time)

Scheduled Learning and Teaching ActivitiesGuided independent studyPlacement / study abroad

Details of learning activities and teaching methods

CategoryHours of study timeDescription
Seminars (Master classes)12Taking place during scheduled Face-to-face masterclasses there will be at least 12 hours of taught input.
Online activities and PDP coaching 64Ongoing PDP coaching throughout 32 weeks of the online module. Drawing upon academic guidance, professional development coaching and workplace mentoring.
Applied Professional Development374Guided and independent learning which will be applied to the work context in consultation with a manager from the organisation. It will include a mixture of reading material, self-development exercises, online discussion forums, self-assessments, videos, and 360-degree feedback.

Formative assessment

Form of assessmentSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
In consultation with line manager, academic mentor and module lead produce an agreed project proposal. Evidence of stakeholder buy-in must be evident. Equivalent to 1,000 words.1-6Academic lead will provide written and verbal feedback.

Summative assessment (% of credit)

CourseworkWritten examsPractical exams

Details of summative assessment

Form of assessment% of creditSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
1. Having developed your proposal taking on board feedback, submit a 10-minute video log outlining the critical success factors in delivering this project2010-minute video log.Academic lead will provide verbal feedback.
2. Internal analysis: Produce a 1,500 essay on the nature of the contemporary workplace.201,000 words.1,2,3Academic lead will provide written feedback.
3. External analysis: Use horizon scanning to set your organisation in context. Outline the challenges facing the sector in the next 10 years. 201,000 words4 & 6Academic lead will provide written feedback.
Project report. 403,500 words 1-11Academic lead will provide written feedback.

Details of re-assessment (where required by referral or deferral)

Original form of assessmentForm of re-assessmentILOs re-assessedTimescale for re-assessment
As per original10-minute video1-136 weeks
As per original1,000 words6 weeks
As per original1,000 words6 weeks
As per original3,500 words6 weeks

Re-assessment notes

Defer – as first time

Refer – capped at 40%

Syllabus plan

This module draws together the learning from across the programme as a whole and through a work-based project creates value back in to the organisation. Having the opportunity to develop skills of analysis, evaluation, project scoping and compilation of a professional report enables the apprentice to engage with the Financial Services Professional standards in preparation for the final End Point Assessment (EPA) assessment of the degree apprenticeship as a whole. 

Details of the EPA process are listed below – taken from 

Work-Based Project

This will be a significant work-based project that contains real activity done in the role and demonstrates many of the aspects of the standard. It should describe what the apprentice did, how they did it and the benefits that resulted from the project.


It will be completed in the last few months of the apprenticeship, following the gateway, and will be 5,500 words (+/- 10%). excluding references. The Apprentice will be given 3 months after the Gateway to complete the project for submission to the End-Point Assessment Organisation.  The Project will be a substantive evidence base from a business related project to demonstrate the application of skills, knowledge and behaviours. It will be related to the specific option that the apprentice has chosen from the Standard.


For example it might cover how the apprentice dealt with a significant issue facing the business or client, describing how they:

  • Analysed the problem
  • Conducted relevant background research e.g. business requirements/implications, industry developments, regulatory requirements
  • Developed options
  • Worked with colleagues and the business to develop an agreed solution
  • Influenced both up and down the organisation to achieve resolution
  • Implemented that solution and any resulting benefits


The project should include evidence of how the project was delivered and the outcomes achieved e.g. relevant emails or client feedback.


Indicative learning resources - Basic reading

Recommended text:


Cottrell, S. (2010) Skills for success: personal development and employability. Palgrave Macmillan

Day, T. (2018) Success in Academic Writing. Palgrave Study Skills. Palgrave Macmillan.

Kahneman, D. (2012) Thinking Fast and Slow. Penguin: UK

Miller, D. (2014) Brilliant Personal Effectiveness: What to know and say to make an impact at work. Pearson: UK


Supplementary text:


Cottrell, S (2017) Critical Thinking Skills; Developing Effective Analysis, argument and reflection.

Palgrave Macmillan:

Paul, D., Cadle, J., & Thomas, P (2012) The Human Touch: Personal Skills for Professional Success. BCS: UK

Winstanley, D. (2009) Personal Effectiveness. Excel Books: UK

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