AF4 Investment Planning Remote Study Course Q1 2024

Tuesday, 23 January 2024
9:30 am (UK time)
    • John Trayner

This event will be held via video webinar.

If you have any questions please contact Susan Stamp at or on 07933 998426.

Module 1

Part 1 - Tuesday 23 January 2024 9.30 am - 1.00 pm

Part 2 - Wednesday 24 January 2024 9.30 am - 1.00 pm

Module 2

Part 1 - Wednesday 7 February 2024 9.30 am - 1.00 pm

Part 2 - Thursday 8 February 2024 9.30 am - 1.00 pm

Module 3

Wednesday 28 February 2024 9.00 am - 5.00 pm

This three-module course aims to significantly improve delegates' chances of passing their AF4 exam by developing an understanding of the key technical points that are likely to be tested.

It is also suitable for those taking a further examination, J10 - Discretionary Investment Management, as the learning content is very similar to AF4, although candidates taking J10 only may prefer to book our two-module course here.

The programme will consist of three modules to give delegates more time to build up their knowledge and understanding.

The training for the March 2024 exam will be held over five weeks. This will be a quite short period to pack a large amount of syllabus content in so delegates will get more out of the training if they have done some advance preparation. As such, a recommended reading list of easily accessible materials will be sent to everyone who registers for the course.

Led by John Trayner, a CII Approved Trainer, each of the three modules will provide a full 6 hours’ CPD. The cost of this three-module course is £195 for CII/PFS members (£255 for non-members).If you would like to join us for this event, please click on the Book Now button below. (Please note, to benefit from the discounted rate, you will be required to provide your membership number at the time of booking.)

Payment can be made by credit/debit card or you can request an invoice to pay offline by cheque or BACS transfer. Credit/debit card payments can only be accepted online at the time of booking and not afterwards.

Course Dates and Objectives
The dates of this course are set out below. By the end of each module, delegates will be able to:

Module 1 - Tuesday 23 January 2024 and Wednesday 24 January 2024

Asset classes

  • understand how the wider economy influences the performance of the different asset classes
  • understand the characteristics and risks of the main asset classes; cash, bonds, equities, property and commodities
  • solve compounding, discounting and rate of return calculations
  • calculate and interpret the key performance measures of Bonds
  • understand what factors affect the price of Bonds and how this affects the price of other assets
  • calculate and interpret the key performance measures of Shares including their Standard Deviation and Beta
  • calculate and interpret the main data from a company’s Profit and Loss Account and Balance Sheet
  • understand the factors in assessing whether to invest in property and commodities
  • understand the main risks that investors are exposed to
  • understand the principles of Modern Portfolio Theory including Capital Asset Pricing Model and the differences between systematic and non-systematic risk
  • understand the principles of behavioural finance

Module 2 - Wednesday 7 February 2024 and Thursday 8 February 2024

Collective investments, Portfolio Construction and Performance Review

  • understand the benefits of using collective investments compared to directly held assets
  • understand the differences between a closed and open-ended fund structure together with the advantages and disadvantages of each
  • know the main tax rules for different collective investments
  • understand the main tax shelters that can be used around collective investments
  • understand the characteristics of an EIS, SEIS and VCT together with their suitability for investors
  • understand the main investment strategies against the background of current economic conditions
  • identify how portfolio construction can mitigate risk including the use of correlation and Efficient Frontier
  • accurately calculate the Holding Period Return, Money Weighted Period Return, Time Weighted Period Return and identify when it would be appropriate to use each
  • understand the concept of Alpha
  • accurately calculate and interpret the main risk related returns, Sharpe Ratio and Information Ratio
  • analyse the performance of a portfolio and identify the cause of under or over performance

Module 3 - Wednesday 28 February 2024 - Consolidation and Revision

  • understand any remaining elements of the syllabus that were not covered in the previous two sessions
  • have identified any areas of potential weakness in their knowledge and had the opportunity to revise these
  • understand what examiners will be looking for to award high marks in candidates’ answers for the AF4 examination

Other information

Please note that these webinars will be run using Zoom technology and you may need to install relevant software onto your computer, tablet, etc in order to follow the webinars.

Full joining instructions will be sent to delegates ahead of the first session.

About our speaker
John has over 40 years’ experience in insurance and financial services. Not surprisingly most of his former employers no longer exist because of mergers and takeovers. For example he joined Leeds Permanent Building Society in 1986 and at retirement was working for Lloyds Banking Group even though he’d never changed employers! The last 15 years were spent in the training department specialising in professional exams.

Not wishing to spend retirement watching daytime TV he decided to become a freelance trainer specialising in helping people to pass the CII’s Financial Services exams.

John is a Chartered Insurance Practitioner and a Fellow of both the Chartered Insurance Institute and the Personal Finance Society.


Please note: This event is a regional collaboration between the local institutes in the area. Your booking details will be shared with the Insurance Institute of Sussex, which is acting as the host institute for this event.

CII Accredited

This demonstrates the quality of an event and that it meets CII member CPD scheme requirements.

6 hours' CPD can be claimed for this event if relevant to your learning and development needs.

It is recommended that you keep any evidence of the CPD activity you have completed and upload copies to the recording tool as the CII may ask to see this if your record is selected for review. Details of the scheme can be viewed online at