• ?Online
  • ?San Francisco
  • ?Hybrid
  • ?30 Total Units

Get Started Now


Almost there. Wow! look at us being popular. Hang tight, it is taking a bit longer than usual.

GGU’s financial planning program permits students to build on their CFP? background and move directly into advanced study in their chosen field. This degree program is particularly well-suited for more experienced planners who aim to take their careers to a higher level.

The financial life planning concentration was designed and is taught by many of the founders of the field, while the taxation and estate planning concentrations are co-taught with the nationally known Bruce F. Braden School of Taxation.


  • Applicants should hold a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited US institution or the equivalent from a recognized foreign (outside the US) institution, and provide official transcripts.
  • Master's degree holders only need to submit transcripts from previous graduate programs. However, applicants are encouraged to submit all transcripts to maximize transfer credit.
  • Applicants whose native language is not English must meet the English Language Proficiency Admission Requirements.
  • Applicants with an undergraduate GPA below 2.50 should submit a statement of purpose and a resume.
    The statement of purpose should address the circumstances that may have led the applicants to poor academic performance, what had changed and why they think they'll be successful now.
  • Applicants for the Advanced Financial Planning program must submit documentation showing that they have already passed the CFP examination.


Core Courses — 6 units

FI 430
Business Development in Financial Services
FI 434
Cases in Financial Planning

Concentrations — 24 units

Students choose one of the following concentrations for 24 units:
  • Estate Planning
  • Financial Life Planning
  • Taxation



Graduates of the MS in Advanced Financial Planning program will demonstrate the following skills and capabilities:
  • Interpersonal skills necessary to maintain successful client relationship and to work effectively with colleagues, individually or in teams.
  • The quantitative, analytical, and technical skills needed to address complex financial situations.
  • The ability to apply their knowledge to real-world problems in financial planning.
  • Knowledge of the principles of managing a financial planning practice.
  • Knowledge of the legal and regulatory environment in which financial planning occurs and familiarity with relevant licensing, reporting and compliance requirements.
Graduates with a concentration in Financial Life Planning will demonstrate the following skills and capabilities:
  • Advanced interviewing skills for uncovering client history, vision, and values.
  • Identify specific client behavioral biases and heuristics and adapt advice accordingly.
  • Advanced coaching skills for helping clients affect positive change and achieve goals.
  • Apply research on client trust and relationship commitment to develop and sustain highly-functional client relationships.
  • Apply research on the impact of money scripts to facilitate better financial health for clients.
Graduates with a concentration in Taxation or Estate Planning will demonstrate the following skills and capabilities:
  • Knowledge of essential tax principles and doctrines, including, but not limited to the following; and be able to critically apply these principles to practical situations:
    • Common law
    • Claim of right
    • Assignment of income
    • Realization
    • Constructive receipt
    • Related party transactions
    • Gross income
    • Tax benefit rule
  • The ability to identify tax issues, to research these issues, and to communicate effectively the results orally and in writing


View All Graduate Faculty


A Powerful Network

Golden Gate University Alumni Map

0 Alumni

?At Top Organizations

?In High-Level Positions

?Around the World

Featured Alumni

Derek Elrod

Derek Elrod, CFP?

MS, Advanced Financial Planning candidate

RB Capital Management

Career Retrospective

Dr. Dave Yeske CFP? is the Program Director for Financial Planning who received a major award from a national industry association.
Watch the video hihglighting his accomplishments.