CSLA Institute

The CSLP Program

The definitive professional student loan advisor program. Learn how to accurately advise clients with student debt.

The CSLP and CSLC Programs
Student Loan Advisor Training

The CSLP® and CSLC® programs are a series of online courses and certification programs for financial professionals and personal financial coaches who work with clients to help them achieve their financial goals. Please review the FAQ for details about participation requirements.

In the program you will learn how to accurately and competently advise clients with student loans within the scope of their overall financial goals, present and future life scenarios. You will learn how to analyze and recommend the the best repayment strategy for their situation.

The program is a self-paced, online suite of courses and modules, each with targeted learning outcomes. This is a comprehensive professional development curriculum that includes a remotely proctored examination. Successful participants who are licensed financial professionals receive permission to use the CSLP® mark.

We teach advisors and test their knowledge of case analysis, managing repayment plans, adjusting based on financial goals of the client, and more:

Here is a direct link to the course content.

  • Identifying undergraduate and graduate loan programs, borrowing limits, and interest rates.
  • Recognizing the significance of loan “type” and loan “status”.
  • Determining when consolidation makes sense and when it doesn’t.
  • Projecting costs under Standard, Extended, and Graduated repayment, and comparing nuances between the various Income-Driven Repayment plans.
  • Helping borrowers track and document progress towards forgiveness and  record keeping by loan servicers
  • Avoiding traps for the unwary (such as paid-ahead status, PLUS consolidation, and capitalization triggers).
  • Helping borrowers avoid losing important rights (such as by refinancing federal student loans).
  • Assisting borrowers in enforcing those consumer protections that do exist (such as enforcing cosigner release provisions).
  • Helping borrowers understand incorporate student debt into their tax and financial planning in an effort to reduce the long term implications of student debt on their financial futures.
  • Evaluating the potential for statutory discharge in every case.

 CSLP Program Highlights

CSLP Participation

The CSLP® designation is intended for financial professionals currently providing personal financial advisement, planning, investments, and tax related services. All candidates are subject to a review and verification of their existing credentials and experience. Additional requirements:

  • Experience including the supervision, direct support, teaching, or personal delivery of part or all of the personal financial planning process to a client. 
  • Typical roles include CPA, CFP, ChFC, EA, CFA, Registered Investment Advisors, etc.
  • For non-licensed individuals, the CSLC (Certified Student Loan Counselor) is awarded upon successful completion of the program and a review of the individual’s credentials. See our FAQ.

CE Credits and more

For CFPs there are 13 CE credits if the course is completed within the initial term of 6 months.

For most CPAs the CSLP certificate program will provide 60 hours of CPE credits for the 4 units college credit earned.  There is no additional fee for this credit. 

Check your state regulations here to determine the availability of CPE credits for the CSLP coursework.

Additional College Credits Available

College credits are issued through Humboldt State University, a campus of the California State University system. To learn more about the college credit program click here.

CSLP Program Modules

The CSLP modules provide information about how to work as an advisor helping clients with individualized approaches to repayment based on present financial status, short and long-term goals, and future earning capacity.

Topics are arranged over 4 primary courses currently containing approximiately 46 presentation sections. Additionally, student loan advising case studies illustrate a variety of situations with multiple loan types and financial situations. The program also addresses laws and the qualifications for loan program participation. Each repayment plan (current and those no longer offered but that may be active with clients) is covered in detail to illustrate features, risks, and common concerns that may be applicable to clients.

Comprehensive Training For Financial Advisors

The CSLP program insures that advisors are prepared to provide high quality student loan repayment planning advice. It enables advisors to take a broader view of the client’s personal financial situation, their student loans, and future goals to create an optimal repayment strategy. This approach can facilitate a longer-term relationship between the client and advisor.

CSLP Administration

The CSLP designation is administered and issued by the Board.

The CSLP program is created and managed by a team of experienced financial, legal and educational professionals.

CSLP Program Delivery

The program is delivered through on online learning management system (LMS) and accessible 24/7. Participants can view audio/visual presentations, access a library of document resources, client advising forms, and current news and research. Progress throughout the modules is tracked and reported for easy monitoring by the participant. Selected sections have quizzes to gauge material comprehension.

Course Fees

The CSLP® program fee is currently $1495.00. This includes the initial exam and remote proctor fee. Annual re-certification renewal is $225 and includes the recertification exam. Group discounts for 5 or more advisors are available.

Accreditation

The CSLP is distributed under the accreditation of the WASC and the California State University system in partnership with Humboldt State University.

Exam

The first year CSLP exam is a 2.5 hour, remotely proctored exam consisting of 90 multiple choice questions on the program material. A 70% passing grade is required.

The annual renewal exam is a non-proctored, open book exam.

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