2 Down…

6 to go!

On Friday, I passed my second CPCU exam. I took CPCU 520 – Insurance Operations. The book was huge and had 11 chapters. Some of which were ridiculously long. Underwriting functions, ratemaking, actuarial function…lots of stuff that I don’t deal with on a daily basis.

When I ordered this book back in the early fall, I mapped out a study schedule. One chapter per week, with the final week leading up to the test earmarked for review.

Well, they always say the road to hell is paved with good intentions, right? LOL! Nothing about that schedule panned out, and I found myself doing 3 weeks of cramming. Nothing like trying to study while your hubby is yelling at the Knicks game, with the tv volume/surround sound on 79!


Despite my nerves, I managed to pass. I am just not cut out for cramming. No matter how much coffee is involved.

There are four foundation courses for the CPCU designation:

Foundation Courses

  • CPCU 500—Foundations of Risk Management and Insurance (This course is replacing CPCU 510)
  • CPCU 520—Insurance Operations
  • CPCU 530—Business Law for Insurance Professionals
  • CPCU 540—Finance and Accounting for Insurance Professionals

I’ve knocked out the first two, and will move on to business law next. You can take them in any order you wish, but I think I’ll just knock out the foundation courses first.

Next, you can choose a concentration in personal lines or commercial lines. I’m going with commercial lines, so I’ll have to take these three:

Commercial Lines Concentration Courses

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

After that, I can pick one elective class from a list of 9. I think I’m going to go with AIC 32 – Liability Claims Practices.

Once I successfully complete the designation, I will receive a 10% bonus from my employer. Not to mention, they pay for the course materials and the test. There’s no reason for me to not do it. It’ll help me in the long run with my industry knowledge.

Does your industry offer professional designations? Do you plan to pursue any or further your education using company resources?


13 thoughts on “2 Down…

  1. Congrats!!!!

    Having a JD already, I can get an LLM (Master of Laws) degree. There’s no pay increase if I get it. The pay increases are predetermined by time. However, I get 50% of my tuition for the LLM classes, plus a 35% scholarship so if I decided to do it, I would only be responsible for 15% of the tuition cost. And LLM classes are significantly cheaper than JD classes.

    I thought about getting my LLM but only after Mister finishes his degree. We both can’t be in school at the same time.

  2. Yay!!! Yes ma’m I will finish my office cert & be a master at the office suite including project. Yay!

    They reimburse me. I pay up front & when I pass I submit with proof I passed.

    • Thank you!

      That’s how my old company was with tuition reimbursement. I had to submit grade reports. With the CPCU, I can just purchase the study materials and submit an expense report, to be reimbursed in the next paycheck. BUT, if I fail the test, the re-take is on me, and the exam is like $350! *faint* LOL!

  3. Congratulations! I am an actuary and some of your exams sound very similar to the exams we have to take for accreditation. We get a raise for each exam we pass. Although after I passed the first 2 I decided I didnt want to take any more. The time it takes to study for the tests was just exhausting to me. I have young children and prefer to give them that time. Also, this is really not what I wanna do for the rest of my life.

    Good luck on your endeavors!

    • Having sat for bar exams to become an attorney, I am so happy for you! Passing a big ole test like is something I checked off on the bucket list (hopefully never to meet up with them again!) such that it proved my mental Amazon womanliness.

      🙂 Marion

      • Hey Marion!

        Thank you! I think that I’ll get my AIC designation in conjunction with this, but then after that I may call it quits. We’ll see.

  4. Woo Hoo ! Congrats ! You are knocking them out the box lady ! I work in the same industry as you and have passed 5 parts of my CPCU. My company pays for the materials and the test as long as you are passing. If you fail then you have to pay to re-test and they won’t pay for any more course material until you pass the next exam. We also get a cash bonus when you get the actual designation . I have not been motivated to finish because I failed an exam that I thought I was prepared for and it affected my confidence AND I have to shell out the cash for the re-test, so I took a little break. You are right, there is so much material to prepare for each exam that is the challenging part. There were things I spent a lot of time learning that I was not familiar with & not ONE question was asked on the exam !!!! Its difficult to know what to focus on. Good luck with your studies & I hope that I can get motivated to finish mine in 2013.

    • Hey there!

      Thank you! I think it’s a good idea to take a break and regroup on this thing. And you’re right – you could learn a particular chapter forwards and backwards, and barely get any questions on that. I was looking at my grade report this morning and the chapter where I scored the lowest was chapter 10, reinsurance. I thought I understood that one, but I guess not!

      I know you can regroup and pass that test. Sending positive vibes your way! 🙂

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s