Continuing Education FAQ
Q1: Why are we implementing an industry-wide Underwriting Continuing Education Certification (UW CE) Program?Answer
Three main reasons are:
1) To introduce a globally recognized underwriting certification program, keeping underwriters at the
forefront of the insurance industry
2) To expand knowledge and skills, promoting the benefits of company & industry continuing education
3) To promote the importance of underwriting professionalism through continuing education
Q2: Who is the intended audience?Answer
Q3: What does this mean for my FALU designation?Answer
Q4: Will this plan enhance my ability to meet my personal continuing education performance goal?Answer
Yes, it will complement achieving your internal Continuing Education goals. Our plan will give you a road map and a central location to report all your progress.
Q5: Do I need to make my Manager aware that I am following this Continuing Education plan?Answer
This plan has gained wide industry acceptance, but it is prudent to make your manager aware of your personal development goals and the importance of Continuing Education.
Q6: When will the UW CE Program take effect?Answer
January 2021. To kick start certification of our profession, the first cycle will be for one (1) year with 20 CE Credits required (from Jan 1, 2021 to Dec 31, 2021).
Q7: Why is the first certification period only one (1) year?Answer
The primary objectives of the shorter initial cycle is to encourage early participation while creating momentum. We also reduced the criteria to 20 CE Credits to kick start certification of our profession.
Q8: What will the UW CE Program look like after the first year?Answer
The two-year certification cycle starts January 2022, with 50 CE Credits required over a two (2) year period (from Jan 1, 2022 to Dec 31, 2023). The next certification period will run from Jan 1, 2024 to Dec 31, 2025.
Q9: Will the programs have a two-year rolling cycle?Answer
No. For ease of administration, we decided to keep it as a static two-year certification period. The first cycle is one year (2021), with all subsequent cycles covering two-year periods (2022-2023, 2024-2025, 2026-2027, etc.)
Q10: What happens if I start mid-year or mid-cycle?Answer
You can apply any CE Credits attained during the certification period.
Q11: How do new underwriters get all of their CE credits?Answer
The committee designed this program so that all levels of underwriters will be able to get their credits for each cycle. While it may not be easy, it should be challenging. One of the benefits of the program is that underwriters can achieve their goals through webinars and other online education opportunities offered throughout the year.
Q12: How is a CE Credit defined?Answer
One (1) CE Credit is generally equivalent to 50 minutes of educational content. Refer to the CE Program Credits Document for a list of activities and their corresponding credit allocation.
Q13: Is there a cost to participate in the program?Answer
There is no cost to individual underwriters or their companies.
Q14: Does there need to be a certain level of participation in the industry?Answer
While there is not a required level of industry participation, we expect the program will enhance growth and development opportunities for each participant underwriter.
Q15: Can we roll credits over from one certification period to another?Answer
Credits from the initial certification period in 2021 will not be allowed to rollover to the two-year accreditation period. Once the regular certification program starts in 2022 it will cover two (2) calendar years. Credits apply during the certification period in which they were earned.
Q16: What if I forget to track my progress before the end of the certification period?Answer
Reporting of credits can continue until the end of the first quarter (March 31) of the next certification period. For example, if a participant completed CE credits at any time in 2021, credits can be reported until March 31, 2022.
Q17: When can I enter my progress in the tracking tool?Answer
Updating as you go or at regular intervals might make it easier for you to track all eligible activities, however you can enter your CE Credits at any time during the year.
Q18: Does attending a sales meeting count for CE credits?Answer
All credits are based on relevance to your underwriting and leadership career.
Q19: How do I track credits and where do I record my CE Credit activities?Answer
The Academy of Life Underwriting (ALU) website will be your portal. Sign into “My Account” at www.alu-web.com and start tracking! If you do not yet have a profile, sign-up is simple and free. Your account will be private and requires a password.
Q20: What records must I keep to be able to prove compliance?Answer
A log of activity will be required in the tracking tool, showing how you met the terms of that requirement in its entirety.
Q21: Will CE Credits be audited?Answer
Yes, one of our guiding principles was that education credits may be subject to audit. We felt it was important to maintain the integrity of the program and self-reporting process.
Q22: What is the purpose of the audit?Answer
An audit works to ensure good faith compliance on the part of all underwriters, without requiring everyone to submit cumbersome paperwork. Early on, the audit will help us enhance the program and ensure that everyone understands the requirements.
Q23: How will you monitor compliance?Answer
We will not take an active role in enforcement or verification. We will randomly audit a small number of members and also look for outliers through an automated tracking tool.
Q24: If my activity is subject to audit, what proof do I need to provide?Answer
None. There is no requirement to keep meeting handouts, attendance records, notes or any other method of documentation. You are not responsible for retaining proof of attendance at structured events, where attendance can be verified. We may reach out to you or your manager and ask for details of credits earned.
Q25: Can I run a report to show what I have completed to date?Answer
Yes, you will have the ability to print a summary of your progress and request confirmation of your certification from the administrator through “My Account” on the ALU website.
Q26: Can I obtain all my CE Credits through internal training presentations?Answer
Some categories have maximum allowable credits to ensure that the program promotes several forms of
professional development and does not rely too heavily on one source such as internal training only. See the master list of CE Credits Document on the ALU website.
Q27: I attend several multi-day conferences a year, so does that qualify me as a Certified Professional Underwriter?Answer
While you are certainly on your way, we also introduced maximum allowable credits for conference attendance. This was also to ensure that the program promoted several forms of professional development and did not rely too heavily on one source.
Q28: Does volunteering on a committee count towards CE Credits?Answer
Yes! The program recognizes the importance of volunteers in our industry. You can obtain credits from your participation on a committee, preparing for a presentation, or publishing an article.
Q29: Who determines what education is job relevant?Answer
Ultimately, you define the CE Credit activities that are relevant to your development and the appropriate balance of technical, business and leadership skills.
Q30: Will there be a master list of all CE credit opportunities?Answer
Yes, there a master list published on the ALU website. The list provides direction, though some discretion is required as the list is not exhaustive and certain courses or educational exercises may or may not qualify. Refer to the CE Program Credits Document for a list of activities and their corresponding credit allocation.
Q31: Will the structure or content of the program change in the future?Answer
Although the initial program design is not expected to have significant changes, we will monitor the program over time to ensure it is meeting the key objectives.
Q32: What if I still have additional questions or need help with understanding some of the program details?Answer
Participants can direct any questions by email to [email protected]