Written by, Martina Georgievska
Updated September, 7, 2022
While it’s by no means a guaranteed position in a company’s Human Resources department, a CIPD qualification can be just the thing that sets you apart from the pack and helps you further your HR and L&D career.
So how much does a CIPD qualification cost? How many levels of qualification are there? How can you pay for it?
Read through our guide to get the answers.
In addition to enriching your CV, a CIPD qualification displays a level of professional ability, as well as a commitment to improvement and development, showing potential employers that you are an aspiring candidate who should get paid at the top end of the wage scale.
There are three levels of CIPD qualifications, suitable for different individuals and available at varying costs, depending on which provider you opt for.
The CIPD Level 3, or Foundation Certificate in People Practice, is the perfect choice for those with minimal experience as it offers a solid and practical foundation in HR and L&D skills such as recruitment, performance management, and coaching & mentoring. The foundation level is meant for people on the hunt for entry-level positions, for instance, HR Assistant and Learning Administrator.
The CIPD Level 5 qualification is split into two courses— Associate Diploma in People Management and Associate Diploma in Organisational Learning and Development. This level is designed for those with some experience in HR or L&D and perfectly suited to candidates looking for mid-level management positions, such as HR Business Partner or L&D Consultant. What’s more, the CIPD Level 5 certificate leads to CIPD Associate membership, which allows you to focus more on specific parts of HR and L&D.
The CIPD Level 7 is created for experienced practitioners and strategic HR decision-makers. Equivalent to a postgraduate degree, the Diploma in Strategic People Management and the Diploma in Strategic Learning & Development is the ideal course for those who want to advance to senior roles, the likes of Head of Resourcing and Senior L&D Advisor. Keep in mind that if you complete the advanced level certificate or diploma, you will be eligible to join the CIPD as a professional member (Assoc CIPD).
While the cost of a CIPD qualification varies from one provider to the next, we listed the general range of prices offered by most study centres in the UK.
The cost of a CIPD qualification varies across countries as well. For instance, a CIPD Level 3 in Ireland course starts from €2,343 (around £1,980), a Level 5 Diploma in Saudi Arabia costs between 13,000 and 50,000 SAR (£2,500 to £10,000), while a Level 7 Advanced Diploma typically costs up to 75,000 AED in the UAE (£15,300).
On top of the course, there are some additional charges you should budget for, such as CIPD membership fees. The overall membership cost depends on whether you are joining for the first time, extending your membership, re-joining, or upgrading to a higher membership grade. That said, membership fees for students range from £49 to £108 a year.
Some providers also charge workshop fees, although the majority of UK study centres provide workshops for free.
As mentioned previously, the CIPD qualification cost depends on the provider you choose. The same goes for payment methods.
Most study centres accept traditional payment methods, with some even allowing you to divide the expense of your online course over a shorter, more manageable period of time. These interest-free payment plans typically divide the cost over 18 months, whereas some providers can split it into 48 months—most of these plans are flexible.
To secure your course and obtain access to the online materials, a modest fee is required at the time of enrolment.
There are also plans that allow your employer to finance the course. In this case, the provider invoices the employer, letting you worry about the things that really matter, i.e. getting your certification.
Studying at home, face-to-face or choosing a blended approach—earning a CIPD Qualification has never been easier.
Now that you have an idea of the CIPD qualification cost range, you’ve taken the first step toward climbing the HR and L&D career ladder. Next is choosing your qualification level, finding the best study centre, and you are well on your way to enjoying the various benefits of a CIPD qualification.
An aspiring linguist with a background in teaching, I decided to use my years of experience to educate my audience through writing. The chance to apply my knowledge to my articles, fueled by my passion for research helped me develop my skills and learn more along the way, awakening my interest in even more topics. When I’m not typing behind my desk, you’ll find me learning a new language or pouring my thoughts into rhymes.