Texas Tech University

Personal Financial Planning Program Ranks Top in the Nation

Glenys Young

October 10, 2019

Wealth Management magazine calls its list the first data-centric approach to program measurement.

It's official: Texas Tech University offers the best Personal Financial Planning (PFP) program in the nation.

In what Wealth Management magazine calls the first data-centric approach to measuring financial planning programs offered around the country, Texas Tech's came out on top. The ranking considered only on-campus, full-time, four-year programs of study for financial planning.


"The PFP faculty and I are very excited and humbled for our program to be ranked No. 1," said Vickie Hampton, chair of the Department of Personal Financial Planning in the College of Human Sciences. "The Texas Tech PFP program has long been respected as a leader in educating the next generation of financial advisers. It is great to now have a third party provide an evidence-based ranking of university degree programs.

"There are many, many factors that contribute to Texas Tech's success, including hard-working students who, with the help of qualified faculty, become financial advisers who assist their clients in meeting financial goals. Our objective is to educate the next generation of financial planning professionals. We structure our degree programs as professional programs emphasizing critical thinking and communication skills in addition to technical competence."

Wealth Management surveyed 109 of the 130 colleges and universities registered by Certified Financial Planner (CFP) Board of Standards. A total of 67 schools, or 61.5%, responded to the survey request. Schools that did not enroll at least 10 students for the 2018 academic year and those that did not respond to multiple requests for participation, or replied with incomplete responses, were not considered.

Wealth Management ranked the programs based on a weighted average of the following indicators, which are believed to be markers of excellence:

  • Degrees granted
  • Number of full-time faculty equivalents
  • Number of faculty with advanced degrees and certifications
  • Capstone course offered
  • CFP®-certified faculty teaching the Capstone course
  • Ratio of faculty with earned CFP®certification
  • Number of CFP completions reported to CFP Board in academic year 2018
  • Minimum number of courses required to graduate
  • Number of elective courses offered beyond the minimums required by CFP Board

The weighted scores were totaled, and the corresponding programs were ranked in descending order of raw scores. For the full methodology, click here.

Rounding out the top 10 are University of Wisconsin-Madison, Utah Valley University, University of Missouri, University of North Florida, California State University-Northridge, Central Michigan University, Indiana Wesleyan University, Delaware State University and Kansas State University.

For the full list, click here.


Texas Tech was among the first universities in the nation to offer bachelor's and master's degrees in financial planning. In 2000, Texas Tech became the first university to offer a doctorate in personal financial planning.

"Since the teaching of the first course in the fall of 1986, the PFP program has enjoyed committed faculty, supportive administration from college deans all the way to chancellors and, most of all, incredible alumni who have built the reputation of the program over the years through their professionalism and pursuit of excellence in the many areas of the financial planning profession," said Bill Gustafson, professor emeritus who helped to create Texas Tech's program. "While not the first time we've been recognized as a leading program, this effort by Wealth Management was impressive and, by featuring it as the cover story, gave credence to our program here at Texas Tech as being one that impacts the future of the industry in many positive ways."

About Wealth Management

Wealth Management delivers independent editorial expertise and proven financial services marketing solutions for measurable return on investment. More than 435,000 financial advisers and wealth professionals rely on Wealth Management information, editorial insight and analysis to assist them in their client activities to improve practice management and gathering of assets. Our marketing services and multi-media channels are used by several hundred wealth management firms daily to promote and communicate product, brand and career opportunities to financial advisers and wealth professionals.