CertMap FAQs

What do I study?

CertMAP covers the core aspects of a caseworker’s role:

  • Working with clients, interviews, budgeting skills and income maximisation
  • Emergency, priority and non-priority debts with legislation, rules and codes of practice
  • Insolvency and debt relief options including how to contest liability
  • County, High and Magistrate Court processes and types of enforcement
  • Cases and caseload management
  • Office procedures including confidentiality, data protection and health & safety considerations
  • Influencing and campaigning
How do I study?
  • CertMAP is studied over 12 weeks with 150 hours of core content
  • You study through Staffordshire University’s online learning system. Learning materials and further reading are available to browse online or download. Discussion forums and live interactive sessions enable you to share ideas with other students and tutors.
  • There are weekly tasks to complete which are a mix of short tests, case studies and discussion tasks. These do not count towards your mark but help to consolidate your learning and prepare you for the exam.
  • There is exam technique support available from the course tutor.
  • The final exam is also held online and has a pass mark of 70%
What are the entry requirements?

The entry requirements are:

  • 1 year current full-time experience in a money advice role (or part-time equivalent) OR
  • Any other relevant experience that Staffordshire University will consider on a case by case basis

To study CertMAP, you MUST be a member of the IMA with membership fees paid. Find out more about membership and benefits here.

Is CertMAP recognised within the money advice sector?

CertMAP, is accredited by the Money and Pensions Service (MaPS) to caseworker/specialist level. Recognition from MaPS means that CertMAP plays a key role in assuring quality of advice across the sector. Read more about MaPS accreditation here.

Many organisations state CertMAP is an essential or desirable qualification in job recruitment.

What is IMA accreditation?

Unlike Money and Pensions Service (MaPS) accreditation, which accredits organisations, IMA accreditation is about the individual. We accredit members who pass CertMAP and allow them to use MIMA (Cert) after their name. IMA accreditation is evidence that the individual is a competent adviser and desirable to employers, funders and strategic partners.

You maintain IMA accreditation by complying with the IMA Continuing Professional Development (CPD) scheme.

How much does CertMAP cost?

Due to our strategic partnership with Staffordshire University, we are able to offer this 15 Credit Higher Education Certificate at a significantly lower cost than equivalent HE qualifications.

The full cost of the course is currently £530 per student.

For the April 2021 CertMAP cohort the United Utilities Trust Fund will be providing bursary funding for advisers of clients in the United Utilities area. The bursary will mean that advisers /organisations will only need to contribute £270 toward the cost of study.

Also for the April 2021 CertMAP cohort, the Thames Water Trust Fund will be providing bursary funding for advisers of clients in the Thames Water area. The bursary will mean that advisers /organisations will only need to contribute £170 toward the cost of study.

The above bursaries are administered by the IMA.  Please do not approach the trust funds directly.

The IMA has also allocated a small amount of its own funds to support advisers in exceptional circumstances who are unable to afford the full cost of study. This funding will be available on a first-come, first-served basis and priority will be given to those in greatest need. This support is for a maximum £320, meaning those receiving it pay a minimum of only £210. To find out more, please email us at qualifications@i-m-a.org.uk.

When is the next cohort?

Details of the next cohort can be found on the how to apply page.


How do I apply?

See here to apply.