Chartered Insurance Institute
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The Institute provides accreditation and professional qualifications to UK and international members. Current (designated) qualifications include (in ascending level order): Cert CII, Dip CII, Advanced Dip CII (ACII - previously called Associateship CII) & Fellowship CII (FCII). ACII and FCII accredited members are eligible to apply for election to Chartered Insurer status, which is based on experience in the insurance industry alongside these qualifications. These titles may be used by any person upon completion of the required level of qualification and confirmation from the institute.
Every CII member in the UK is also a member of a local institute. There are currently 60 local institutes across the UK, plus 7 associated institutes in the Republic of Ireland.
If you become a member of the CII in the UK, the Channel Islands or the Isle of Man, you also join a local institute. The network of local institutes offers a useful contact point, education advice, CPD seminars and social events
Membership is currently in excess of 102,000.
CII members are expected to maintain requisite standards of knowledge and of behaviour. An independent Professional Standards Board exists to promote professionalism and the adoption of high standards widely throughout the Insurance and Financial Services Industry and interfaces with Government, with regulators and most importantly consumers in pursuing this objective.
Industry Led 
CII is engaged with a large number of senior industry figures who help to drive the direction and improve the awareness of the importance of professionalism and the CII. The CII’s system of Faculties and Societies ensures that CII services reflect the highly specialised nature of many of its professional members and corporate customers. The CII Group encompasses: In General Insurance (‘Non-Life’ or ‘Property/Casualty’): • The Faculty of Underwriting – a market forum for everyone engaged underwriting activities; • The Faculty of Claims – raising standards and levels of professionalism across the claims community; • The Faculty of Insurance Broking – a market forum for everyone working in insurance broking; • The London Market Faculty – a centre of excellence and best practice for the London insurance market. In the Life and Advice markets: • The Faculty of Life and Pensions – a market forum for those at all levels who work for Life and Pensions providers; • The Personal Finance Society (PFS) – the UK’s premier and largest body for financial advisers. In the Mortgage market: • The Society of Mortgage Professionals – enhancing the professional competence and standing of mortgage practitioners. This structure ensures firms and individuals from across the market receive the dedicated support they need to ensure regulatory compliance, market effectiveness and professional development.
Supporting the industry – competence, not just exams 
The CII is well known around the world for the quality and breadth of its exams and qualifications. As an examination body, the CII is recognised by UK examinations regulator, the QCA (Qualifications and Curriculum Authority). ACII is recognised as the de facto global standard in General Insurance. The CII’s Chartered titles (Insurance Broker; Insurance Practitioner; Insurer; Financial Planner) represent the peak of the profession in each sector.
The CII is also increasingly recognised for its wide range of products and services which support the competence of companies and individuals. The CII has produced a range of competence frameworks covering the insurance sector. The CII is acknowledged to be an innovator in training and education. It is particularly active in developing online provision – including the award winning Broker ASSESS product. In partnership with the leading UK broker trade body BIBA and international insurance company AXA, the CII and its Faculty of Insurance Broking launched The Broker Academy in 2007. This established a market leading one stop shop training and development facility dedicated to insurance brokers.
Working with employers 
The CII continues to work with employers to devise and implement training and development solutions that align with regulatory requirements, enhance professional development and sharpen competitive edge. The CII has also championed a number of market-wide initiatives, including work to improve the flow of talented recruits into the sector. The CII is leading an industry Talent Taskforce that is changing the perceptions of university graduates and school leavers about the insurance and financial services industries. The aim is to encourage the brightest and best young people to consider a career within the sector.
Supporting the profession 
CII members are entitled to a host of benefits to help them with their professional and personal development, including a comprehensive CPD (continuous professional development) scheme.
CII – a global body 
The CII has around 13,000 members outside the UK in around 150 countries and 70 affiliated institutes. CII has offices in the Far East, Middle East and India. This is an area in which the CII is growing fast.
Institute history 
1873: First insurance institute founded at Manchester on 14 March - concerned mainly, but not exclusively, with fire insurance.
1883: Junior Insurance Institute - became the Insurance Association of Manchester.
1885: Insurance Institute of Ireland.
1886: Insurance Institute of Norwich.
1887: Birmingham Insurance Institute.
1888: Insurance Institute of Yorkshire (which became Insurance Institute of Leeds)
1890: Insurance Institute of Bristol (originally the Insurance Social and Musical Society of Bristol).
1896: Insurance Institute of Newcastle upon Tyne.
1896: Nottingham Fire Offices Society which became, in 1898, the Nottingham Insurance Institute.
1897: So, by 1897 ten "insurance institutes" existed. No institutes at this time in London, Edinburgh or Liverpool. James Ostler (of the Northern), president of Manchester 1896-8, proposed a bringing together of existing institutes after a dinner at the Reform Club.
1897: 12 March - Conference held at the Accountant's Hall, King Street, Manchester. James Ostler elected president of The Federation of Insurance Institutes of Great Britain and Ireland.
1898: 4 February - Charles Stevenson appointed part-time Secretary - salary £25 p.a. At same meeting it was agreed that the Federation must become an examining body and placed the onus on the local institutes to form classes.
1898: 10 June - Contents of first volume of the Journal decided and price fixed.
1899: April - 1,500 copies of the Journal. May - First examinations held in 12 centres, 567 scripts, exams held in the evening between 5.45pm and 10pm during the week and from 2pm - 9pm on Saturdays.
1900: 140 candidates sat the examinations, procedures for the affiliation of overseas institutes were agreed, the Insurance Institute of Toronto (now Ontario) was accepted followed in 1901 by the Insurance Institute of Montreal.
1902: Insurance Clerks' Orphanage formed; operated from premises of London Salvage Corps and was independent of the Federation.
1903: Orphanage had subscribing membership of 2000. Insurance Institutes of South Africa and New Zealand. First Constitution agreed.
1906: Work commenced to seek Royal Charter; agreed Federation of individuals, not of insurance institutes, was required.
1907: Institutes at London, Liverpool, Belfast and Cardiff admitted to Federation.
1908: Insurance Institutes of Great Britain and Ireland constituted, subscriptions paid by local institutes on behalf of their members. Non-tariff company employees excluded from membership.
1912: June - The President - O Morgan Owen - sponsored an appeal for the establishment of London headquarters. £2,800 raised. New set of bye-laws approved.
1912: Royal Charter granted 5 February, Federation became The Chartered Insurance Institute.
1913: Examinations entries 1314 (NB Examinations in Associateship were only in three branches - fire, life and accident). E.W. Humphry replaced Stevenson as Secretary. CII moved to 11 Queen Street, Cheapside - the same building as the Insurance Institute of London.
1914: First Fellowship examinations. 25 local institutes with Hull and Leicester joining by the end of the year.
1914 - 1920: Examinations suspended - World War I
1917: British Insurance Association formed - relieved CII of having to act as a trade association charged with furthering commercial interests of insurers thus enabling it to concentrate on professional and ethical aspects.
1926: Presidential badge struck - first president to wear it was Robert McConnell.
1927: The possibility of establishing a system of tuition by correspondence was considered but rejected.
1928: CII took over exams previously conducted by Lloyd's Students' Society. First steps taken towards the formation of the Insurance Benevolent Fund - largely at the instances of Newcastle.
1929: Insurance Benevolent Fund set up.
1930: G W Reynolds suggested the formation of a CII College.
1931: Faculty of Insurance Limited ( catered specifically for the staffs of approved societies and insurance committees which dealt with the administration of national insurance medical treatment) applied for a charter. Opposed by CII which started its own examinations in the subject. Faculty discussed merger with CII. Institute of National Insurance set up in London but was soon absorbed into Insurance Institute of London. These arrangements remained until 1949.
1932 Insurance Institute of Peterborough formed.
1933: Application for Grant and Arms submitted. Morgan Owen Medal Competition for best essay, work of research or paper by a Fellow instigated.
1934: The Hall opened by King George V who then agreed to become patron providing the highest possible recognition of CII's work. (Building cost £33,000)
1937: Fellowship conferred on E W Humphry as part of 25th Anniversary of granting of Charter.
1938: Senior membership grade introduced (NB All council members to be Seniors)
1939: World War II
1940: After the fall of France, insurance men in prisoner of war camps asked for help in continuing their insurance studies. Scheme organised with British Red Cross Society and £1,000 raised to buy books. Thousands of correspondence courses and books sent to prisoners and on three occasions CII examinations were held in prisoner of war camps. During the war the Corporation of Insurance Brokers decided not to resume its examinations but instead required its students to take the ACII.
1944: Morgan Owen competition reintroduced - over 30 papers submitted.
1945: September - Hugh Cockerell appointed Secretary.
1949: December - Revised consolidated Charter approved by Privy Council and number of local institutes virtually doubled as full institute status granted to former centres of local institutes. System of financing local institutes changed to a grant from the centre, based on their membership and supplemented by grants for premises and possibly libraries.
1950: Dinsdale started to conduct courses of a training nature. These classes grew.
1956: Institute decided to open a College of Insurance with courses having both a training and educational content. D C McMurdie appointed principal and premises for the College were found at Surbiton.
1957: CII celebrated it diamond jubilee at the London annual conference. Edgar Wheeler donated £1,000 for a library at the new College. In September the College of Insurance was opened. Careers Department set up by Hugh Cockerell.
1959 - 1960: Educational Policy Committee, chaired by Bill Copeman (one of the two men to receive the Institute's Gold Medal for distinguished service) reviewed the full educational programme, proposed the introduction of day-release for study and that examiners should comment on study courses. It also considered setting up a research unit for the CII but this was rejected.
1962: Technical insurance courses were added to the curriculum at the College.
1963: New examination syllabus introduced.
1964: The number of trainees at the College rose to 1145 (from 614 in 1959).
1966: A new Educational Policy Review Committee was set up to report on the educational needs of the industry. As a result the direct entry requirements for the Associateship were raised from O level to A level.
1967: College provided first educational as compared with training facilities.
1968: The Insurance Industry Training Council was formed - its first secretary was D C McMurdie - then director of education for the CII
1972: New syllabus, based on the revised structure recommended by the Review Committee, introduced. "Six year rule" for completion of Associateship introduced (subject to possible extension on appeal).
1976: Further Educational Policy Review initiated.
1977: Media Resource Centre founded and first video cassette training programmes issued.
1979: Review Committee reported to Council. Noted changes in the market. Proposed a new approach to insurance studies based on progressive development building from elementary to advanced study in carefully designed stages. December - College moved from Surbiton to Churchill Court, Sevenoaks.
1982: Rule that students should pass the first three subjects at one sitting was introduced.
1984: Rule abandoned.
1985: Revised Charter & Bye-laws ratified by the Privy Council following a constitutional review chaired by W N Brewood which also recommended the introduction of a descriptive title. A reception for insurance ex-prisoners of war held at The Hall.
1986: Society of Fellows set up.
1987: Certificate of Proficiency introduced.
1986: Refurbishment of lower ground floor completed. Lord Mayor of the City of London officially opened the new "Insurance Hall". CII Enterprises Limited set up. Local Institutes Review Committee established to review the nature and functions of local institutes.
1988: Local Institute Grants Committee's report recommended introduction of system of regional co-operation. South West Regional Council established which became operational the following year.
1989: Portrait of H.M. The Queen, commissioned in 1986, unveiled in The Great Hall. Descriptive titles "Chartered Insurer" and "Chartered Insurance Practitioner" allowed by the Privy Council. July - first examinations in the Financial Planning Certificate. Co-ordinating Committee formulated scheme for election to Fellowship following the introduction of new examinations in 1992. Journal re-designed. PV Saxton retired (December) as Director General.
1990: 1 January. D E Bland appointed Director General. CII's activities extended into Eastern Europe. Need for intermediate level examination identified. CII became involved with development of National Vocational Qualifications.
1991: International Division established. Special General Meeting in April to discuss proposed merger with Chartered Building Societies' Institute. As result of subsequent poll decided no point in proceeding with merger. Certificate of Insurance Practice introduced to be examined in 1992. Advanced Financial Planning Certificate introduced. Society of Financial Advisers established. CII took over responsibility as the examining body for the Life Insurance Association for Financial Planning Certificate examinations.
1992: New examination structure and new syllabuses introduced. Twice yearly examinations introduced. Both old and new examinations received very high rating in the national scheme for the transfer of credits under the Council for National Academic Awards. Formal confirmation received from the Department for Education that the pre-1992 FCII and the 1992 ACII equivalent to degrees. 40% decline in entries for the ACII resultant on changes in the insurance market, although some students deferred until October. CII staff reduced as a result of the recession. Accreditation of in-company schemes for financial services sector training approved for certain examinations. CII convened conference of insurance educational organisations in Brussels.
1993: Major initiatives commenced in Hungary, Poland, Slovakia, Russia, Latvia and the Czech Republic. President's Roadshow initiative commenced. First members joined the Society of Technicians in Insurance whose constitution was approved in December 1992. Constitution Review Committee submitted report to AGM proposing greater and more regular direct involvement in the affairs of the CII be given to local institutes. Continuous assessment reintroduced (following pilot scheme carried out in 1989-90). Examination review committee set up to review 1992 examination scheme.
1994: Report of review committee stated that the examinations were appropriate. IITC staff became part of CII. Decision taken to publish details of disciplinary cases in The Journal. CII Library computerised. "Certificated status" for holders of the full, three subject, Financial Planning Certificate introduced. Implementation of Continuing Professional Development for Certificated status and Descriptive title holders agreed. Education Review Sub-committee put forward 51 recommendations which were approved by Council. Number of subject entries for the ACII fell to 28,717. Revised FPC examinations examined for the first time in January. The revisions had been undertaken to ensure that the syllabuses and assessment methodology were acceptable to the Securities and Investments Board. Continuous assessment options available from April in four ACII and four CIP subjects. Revised Charter and Bye-laws implemented. All local institute constitutions revised. 1995: Continuing Professional Development implemented. Generic text introduced in the early 1990s translated into Polish, Latvian, Russian, Slovak, Czech, Hungarian and Albanian. College accredited by the Law Society a supplier of training. All Chartered title holders became members of the Society of Fellows - the category of Associate member was introduced to cater for Associates who held the descriptive title.
1996: Over 1000 candidates entered for CIP examinations in Poland. CIP programmes in Italian and Arabic developed. Project commenced for the provision of a range of education and training services for the Vietnamese insurance market. Revised Certificate of Proficiency, launched in December 1995, was first examined in January with the examinations being offered quarterly. CII Centenary celebrations commenced at the close of the Annual Conference in September. The Society of Financial Advisers was recognised formally as the retail financial services arm of the CII.
1996: CII Centenary year. Launch of IFC to replace COP - September 97.
1997: CII's internet website launched, over one million hits in the first year. Centenary Dinner held in Guildhall, London on 12 March 1997. A cheque for £125,000, the result of a year's fund raising by local and associated institutes, presented to the Princess Royal, President of Save the Children Fund. A mosaic, signed by the presidents of all local and associated institutes completed its journey around the UK and Ireland at the Annual Conference in Manchester. Launch of the IFC to replace COP September 1997. Deadline for the completion of FPC examination reached on 30 June. Over 80,000 advisers completed FPC and over 168,000 entries processed in 18 months. Examination provision proposals rejected by local institutes - resulted in the reduction in technical subjects to be offered within Associateship whilst strengthening link between CIP and Associateship. CD-Rom training program launched. CII with Institutes in America and Canada as founder members and affiliated members in Australia, Brazil, India, New Zealand and South Africa established the Institute for Global Insurance Education. Decline in examination entries resulted in further reductions in staff numbers and sale of the College of Insurance building in Sevenoaks.
2000: David Bland left the Institute and returned to academia. He was succeeded as Director General by Dr. Alexander Scott, who it is much felt by many brought the Institute into the commercial world.
2006 - 2007 The CII launches a drive to recruit more young people into the sector. A mixture of visiting and talking at colleges and universities has been employed in an attempt to persuade. The usefulness and success of this campaign may not be known for a number of years.
2011 CII membership hits over 100,000.
The Institute has a small museum at Aldermanbury in the City of London which is mainly concerned with the history of fire fighting. In the 17th century insurance companies issued fire marks which their clients had to display on the insured property to show that they had purchased cover. The museum has a collection of fire marks and other artefacts relating to the history of fire insurance.
- Official website
- CII Local Institutes - Official site
- Discover Risk
- The Personal Finance Society - Official site
- www.findanadviser.org - IFA search engine populated with qualified PFS members
- Chartered Insurance Institute Museum - information from Culture 24
- (French) French National School of Insurance: ENASS - Ecole Nationale d'Assurances website