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Certificate in D C Governance

The Pensions Management Institute


£495 - £575 inc VAT
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There is an Affiliate Membership Fee payable of £80 on top of the cost of the course for...

Study method
Distance learning, self-paced
100 hours
Level 4 Certificate
Additional info
  • Exam(s) / assessment(s) is included in price

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To provide an understanding of the requirements and standards of governance relating to defined contribution (DC) workplace pension schemes.


Level 4 Certificate


The qualification is grouped under fourteen main headings.

  1. Distinguish between the different methods of providing and delivering DC pensions and the different benefits and options
  2. Evaluate why an employer might choose either a trust, master trust or contract based arrangement
  3. Understand the roles and functions of the bodies that regulate workplace DC pension schemes and provide assistance or protection to members and employers
  4. Outline recent developments in legislation and forthcoming changes that will impact on DC pension provision
  5. Demonstrate an understanding of the automatic enrolment requirements
  6. Demonstrate an understanding of the importance of the governance structure in DC arrangements
  7. Demonstrate an understanding of the importance of risk management
  8. Demonstrate an understanding of the nature of decision making and the role of professional advice
  9. Understand the Pensions Regulator’s and DWP’s approach to DC governance and quality standards
  10. Understand the Financial Conduct Authority’s regulatory approach to DC Quality Standards
  11. Understand the administration requirements for DC arrangements
  12. Demonstrate an understanding of the importance of effective member communications and engagement
  13. Demonstrate an understanding of the National Association of Pension Funds Pensions Quality Mark 'PQM'
  14. Demonstrate an understanding of the role of trustees and employer and provider governance committees in choosing and monitoring investments

Who is this course for?

It is suitable for those running, advising on or governing workplace pension schemes including:

  • Members of governance committees
  • Trustees and scheme secretaries
  • Associates or Fellows of the PMI who qualified when the examinations were focussed on the requirements for defined benefit schemes
  • Individuals working in allied professions such as legal, investment and actuarial
  • Consultants advising on pure DC schemes (trust and contract) and those whose defined benefit schemes include for example AVC arrangements
  • Independent Financial Advisers
  • Administrators (including providers and master trusts) of pure DC schemes (trust and contract) and those whose defined benefit schemes include for example AVC arrangements
  • Those who have completed the PMI’s Certificate in Pensions Automatic Enrolment, Retirement Provision Certificate or Certificate in Pensions Essentials.


It is a compulsory requirement to be a member of the PMI to sit the examination.

Candidates (who are not already PMI Members) will become Affiliate Members of the PMI. Candidates who successfully complete the qualification will be entitled to apply to become Certificate Members of PMI and use the designation CertPMI after their name.

Career path

The Certificate in DC Governance is a standalone qualification.

Those who complete the RPC could proceed to any of the PMI Diplomas or consider other standalone PMI qualifications, depending on individual circumstances.

Questions and answers


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What does study method mean?

Study method describes the format in which the course will be delivered. At courses are delivered in a number of ways, including online courses, where the course content can be accessed online remotely, and classroom courses, where courses are delivered in person at a classroom venue.

What are CPD hours/points?

CPD stands for Continuing Professional Development. If you work in certain professions or for certain companies, your employer may require you to complete a number of CPD hours or points, per year. You can find a range of CPD courses on, many of which can be completed online.

What is a ‘regulated qualification’?

A regulated qualification is delivered by a learning institution which is regulated by a government body. In England, the government body which regulates courses is Ofqual. Ofqual regulated qualifications sit on the Regulated Qualifications Framework (RQF), which can help students understand how different qualifications in different fields compare to each other. The framework also helps students to understand what qualifications they need to progress towards a higher learning goal, such as a university degree or equivalent higher education award.

What is an ‘endorsed’ course?

An endorsed course is a skills based course which has been checked over and approved by an independent awarding body. Endorsed courses are not regulated so do not result in a qualification - however, the student can usually purchase a certificate showing the awarding body’s logo if they wish. Certain awarding bodies - such as Quality Licence Scheme and TQUK - have developed endorsement schemes as a way to help students select the best skills based courses for them.