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Subject overview

This course is no longer accepting new student applications. Single subject enrolments will be open until Study Period 6 2022. Contact us for further details.

The subject focuses on developing advisers’ knowledge and skills in behavioural finance and how this affects the decision-making process of SMSF trustees. Individuals  examine the central tenets from the field of behavioural finance, particularly those findings that provide insights into psychological influences in investment decision‐making.  The assessments provide individuals an opportunity to apply their learnings via conceptual and case-study based short- and long-answer questions, which also cover application to their personal professional practice with SMSFs.

For more information, please refer to the subject outline.

Subject information

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this subject, individuals should be able to:

  • Evaluate the application of behavioural finance to the interaction and engagement with SMSF trustees.
  • Explain factors resulting in measurable, systemic biases in investment decisions including the difference between collective and individual decision making processes.
  • Analyse the impact of behavioural biases on SMSF fund management strategies.
  • Develop a methodology for mentoring and guiding SMSF trustees


Topics covered

  1. Origins of behavioural finance
  2. Traditional and behavioural finance
  3. Emotional decision making
  4. Personality traits
  5. Risk perception and risk tolerance
  6. Behavioural portfolio theory
  7. Advising the behavioural investor
  8. Financial therapy
  9. SMSF trustee coaching and observational awareness


Continuing professional development (CPD)

Please contact Kaplan Professional’s CPD Support team on 1300 527 526 or

Reading list

Baker, HK & Ricciardi, V (eds.) 2014, Investor behavior: the psychology of financial planning and investing, John Wiley & Sons, Hoboken, N. J.

Reading list


Assessment TypeAssessedWeighting
Assignment 1Week 640%
Assignment 2Week 1260%

Previous study requirements


The duration of this subject is one study period (12 weeks).


There are no prerequisites for this subject. However, individuals should review the ‘Assumed Knowledge’ tab to understand the prior knowledge Kaplan Professional advises you should hold before enrolling in this subject.

Assumed knowledge

Whilst there are no prerequisites for this subject, Kaplan Professional assumes individuals have completed or are currently studying SMS001 SMSF Best Practice with SMS002 Understanding SMSF Trustees.

Course transition subject equivalence

Individuals may not be required to complete this subject if they have transitioned from a SIA/Finsia/Kaplan Professional course and have completed the following subjects:

  • there are no equivalences for this subject.

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