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  • Taking your first step into the UK Investment Profession with IMC

    by Katy Thomason-Stewart | May 26, 2022

    The IMC qualification is the ideal entry point for those wanting to start a career in the high-flying world of Finance. So what do our IMC courses entail and why is it the beginning of a great career path?

    So you may have just left school/college with huge ambitions, or might be looking to move into an exciting and well paid sector. If that’s the case, look no further…

    IMC might be for you

    The IMC course is an introductory certificate, and offers the fundamentals when it comes to investment management and chartered finance. It’s a great introduction to the more advanced CFA qualification and is ideal for those new to the industry.

    It provides an excellent foundation into the core areas of: portfolio management, research analysis, front office investment, relationship management and risk management. These are some of the core activities that underpin the investment profession.

    There are no entry requirements needed to study IMC, but ideally candidates will have 5 GCSEs A* to C or Grade 4 and above. If it's been a while since you studied Maths, we recommend you take the one day core skills online course.

    The qualification is made up of two units: Unit 1 (Investment Environment) and Unit 2 (Investment Practice). You will need to have passed both units to be awarded the qualification.

    Why study with Kaplan?

    As someone who is new to this profession, you couldn’t ask for a better provider. Kaplan has decades of teaching experience and vast resources, meaning we can give you that extra level of support to help you pass your exams.

    For instance, we have a range of study method options. You might prefer being in a face-to-face classroom, or studying remotely (distance learning), at a pace and time that fits around your personal life. Or you might be comfortable working in a way that is a hybrid of both (distance learning with recorded classes).

    Whichever study method you choose, you'll benefit from highly experienced tutors, practical learning methods and ongoing support, right up until your exam. And if you already have the CFA UK Official Training Manual, this can be discounted from your package price.

    It gives you the face-to-face experience and structure of a live classroom tutor, with the flexibility to attend from any location. A modern delivery style to compliment a modern working world.

    - Jeremy Smith, Head of Banking and Finance - on our hybrid study method.

    The unique benefits of studying IMC with Kaplan

    Training and study tools fully integrated with Official Training Manuals (OTMs) - OTMs, written by the examiner, are the definitive exam reference documents around which our product is built. No other training provider can significantly improve your chances of passing.

    Study materials to help you pass - Our subject matter experts have developed a study portal where you can access all of your learning resources. From a recommended study approach to online questions and tutor recordings - we’ve got you covered.

    Over 25 years teaching - Kaplan started teaching the qualification shortly after it was launched in the UK. Our tutors know what it takes to pass and have all completed the IMC.

    Ongoing support so you’re never alone - Whenever you need to contact a Kaplan tutor, we are here to help with any challenges you may have.

    IMC - the start of your dream career

    We hope you’re inspired to explore this course and seek the exciting benefits it brings. For more information on our IMC course please visit our IMC web page.

  • Taking your first step into the UK Investment Profession with IMC

    by Katy Thomason-Stewart | May 26, 2022

    The IMC qualification is the ideal entry point for those wanting to start a career in the high-flying world of Finance. So what do our IMC courses entail and why is it the beginning of a great career path?

    So you may have just left school/college with huge ambitions, or might be looking to move into an exciting and well paid sector. If that’s the case, look no further…

    IMC might be for you

    The IMC course is an introductory certificate, and offers the fundamentals when it comes to investment management and chartered finance. It’s a great introduction to the more advanced CFA qualification and is ideal for those new to the industry.

    It provides an excellent foundation into the core areas of: portfolio management, research analysis, front office investment, relationship management and risk management. These are some of the core activities that underpin the investment profession.

    There are no entry requirements needed to study IMC, but ideally candidates will have 5 GCSEs A* to C or Grade 4 and above. If it's been a while since you studied Maths, we recommend you take the one day core skills online course.

    The qualification is made up of two units: Unit 1 (Investment Environment) and Unit 2 (Investment Practice). You will need to have passed both units to be awarded the qualification.

    Why study with Kaplan?

    As someone who is new to this profession, you couldn’t ask for a better provider. Kaplan has decades of teaching experience and vast resources, meaning we can give you that extra level of support to help you pass your exams.

    For instance, we have a range of study method options. You might prefer being in a face-to-face classroom, or studying remotely (distance learning), at a pace and time that fits around your personal life. Or you might be comfortable working in a way that is a hybrid of both (distance learning with recorded classes).

    Whichever study method you choose, you'll benefit from highly experienced tutors, practical learning methods and ongoing support, right up until your exam. And if you already have the CFA UK Official Training Manual, this can be discounted from your package price.

    It gives you the face-to-face experience and structure of a live classroom tutor, with the flexibility to attend from any location. A modern delivery style to compliment a modern working world.

    - Jeremy Smith, Head of Banking and Finance - on our hybrid study method.

    The unique benefits of studying IMC with Kaplan

    Training and study tools fully integrated with Official Training Manuals (OTMs) - OTMs, written by the examiner, are the definitive exam reference documents around which our product is built. No other training provider can significantly improve your chances of passing.

    Study materials to help you pass - Our subject matter experts have developed a study portal where you can access all of your learning resources. From a recommended study approach to online questions and tutor recordings - we’ve got you covered.

    Over 25 years teaching - Kaplan started teaching the qualification shortly after it was launched in the UK. Our tutors know what it takes to pass and have all completed the IMC.

    Ongoing support so you’re never alone - Whenever you need to contact a Kaplan tutor, we are here to help with any challenges you may have.

    IMC - the start of your dream career

    We hope you’re inspired to explore this course and seek the exciting benefits it brings. For more information on our IMC course please visit our IMC web page.

  • Let’s talk about stress

    by Katy Thomason-Stewart | May 26, 2022

    Stress. It’s a word we hear a lot, but what is it and how does it manifest? We’ve teamed up with caba, the independent charity helping the ICAEW community thrive, to offer advice on stress and how to deal with it.

    What is stress?

    Stress is a condition that most of us will experience at some point in our lives. A small amount can be useful to motivate us.

    But if you feel constantly overwhelmed, this exposure to long-term (chronic) stress can have a real impact on your physical and mental health.

    You probably know how it feels to be stressed all too well. Your breath might quicken, perhaps your heart starts to pound, or your mouth feels dry, your muscles might tense and your hands are weirdly cold but sweaty.

    What one person finds stressful another person might not. We all perceive the world differently, which means we all have different definitions of stress. This means some of us are more sensitive to stress than others.

    When we feel stressed, it releases stress hormones which trigger the “fight or flight” response. This is designed to help our bodies handle stress, but long-term exposure can cause mental and physical illnesses.

    Responding to danger - fight or flight?

    Fight or flight describes the body's automatic response to danger. It's thought that this evolved hundreds of thousands of years ago as a way to help us react to life-threatening situations.

    Because it's an automatic response, it's often triggered without us realising it - or being able to prevent it.

    In the presence of danger, our eyes and/or ears send information to the ‘amygdala’, the area of the brain which is responsible for processing our emotions.

    The amygdala sends a distress signal to an area at the base of the brain called the hypothalamus, which communicates with the body via the nervous system.

    The hypothalamus activates the sympathetic nervous system.

    This sends signals to the adrenal glands, which then produce hormones including adrenaline, norepinephrine, and cortisol into the bloodstream.

    As these hormones circulate through the body, they trigger a range of physical changes.

    What are the physical signs of stress?

    We all experience stress differently but some of the physical symptoms of stress include:

    • faster heart rate, chest pain, or feeling like your heart is racing
    • dry mouth and decreased saliva production
    • headaches, dizziness, or shaking
    • sweating
    • raised blood pressure
    • more energy (caused by the release of sugars and fats into the muscles)
    • muscle tension or jaw clenching

    If the brain perceives the threat as ongoing, the hypothalamus releases more hormones.

    These act on the adrenal glands, making them release more cortisol and leaving the body in a continued state of alert.

    When the brain believes the threat is over, it reduces cortisol levels. The hypothalamus also activates the parasympathetic nervous system, which dampens the stress response.

    Chronic stress and the long-term effects

    Sometimes, a stress response can be useful. It can boost our awareness in stressful situations and help us cope with emergencies.

    But if it happens too often, or for too long, the content release of stress hormones can lead to physical health problems including:

    • stomach or digestive problems like diarrhoea, constipation, and nausea
    • a weakened immune system, causing regular colds and infections
    • exhaustion or sleeping problems
    • heart disease

    Long-term stress can also lead to emotional and mental health symptoms, such as:

    • anxiety or irritability
    • depression
    • panic attacks
    • sadness.

    It’s vital to listen to our bodies, especially if we’re experiencing any of the symptoms mentioned above.

    Stress, and the symptoms of stress, must be taken seriously. If they’re not, as we’ve seen, it can cause real issues for our mental and physical health.

    How can you prevent stress?

    More movement

    Exercising reduces the build up of stress hormones in our body. Even a short walk outdoors can boost your mood. It can also give you an opportunity to clear your mind without any distractions.

    Eating well

    While we shouldn’t deprive ourselves of treats, or become obsessive about our diets, eating a balanced diet will naturally boost your mood and give you more energy.

    Effective sleep

    Getting a good night’s sleep helps you keep things in perspective. If you’re struggling to sleep well, Sleepstation can support you.

    Staying positive

    It’s natural for us to only focus on what we haven’t achieved each day. But it’s important to sit back and think about what you have achieved. This will help to improve your mindset over time.

    Set yourself realistic goals

    Setting goals for each day, week, and month will narrow your view and help you feel more in control of short and long-term tasks.

    Set boundaries

    Saying ‘no’ to colleagues, family members, and loved ones can be terrifying. Which is why we usually say yes, even if it’s likely to increase our stress levels.

    But saying ‘no’ promotes healthy boundaries with the people around you. It also opens up a dialogue which allows you to talk through what your current focus is.

    Relaxation time

    Dedicating a small portion of your day to relaxing not only gives you something to look forward to, but also gives you that all-important opportunity to switch off.

    Self-care is often sniffed at but has never been more important. Simple things like treating yourself to a long bath after a tough day helps you compartmentalise the negative emotions you may be experiencing, relax tension you’re carrying in your muscles, and calm your mind.

    Need help with stress?

    If you’re finding yourself overwhelmed, then speak to your GP or other healthcare professional. If there is something about your course or studies that is causing you stress, please get in touch with us. You can also contact caba for advice about managing stress and your wellbeing.

    This blog is a joint collaboration between Kaplan and caba. caba is the charity that supports ACA students, past and present ICAEW members and their close family dependents.

  • Taking your first step into the UK Investment Profession with IMC

    by Katy Thomason-Stewart | May 26, 2022

    The IMC qualification is the ideal entry point for those wanting to start a career in the high-flying world of Finance. So what do our IMC courses entail and why is it the beginning of a great career path?

    So you may have just left school/college with huge ambitions, or might be looking to move into an exciting and well paid sector. If that’s the case, look no further…

    IMC might be for you

    The IMC course is an introductory certificate, and offers the fundamentals when it comes to investment management and chartered finance. It’s a great introduction to the more advanced CFA qualification and is ideal for those new to the industry.

    It provides an excellent foundation into the core areas of: portfolio management, research analysis, front office investment, relationship management and risk management. These are some of the core activities that underpin the investment profession.

    There are no entry requirements needed to study IMC, but ideally candidates will have 5 GCSEs A* to C or Grade 4 and above. If it's been a while since you studied Maths, we recommend you take the one day core skills online course.

    The qualification is made up of two units: Unit 1 (Investment Environment) and Unit 2 (Investment Practice). You will need to have passed both units to be awarded the qualification.

    Why study with Kaplan?

    As someone who is new to this profession, you couldn’t ask for a better provider. Kaplan has decades of teaching experience and vast resources, meaning we can give you that extra level of support to help you pass your exams.

    For instance, we have a range of study method options. You might prefer being in a face-to-face classroom, or studying remotely (distance learning), at a pace and time that fits around your personal life. Or you might be comfortable working in a way that is a hybrid of both (distance learning with recorded classes).

    Whichever study method you choose, you'll benefit from highly experienced tutors, practical learning methods and ongoing support, right up until your exam. And if you already have the CFA UK Official Training Manual, this can be discounted from your package price.

    It gives you the face-to-face experience and structure of a live classroom tutor, with the flexibility to attend from any location. A modern delivery style to compliment a modern working world.

    - Jeremy Smith, Head of Banking and Finance - on our hybrid study method.

    The unique benefits of studying IMC with Kaplan

    Training and study tools fully integrated with Official Training Manuals (OTMs) - OTMs, written by the examiner, are the definitive exam reference documents around which our product is built. No other training provider can significantly improve your chances of passing.

    Study materials to help you pass - Our subject matter experts have developed a study portal where you can access all of your learning resources. From a recommended study approach to online questions and tutor recordings - we’ve got you covered.

    Over 25 years teaching - Kaplan started teaching the qualification shortly after it was launched in the UK. Our tutors know what it takes to pass and have all completed the IMC.

    Ongoing support so you’re never alone - Whenever you need to contact a Kaplan tutor, we are here to help with any challenges you may have.

    IMC - the start of your dream career

    We hope you’re inspired to explore this course and seek the exciting benefits it brings. For more information on our IMC course please visit our IMC web page.

  • Taking your first step into the UK Investment Profession with IMC

    by Katy Thomason-Stewart | May 26, 2022

    The IMC qualification is the ideal entry point for those wanting to start a career in the high-flying world of Finance. So what do our IMC courses entail and why is it the beginning of a great career path?

    So you may have just left school/college with huge ambitions, or might be looking to move into an exciting and well paid sector. If that’s the case, look no further…

    IMC might be for you

    The IMC course is an introductory certificate, and offers the fundamentals when it comes to investment management and chartered finance. It’s a great introduction to the more advanced CFA qualification and is ideal for those new to the industry.

    It provides an excellent foundation into the core areas of: portfolio management, research analysis, front office investment, relationship management and risk management. These are some of the core activities that underpin the investment profession.

    There are no entry requirements needed to study IMC, but ideally candidates will have 5 GCSEs A* to C or Grade 4 and above. If it's been a while since you studied Maths, we recommend you take the one day core skills online course.

    The qualification is made up of two units: Unit 1 (Investment Environment) and Unit 2 (Investment Practice). You will need to have passed both units to be awarded the qualification.

    Why study with Kaplan?

    As someone who is new to this profession, you couldn’t ask for a better provider. Kaplan has decades of teaching experience and vast resources, meaning we can give you that extra level of support to help you pass your exams.

    For instance, we have a range of study method options. You might prefer being in a face-to-face classroom, or studying remotely (distance learning), at a pace and time that fits around your personal life. Or you might be comfortable working in a way that is a hybrid of both (distance learning with recorded classes).

    Whichever study method you choose, you'll benefit from highly experienced tutors, practical learning methods and ongoing support, right up until your exam. And if you already have the CFA UK Official Training Manual, this can be discounted from your package price.

    It gives you the face-to-face experience and structure of a live classroom tutor, with the flexibility to attend from any location. A modern delivery style to compliment a modern working world.

    - Jeremy Smith, Head of Banking and Finance - on our hybrid study method.

    The unique benefits of studying IMC with Kaplan

    Training and study tools fully integrated with Official Training Manuals (OTMs) - OTMs, written by the examiner, are the definitive exam reference documents around which our product is built. No other training provider can significantly improve your chances of passing.

    Study materials to help you pass - Our subject matter experts have developed a study portal where you can access all of your learning resources. From a recommended study approach to online questions and tutor recordings - we’ve got you covered.

    Over 25 years teaching - Kaplan started teaching the qualification shortly after it was launched in the UK. Our tutors know what it takes to pass and have all completed the IMC.

    Ongoing support so you’re never alone - Whenever you need to contact a Kaplan tutor, we are here to help with any challenges you may have.

    IMC - the start of your dream career

    We hope you’re inspired to explore this course and seek the exciting benefits it brings. For more information on our IMC course please visit our IMC web page.