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About the Program

​​​​Enroll in the Certified Employee Benefit Specialist® (​​CEBS) program and earn the most respected designation in the benefits industry. You'll learn from health and retirement curriculum—Streamlined core courses, laser-focused content and less breadth and more depth mean now you can learn more in less time. 

Enroll in the Certified Employee Benefit Specialist® ​​(CEBS) program and earn the most respected designation in the benefits industry. You'll learn from health and retirement curriculum—Streamlined core courses, laser-focused content and less breadth and more depth mean now you can learn more in less time. 

The Group Benefits Associate (GBA) and the Retirement Plans Associate (RPA) form the core of the CEBS curriculum. Earn a designation in each of the specialty tracks and, at the same time, receive credit that will qualify toward earning the CEBS designation, which carries a five-course requirement.

​Certified Employee Benefit Specialist (CEBS)

The CEBS designation is a credential that is recognized for the depth and relevance of critical knowledge achieved. It draws from the GBA and RPA curriculum to build a total benefits perspective and is achieved by successfully completing all five required courses:

CEBS Designation


Group Benefits Associate (GBA)

For those working with health and other group benefits. The courses reflect the up-to-date and relevant information—including updates on health care reform—needed to effectively design, administer and communicate group benefits.​​

Retirement Plans Associate​ (RPA)

​For those who work with defined contribution and defined benefit plans or are involved with the management of plan assets. The courses reflect the most current and relevant information needed to effectively design and manage retirement plans.​​​

New CEBS Registration

New CEBS Registration​​

CEBS Partnership

The International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans is privileged to partner with the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania in the United States and Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada in offering the CEBS program.

About the International Foundation

The International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans, a non-profit educational organization, dedicated to providing the diverse employee benefits community with objective, solution-oriented education, research and information established the CEBS program in 1977.

About Dalhousie University

With more than 18,000 students, Dalhousie is a member of the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada, the Atlantic Association of Universities and the Association of Commonwealth Universities.

About the Wharton School

Founded in 1881, the Wharton School is recognized globally for intellectual leadership and ongoing innovation across every major discipline of business education.

International Foundation Logo 

Wharton Logo  

International Foundation Logo 

Dalhousie University Logo  

What's In It For Me?

The secret's out. Employee benefits pros are having true impact in organizations. CEBS puts the power in profession by providing the knowledge you need and the respect you deserve. CEBS has always provided the high-caliber knowledge you need by partnering with prestigious universities. Now you also get the application, the connections and the relationships, all career long.​

Individuals Looking for Professional Development

You're looking ahead and CEBS is going to take you there. We've streamlined the curriculum, sped it up, moved it online, and applied it to the real world for you.

  • Go from CEBS newbie to graduate in under three years—new streamlined model means you can learn more in less time.
  • Earn your Group Benefits Associate (GBA) and Retirement Plans Associate (RPA) designation along the way, each obtainable within a year for the most motivated students.
  • Choose your path and your timeline—CEBS fits your life with flexible learning.
  • Earn credit as you work toward your CEBS—coursework qualifies for licensing and other continuing professional education requirements.
  • Are you a university student considering a career in the benefits industry? Find out more about the benefits of CEBS for your future.

Employers Looking to Develop a Strong Benefits Team 

You need a team of bright professionals ready to hit the ground running by applying their knowledge from day one. Arm your team with comprehensive, accelerated, application-based knowledge that leads to better engagement within your organization.

CEBS will help you create a team of top-notch benefits professionals that know the ins and outs of benefits, ready to speak to the beneficiaries all the way up to the c-suite.

Credentials are must-haves in today's ever-changing business environment. The CEBS designation fits your employee development goals by providing relevant education and elevating your employees' and your organizations' stature in the benefits community. 

Benefits Departments

(Benefits and pension managers, administrators, executives, generalists and specialists)

Use the CEBS program to build a team of bright professionals ready to hit the ground running. The CEBS curriculum provides the application elements that allow students to apply the knowledge from day one. Arm your team with the knowledge needed to ask advisors questions and confidently answer those  received each day.

Sales Teams and Professional Services

(Agents, brokers, producers, account managers, account execs, consultants, actuaries, lawyers, accountants, third-party administrators)

CEBS gives your organization a competitive edge with the "best-of-the-best" staff, resulting in increased business revenue and client retention. Ramp up your strategy with critical knowledge to put into action immediately and grow your business.

 Ready To Take the Next Step?

CEBS Graduates

Since the CEBS program began, more than 14,000 individuals have earned the CEBS designation. The new CEBS meets the demands of an evolving benefits industry while elevating the stature of designation holders.

As champions of the designation, graduates are a symbol of the bold statement "I am a CEBS." Having worked hard to achieve this level, they lead by example and inspire those following in their footsteps. They are the difference makers, the elevated stars, they are CEBS.

CEBS graduates benefit from

  • ​​A credential that demonstrates a high level of knowledge and commitment to the benefits profession ​
  • Knowledge backed by a prestigious academic powerhouse
  • Wide spread respect of an externally-driven credential
  • Being part of a community of like-minded peers​​

Learn More

Frequently Asked Questions | Contact Us

Still looking for more information? Check out CEBS FAQ for further details on curriculum updates.
Questions about your next step? Give us a call at (800) 449-2327, option 3 or e-mail



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