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FIN5416 Insurance and Risk Management

Semester 2, 2011 External Toowoomba
Units : 1
Faculty or Section : Faculty of Business and Law
School or Department : School of Accounting, Economics and Finance

Contents on this page


Examiner: Lujer Santacruz
Moderator: Peter Phillips

Other requisites

Students are required to have access to a personal computer, e-mail capabilities and Internet access to UConnect. Current details of computer requirements can be found at <//>. Note: The course is conducted within the Australian context and because of this, international students would be encountering concepts that are new to them and would require some effort to understand.


With the ageing of the Australian population and the seemingly unending demands being placed on public resources, individuals are now being encouraged to become more responsible for their own financial security, particularly in retirement. Accordingly, it is important that those who advise their clients are familiar with and understand the key components of the financial planning process. An important element of which is personal risk management, as all individuals should be concerned about protecting themselves and their assets from an appropriate measure of avoidable risk. One way of doing this is by transferring risk by way of an insurance policy or contract. However, what is not immediately apparent is how much risk should be transferred. The degree to which risk is transferred will be an integral part of their personal financial plan to be determined by the individual risk profile and stage of the accumulation process.


This course has been written from a financial planning perspective but can be taken by those with a general interest in risk management or by those specifically interested in the insurance aspects of financial planning. It does not contain any actuarial studies content. The general nature of risk and its management is explored, of which insurance is but one aspect. The economic output of insurance entities is discussed with reference to the life and general insurance industries, whose market structure is important from a pricing, conduct and performance perspective. The public face of insurance is its products, and most life, general, health and mandated policies are investigated with particular emphasis on legal and taxation aspects, as applicable to consumers and small business. The role and professional advice methodology of the insurance advisor is explored. Finally, regulation and compliance within the financial services sector in general and the insurance industry in particular is examined in some detail.


On successful completion of this course, students should be able to:

  1. describe the legal framework within which the insurance sector operates
  2. explain the functions and role of the relevant regulators
  3. discuss the overall thrust of relevant legislation as they apply to the insurance industry
  4. analyse the structure, conduct and performance of Australian Insurance markets
  5. integrate the various risk concepts, classifications, rules, methods of handling risk into the overall risk management process
  6. complete an appropriate fact find, prepare a needs analysis and provide resulting recommendations
  7. discuss the roles of participants within, and operation of, the Australian insurance markets; understand the role of insurance brokers and agents, their remuneration and their responsibilities regarding disclosure and compliance
  8. analyse the different types of life, general and other insurance products; discuss specific policy wordings, special meanings and the cost/benefit of particular products
  9. discuss specific issues regarding rating, setting premiums and product development
  10. explain the claims process and taxation issues which may arise
  11. demonstrate an ability to learn from feedback on assessment and through interaction with others.


Description Weighting(%)
1. The nature of risk and its management 10.00
2. Insurance industry structure 10.00
3. Insurance policy law and documentation 10.00
4. Life insurance 25.00
5. General insurance 15.00
6. Mandated and health insurance 5.00
7. Needs analysis and recommendations 10.00
8. Taxation of insurance products 5.00
9. Regulation and compliance 10.00

Text and materials required to be purchased or accessed

ALL textbooks and materials available to be purchased can be sourced from USQ's Online Bookshop (unless otherwise stated). (

Please contact us for alternative purchase options from USQ Bookshop. (

  • Teale, J 2008, Insurance and risk management, John Wiley & Sons, Milton, Queensland.
  • Australian Government, invest Australia & AXIS Australia 2006, Insurance in Australia: executive briefing. (this will be supplied to students in the study package).

Reference materials

Reference materials are materials that, if accessed by students, may improve their knowledge and understanding of the material in the course and enrich their learning experience.

Student workload requirements

Activity Hours
Assessments 25.00
Directed Study 50.00
Private Study 90.00

Assessment details

Description Marks out of Wtg (%) Due Date Objectives assessed Graduate skill Level assessed Notes
QUIZZES 100 10 19 Jul 2011 All U2,U3 2,2 (see note 1)
ASSIGNMENT 100 30 03 Oct 2011 All U2,U3,U4,U9 2,2,2,2
EXAM A (MULTIPLE CHOICE) 20 12 End S2 All U2,U3 2,2 (see note 2)
EXAM B (SHORT ANSWER & ESSAY) 80 48 End S2 All U2,U3,U4 2,2,2

  1. These quizzes are to be administered throughout the semester and are to be completed online through the Study Desk. Refer to the Introductory Book for details.
  2. The examination is scheduled to be held in the end-of-semester examination period. Students will be advised of the official examination date for Exam (A and B) after the timetable has been finalised. The total working time for Exam (A and B) is 2 hours.

Graduate qualities and skills

Elements of the following USQ Graduate Skills are associated with the sucessful completion of this course.
Problem solving (U2)Intermediate (Level 2)
Academic, professional and digital literacy (U3)Intermediate (Level 2)
Written and oral communication (U4)Intermediate (Level 2)
Creativity, initiative and enterprise (U9)Intermediate (Level 2)

Important assessment information

  1. Attendance requirements:
    If you are an international student in Australia, you are advised to attend all classes at your campus. For all other students, there are no attendance requirements for this course. However, it is the students' responsibility to study all material provided to them or required to be accessed by them to maximise their chance of meeting the objectives of the course and to be informed of course-related activities and administration.

  2. Requirements for students to complete each assessment item satisfactorily:
    To satisfactorily complete an individual assessment item a student must achieve at least 50% of the marks. (Depending upon the requirements in Statement 4 below, students may not have to satisfactorily complete each assessment item to receive a passing grade in this course.)

  3. Penalties for late submission of required work:
    If students submit assignments after the due date without prior approval of the examiner, then a penalty of 5% of the total marks gained by the student for the assignment may apply for each working day late up to ten working days at which time a mark of zero may be recorded. No assignments will be accepted after model answers have been posted.

  4. Requirements for student to be awarded a passing grade in the course:
    To be assured of receiving a passing grade a student must achieve at least 50% of the total weighted marks available for the course.

  5. Method used to combine assessment results to attain final grade:
    The final grades for students will be assigned on the basis of the aggregate of the weighted marks obtained for each of the summative assessment items in the course.

  6. Examination information:
    This is a restricted examination. Candidates are allowed access to specific materials during the examination. The only materials that candidates may use in the restricted examination for this course are: writing materials (non-electronic and free from material which could give the student an unfair advantage in the examination); calculators which cannot hold textual information (students must indicate on their examination paper the make and model of any calculator(s) they use during the examination). Students are not permitted to take mobile telephones, pagers or other electronic means of communication into the examination room.

  7. Examination period when Deferred/Supplementary examinations will be held:
    Any Deferred or Supplementary examinations for this course will be held during the next examination period.

  8. University Student Policies:
    Students should read the USQ policies: Definitions, Assessment and Student Academic Misconduct to avoid actions which might contravene University policies and practices. These policies can be found at

Assessment notes

  1. Assignments: (i) The due date for an assignment is the date by which a student must despatch the assignment to the USQ. The onus is on the student to provide proof of the despatch date, if requested by the examiner. (ii) Students may be required to provide a copy of assignments submitted for assessment purposes. Such copies should be despatched to the USQ within 24 hours of receipt of a request to do so. (iii) In accordance with university policy, the examiner may grant an extension of the due date of an assignment in extenuating circumstances. (iv) The faculty will NOT accept submission of assignments by facsimile. (v) Students who do not have regular access to postal services or who are otherwise disadvantaged by these regulations may be given special consideration. They should contact the examiner of the course to negotiate such special arrangements. (vi) In the event that a due date for an assignment falls on a local public holiday in their area, such as a show holiday, the due date for the assignment will be the next day. Students are to note on the assignment cover the date of the public holiday for the examiner's convenience.

  2. Referencing in assignments: Harvard (AGPS) is the referencing system required in this course. Students should use Harvard (AGPS) style in their assignments to format details of the information sources they have cited in their work. The Harvard (AGPS) style to be used is defined by the USQ Library's referencing guide at <//>.

  3. Course weightings: Course weightings of topics should not be interpreted as applying to the number of marks allocated to questions testing those topics in an examination paper. The examination may test material already tested in assignments.

  4. Dishonest actions: (i) Any student who is alleged to have performed a dishonest action relating to any assessment in the course will have a course of action taken against him/her as outlined in the academic regulations. (ii) Pieces of assessment should be the work of individual students. Joint pieces of assessment are not permitted unless written approval has been obtained from the examiner. (iii) Dishonest action in relation to assessment includes: copying or attempting to copy the work of others; use of or attempting to use information prohibited from use in that form of assessment; submitting the work of another as your own; consciously committing acts of plagiarism, that is, taking and using another's thoughts or writings as one's own with intent to deceive, which occurs when paragraphs, sentences, a single sentence or significant parts of a sentence which are copied directly, are not enclosed in quotation marks and appropriately footnoted or referenced in the text; direct quotations are not used, but text is paraphrased or summarised, and the source of the material is not acknowledged by footnoting or other reference in the text.

  5. Deferred work: Students who, for medical, family/personal, or employment-related reasons, are unable to complete an assignment or to sit for an examination at the scheduled time may apply to defer an assessment in a course. Such a request must be accompanied by appropriate supporting documentation. One of the following temporary grades may be awarded: IDS (Incomplete - Deferred Examination); IDM (Incomplete Deferred Make-up); IDB (Incomplete - Both Deferred Examination and Deferred Make-up).

Other requirements

  1. E-mail and Internet access: Students will require access to e-mail and Internet access to UConnect for this course.-