Diploma in Fundraising Online (Starting 17th March 2021)

Diploma in Fundraising Online (Starting 17th March 2021)

Date: Wednesday 17th Mar 2021

Time: The booking deadline for this qualification is 3rd February 2021.

This course starts on the 17th March 2021 with set deadlines for Assignment submissions and Exam date (please see below). The qualification takes approximately an academic year to complete with 6-8 hours per week study time.

Venue: This is an online professional qualification. There are no face to face training days and you need to be working in a fundraising capacity (either voluntary or paid) in order to complete the four work based assessments. This online qualification is designed to give clear milestones each week to keep students motivated and engaged. The key to success within this educational approach is student participation and student involvement. The course won’t work without it.

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Keen to advance your strategic fundraising and management skills? The Diploma in Fundraising builds on your existing experience and skills to consolidate and expand your knowledge in all key aspects of fundraising, including strategic planning and innovative techniques involved in e-fundraising.

The booking deadline for this qualification is the 3rd February 2021. 

The online format for the Diploma in Fundraising allows you to study for the UK’s most recognised fundraising qualification, wherever you live, complete scheduled weekly tasks at times which suit you during the week, with on-going distance learning support from our professional, experienced tutors. The virtual learning environment helps you to gain the knowledge and apply it as well as giving you the opportunity to share your ideas and experiences through the student discussion forum.

Please note: This qualification will start on the 17th March 2021 and will follow a scheduled 32 week calendar. 

 How is the course structured and delivered?

The course is delivered 100% online with a mixture of content including interactive activities (including an online student discussion forum), readings and resources. Assessment is based on completion of three formal written assignments and a 3 hour written Examination in London. The deadlines for your Assessments are set in advanced to help you plan your studies.

The course consists of four Units which are broken down into weekly ‘Study Guides’ designed to help you to consolidate your knowledge. These guides are essential and have been designed to ensure you put your learning into practice. Your tutors can provide support to help you prepare for each Unit’s Assignment.


The online course includes:

  • Students Area where you can manage your details, access your calendar and review your progress and feedback for submitted assignments and activities.
  • Study Guides where you will find each course Unit’s:

i) Learning outcomes which are documents available to download.

ii) Weekly readings and activities enabling you to consolidate your knowledge and put your learning into practice. 

  • The Resources area contains materials relevant to your course including the required readings, relevant articles, videos, links to relevant websites and study guides.
  • The Assignments area is where formal assignments are submitted and marked.
  • The student discussion forum will enable you to post comments and feedback in response to tutors’ and your fellow students’ postings. Student participation and engagement is essential throughout the qualification.


Who is this qualification for?
This qualification contains significant elements of management and strategy and is designed for those whose roles are concerned with these areas. As a guide you should have a minimum of three years fundraising experience either in a paid or voluntary capacity and have management experience.
What are the benefits to you and your organisation?
You will become a more successful, confident and strategic fundraising manager and leader. In addition to consolidating your existing fundraising knowledge you will learn and understand how to apply proven techniques to enhance your own and your team's performance and development. These skills will enable you to manage the sustainable development and growth of your organisation's fundraising income streams.
What will I learn?

You will work your way through four Units on this course. These are:

  • The Direct Response Fundraising unit examines the definition, evolution and role of direct response, individual giving behaviour, direct response planning, testing, fundraising media, e-fundraising, the online communications mix, best practice and cost structures and the characteristics of effective fundraising websites


  • The Major Gift Fundraising and Legacy Giving unit looks at forms of major gifts, the principles of prospect research, the institutional readiness, systems and processes to support major gift fundraising. In addition to this the categories and characteristics of capital campaigns will also be studied. This will include use and content of feasibility studies and monitoring and evaluation as well as the current trends of legacy giving, legacy solicitation methods, joint promotions and the role of third party partners


  • The Corporate and Grant Fundraising unit explores the forms and motives of support, CSR, organisational giving behaviour and relationship development. It will look at the management of payroll giving in the overall fundraising mix, identification of needs appropriate for grant support and the difference between restricted and unrestricted funds. It will also examine reporting requirements and organisational behaviour


  • The Fundraising Management unit analyses motivation at work, leadership and performance appraisal. It will look at reasons, methods and characteristics of a legally defensible appraisal system and volunteer recruitment and retention. It will also examine volunteer induction and training, key volunteer legislation, reasons for volunteer attrition and strategies to prevent this


How will I be assessed?

You need to complete a series of three work based assignments and take a three hour written examination under formal exam conditions. To help you plan your studies the assignment deadlines and exam date for this course are below. Information on the assignment requirements can be found in the Course handbook.

 Diploma in Fundraising assessment deadlines:

  • Assignment 1: 29th April 2021
  • Assignment 2: 17th June 2021
  • Assignment 3: 2nd September 2021


London Examination date: October 2021 (between 09:00 - 17:00, exact timings and central London venue to be confirmed)

 Graduation ceremony, London (optional): November 2022 (exact date and venue to be confirmed)

 What level of commitment is needed?

Successful online learning demands that students actively engage with their online course, their tutor and student group. From experience we have found that those students who regularly engage, by applying and testing their knowledge using the activities, resources and the student discussion forum to connect with their peers, find the course more rewarding and are better prepared to complete their Assignments. Course participation will form part of your overall grade assessment.

You are expected to study in your own time and complete three written Assignments which must be submitted on or before the deadlines given above. We recommend that students put aside at least six to eight hours per week for study, including the time required to complete the Assignments. On average the length of time needed to complete this qualification is approximately an academic year.

To ensure you are not placed at a disadvantage when studying for an IoF qualification you should have a good command of written and spoken English to complete assignments to the required standard.

You will need Internet access to participate in this course and enable you to register for the file sharing service which provides essential online course materials.

You will need to purchase the course textbook Sargeant, A. and Jay, E. (2014) Fundraising Management: Analysis Planning and Practice (third edition), Routledge, London.The course textbook is not included in the fees.


Course Fees:


£2,285 for IoF Individual members, £2,442* for Non-individual members.

*If you are not yet an individual IoF member your first year's membership is included with the non-member rate. You must hold a valid IoF Full individual membership while studying for a qualification. This gives access to range of benefits which should assist your studies and wider professional development.

 IoF Academy Qualifications Course Booking Terms and Conditions

Please note if you are a new member you will need to provide a reference to complete your membership application and our Membership team will get in touch with you to arrange this on receipt of your booking. You can visit our membership pages for more information.

IoF Student benefit - NUS Extra Card

As an IoF Individual member studying towards one of our professional qualifications* you have the opportunity to apply for an NUS Extra Card. More information can be found here.

 Please consider the following questions before booking:

  • Will you benefit from gaining a recognised professional qualification?
  • Do you meet the suggested level of experience for this course?
  • Can you commit to the online study elements of the course for at least 6-8 hours a week over a period of approximately 1 academic year from the start date?
  • Are you currently in a strategic fundraising role for a non-profit organisation and do you have access to that organisation’s current materials (such as strategic plan, business plan, marketing materials and fundraising collateral)?


Assuming you can answer 'yes' to all of the above, we look forward to welcoming you to the course!

Bookings close 3rd February 2021. 

Further details and contact information

IoF Academy team
Email: academy@institute-of-fundraising.org.uk
Telephone: 0207 840 1020

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