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Course structure

Part 1

  • Introduction to share plans
  • Design
  • Legal and Regulatory
  • International

Part 2

  • Executive Share Plans
  • Tax
  • All-Employee Plans
  • Accounting and disclosure
  • Administration

Each part combines larger group teaching with participatory learning through smaller breakout sessions, including worked examples, case studies and Q&A. All our material will be available to you.


You must attend at least 75% of the sessions to be eligible to sit each end of course examination. If there are problems with your attendance once the course starts, you can speak to us and we may be able to make arrangements to assist you.

Course materials

The course material is fully updated each year with the latest developments and new case studies.

A set of materials will be provided for each module. This includes detailed notes, slides, and test yourself and small group handouts . For the convenience of participants, an electronic version of all course materials will be available on the course website.

Assessment methodology

Each of the 2 parts will be assessed by a 2 hour virtual examination.

Each exam is worth 50% of the final grade received.

The examinations are set by the Examining Board and moderated by the Chartered Governance Institute moderator who is responsible for maintaining standards. For more information on the examinations, please see the student handbook.

We are keen that you feel confident about taking the exams and will support you where possible, with your revision practice.

To pass the Certificate

To be awarded the Certificate, you must achieve a pass result (50% or over) in each of the two exams. If you fail one or both of the examinations, you will be permitted up to two opportunities to re-sit each failed part. The re-sit must be taken at the next examination date, unless approved mitigating circumstances prevent this. Both exams (and complete attendance of the course) must normally be passed within 3 years of the end of the year in which you started attending the course. As an example, if you were to attend Part 1 of the course in May 2023, you would need to ensure you attended Part 2 and passed both exams by December 2026. If both parts have not been attended and the exams for each part passed by this deadline, you will need to retake the entire programme of study.

The overall grade will be the average of both exams and will be shown on your certificate as a named grade band. This is as follows:

75% – 100%: Distinction
65% – 74.5%: Merit
50% – 64.5%: Pass

46 – 49.5 Grade A Fail
40 – 45.5 Grade B Fail
20 – 39.5 Grade C Fail
0 – 19.5 Grade D Fail

Quality assurance

Tapestry is committed to delivering the highest of standards for both course delivery and course material.

The Chartered Governance Institute is responsible for quality assurance of the assessment, through moderation of the exam material and the marking.


An award ceremony will take place after completion of the course. A prize will be presented by the Chartered Governance Institute to the best overall student. Other prizes may also be awarded, at Tapestry’s discretion. On successful completion of the course, you will be invited to take up affiliated membership of the Chartered Governance Institute.

Apply here