Membership Categories

Membership of the Institute is classified across two groups:


Professional Members

  • Professional membership consists of four individual membership categories:
    • Fellows
    • ​Licentiates
    • Practitioners
    • Associates
  • Fellows, Licentiates and Practitioners are entitled to vote at the Institute’s general meetings, and members in these categories may use the qualifying letters FIB, LIB and PIB.
  • These categories of professional membership reflect a hierarchy of the Institute’s expanded number of academic qualifications and professional designations.
  • Details of the route to each category can be found on the "Professional Membership Categories" chart here.


  • This category consists of members who are commencing a relationship with the Institute or who will have a potentially short or fixed term relationship with us.
  • Examples include those who are not professional members and who commence a course of study with the Institute or those who are primarily members of other professional bodies and who wish to participate in the Institute’s activities.


The Institute’s mission is to “make a defining contribution to the renewal of the professional standards and standing of Irish banking and financial services to the benefit of customers and society”.

In the context of our mission and the critical importance of professional standards in the provision of banking and financial services, our Articles of Association explicitly incorporate the commitment of Professional Members of the Institute to uphold the best standards of 

  • Integrity
  • Professionalism
  • Propriety
  • Objectivity
  • Fairness

All Professional Members commit to these standards and this commitment is reflected in the continuing obligation of Professional Members of the Institute.

Qualifying letters


To help you better understand our qualifying letters, please see below answers to frequently asked questions.

1. What do my qualifying letters stand for?

a)    Academic Awards with The Institute of Banking (from the highest to the lowest)

  • MSc -             Master of Science in Financial Services / in Banking / in Compliance 
  • BFS -             Bachelor of Financial Services

b)    Professional Institute’s Membership Category

  • FIB -               Fellow of The Institute of Banking
  • LIB -               Licentiate of The Institute of Banking
  • PIB -               Practitioner of The Institute of Banking 

c)    Professional Designations

  • CBD -             Certified Bank Director
  • CIFD -            Certified Investment Fund Director
  • Chartered Banker (no qualifying letters; use the full title)
  • SIA -               Specialist Investment Adviser
  • Professional Banker (no qualifying letters; use the full title)
  • QFA -             Qualified Financial Adviser
  • APA -             Accredited Product Adviser
  • LCOI -            Licentiate of the Association of Compliance Officers in Ireland
  • CDPO -          Certified Data Protection Officer
  • CFCPP -         Certified Financial Crime Prevention Practitioner
  • FCOI -            Fellow of the Association of Compliance Officers in Ireland


2. What is the difference between a qualification and a designation?

A qualification is an academic award conferred by an educational body (in the case of the Institute the awarding body is UCD). A qualification does not automatically allow you to practice in a trade or profession.


A designation is the letters you are entitled to use after your name following successful completion of certain qualification and is your licence to work in a particular profession. In order to perform your role you must maintain your designation through Continuing Professional Development (CPD).


3. How should I use the Institute qualifying letters in my professional title?

The general rule of using your qualifying letters in your professional title is: 


     Academic Qualifications 
+ Professional Membership Category + Professional Designations

   (from the highest to the lowest)        (just one category applies)                     (note below*)


* designation order: The Institute of Banking designations are first ordered by the level of designation (from highest to lowest), then external designations maintained by the Institute (e.g. LCOI CFCPP) - see point c) above.



Mary Murphy MSc FIB Professional Banker QFA
John Connelly BFS PIB APA


4. What should I do if I hold qualifications from organisations other than The Institute of Banking?

You may hold more qualifications than just those obtained via The Institute of Banking. In this case, the same rule applies:     

     Academic Qualifications 
+ Professional Membership Category + Professional Designations

   (from the highest to the lowest)        (just one category applies)                   (see point 2)



Mary Murphy MA LIB Professional Banker QFA FCOI
John Connelly MBA PIB APA LCOI


5. Should I use commas separating my qualifying letters?

No, spaces are sufficient.


6. What is the route to Membership Categories?
Click on the table below to view the route.
PM categories.PNG