Event Planning Benefits from Financial Knowledge Test Results
The National Financial Educators Council (NFEC), a for-profit organization with a social enterprise business model, has a stated mission to raise the financial capabilities of people around the world. The first critically important step toward achieving that mission is to conduct rigorous research to identify what education is needed, and which audiences would benefit most from money management lessons. That’s why the NFEC developed a national financial literacy test to assess where young people currently stand in terms of financial capability.
Many financial experts and industry professionals today have recognized the need to teach teens and young adults how to better manage their money. When searching for effective programs around which to plan a financial literacy event, it’s important to look for materials based on sound empirical evidence. The NFEC curriculum is one such program. The NFEC’s package was guided in part by data collected in an online high school financial literacy test that helped identify key topic areas about which youth lacked knowledge.
The NFEC recommends collecting several types of data to guide planning a financial education event. The first measure should be aimed at testing the program concept. For example, one might conduct interviews with potential participants to learn which topics they would value and their preferred learning styles.
A second measure should ask participants a set of financial literacy test questions both before and after the event. Measuring how much people know about personal finance beforehand provides a baseline against which to compare their results after they attend the program. If the follow-up indicates that the attendees succeeded to learn key money skills, those data can help garner support for future initiatives. It’s important to ask questions that are covered in the educational materials to make sure the event has positive impact on participant knowledge.
The NFEC takes a holistic approach to financial education. That means they have envisioned the entire process from start to finish. Planning a financial literacy event must be guided by diligent research to understand the target audience and the best ways to reach them. Rigorous measures help programs meet the expectations of participants and promote long-term behavior changes that can improve their financial futures.