Recommendations for Teaching Financial Literacy to College Students
Want to understand the best process for teaching financial literacy to college students? The resources and tools you need can be found here, where we describe the optimal steps involved in evidence-based practices for teaching college students financial literacy.
Read the following example for an illustration of how this system has helped others fulfill their commitment to teaching college students financial literacy.
As a Marketing professor and faculty advisor of the DECA chapter at State University, Eileen Sumner was interested in teaching financial literacy to college students, but wasn’t sure how to teach financial literacy while designing it the program to scale. Dr. Sumner wanted to bring personal finance instruction to the 120 DECA members at the university. She knew most of the members personally; they were motivated college students pursuing marketing, finance, hospitality, or management careers. But she wasn’t sure about the personal finance subjects from which they’d benefit the most, or how to motivate them to learn more about money.
She sought help from the DECA student leaders to conduct a survey among chapter members. Almost all DECA members (93%) completed the survey, and the data indicated that the students wanted to learn about credit, debt, and planning for major purchases.
After Dr. Sumner had clarified her short-term and longer-term objectives, she shifted focus toward choosing delivery methods for teaching financial literacy to college students.
She selected a hybrid paced method to teaching students financial literacy according to time and achievements, so the DECA students would gain cognitive reasoning skills about the topics of interest within the specified time frame. Given their need to build practical skills around credit, debt, and major purchases, Eileen adopted a flipped instructional model. In other words, students would watch a podcast lecture and conduct independent research, and then the workshops could include hands-on activities where students practiced real-world decisions.
The next step involved in teaching financial literacy to college students was for Dr. Sumner to find a highly-qualified instructor – one with proven content knowledge and educational skill – to record the podcast and proctor the workshops.
After asking around among her State University colleagues, she discovered that the NFEC had a presence on campus led by Art Farrell, a Certified Financial Education Instructor. Eileen’s student relationships and Art’s skill as a certified financial educator made them a perfect team: Art would record the podcasts and they both would conduct the workshops.
Among the 120 State University DECA members, 95 (79%) attended all three workshops and 112 (93%) attended at least two. The average improvement between pre- and post-test results was 37%.
Dr. Sumner compiled these data into a report to indicate program effects, which she could use to raise funds and attract more students to attend workshops in the future.