Fin Lit Course

Introduction to American Personal Financial Literacy

A course by Richard Thripp

NOTE: On 2016-10-29, Richard Thripp decided he will not be completing this course.

This course educates the learner on spending and saving, credit and debt, employment income, investing, risk and insurance, and financial decision making, which, when applied, can improve the learner’s financial habits, leading to less stress, more opportunity, and higher quality of life. This course uses video lectures, narrated slides, text-based modules, multiple-choice quizzes, and written or typed activities that are self-assessed with provided rubrics or examples. This course is offered at no cost. It is organized into 7 units containing over 25 modules that can be skipped or accessed in any order. Completing the entire course will take 5–7 hours. The curriculum for this course is based in part on the Jump$tart Coalition for Personal Financial Literacy’s National Standards in K–12 Personal Finance Education (4th ed., 2015) and information from government websites. Key issues identified in recent (2003–2016) peer-reviewed articles are addressed. This course is designed with cognitive load theory (Sweller), the mindset model (Dweck), and achievement goal theory (Ames) in mind.

At the end of my course, students will be able to…

Apply financial knowledge to decisions involving spending, saving, debt, employment, investing, and insurance. The learner will be able to articulate pros and cons of many important personal financial issues. The learner should feel encouraged to become more financially educated and to implement strategies that promote wealth accumulation into daily life.

Who should take this course?

Individuals with little or intermediate financial knowledge will gain from this course. This course is free and open access. Learners do not need to proceed linearly; they may alternately choose to view only the modules that are interesting and appropriate for their present situations.

Who should not?

Individuals who are already financially educated and prudent may learn little from this course, but may enjoy the empirical research that supports much of the course content.

What will students need to know or do before starting this course?

Basic numeracy skills, such as understandings of arithmetic and percentages, is preferrable.

Awareness of one’s financial situation will help the learner relate the material to his or her life. This includes one’s debt balances and interest rates (credit cards, mortgages, car loans, student loans, etc.), income, investments (if any), and types and amounts of insurance held (health, homeowners’, car, life, etc.).

By Richard Thripp