Five Key Factors for Effective Financial Education

Posted August 24, 2015 by Raven Newberry

The effect of financial education programs depends on several key aspects. As a guide for educators on how to successfully teach personal finance, NEFE has outlined five key factors.

Well-Trained Educator

The instructor needs to be confident and knowledgeable about the topic of personal finance in order to create an environment that is ideal for student learning. Many college administrators find themselves teaching personal finance though they might not have a formal background in the subject. CashCourse and other NEFE resources mitigate this by providing materials designed for the average person to be able to present on personal finance. For example, CashCourse workshop kits provide the needed background information on subjects from credit to paying for college.

Vetted Program Materials

Program materials should be created with the consultation of field experts alongside testing with the intended audience. To ensure quality control, it is vital to have these materials properly evaluated and created by a subject matter expert such as a financial planner or insurance agent. NEFE materials are all vetted by field experts and are created with no commercial ties.

Timely Instruction

Program goals and topics should link to decisions that learners are readily able to make. If the topics cover concepts that are many years away from your college students, consider alternative examples that cover the same lesson, but that are more relatable to their day-to-day lives.

Relevant Subject Matter

Relevant subject matter is essential to impacting behavior. If learners are unable to relate to the topics, examples, and content, then you will not be able to engage them. Make sure topics covered are something that matters to your students today. Consider the “WIIFM” factor, or “What’s in it for me?” from the perspective of your students to help inform your programming.

Evidence of Impact

Continuously seek information on the impact of your program. Evaluation allows you to make any necessary changes to programming so that it best reaches your students. Not sure how to measure your program? Try out NEFE’s evaluation toolkit for tips and instructions on how to evaluate personal finance programming.