Financial Literacy: How Education in Financial and Mathematical Concepts Among the Youth can Contribute to Improved Saving and Investment Decisions

Open Access
Author:
Twerdok, Amy C
Area of Honors:
Finance
Degree:
Bachelor of Science
Document Type:
Thesis
Thesis Supervisors:
  • James Alan Miles, Thesis Supervisor
  • Rose Mary Zbiek, Honors Advisor
  • Chris Muscarella, Faculty Reader
  • James Alan Miles, Honors Advisor
Keywords:
  • financial literacy
  • financial education
  • saving
  • investing
Abstract:
Personal financial literacy has only come to the attention of researchers in the past two decades. While several studies have attempted to measure the level of financial literacy displayed by the general population, a consensus definition has been anything but clear. One trend, however, is evident and consistent: consumers and investors today are unprepared to meet the challenge of adequately managing their money to plan for future wealth. Because previous research has shown that a comprehensive understanding of financial and mathematical concepts most associated with financial literacy predicts how much wealth a person accumulates over the course of his or her lifetime, it is imperative to focus on the younger generation in analyzing how education in financial topics can translate into better prepared, more conscious consumers and investors. By concentrating on how much this younger generation understands today, the financial and mathematical topics that contribute to financial literacy, and how these financial and mathematical concepts interact, a clear link between financial literacy and informed decision making can be established. This connection enables the suggestion of solutions and education practices that may be addressed (and potentially further researched) to eradicate the financial illiteracy epidemic among the youth that the nation is facing today.