Theses Doctoral

Let's Ask the Youngsters: Adolescents' Attitudes Toward Money and Financial Literacy Education

Hirsch, Joseph S.

A review of financial literacy education programs in the United States revealed that the voices of youngsters, particularly urban adolescents enrolled in high school, are lacking in the discussion about financial literacy education. By neglecting the experiences with which these adolescents come to learn financial literacy, educational researchers, teachers, and policymakers are unwittingly limiting their educational outcomes. In this qualitative inquiry, the researcher prepared in-depth interviews and surveys conducted by the researcher to determine how 19 urban students at one high school perceived that financial literacy education could build on their personal literacies and expand their educational outcomes.

In addition, the researcher prepared interview questions and provided them to a third-party company which included them in a survey it conducted of adolescents throughout the United States to determine how they perceived financial literacy education could build on their personal literacies and expand their educational outcomes. The overarching finding of this study was that the adolescents’ financial literacy education should focus on their self-identified goals rather than on financial literacy topics prescribed by a financial literacy program. Furthermore, financial literacy education should integrate adolescents’ everyday experiences from outside the classroom into their in-class educational experiences. Recommendations offered for teachers and policymakers, adolescents, and future researchers. Given multiple factors that affect culturally and socially responsive and engaging financial literacy experiences for adolescents, consideration of the appropriateness of recommendations should take place on an individual basis.

Geographic Areas


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More About This Work

Academic Units
Interdisciplinary Studies in Education
Thesis Advisors
Morrell, Ernest
Ed.D., Teachers College, Columbia University
Published Here
July 15, 2021