Top 50 College Financial Literacy Programs
- March 9, 2017
- Posted by: Mike Brown
- Category: Top Colleges
In 2008, The President’s Advisory Council on Financial Literacy defined financial literacy as "the ability to use knowledge and skills to manage financial resources effectively for a lifetime of financial well-being." Today, nine years later, the need for financial literacy has become dire due to rising college tuition costs that leave students in suffocating debt.
According to the most recent data, the national student loan debt has climbed to $1.41 trillion. Additionally, the average college student holds $28,400 in student loan debt. These stats are particularly distressing because the average student knows nothing about their finances. For example, a recent LendEDU study showed that 49.80% of college attendees incorrectly believed the government would forgive their federal student loans. If students do not know basic financial information about student loans, how are they going to know how to balance a checkbook, take out a mortgage, or invest in mutual fund?
In light of this, LendEDU has compiled a ranking of the 50 best financial literacy programs offered at colleges throughout the United States. Financial literacy initiatives have become popular on college campuses in large part because of the inflated expenses required to attend these institutions. Many schools now offer workshops, courses, one-on-one consultations, and incentivizing programs to teach their students to become fiscally responsible.
Our study looked at hundreds of colleges and universities that are known to have a financial literacy program. Our rankings were based on 3 parameters: (1) Number of Workshops and Resources Available; (2) Access to One-On-One Financial Consultation; (3) Incentivizing Programs Available. Each parameter was graded on a 50 point scale (50 being the best) and that number was multiplied by each parameter’s respective weight. The weights for the aforementioned parameters were, respectively, 50%, 30%, and 20%. The total score was tallied on a 50 point scale by adding together each parameter’s weighted score. Full methodology can be found at the bottom of this page.
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Top 50 College Financial Literacy Programs
1. Texas Tech University
Total Score: 48.8
Texas Tech University is home to the best college financial literacy program according to LendEDU. The Texas Tech financial literacy program, known as "Red to Black," covers topic such as creating budgets, building and using credit, and maximizing student loans. Texas Tech's America Saves Week is a week long event featuring numerous financial literacy workshops. The Raider Relief Fund was created to give financial assistance to qualified applicants for living and other educational expenses.
2. University of North Texas
Total Score: 47.6
The University of North Texas and their Student Money Management Center have earned the number two spot in our rankings. According to their website, North Texas' financial literacy program "provides personal financial coaching sessions in which students lead the discussion on personal financial topics and concerns relating to their lives." The university has a busy financial literacy workshop schedule, with presentations like "Wedding on a Budget," "Salary Negotiation," and "How to Avoid Moving Back Home."
3. Syracuse University
Total Score: 47.5
Rounding out the top three is Syracuse University. Syracuse's Money Awareness Program is one of the best incentivizing financial literacy programs on any college campus. Qualified students are awarded grant funding to replace their student debt. Every semester, participating students must complete a financial literacy session, answer financial literacy questions, and set new goals. Students can also become Peer Financial Coaches, in which they help their fellow students with financial issues and receive credit in return.
4. University of Montana
Total Score: 45.8
The University of Montana is number four on the Top 50 College Financial Literacy Programs list. UM is one of the few schools that requires financial literacy education for their students. Their required financial education program is known as "Transit", and it covers topics like 401ks, investing, and student loan default protection. The University of Montana also offers students 30 or 60 minute private counseling sessions with a financial expert.
5. Bowling Green State University
Total Score: 45.5
Bowling Green State University has taken the number five spot in our list. BGSU is in a partnership with PNC Bank to provide financial literacy resources and workshops to students. As part of their financial literacy partnership, PNC incentivizes financial literacy by offering a $500 scholarship to Bowling Green State students. PNC Bank also offers monthly seminars on a wide range of financial literacy topics, including identity theft, setting financial goals, and borrowing basics.
6. Sam Houston State University
Total Score: 45.1
Sam Houston State University is number six on our list of the best college financial literacy programs. Sam Houston State had a number of unique incentivizing programs that encourage financial literacy. The university offers a $500 scholarship to students who score well on a financial literacy quiz, and also gives students the opportunity to win $1,000 in financial literacy jeopardy. Signature events at SHSU that promote financial literacy include Houston Money Week, Financial Literacy Week, and Financial Literacy Month.
7. Ohio State University
Total Score: 44.7
Ohio State University and their Scarlet and Gray Financial program are ranked seventh on LendEDU's list. Scarlet and Gray Financial is a financial coaching program that helps thousands of Buckeyes each year. Students will have no problem scheduling a one-on-one consultation with a financial expert, as the Scarlet and Gray program employs 56 financial advisors. The TOPP program offers to forgive students the $25 fee for late payments if they schedule a private financial consultation.
8. University of South Carolina
Total Score: 44.5
The University of South Carolina's financial literacy program was good enough to be ranked eighth on our list. USC offers private financial advice from an expert on a number of topics, including debt management and financial planning for study abroad. South Carolina also offers a wide range of financial literacy workshops upon request. Topics for these workshops include "Identity Theft 101," "How to Negotiate a Salary," and "How to Pay the Bills." The school also offers up to $500 in an emergency loan for students who run into unexpected financial hardship.
9. George Washington University
Total Score: 44.1
Few schools on this list have set up an entire center for financial literacy, but George Washington has, and it has earned them the nine spot in the rankings. The Global Financial Literacy Excellence Center at George Washington has created many helpful resources to help students understand their finances. They offer a number of financial literacy courses such as "Personal Finance", and "The Federal Reserve and the Financial Crisis." The university also has a Financial Literacy Seminar Series which is offered throughout the school year and features guest speakers from around the country.
10. University of Kansas
Total Score: 43.8
Rounding out the top 10 is the University of Kansas. The University of Kansas offers a couple of three credit personal finance classes. KU also allows for students to schedule a one-on-one financial advice session, or a financial literacy workshop. Topics that can be scheduled include "Credit Card Debt" and "Budgeting and Savings". KU Financial Aid TV is an online portal that allows students to watch a wide variety of videos that offer financial literacy advice.
11. University of Wisconsin-Madison
Total Score: 43.6
The University of Wisconsin-Madison, and their Center for Financial Security have earned the 11 slot on our list. The Center for Financial Security offers a ton of informative webinars on topics such as "Retirement Planning and Saving." The university also publishes a quarterly financial coaching newsletter. The Household Finance Research Seminar is offered at the University of Wisconsin to better understand the everyday impacts of various financial topics. Training sessions and presentations can be made available upon request.
11. California State University, Northridge
Total Score: 43.6
California State University, Northridge has found themselves in a three way tie for the 11th spot in LendEDU's rankings. CSUN's Financial Literacy Program declares its mission is "to expand students’ understanding of money management strategies that will empower them to make wise and informed financial decisions..." The university offers a busy financial literacy workshop schedule, with topics like "How is Interest Calculated on Student Loans?" and "Four Money Pitfalls to Tackle While in College."
11. Yale University
Total Score: 43.6
Yale University marks the last member of the three way tie for the 11 spot, and also is the first Ivy League school to be mentioned in our rankings. Beginning in 2012, Yale University has offered private financial consultations to students to discuss their financial situations, loan obligations, and repayment options. Yale has a tremendous incentivizing program known as the Career Option Assistance Program (COAP). The program provides financial assistance to graduates who choose lower-paying careers. 45 percent of all students with student loan debt use this program.
14. Boston College
Total Score: 43.5
Boston College has earned the 14th spot in the Top 50 College Financial Literacy Programs ranking. Boston College's financial literacy program is known as "Successful Start" and features a full workshop schedule. Workshops scheduled in the month of March include "Investing 101" and "Evaluating a Job Offer and the Art of Negotiation." On April 25th, BC will celebrate the 10 year anniversary of Successful Start by having their own Financial Literacy Day.
15. Creighton University
Total Score: 43.4
Creighton University comes in at number 15 on our list. Creighton's financial literacy page on their website has a plethora of resources and learning material. Creighton's financial literacy program known as "Financial Fitness" frequently posts financial tips and advice for students looking to become more fiscally responsible. Group orientated financial workshops and private consultations can be scheduled at Creighton upon request.
16. Loyola University Chicago
Total Score: 43.3
Loyola University Chicago's financial literacy program has made the list at number 16. Loyola Chicago's program is called "Money Matters", and it provides plenty of helpful resources for students looking to handle their finances better. Financial experts at the university can provide expertise on topics such as searching for scholarships, creating a budget, and understanding financial aid applications and packages. Loyola University Chicago has also created a number of interactive video courses that explain key financial topics.
16. Champlain College
Total Score: 43.3
Champlain College has earned a share of the 16 spot in LendEDU's rankings. Champlain's Center for Financial Literacy aims to provide financial literacy education to not just college students, but also K-12 students and teachers. This Vermont college offers a wide range of courses and workshops related to financial literacy. Examples of these courses include, "Financing Your First Car," "Understanding Employee Benefits," and "Financial Sophistication." Champlain's Awesome Island Game rewards the most financial literate participants with grants ranging from $10,000 to $25,000.
16. University of South Florida
Total Score: 43.3
The University of South Florida is the final school that finished with a total score of 43.3, good enough for a three way tie for 16th. USF's financial literacy program is known as "Bull2Bull Financial Education". Organizations or classes on campus can schedule a financial literacy seminar with Bull2Bull at any time. South Florida's workshop schedule is jam-packed, with workshops such as "Loan Smarts," "Healthy Money Habitudes," and "Financial Life After Graduation" available in the spring semester. Students can also schedule private consultations regarding loans.
19. University of Central Florida
Total Score: 43.2
The University of Central Florida places 19th on LendEDU's list. Central Florida's financial literacy program is called "Centsible Knights," which offers wide-reaching financial advice on a number of topics such as "saving for your future." Students at UCF can visit the Office of Student Financial Assistance to receive financial guidance and advice. Centsible Knights incentivizes financial literacy by running a contest in which students must show what they are saving up for to be eligible for a $50 gift card.
20. Texas State University
Total Score: 43.1
Texas State University makes LendEDU's list at number 20. Their program, known as "University College's Career & Financial Education (CAFE) Financial Literacy Program," offers plenty of financial literacy workshops, presentations, events, and collaborative campus ventures. Examples of these workshops include "Financial Safeguards" and "Post-Graduation Transitions." Students are also given the option to schedule a professional financial consultation session whenever they would like.
20. University of Arizona
Total Score: 43.1
The University of Arizona's financial literacy program, "Take Charge Cats," finds itself in a tie for the 20th spot. Besides helping out their fellow students, Take Charge Cats also teaches financial literacy to over 21,000 youths and adults in the Tucson community. The program offers numerous financial literacy workshops that can be scheduled at any time. "Developing a Spending Plan," "Understanding Credit Reports," and "Understanding Paychecks" are some of the workshops made available. Take Charge Cats has also created a couple of incentivizing financial literacy programs.
22. University of California, Los Angeles
Total Score: 42.9
The University of California, Los Angeles' Financial Wellness Program was good enough for number 22 on LendEDU's list. UCLA allows students to request workshops on a wide range of topics such as "Apartment Hunting Made Easy" and "Socialize on a Shoestring." The university also has an online financial literacy education course that is mandatory for first-year students and transfers. UCLA's financial literacy program includes 10 Financial Wellness peers that are available to students seeking one-on-one financial consultation.
23. Harvard University
Total Score: 42.7
Harvard University has earned the number 23 spot on our list. The Ivy League school has a number of resources available to students related to topics such as budgeting, credit, and debt management. Harvard utilizes Google Hangouts to give presentations and Q & A's to students looking to become financially literate. Students can also be invited to two different financial literacy seminars, which are "Financial Aid 201" and "Money Management 201." On April 8th, Harvard celebrates Financial Literacy Day by conducting informative sessions.
24. University of Pittsburgh
Total Score: 42.5
The University of Pittsburgh has filled the number 24 spot in the rankings. All incoming students at the University of Pittsburgh are required to complete a financial literacy course. At Pittsburgh, students are welcomed to walk-in to the financial aid office at any time to receive financial advice. The university offers a number of helpful resources, including a page that teaches financial aid terms, a page that helps students develop a budget, and a page where students can monitor their loans.
25. Indiana University
Total Score: 42.3
Indiana University's financial literacy program, "MoneySmarts", finishes 25th in our rankings. In addition to offering online consultations, the MoneySmarts team provides students with private consultations regarding topics such as budgeting, identity theft, and establishing credit. IU's financial literacy program also offers hour long group presentations on financial literacy. Indiana University also offers both one and three credit courses on financial literacy topics such as personal finance basics and risk management.
25. Liberty University
Total Score: 42.3
Liberty University has earned themselves a tie for the 25th spot on LendEDU's list of the Top 50 College Financial Literacy Programs. Liberty University offers a free financial literacy class to all students currently enrolled at the school. The course can be completed at the student's pace, and it covers financial topics such as "Properties of Money and Wealth," "College Essentials," and "Career Planning." The course is done in collaboration with personal financial expert and #1 New York Times Best-Selling author, Dave Ramsey.
27. Kansas State University
Total Score: 41.9
Kansas State University's Powercat Financial program takes home the 27th slot in our rankings. Powercat Financial offers both online and in-person one-on-one financial counseling upon request. KSU's financial literacy program also offers presentations to students on a litany of topics such as "Creating a Spending or Savings Plan" and "Protecting Against Identity Theft." Kansas State has made available two financial literacy courses, "Money 101" and "Introduction to Personal Finance Planning."
27. Georgetown University
Total Score: 41.9
Georgetown University's financial literacy program has finished in a tie for the 27th spot on LendEDU's list. Georgetown's program, "Money $ense," has expanded to provide students with one financial literacy workshop a month for the whole school year. Workshop topics include lessons on taxes, budgeting, investing, and loans. The university also offers peer counseling to students struggling with the financial aid process.
29. University of Alaska, Anchorage
Total Score: 41.8
The University of Alaska, Anchorage has come in at number 29 on our list. The University of Alaska, Anchorage's financial literacy initiative is known as "$avy $eawolf." UAA has a very impressive lineup of financial literacy workshops, such as "Stretching Your Dollar" and "The Loan Zone." The university requires all graduating students who have student loans to complete an exit counseling session so that they know their rights and responsibilities as a student loan borrower.
29. Southern Connecticut State University
Total Score: 41.8
Southern Connecticut State University has a financial literacy program that was tied for 29th on our list. SCSU's financial literacy website has an impressive collection of financial literacy resources and tools. Besides offering one-on-one financial literacy consultations and presentations, Southern Connecticut State University offers customized financial planning sessions with individual students. Individual financial plans can be created for each student according to their financial situation and academic goals.
31. Benedictine University
Total Score: 41.7
Benedictine University's financial literacy program has come in at number 31 on our list. Started in 2008, Benedictine's program offers a financial literacy course that allows students create their own budget and statement of net worth, track their spending, and learn from financial literacy experts. The course, Financial Literacy 120, is two credit hours and is open to all undergraduate students regardless of major. The course also combines their online learning and discussion sessions with on-site presentations.
32. Iowa State University
Total Score: 41.2
Iowa State University has earned the number 32 ranking on our list of the Top 50 College Financial Literacy Programs. Iowa State's financial literacy initiative offers an impressive number of financial literacy courses. The school offers plenty of courses that are meant for both personal and family finance. Students will learn how to minimize debt, accrue savings, and invest intelligently.
33. University of Buffalo
Total Score: 41.1
The University of Buffalo's financial literacy program was good enough to take the 33rd spot in our rankings. Besides providing an ample amount of interactive financial literacy resources, UB also allows students to register for an online financial education program known as "SUNY Smart Track." This online program teaches students about financial literacy through online courses and blog posts. The university also provides students with many financial advisors that the students can go to for financial advice.
33. University of Iowa
Total Score: 41.1
The University of Iowa has landed in a tie for having the 33rd best financial literacy program. Students at the University of Iowa can schedule a private consultation with a financial literacy specialist, and discuss topics such as "applying for financial aid," "budgeting educational expenses," and "borrowing wisely." University of Iowa students can also enroll in UI's CashCourse, where they can learn about money management skills, how to manage debt, and how to survive a tough economy.
35. University of Illinois
Total Score: 40.9
The University of Illinois has come in at number 35 on our list. The University of Illinois' financial literacy program is particularly strong because of their incentivizing programs. For example, the University Challenge is a program that gives a student, from any major, a mock $1 million portfolio and an online brokerage account so that they can learn to buy and sell equities. The China Challenge allows students to mock invest in Shanghai and Shenzhen in Chinese Yuan. The university also allows students to take a financial literacy quiz to test their knowledge in financial matters.
36. University of Cincinnati
Total Score: 40.7
The University of Cincinnati has a financial literacy program that was good enough for 36th in our rankings. The program, known as "UCAN Manage It," offers a combination of financial literacy videos and presentations. The University of Cincinnati has partnered with Grad Ready, a personal financial literacy tool that provides guidance and teaches money skills. During the month of April, the University of Cincinnati will be celebrating Financial Literacy Month with plenty of informative events.
36. University of Michigan
Total Score: 40.7
The University of Michigan has finished tied for 36th in our financial literacy rankings. The University of Michigan enables students to take a one-credit mini-course known as "The Financially Savvy Student." This course teaches students how to use credit cards safely and smartly, develop a budget, and assess their financials. UofMich's "Smart Borrowing Initiative" counsels students on individual debt and requires students to take online financial tutorials before taking out more federal student loans.
38. Wichita State University
Total Score: 40.6
Wichita State University's financial literacy program was good enough for the 38th spot on LendEDU's list. Wichita State works with CashCourse to provide financial literacy information to students and help them manage their financial habits. The University also developed MyCollegeMoneyPlan to help students make smart financial decisions when they are choosing a school to attend. Wichita State also offers a grant ranging from $250 to $4,000 per year to incoming students who perform well in the classroom, but have financial limitations.
39. California State University, Bakersfield
Total Score: 40.3
California State University, Bakersfield has earned the number 39 spot in our rankings. CSUB has partnered with iGrad to provide their students with ample financial literacy information. A free online personal finance course can be taken that covers topics including budgeting, banking, and credit card debt. Students at CSUB can also participate in the iGrad Townhall, a monitored online bulletin discussion board where students can ask questions pertaining to their finances.
39. Michigan State University
Total Score: 40.3
Michigan State University has been placed in a tie for the 39th spot in LendEDU's rankings. Michigan State's financial literacy website makes available a ton of resources for students looking to improve their financial literacy skills. The university has created Financial 4.0, a website that provides tools such as financial calculators and a budget tracker. MSU has created an impressive workshop schedule, with events entitled "Credit," "Budgeting," and "Identity Theft" all available for students to attend.
41. Johnson & Wales University
Total Score: 40
Coming in at number 41 is Johnson and Wales University. Johnson and Wales University has partnered with iGrad to teach their students about the importance of financial literacy. Also available to students of JWU is an impressive roster of financial planning experts that can be made available for a one-on-one consultation upon request. Johnson and Wales University also has a wide variety of scholarships for students looking to improve their financial situation.
42. Menlo College
Total Score: 39.9
Menlo College's financial literacy program was good enough to crack the list at number 40. According to the schools financial literacy page, Menlo's financial literacy center "provides learning opportunities to enable college students to make sound economic decisions, which will serve as fundamental skills for the rest of their lives." Menlo also offers a course for freshman that teaches nine sections of personal finance. Like many schools on this list, Menlo partners with iGrad to promote financial literacy.
42. University of Colorado Denver
Total Score: 39.9
The University of Colorado Denver has a financial literacy program that is tied for 42nd in LendEDU's rankings. Colorado Denver has a number of interesting workshops that promote financial literacy. Examples of these workshops include "Ballin' on a Budget," "Money Matters," and "Are You Credit Worthy?" The University of Colorado Denver also has no shortage of interactive resources and financial tools, such as their own budget worksheet.
44. University of Maine
Total Score: 39.8
The University of Maine's financial literacy program finished 44th on the Top 50 College Financial Literacy Programs list. The University of Maine's financial literacy and debt management program is called SALT. Students that use SALT can take an online training course that teaches them practical money management strategies. SALT also has the ability to track all of a student's loans in one place. The University of Maine has a large financial advisory team that is available for counseling Monday through Friday from 8:30 AM to 3:30 PM.
45. University of Albany, SUNY
Total Score: 39.6
The University of Albany, SUNY comes in at number 45 on our list. Their program, known as "Great Danes, Dollars, & $ense," was created in partnership with SUNY Smart Track. SUNY Smart Track provides students with training in financial topics like personal budgeting, saving, and identity theft. The university incentivizes students to practice financial literacy by offering the chance to win a $500 scholarship or one semester tuition-free if they attend one of the financial literacy workshops.
46. Eastern University
Total Score: 39.4
Eastern University has earned the number 46 spot on LendEDU's list. Eastern University's financial literacy program is known as "Financial Literacy and You (FLY)." According to the website, FLY's goal is "to help students learn how to better manage their money so they can afford to stay in school, borrow wisely and graduate with the financial skills needed to achieve their financial goals." FLY offers students one-on-one coaching sessions with financial experts, or peer counseling sessions with a student coach.
47. Gonzaga University
Total Score: 39.1
Gonzaga University's financial literacy program was good enough to take the 47th spot in our rankings. Gonzaga University has made their financial literacy program part of their healthy campus initiative. The university has an impressive collection of financial literacy resources available to all students. Similar to many schools on this list, Gonzaga has entered into a partnership with CashCourse, an online, interactive guide that promotes financial literacy.
47. San Jose State University
Total Score: 39.1
San Jose State University has tied for the 47th spot in our rankings. Like many schools ranked on our list, San Jose State works with CashCourse to promote and teach financial literacy to students. San Jose State also has provided quite a few financial literacy workshops to their students. Some workshops coming up include, "Think Before You Swipe! Credit & Credit Cards," "Road to Wealth - Budgeting & Basic Banking," and "Loan Repayment Options."
49. Duke University
Total Score: 38.9
Duke University has earned the number 49 spot on LendEDU's list. Duke offers plenty of workshops for students that can be scheduled upon request. A few examples of these workshops include, "Your Spending Plan," "Saving and Investing in your Future," and "Salary Negotiations and Benefits." The financial literacy website at Duke University features a ton of financial literacy resources and guides to help students. Also, Duke includes creative money-saving options for students on budget.
50. University of Maryland
Total Score: 38.6
The University of Maryland completes LendEDU's Top 50 College Financial Literacy Programs list. At the University of Maryland, students are able to request financial literacy presentations. Maryland's financial literacy page offers resources that will educated students on topics like maintaining credit, budgeting, and borrowing. The University of Maryland is also partnered with iGrad to provide students with webinars, video presentations, educational games, and financial calculators to improve their financial literacy.
Complete Rankings for the Top 50
In the following table, the column headers represent the following:
Resources: The amount of financial literacy workshops, webinars, presentations, tools, and pages readily available
Advice: The amount of financial experts readily available for private consultations and the hours they are available
Programs: The amount of programs readily available that incentivize financial literacy
Total Score: The combined score of all three weighted parameters
|Rank||School Name||Resources||Advice||Programs||Total Score|
|1||Texas Tech University||50||48||47||48.80|
|2||University of North Texas||49||45||48||47.60|
|4||University of Montana||50||44||38||45.80|
|5||Bowling Green State University||46||45||45||45.50|
|6||Sam Houston State University||46||45||43||45.10|
|7||Ohio State University||44||49||40||44.70|
|8||University of South Carolina||50||45||30||44.50|
|9||George Washington University||49||38||41||44.10|
|10||University of Kansas||45||43||42||43.80|
|11||University of Wisconsin - Madison||49||37||40||43.60|
|11||California State University, Northridge||48||42||35||43.60|
|16||Loyola University Chicago||45||44||38||43.30|
|16||University of South Florida||46||41||40||43.30|
|19||University of Central Florida||47||39||40||43.20|
|20||Texas State University||46||43||36||43.10|
|20||University of Arizona||45||42||40||43.10|
|24||University of Pittsburgh||44||39||44||42.50|
|27||Kansas State University||43||44||36||41.90|
|29||University of Alaska||44||36||45||41.80|
|29||Southern Connecticut State University||40||46||40||41.80|
|32||Iowa State University||45||39||35||41.20|
|33||University of Buffalo||40||45||38||41.10|
|33||University of Iowa||40||45||38||41.10|
|35||University of Illinois||39||40||47||40.90|
|36||University of Cincinnatti||44||37||38||40.70|
|36||University of Michigan||39||44||40||40.70|
|38||Wichita State University||40||40||43||40.60|
|39||California State University, Bakersfield||43||36||40||40.30|
|39||Michigan State University||43||36||40||40.30|
|41||Johnson & Wales University||37||43||43||40.00|
|42||University of Colorado Denver||43||38||35||39.90|
|44||University of Maine||40||42||36||39.80|
|45||University of Albany - SUNY||41||37||40||39.60|
|47||San Jose State University||41||36||39||39.10|
|50||University of Maryland||37||37||45||38.60|
|Rank||School Name||Resources||Advice||Programs||Total Score|
LendEDU’s study of the Top 50 College Financial Literacy Programs was conducted by looking at hundreds of colleges and universities in the United States that are known to have a financial literacy program. Our rankings were based on three parameters: (1) Number of Workshops and Resources Available; (2) Access to One-On-One Financial Consultation; (3) Incentivizing Programs Available.
Each parameter was judged on a 50 point scale (50 being the best, one being the worst). To come up with a number score for each parameter for every school, each school’s readily available information was tallied up, and a mean was found for each parameter. The mean was used to assign a number score for each parameter for every school.
Once each parameter for each school was assigned a score, we were able to calculate a total score. The total score was found by multiplying each parameters 50 point score by that parameters assigned weight. Once that happened, we were able to add all three weighted scores together to find a total score on a 50 point scale. The first parameter, Number of Workshops and Resources Available, was weighted at 50%, or 25 of the 50 points. The second parameter, Access to One-On-One Financial Consultation, was weighted at 30%, or 15 of the 50 points. The third parameter, Incentivizing Programs Available, was weighted at 20%, or 10 of the 50 points.
Here is a more detailed description of each parameter:
Number of Workshops and Resources Available: This was considered our most important parameter and was weighted accordingly at 50%. Each school’s financial literacy website was examined to determine the number of financial literacy workshops that were readily available. Besides the amount of financial literacy workshops, we also looked for the amount of resources that were readily available. Resources could have been webinars, video presentations, live presentations, financial tools, financial literacy pages, and interactive guides.
Access to One-On-One Financial Consultation: This was looked at as our second most important parameter and was weighted at 30%. Each school’s financial literacy website was examined to determine how accessible it was for students to get one-on-one consultations from a financial expert. The amount of financial experts that were available at a certain school and the hours that they were available to give financial consultation were taken into account.
Incentivizing Programs Available: This was our third most important parameter and was weighted at 20%. Each school’s financial literacy website was examined to determine the amount of incentivizing programs that were readily available for a student. An incentivizing program was something that encouraged the school’s students to practice financial literacy. Most of these programs would make the student participate in a financial literacy event, and in turn the student would be considered for a reward, usually monetary.