Financial Literacy – Why is it
The President's Advisory
Council on Financial Literacy defines personal financial literacy as "the ability to use knowledge and skills to manage
financial resources effectively for a lifetime of financial well-being" (2008
Annual Report to the President).
The same is true for financial
literacy as it pertains to postsecondary expenses and financial aid. There are numerous
ways to pay for college. Students and their parents need financial literacy to
make prudent decisions about financing higher education, and to better understand
how taking on debt or accepting other forms of student aid may affect them in
The following websites offer
free tools, calculators, Q&A, and other forms of guidance that can help students
and their parents become more financially literate about financial aid and college
tuition expenses; and learn how to make the most of their higher education
Financial Literacy Resources
Big Future ‘Pay for College’ – This
website from College Board offers calculators, search tools and a Q&A page help
students and their parents learn how they can pay for college. The Financial Aid Can Help You Afford College page defines
commonly used financial aid terms, while explaining what financial aid is, where
it comes from, and how to apply.
Cash Course – Your Real-Life Money Guide -
Cash Course offers a customizable set of tools that
help students build “real-life-ready” financial skills. Tools also are
available for school administrators and individuals who are not affiliated with
a college or university.
College Affordability Guide
- The College Affordability Guide wants students to earn a college degree at an
affordable price. The guide explains some of the lesser-known ways to reduce
the cost of a college degree, such as utilizing prior-learning assessments, open online courses that offer college credit, and more.
Financial Literacy for College Students – This research guide from Penn
State University Libraries includes a wealth of resources related to financial
literacy for college students, including links to books, articles, websites,
and other resources that address personal finance and student loan debt issues.
360 Degrees of Financial Literacy – This website from the
American Institute of CPAs provides multiple tools, calculators and Q&A to
help college students better manage their finances.
NCAN Member-Exclusive Resources
Literacy Training - The
Scholarship Foundation worked with a PhD student from Washington University in
St. Louis, to develop a financial literacy study. The attached PDF is a
presentation we provide for our interest-free loan
recipients at new student orientation.
NCAN Advisor Training Module - Chapter 7 of the module contains
information about financial aid, including a list of commonly used acronyms and
abbreviations (pages 71-73).