“Facts and Figures Generation” Platform to Help Students Develop Healthy Financial Habits
“Facts and Figures Generation” (FFG), an educational platform launched by The Education University of Hong Kong (EdUHK) to promote financial literacy amongst local youngsters, has recently been recognised by the Investor and Financial Education Council’s Financial Education Champion Award and the Financial Education Champion-Quality Award.
The platform has been used in the United States for years to educate consumers to identify sales and marketing tactics and make informed decisions. Thanks to the staunch support of the Po & Helen Chung Foundation, EdUHK has introduced a number of modules tailored to local teachers whereas workshops were organised to support the systematic use of the platform to promote financial literacy.
The curriculum covers topics such as introduction to financial management, credit card best practices and common pitfalls, budgeting and saving, and retirement planning. It features short videos, teaching plans and discussion exercises and allows users the flexibility to complete each module at their own pace. The modules are also equipped with automatic pre- and post-tests to help teachers monitor individual students’ learning progress with a computer system.
A total of 871 students from eight secondary schools were invited to participate to acquire financial management knowledge during the production phase of the FFG platform. A follow-up survey revealed that all participating students completed at least three modules, and 137 students – over 15% of the participating students – completed all five modules. A comparison of the pre- and post-tests revealed an increase from 46 to 61 in their overall average score – a 32% increase – demonstrating the platform's effectiveness in the improvement of students' financial management capability.
Professor Stephen Cheung Yan-leung, President of EdUHK, whose research interests encompass finance and public policy, expressed his gratitude to the FFG team for its dedicated effort in promoting financial literacy. “Financial management is part of our daily lives, from managing MPF investment portfolios, calculating credit card interests to repaying mortgage loans. As such, financial literacy should start from a young age” he said.
Professor Christina Yu Wai-mui, Professor (Practice) of the Department of Social Sciences at EdUHK in charge of the FFG platform said, “With the rise of consumerism and materialism, young people are susceptible to myriad sales and marketing tactics. Without realising the consequences, they may over-consume and develop unhealthy financial management habits. We are using this platform to teach students how to make responsible financial decisions by having a good grasp of facts and figures.”
In a related development, EdUHK will launch the first ever Master of Arts in Personal Finance Education (MAPFE) programme in Hong Kong this September. This will enable students to become professional educators in personal finance and financial literacy by learning how to transfer financial knowledge to different sectors of the community. For details, please visit the website.
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