This Is AuburnElectronic Theses and Dissertations

Examining the Influence of Personal Finance Education on Decision-Making among Graduate Students




Brock, Ruth

Type of Degree



Education Foundation, Leadership, and Technology


Graduate students enrolled in programs leading to careers in health-related fields graduate with some of the highest student loan debt levels of any educational disciplines. Colleges and universities that participate in the Federal loan programs are required to educate these student borrowers during mandatory entrance and exit counseling about their repayment obligation, repayment plans and schedules, and the deferment and forbearance options, and the borrower’s rights and responsibilities (U.S. Department of Education, 2008). There is a gap in the research in identifying how financial literacy education influences future financial decision-making among students who attend financial educational sessions. This study specifically investigated the results of financial education sessions at a medical school and pharmacy school at two universities in the southeastern United States. The research determined how and to what extent financial programs influenced students’ financial decision-making behavior after participation in personal finance education sessions. A one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) was calculated with the independent variable being the number of financial education sessions attended and participants’ scores, based on answers to questions about financial decision-making. The results of the ANOVA analysis suggested that there was a positive correlation between the number of financial education sessions attended and responsible financial behavior. The results of a post-hoc LSD test indicated that participants who attended financial education sessions had higher scores than those who did not. In order to determine if personal finance education influenced responsible financial behavior, the results suggested there was a statistically significant relationship between students’ participation in personal finance education sessions and students’ responsible financial behavior.