How to assess the outcomes and impacts of financial education programs?
This paper presents a framework for studying the outcomes and impacts of financial education programs.The paper focuses specifically on outcomes of financial literacy in five thematic areas. These include:
Under each thematic area, the paper suggests indicators to study changes in:
Skills and attitudes;
Financial behaviors and practices;
The paper asserts that systematic outcome assessments can enhance understanding of:
What works and why?
How can financial education programs be improved?
What is the value of investing in them?
It concludes that, in future, evaluation of outcomes and impacts of financial education programs should include a focus on:
Translation of indicators of financial knowledge, skills, attitudes, behaviors and outcomes into appropriate measures of change;
Establishment of benchmarks of behavior change that can be expected from financial education programs;
Development of simple, practitioner-led progress tracking systems;
Expansion and elaboration of a conceptual framework to guide the design of financial education impact assessments.