Financial education learning framework in the United States (Jump$tart)

History of the development of the framework

The Jump$tart Coalition issued its first Personal Finance Guidelines and Benchmarks in 1998, developed by a broad range of education, government and financial services organisations. The national standards were subsequently revised, updated in 2001 and 2006 and also reviewed by a group of finance and business industry professionals and educators in the third edition in 2007, National Standards in K-12 Personal Financial


The Jump$tart Coalition for Personal Financial Literacy is a not-for-profit organisation that consists of 180 business, financial and educational organisations and 47 affiliated state coalitions dedicated to improving the financial literacy of youth.

Learning outcomes/standards

The national standards provide “knowledge statements” of the “overall competency” that students are expected to develop for each of the dimensions of personal finance. As well as the overall competency statement, more detailed descriptions are provided of the knowledge that students at 4th Grade, 8th Grade and 12th Grade are expected to be able to exhibit.

The overall competency statements are as follows:

  • • financial responsibility and decision making: apply reliable information and systematic decision making to personal financial decisions;
  • • income and careers: use a career plan to develop personal income potential;
  • • planning and money management: organise personal finances and use a budget to manage cash flow;
  • • credit and debt: maintain credit worthiness, borrow at favourable terms, and manage debt;
  • • risk management and insurance: use appropriate and cost-effective risk management strategies;
  • • saving and investment: implement a diversified investment strategy that is compatible with personal goals.

Topics/issues covered and their goals

Broad topics/issues are provided in the form of standards for each of the dimensions of personal finance education. These are in the form of overall standards which are expanded into expectations for each of the standards at 4th grade, 8th grade and 12th grade. The following are the overall standards for each of the dimensions:

Financial responsibility and decision making:

Standard 1: take responsibility for personal financial decisions.

Standard 2: find and evaluate financial information from a variety of sources.

Standard 3: summarise major consumer protection laws.

Standard 4: make financial decisions by systematically considering alternatives and consequences.

Standard 5: develop communication strategies for discussing financial issues.

Standard 6: control personal information.

Income and careers

Standard 1: explore career options.

Standard 2: identify sources of personal income.

Standard 3: describe factors affecting take-home pay.

Planning and money management

Standard 1: develop a plan for spending and saving.

Standard 2: develop a system for keeping and using financial records.

Standard 3: describe how to use different payment methods.

Standard 4: apply consumer skills to purchase decisions.

Standard 5: consider charitable giving.

Standard 6: develop a personal financial plan.

Standard 7: examine the purpose and importance of a will.

Credit and debt

Standard 1: identify the costs and benefits of various types of credit.

Standard 2: explain the purpose of a credit record and identify borrowers’ credit report rights.

Standard 3: describe ways to avoid or correct debt problems.

Standard 4: summarise major consumer credit laws.

Risk management and insurance

Standard 1: identify common types of risk and basic risk management methods. Standard 2: explain the purpose and importance of property and liability protection insurance.

Standard 3: explain the purpose and importance of health, disability, and life insurance protection.

Saving and investing

Standard 1: discuss how saving contributes to financial well-being.

Standard 2: explain how investing builds wealth and helps meet financial goals. Standard 3: evaluate investment alternatives.

Standard 4: describe how to buy and sell investments.

Standard 5: explain how taxes affect the rate of return on investments.

Standard 6: investigate how agencies that regulate financial markets protect investors.

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