The Effect of Personal Finance Education on The Financial Knowledge, Attitudes and Behaviour of University Students in Indonesia

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Colleges, School and Institutes


There is much debate about the impact of personal finance education on financial knowledge, attitudes and behaviour, particularly based on studies in the United Kingdom (UK) and United States of America (US). This paper makes a contribution to this debate, drawing on analysis of a survey of 521 undergraduate students at Bogor Agricultural University (IPB) in Indonesia in 2015. As part of that study, we measured the impact of a 14-week personal finance education course on financial knowledge, attitudes and behaviour. Our findings show that, when controlling for other factors, the personal finance course did, indeed, have a positive and statistically significant impact on financial knowledge. However, there was no statistically significant impact of the course on financial attitudes or behaviour. Our analysis also shows that family financial socialisation was an important driver of financial knowledge, attitudes and behaviour while other drivers of financial behaviour included income, work experience, year/field of study and discussing money with friends. We do not argue here that formal financial education is unimportant but that its role in changing attitudes and behaviour should be considered carefully if this is, indeed, its aim.


Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Family and Economic Issues
Early online date18 Nov 2020
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 18 Nov 2020