A Situated Learning Approach to Measuring Financial Literacy Self-Efficacy of Youth

Pauline Prevett, Maria Pampaka, Valerie Farnsworth, Afroditi Kalambouka, Xin Shi

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In setting a new direction for the field by highlighting the importance of measure development, this paper offers an original approach to modelling financial literacy, in which theories of situated learning meet self-efficacy: an approach that we claim fits well with the aims of program evaluation. It presents results from the validation of a new set of measures, intended for use with 16 to 19-year-olds, of financial literacy self-efficacy pertaining to contexts such as the classroom or the everyday activity of personal banking. Self-efficacy implies a domain in which confidence is measured specific to that context - in this case financial literacy. The data were collected in the United Kingdom from high school and college students enrolled in an optional certificate course in personal financial management. The measures were validated on a subset (n=171) of a larger sample and was an off-shoot project of a larger three-year evaluation study of the financial literacy certificate course (n=2000), which provided additional mixed-methods data used in validation. Correlation analysis supports the contention - incorporated within the framework presented - that self-efficacy is context-specific and so measures of self-efficacy must adequately reflect the contexts in which the associated literacies reside.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)229-250
Number of pages22
JournalJournal of Financial Counseling and Planning
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2020


  • financial literacy
  • financial literacy measurement
  • self-efficacy
  • situated learning
  • youth


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