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Financial Educator Certificate Program

The University of Minnesota online Financial Educator Certificate program (FEC) equips community-based professionals with knowledge and skills to work with people to manage financial resources, build financial assets, and improve financial health and well-being.

The 10-module program covers core financial concepts of earning, spending, saving, borrowing, and protecting. The program is also focused on financial behavior theory, financial education delivery methods, ethics, and program evaluation.

  • Module 1: Influences on Money
  • Module 2: Financial Planning Process
  • Module 3: Understanding Credit
  • Module 4: Managing Debt
  • Module 5: Savings and Asset Development
  • Module 6: Investing
  • Module 7: Asset Preservation and Protection
  • Module 8: Delivery Methods for Effective Financial Education
  • Module 9: Evaluation
  • Module 10: Financial Portfolio

The FEC modules are designed to be instructor-facilitated. Instructors are Dr. Mary Jo Katras, Extension, and Dr. Catherine Solheim, Family Social Science.

Berni Johnson-Clark Shares Need for Financial Educator Certificate

Core Competencies for Financial Educators

The online Financial Educator Certificate program is designed to fulfill the following core competencies for financial educators:

1. Comprehend core concepts of financial literacy

As outlined by the Department of Treasury in the Federal Register on August 26, 2010

  • Earning
  • Spending
  • Saving
  • Borrowing
  • Protecting

2. Demonstrate mastery of core financial practices

  • Analyze financial situations
    • Net worth, cash flow, ratio
  • Set goals
  • Create spending and saving plans
  • Build and repair credit
  • Manage debt
  • Access tax credits
  • Build wealth

3. Comprehend core tenets of financial education and evaluation

  • Apply financial educational theories
  • Choose appropriate financial education delivery methods for intended outcomes
  • Comprehend key principles in financial education program evaluation
  • Demonstrate ethical principles in financial education

Participation in the FEC Program

This research project has developed into an online courses offered by the U of M's Extension Service. For details and requirements, visit the Extension's Financial Educator certificate course.


If you have any questions, please email fincert@umn.edu

Development of this online financial education certification program was financially supported by the Greater Twin Cities United Way. The College of Education and Human Development, University of Minnesota, provided instructional design and technology production support. This educational program is a partnership between University of Minnesota Extension and the Department of Family Social Science.