Helping Undergraduates Discover The Value Of A Dollar Through Self-Monitoring

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Lance Palmer
Donna L. Bliss
Joseph W. Goetz
Diann Moorman


Financial education, student finance, financial management, budgeting


Many college undergraduates lack basic financial management knowledge and skills while bearing ever increasing debt burdens upon graduation. In order to encourage students to become aware of their spending patterns and weigh those patterns against personal values, a self-monitoring project was implemented as a class activity. The resulting effect on financial behavior was examined. Analysis of participants’ self-reflection papers revealed that awareness of spending behaviors increased universally among participants, and a significant proportion of students spontaneously modified spending behaviors to more closely conform to personal values. Participants consistently reported the importance of a spending management tool in modifying spending behavior.


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