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  • websurfing
    • #2
    • 6th Dec 10, 2:04 PM
    • #2
    • 6th Dec 10, 2:04 PM
    I disagree with "Who better than these institutions of education to educate about institutions finances."
    Is the suggestion that once the students are in University they are educated? Or bring potential student in and educate them?
    In my opinion it is too late by then. You need to educate much earlier, probably during the time that options of HE are being considered. Some more information to the secondary schools would be a good idea. With information for parents as well. Certainly not "When they apply, when they get accepted".
    • MSE Martin
    • By MSE Martin 6th Dec 10, 4:41 PM
    • 8,115 Posts
    • 42,285 Thanks
    MSE Martin
    • #3
    • 6th Dec 10, 4:41 PM
    • #3
    • 6th Dec 10, 4:41 PM
    I disagree with "Who better than these institutions of education to educate about institutions finances."
    Is the suggestion that once the students are in University they are educated? Or bring potential student in and educate them?
    In my opinion it is too late by then. You need to educate much earlier, probably during the time that options of HE are being considered. Some more information to the secondary schools would be a good idea. With information for parents as well. Certainly not "When they apply, when they get accepted".
    Originally posted by websurfing

    Hi

    As you'll see from the blog -financial education in schools is my main priority - yet I don't see that means we shouldn't continue it on the specific issues within uni too.

    Teach em before
    Teach em during
    Teach em after

    Seems the best way to go for me

    Martin
    Martin Lewis, Money Saving Expert.
    Please note, answers don't constitute financial advice, it is based on generalised journalistic research. Always ensure any decision is made with regards to your own individual circumstance.

    Don't miss out on urgent MoneySaving, get my weekly e-mail at www.moneysavingexpert.com/tips.

    Debt-Free Wannabee Official Nerd Club: (Honorary) Members number 000
  • Premier
    • #4
    • 6th Dec 10, 5:12 PM
    • #4
    • 6th Dec 10, 5:12 PM
    I suggest we start by going back to the basics that all other skills can be built upon.

    i.e. Basic numeracy (and literacy) ... and I don't mean which order to press buttons in on an electronic gizmo

    I was never given specific financial education at school, and neither were my parents or grandparents, but we were all taught the basic skills.

    You can't hope for people to master how they can have less money than none at all, unless they have a proper understanding of basic numeracy ... and with that knowledge the basics of personal finance will naturally follow, if through no other reason than natural inquisitiveness (i.e what does it mean if I have less than no money?, what happens then?) ... as it did with myself, my parents and their parents.

    Afterall, these people you hope to educate are hopefully those with above average ability and willingness to learn; not by being spoon fed the information, but via their own questioning and research.

    I'm not convinced that necessarily applies to 40+% of the population, but that's another debate.
    Last edited by Premier; 06-12-2010 at 5:20 PM.
    "Now to trolling as a concept. .... Personally, I've always found it a little sad that people choose to spend such a large proportion of their lives in this way but they do, and we have to deal with it." - MSE Forum Manager 6th July 2010
  • Jigsaw220
    • #5
    • 6th Dec 10, 6:37 PM
    • #5
    • 6th Dec 10, 6:37 PM
    I am a current uni student studying economics. Education of the youth is imperitive if we are to have a financially literate people. However it seems that one piece of the modern financial world has not been properly investigated in relation to financing and debt (and i was hoping for Martin's opinion on this). This is the use of credit and debit cards. No doubt these have bought a world of benefits and safety to us. However i can't help but believe that since almost everything is done electronically nowadays we have lost sense of the value of money. Our wages are given to us electronically and we spend it using these same methods. At no point do we handle real money and so the value of this money is less than before.

    I could take myself as an example. If i saw a pair of trainers i like and they were say £50 i would be much more willing to buy it using my card than if i had to make the decision solely if i had £50 in my back pocket and i know its much the same with other mates of mine.

    This kind of mentality does effect us in terms of our attitudes towards debt and finances and i believe that it requires greater investigation.
  • WhiteHorse
    • #6
    • 6th Dec 10, 6:49 PM
    • #6
    • 6th Dec 10, 6:49 PM
    If someone needs to be spoon fed information like that, they shouldn't be at university.
    "Never underestimate the mindless force of a government bureaucracy
    seeking to expand its power, dominion and budget"

    Jay Stanley, American Civil Liberties Union.
  • Errata
    • #7
    • 6th Dec 10, 8:17 PM
    • #7
    • 6th Dec 10, 8:17 PM
    With fees now likely to be £9,000 it’s time higher education institutions are mandated to take responsibility for their students (or maybe now we should call them customers?) knowledge about how their funding and loans work.
    I agree with you, and the only thing a uni has to do is stick the information on their website. They don't have to be responsible for students understanding it, that's the students responsibility.
    .....................I'm smiling because I have no idea what's going on ...
    • Eco Miser
    • By Eco Miser 7th Dec 10, 12:21 AM
    • 3,444 Posts
    • 3,239 Thanks
    Eco Miser
    • #8
    • 7th Dec 10, 12:21 AM
    • #8
    • 7th Dec 10, 12:21 AM
    At no point do we handle real money and so the value of this money is less than before.

    I could take myself as an example. If i saw a pair of trainers i like and they were say £50 i would be much more willing to buy it using my card than if i had to make the decision solely if i had £50 in my back pocket and i know its much the same with other mates of mine.
    Originally posted by Jigsaw220
    What is real money? Pieces of paper with a promise on them? Pieces of metal with a scrap value a tiny fraction of their face value?
    I used cash, or cheques for large sums, for many years, still do for small things, but these days I pay by card for most things over a tenner. The only change in my decision process since getting a card is that I never see something I want and can afford, but have to go looking for a bank or cash machine before I can buy it.

    Perhaps it's different brought up with cards.
    Eco Miser
    Saving money for well over half a century
    • JimmyTheWig
    • By JimmyTheWig 7th Dec 10, 8:51 AM
    • 11,863 Posts
    • 11,403 Thanks
    JimmyTheWig
    • #9
    • 7th Dec 10, 8:51 AM
    • #9
    • 7th Dec 10, 8:51 AM
    Who better than these institutions of education to educate about institutions finances.
    Not totally convinced that I agree with you on this one. The universities are the ones to benefit from the borrowed money. Can they be trusted to give the right advice? Even if so (on the basis that a university is whiter than white), is this not at odds with the whole adversarial consumer society concept?
    Would you trust a car salesman who told you that a personal loan was a good thing?
    Would you trust an estate agent who said that a mortgage was a good thing?
    Whether they are right or not, I wouldn't trust them as they stand to gain from the advice given. And I think to teach students that it is right to take advice from those with a vested interest is wrong.

    I think that by the age of 18 we need to be taking responsibility for ourselves. Therefore I think it is the job of the Student Unions to teach the students about these new debts. [As has been mentioned already, this is too late a time to _start_, but an ideal time to continue this financial education.]
  • Premier
    For years we’ve educated our youth into debt when they go to Uni, but never about debt. ...


    Debt is nothing new in our society.

    Last night I was watching the first ever Coronation Street episode first broadcast 50 years ago. In that, one of the characters went into the local shop and bought something that they asked to be 'put on the slate'.

    People were borrowing 50 years ago in order to get things they didn't have the money to pay for at the time. They understood then that what wasn't paid for upfront would have to be paid for later. Where have we gone wrong if we now have to educate people 'about debt' that was once considered basic common sense?

    The only difference nowadays is that loans are backed up with full terms and conditions before the amount is lent. I agree with Errata, it is for these people who want to demonstrate their thirst for knowledge and understanding to start by reading and understanding these terms, not to be paying £9000 per year to have it explained to them by mandate.
    I'm sure if, after reading such terms, a few individuals still cannot fully understand them, there will be many opportunities for them to seek further advice before they just take the money.
    By the time individuals are 18, they should be taking responsibility for their own actions.

    If education needs improving, perhaps it's educating our children that at some time they need to start taking reponsibility for their own actions. But wasn't this something that parents used to teach their children rather than relying on a formal educational establishment to do?
    • JimmyTheWig
    • By JimmyTheWig 7th Dec 10, 11:31 AM
    • 11,863 Posts
    • 11,403 Thanks
    JimmyTheWig
    Where have we gone wrong if we now have to educate people 'about debt' that was once considered basic common sense?
    Originally posted by Premier
    I think that the difference is that in their quest for profits, companies have become more "savvy". To combat this, customers need to become more savvy. Hence the need for more financial education.
    Great if this can come from parents. But it won't always do, so we need other ways (schools, children's centres, community groups, etc) to get the message out there.
  • WhiteHorse
    I think that the difference is that in their quest for profits, companies have become more "savvy". To combat this, customers need to become more savvy.
    Originally posted by JimmyTheWig
    Yes, moneylenders (for that is what they are), have become far more devious than they used to be. Unfortunately, this coincides with young people being more gullible than they used to be.

    The more 'child-centred' everything becomes, the more we pander to 'youth culture' and load the younger generation with privileges, the more stupid they seem to become.
    "Never underestimate the mindless force of a government bureaucracy
    seeking to expand its power, dominion and budget"

    Jay Stanley, American Civil Liberties Union.
  • Premier
    Further to my earlier post calling for an improvement in basic eduacational skills in numeracy (and literacy) there's an interesting report out today.

    According to the OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development) which has compared the standards of 65 different countries/regions educational systems, the UK is classified as only 28th best in mathematics and 25th in reading skills.

    This compared with only 7 of the 65 countries that spend more per student on education than we do in the UK.

    http://www.edexec.co.uk/news/1421/uk-falls-down-education-table/

    Shadow education secretary Andy Burnham said: "...People forget how bad things were: in 1997, half of all schools failed to reach the basic benchmark of 30% of students getting 5 GCSEs graded A*-C, including English and maths - that number is now fewer than one in 12."
    But as is often claimed when each year's results on paper show an increasing number of students attaining the best grades, there are two ways this result can be obtained.
    Surely this report suggests how perhaps it actually was?
    Last edited by Premier; 08-12-2010 at 8:56 AM.
  • sjanuary
    Of course students should be educated about how the loans will work but I think many who do fully understand the system will still be put off by the total size of the loan and the length of time it will take to repay.
  • WhiteHorse
    Of course students should be educated about how the loans will work ...
    Originally posted by sjanuary
    Surely all they need is the same sort of introductory literature that accompanies any loan agreement. If they need more than suffices for any other adult, then surely they are not of university calibre?

    ... but I think many who do fully understand the system will still be put off by the total size of the loan and the length of time it will take to repay.
    And will thereby got rid of a lot of nonsense cornflake-packet degrees that will never produce a living.
    "Never underestimate the mindless force of a government bureaucracy
    seeking to expand its power, dominion and budget"

    Jay Stanley, American Civil Liberties Union.
    • chattychappy
    • By chattychappy 8th Dec 10, 6:15 PM
    • 7,096 Posts
    • 3,932 Thanks
    chattychappy
    No, no no!

    Work it out before you go, or take responsibility for not understanding what you are getting into.

    I think we ought to be looking at what is going wrong in schools. Frankly the maths involved should be primary school level (and would be in other countries). If kids can't get it by the time they leave secondary school then they shouldn't be going to university.
    • Pincher
    • By Pincher 9th Dec 10, 1:13 AM
    • 6,516 Posts
    • 2,491 Thanks
    Pincher
    It is not a matter of policy and legislation,
    more a student union support activity.

    Seminars, workshops, visiting speakers.
  • Errata
    Given the current student demonstrations about fees, it could be argued that they completely understand the financial implications of studying for a degree.
    .....................I'm smiling because I have no idea what's going on ...
  • salmagundi
    Sensible alternative to fees.
    Donít raise fees for students, abolish them for British students, but insist all courses must be needed by, and of benefit to this country, and make students sign a contract that they will not take those skills out of the UK for the first 5 years of their working life.
  • WhiteHorse
    Interesting to see students prepared to travel the length of the country to riot in London in defence of their perceived financial interest ... yet who are unwilling to assist the local community in clearing snow and ice, maintaining vital services, etcetera.

    Where are the student battalions? They love to 'organise' against this and that, yet when it comes to doing something useful and actually being part of the community, they are nowhere to be seen.

    The Sheffield contingent currently in London springs to mind, one of whose number appeared on the TV today, complaining about the terrible injustice that they are about to suffer.
    Last edited by WhiteHorse; 09-12-2010 at 4:04 PM.
    "Never underestimate the mindless force of a government bureaucracy
    seeking to expand its power, dominion and budget"

    Jay Stanley, American Civil Liberties Union.
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