Visual Tools and Narratives

New Ways to Improve Financial Literacy

Published in: Journal of Pension Economics and Finance, Volume 16, Issue 3 (July 2017), pages 297-323. doi: 10.1017/S1474747215000323

Posted on RAND.org on October 06, 2017

by Annamaria Lusardi, Anya S Samek, Arie Kapteyn, Lewis Glinert, Angela Hung, Aileen Heinberg

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We developed and experimentally evaluated four novel educational programs delivered online: an informational brochure, a visual interactive tool, a written narrative, and a video narrative. The programs were designed to inform people about risk diversification, an essential concept for financial decision-making. The effectiveness of these programs was evaluated using the American Life Panel. Participants were exposed to one of the programs, and then asked to answer questions measuring financial literacy — in particular, risk literacy — and self-efficacy. All of the programs were found to be effective at increasing self-efficacy, and several improved financial literacy, providing new evidence for the value of programs designed to improve financial decision-making.

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