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Personal Finance

  • As part of their curriculum, students in Missouri must earn a 1/2 credit in the area of Personal Finance.
  • Students who are receiving personal finance credit from embedded coursework: The online assessment is REQUIRED. The pass rate is the district’s decision.
  • Students attempting to “test out” and receive personal finance credit toward graduation: The online assessment is REQUIRED. Students must attain a score of 90% or higher to receive personal finance credit.
  • Students who are enrolled in a stand-alone personal finance course: The online assessment is OPTIONAL. Participation, however, permits the district to evaluate student achievement with an assessment fully aligned to state standards.
  • A student may take the Personal Finance Assessment ONE time per testing window.
  • The Personal Finance Assessment is provided at no cost to districts.

Important Dates

Dates Event
June 9, 2014 to August 29, 2014 Summer 2014 Window
October 6, 2014 to January 23, 2015 Fall 2014 Window
February 23, 2015 to May 22, 2015 Spring 2015 Window

PF Assessment

Before Testing

The Personal Finance Assessment runs off of a standalone testing browser (MetaCat). The MetaCat browser requires Windows 2000 or above.

Before testing begins, DTC's should have their IT staff download the MetaCat Browser and run it on all systems that will be used for testing. This is a one time download.

If you cannot access this page, direct your building IT staff to allow "http://www.metacat2.net" through the firewall. Access to this URL is needed for testing.


During/After Testing

When students are ready to take the assessment, the examiner should distribute specific usernames and passwords to each student. These usernames are e-mailed prior to testing. The examiner should then direct them to the MetaCat Browser and have them log in with their given username and password.

Student work is saved as they progress through the assessment. If there is any network interruption, students can log back in and resume. Once a student has finished the test, they cannot take it again until the next window.

After students have finished testing, and the program is ready to be closed, press ALT-F4.

If there are circumstances where a test needs to be reset, please contact MetaLogic at: [email protected] or call 877-654-9888.

Pre-Coding/Enrolling Students

Field Name Description
Testing Window Summer, Fall or Spring and Year (ex. Fall 2014)
County-District Code DESE assigned 6 digit code
School Code DESE assigned 4 digit code
MOSIS ID State assigned student identier.
Last Name Legal last name of student
First Name Legal first name of student
Suffix (Optional) Legal name suffix. (Jr., Sr., etc)
Date of Birth Student date of birth
Grade Level Student Grade Level at time of testing
Race/Ethnicity A (Asian), B (Black), H (Hispanic), I (Indian), P (Hawaiian or Pacific Islander), W (White), M (Multi-Race)
Course Name Name of Course Student is receiving Personal Finance credit in
Instructor Last Name Last name of educator
Instructor First Name First name of educator
Class Period Period in which the assessment is given
Test Type Embedded Class, Stand-Alone Class or Test Out

Login Information

Within 24 hours, DTC's will receive a username and password for each student. Once a DTC has received usernames and passwords, districts may take the assessment at any time.

Finally, DTC's will send a list of names, phone numbers and e-mail addresses for any other administrators/teachers that are involved in the assessment to: [email protected]

  • Only those names submitted by the DTC will have access to the system and be given technical support. DTC's should be sure to use their official school email address to submit this list.

Who takes the Personal Finance Assessment?

  • Students who are taking a course in which the Personal Finance competencies are embedded are required to take the assessment.
  • Students who are attempting to “test out” are required to take the assessment.
  • For students who are enrolled in a stand-alone Personal Finance course, the assessment is optional.

In what grades may the state Personal Finance class and/or the Assessment be taken?

It is recommended that the Personal Finance course be completed after the ninth grade because of the specific content and its relevance for persons reaching the age at which they must begin to assume financial responsibilities. However, grade level designations are not included in the Rule, so the grade level at which Personal Finance may be taught is ultimately an individual school district’s decision. Although the Graduation Handbook does refer to specific grade levels at which the course is to be offered, that document is meant for technical assistance only.

What is the “test out” option?

Districts have the option to allow students to “test out” in order for that student to receive the ½ unit of credit in Personal Finance required to graduate. To “test out,” a student must attain a score of 90% or higher on the Personal Finance Assessment.

What is the pass rate for the Personal Finance Assessment?

For students attempting to “test out,” the passing rate is 90%. Districts have the flexibility to set their own passing rate for all other students who take the Personal Finance Assessment.

How many times can a student take the Personal Finance Assessment?

A student may take the Personal Finance assessment one time per assessment window. This includes those students attempting to “test out.”

Are English Language Learners (ELLs) or students with Individual Education (IEP) Plans/504 plans allowed accommodations?

ELLs or students with an IEP/504 plan are allowed the same accommodations they would receive on an other content assessments. Be aware that the MetaCat system does not have the same features as the platforms for other assessments.

  • Please note: The Personal Finance Assessment is notavailable in a paper and pencil, large print or Braille version at this time.

How quickly are the results for the Personal Finance Assessment available?

Test results are available immediately. When a student finishes the test, the score is shown to the student.

How do test examiners view results for the Personal Finance Assessment?

Test examiners may view results once all students in the class have finished the assessment.

Can local districts use student scores on the Personal Finance Assessment as part of the student grade?

Yes, districts may, but are not required to use the scores from the Personal Finance Assessments as part of the student grade.

Are there achievement levels for the Personal Finance Assessment?

No, there are no achievement levels for the Personal Finance Assessment.

Where does Personal Finance fit into the curriculum and how may it be counted for credit?

Personal Finance may be counted as ½ credit as a practical arts course, a social studies course or a standalone elective course.

Who may teach Personal Finance?

The district should choose the most qualified person to teach the course. The instructor must have a valid Missouri teaching certificate for secondary education.

Personal Finance Comptencies

The competencies for the approved course in personal finance have been developed and are available.  The State Board of Education approved an increase in the minimum high school graduation standards that includes a required half-unit course in personal finance.  The State Board of Education approved this policy on October 6, 2005.

The competencies were developed by an advisory committee of business representatives; higher education officials; the Centers for Economics Education; and teachers from the areas of family and consumer sciences, business education, and social studies.  Personnel from the Missouri Center for Career Education assisted the Department in developing the competencies.

As a starting point, teachers reviewed the personal finance standards from the JumpStart Coalition for Personal Financial Literacy.  They also reviewed the recommended content standards and benchmarks from the Missouri Council on Economic Education's Towards Economic and Financial Literacy: A Final Report.

Additional Resources