Build Financial Skills with Online Classes

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Phyllis Zalenski
Human Sciences
Iowa State University Extension & Outreach

Iowans can expand their financial knowledge and skills without leaving home with free online classes and webinars from Iowa State University Extension and Outreach and eXtension. The only requirement is a computer with Internet access.
“Many people are interested in improving their financial know-how, but going somewhere to take a class just doesn’t fit into their schedules. Online learning lets you choose the time, place and pace that works for you,” said Phyllis Zalenski, a human sciences specialist in family finance with ISU Extension and Outreach.

Take Control of Your Money

“Take Control of Your Money” focuses on basic money management principles, as well as reducing debt, building financial security and improving family communication about money, Zalenski said. The course includes tools for planning and tracking spending, forums for sharing ideas with other participants, audio-visual lessons and optional quizzes.
“You can choose the course modules of interest to you, start at any time and complete them in any order,” she said. “You also can get tips via email from a learning coach, if you so choose.”
Visit to learn more about the course and register to participate.

Smart Investing @ your Library

“Are you interested in learning to make wise investing decisions? Then sign up for one of three investment education courses focused on your stage in life,” Zalenski said.
"Smart investing @ your library®" online courses are open for enrollment at any time. Each course involves four online modules and is tailored to the investment challenges of each age group. Topics include balancing risk, cutting investment costs, choosing an investment adviser and fine-tuning an investment portfolio at each life stage. For more information, visit

Interactive Learning Environment:

eXtension is an online, interactive learning environment delivering researched knowledge from land-grant universities across the country. More than 17 financial topics are featured, including consumer credit, estate planning, health finance, insurance, legal topics and retirement planning. Free webinars feature experts in personal finance from land-grant universities throughout the United States.
“During live webinars, you can interact with presenters and pose your own questions. Or you can watch a recording of any of the archived webinar presentations. Most webinars are 90 minutes long and many do not require registration,” Zalenski said.
To participate in an upcoming or archived webinar, simply click the webinar link at

Date of Publication: 
December, 2014