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4 Free Personal Finance Courses That Can be Done in Three Hours

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One of the most pivotal parts of an individual’s livelihood is learning about personal finance, a term used to describe how one manages their money. It essentially encompasses everything from how you earn and spend your money to how you save, invest and borrow it.

Despite its importance in our everyday lives, however, personal finance is a subject that historically has been left off school curriculums, though that’s now changing. As a result, many adults today have been left without any sort of proper education or guidance as to how their finances actually work.

Thankfully, there’s an abundance of resources available online, including blogs and YouTube channels, that break down the basics of personal finance to help anyone start learning. For a more organized approach, online courses also exist, taught by vetted industry professionals and experts who are just a couple of clicks away.

Below, Select outlines four free online personal finance courses that can help you kickstart your financial journey — and don’t require much time.

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1. Udemy’s “Personal Finance 101: Everything You Need to Know”

Udemy is a massive online educational resource covering various topics.

A good place to begin learning about personal finance is through its “Personal Finance 101: Everything You Need to Know” course. By watching animated videos, users can learn basic personal finance topics such as saving for college, retirement planning and the ins and outs of credit cards.

This three-hour class requires no prior knowledge of finance or statistics and will guide you with concise online lectures that are no longer than a few minutes each. More than 55,000 people are enrolled and reviewers are generally pleased with the content, giving the course an average rating of 4.5 out of 5 stars. You’ll have to pay for a certificate of completion if you’d like one, but all the other course video content is available for free.

2. Skillshare’s “My Financial Mountain: Understanding Your Path to a Solid Financial Foundation”

You may have already heard of Skillshare, as it’s a popular online learning community offering all sorts of educational classes.

Though Skillshare is a subscription-based service, you can still sign up for a free trial and receive unlimited access to more than 35,000 classes. You can cancel the free trial at any time — once it elapses, you’ll be charged $168 for the annual premium subscription plan.

We recommend beginners sign up for the free trial and take a course called “My Financial Mountain: Understanding Your Path to a Solid Financial Foundation” — it’s only 24 minutes long and allows you to breeze through topics such as saving for the future and financial planning.

While it’s definitely not a deep dive into personal finance and you won’t receive a certificate for completing it, this class will help put first-timers on track to understanding the key concepts, since it also walks you through seven steps you can take to set up a strong financial foundation.

With an enrollment of about 850, this course exceeded 33% of reviewers’ expectations and met 50%.

3. Alison’s “Introduction to Managing Your Personal Finance Debts”

Alison — short for Advanced Learning Interactive Systems Online — is an education platform that offers free online courses with certificates and diplomas, though the latter are available for purchase. Users can use their programs to learn skills such as accounting, contract law, business management and graphic design, and there are loads of personal finance courses available.

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