Adulting: Financial Literacy, College Study Skills, & Career Planning

One-semester course. Adulting: Financial Literacy, College Study Skills, & Career Planning (formerly Life Skills for the Young Adult II) is divided into four, four-week modules focusing on: college and adult-level study skills; personal financial planning; career planning; and the mechanics of the job search. Students will complete a project for each module which will be a study guide, a budget, a personal career analysis, and a cover letter and advanced resume. Additionally, students will read and react to the course texts weekly, participate in discussion boards, and be responsible for three student presentations. There will be two take-home tests in the middle and the end of the semester.

The first module challenges students to evaluate their study skills through Cal Newport’s How to Become a Straight A-Student. Students learn the specific ways to break down both humanities and science classes, with a particular focus on the right method to use to spend less time on assignments and achieve high academic results. This part of the course challenges students to accept the rigor of college studies as essential to deciding to undertake an undergraduate degree.

The second module uses Personal Finance for Dummies to review the ins and outs of decision making. In particular, the concepts of the limitedness of resources and tradeoffs in decision making are incorporated into discussion. Students learn the realities of the ordinary expenses of everyday adult life.

The third module focuses on Matthew Rose’s book, Shopcraft as Soulcraft, where the author details his journey from an aspiring academic (earning his Ph.D in philosophy) to a successful motorcycle mechanic. Students learn about the intellectual and personal rigor required in many professions, whether they are tied to further academic study or the taking up of a craft. The idea of acquiring a valuable skill is emphasized throughout this module, as well as the importance of a work-life balance.

The final module uses the classic job-hunting text What Color is Your Parachute to walk students through the job search process. In particular, with an increasing trend of young adults mastering several career paths in their lives, this module challenges students to think dynamically about their career options and learn how to evaluate when to embrace an opportunity and when to pivot onto a new adventure.

All classes are live with ample interaction with the instructor and fellow students and the occasional in-class group exercise.

*While this course builds upon Adulting: Finance & Goal Planning; Resumes & Real Life, it may be taken separate from that course or as the first of two courses.


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Adulting: Financial Literacy, College Study Skills, & Career Planning Information




  • Example Syllabus
  • Class meets once per week for 50-55 minutes.
  • Class cap: 20 students.
  • Designed for grades 9-12.
  • High school students may be awarded .5 Personal Finance or Elective credit upon completion of this course.

Course Materials




  • Click here to purchase the course texts.
    • How to Become a Straight-A Student, Cal Newport
    • Personal Finance in your 20s and 30s for Dummies
    • Shopcraft as Soulcraft, Matthew Crawford
    • Richard N. Bolles, What Color is Your Parachute


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