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Other · Richards College of Business · Accounting/Finance

Personal Financial Management

  • Spring 2021
  • Section E01
  • 3 Credits
  • 01/09/2021 to 05/11/2021
  • Modified 12/17/2020


A non-technical course of general application stressing personal financial planning, budgeting, savings and investments, small business ownership, estate planning, and retirement income.


Richards Col Upper Division RCUD

Contact Information

Instructor: Dr. Heather R. Bono

Office Hours

  • Virtually via Google Meet by appointment only.

Please send me an email ([email protected]) to schedule an appointment. You should use your myWestGA email account when sending your request.

I will check emails regularly between 9:00am and 4:30pm Mondays-Fridays. Please allow 24 to 48 hours for a response.


Meeting Times

  • This class is entirely online and has no required face-to-face attendance.
  • Lecture and Problem Solving: Topics in personal financial management are presented in the textbook materials and/or lectures presented by the instructor and other presenters.
  • Internet Materials: Various materials are available on the CourseDen course site.
  • Outside Assignments: Students are required to complete a series of personal financial analysis exercises.  CourseDen housed quizzes and exams must be completed.



  • Author: Gitman, Joehnk, and Billingsley
  • Publisher: Cengage Learning
  • Edition: 7th

Other Necessary Course Materials

A basic calculator, access to an internet connected computer, and library reference resources are needed.


A complete list of expected learning goals (LG) for the Richards College of Business can be found here.

Learning Goal 1

Communicate effectively

Learning Goal 2

Apply basic quantitative skills to personal finance

Learning Goal 3

Use information technology to research and analyze personal finance problems

Learning Goals 4 and 6

Develop ability to use financial information to make informed personal financial decisions

Learning Goal 5

Understand how ethical decision-making and globalization affect financial decisions



Grading Weights

What Do You Know about Personal Finance Quiz, 10 points

Quizzes 1-12 (10 highest), 100 points

Financial Planning Exercises, 90 points

Midterm Exam, 100 points

Final Exam, 100 points

Grading scale

360 and above points, Letter Grade A

320 up to 360 points, Letter Grade B

280 up to 320 points, Letter Grade C

240 up to 280 points, Letter Grade D

Below 240 points, Letter Grade F


Assignment policies

  • Requests for quiz, exam, and assignment score adjustments must be made in writing (email is fine) within ONE WEEK of grade assignment.
  • All quizzes (What Do You Know About Personal Finance Quiz and Quizzes 1-12) are available for completion beginning the first day of the semester and as such, you will have plenty of time to complete these quizzes well in advance of their stated deadlines.  No makeup quizzes will be given unless offered to the entire class. If you miss a quiz you will receive a grade of zero on that quiz. 
  • If you miss an exam, you will receive a zero unless your reason for missing the exam is deemed valid by the instructor. You must contact your instructor (via email) regarding your excuse for missing an exam within one week of the closing time of the exam or you will receive a zero on the exam.
  • The financial planning exercises are available for completion beginning the first day of the semester and as such, you will have plenty of time to complete these assignments well in advance of their stated deadlines.  You are responsible for making sure that you complete the financial planning exercises prior to the stated deadlines.  There are no make ups for the financial planning exercises.  If you miss an assignment, you will receive a grade of zero. It is your responsibility to ensure that you have submitted the file you wish to have graded.  Submissions after the deadline will not be accepted.  Any issues, technical or otherwise, concerning the financial planning exercises must be addressed no later than the day before the deadline for completion so that Dr. Bono has sufficient time to help you with this issue prior to the submission deadline.  You should keep in mind the communication policy for this course. Once the deadline has passed, any unattempted assignment will result in a grade of zero. You will not receive an extension and the assignment will not be reopened.  Emailed or late assignments will not be accepted.  Only assignments submitted to the appropriate CourseDen folder will be graded.  
  • You are responsible for knowledge of administrative announcements (test information, schedule changes, etc.) that are posted in CourseDen or sent to your official UWG email address.


Financial Planning Exercises (18 points each, 90 points total)

Five financial planning exercises will be posted in CourseDen. The assignments will focus on application of the learned material. Each assignment will be worth 18 points. If completed by the due dates, you will receive full credit for your submissions or be told changes that need to be made for you to receive full credit.

Exams (100 points each, 200 points total)

Two exams, a midterm and a final, will be available in CourseDen.  All exams are taken online.  The midterm exam covers material from the beginning of the course until the midterm exam date.  The final exam covers material starting after the midterm exam until the final exam date.  Each exam will be worth 100 points.  There are corresponding sample exams in CourseDen for both exams.  Sample exams are provided as study aides.  Sample exams can increase your exam scores, but cannot lower your scores.  If your highest sample exam score is lower than your actual exam score, you keep your actual exam score.  If your highest sample exam score is greater than your actual exam score, your adjusted exam score will be calculated as:  Adjusted Exam score = (0.25*sample exam score) + (0.75*actual exam score).  Time limits are set at twice the time you are expected to need to complete the exams. 

Quizzes (10 points each, 100 points total)

Twelve chapter quizzes will be available in CourseDen. Each quiz will be worth 10 points. The two lowest of the twelve quiz scores are dropped. Each of the quizzes may be taken up to four times. The highest score for each quiz is retained for grading purposes. The quizzes change each time they are opened. Time limits are set at twice the time you are expected to need to complete the quizzes.

What Do You Know about Personal Finance Quiz (10 points)

One "What Do You Know about Personal Finance Quiz" will be available in CourseDen. This quiz will be worth 10 points. You will only have one attempt on this assignment.  Time limits are set at twice the time you are expected to need to complete the assignment.

Extra Credit (2 points)

The introduction discussion activity is worth two extra credit points.

Additional Information

Work submitted for credit in other courses will not be accepted for credit in this course. There is no extra credit in this course beyond that explicitly stated in the course syllabus or announced in class by the instructor. I reserve the right to “curve” grades; but any curve would only increase your score.


Basic Information

  • All quizzes and exams open when the class starts. Quizzes, exams, and assignments close at 11:59pm on the due dates listed below.
  • The schedule may require modification as the semester progresses. Any changes will be noted in CourseDen. 

Important Due Dates

  • January 19: Introduction Discussion
  • January 19: Syllabus Quiz; You will be dropped from the class if you do not complete the syllabus quiz by its deadline.
  • January 19:  What Do You Know About Personal Finance Quiz
  • January 21: Financial Planning Exercise 1
  • February 4: Financial Planning Exercise 2
  • February 18: Financial Planning Exercise 3
  • March 4: Quizzes 1 through 6; AND Midterm Exam
  • April 1: Financial Planning Exercise 4
  • April 2: Last day to withdraw with a grade of W.
  • April 15: Financial Planning Exercise 5
  • May 6: Quizzes 7 through 12; AND Final Exam

The suggested weekly schedule for completing the course can be found below.

Course calendar and related activities
When Topic Notes
Week of 01/11
Introduction/Orientation/Chapter 1
  • Introduction Discussion Activity (closes 01/19)
  • Syllabus Quiz (closes 01/19); you will be dropped from the class if you do not complete the syllabus quiz by its deadline.
  • What Do You Know About Personal Finance Quiz (closes 01/19)
  • Quiz 1 – Covers Chapter 1 (closes 03/04)
Week of 01/18
Chapter 1
  • Introduction discussion due 01/19
  • Syllabus Quiz due 01/19; you will be dropped from the class if you do not complete the syllabus quiz by its deadline.
  • What Do You Know About Personal Finance Quiz due 01/19
  • Financial Planning Exercise 1 due 01/21
Week of 01/25
Chapter 2
  • Quiz 2 – Covers Chapter 2 (closes 03/04)
Week of 02/01
Chapter 3
  • Financial Planning Exercise 2 due 02/04
  • Quiz 3– Covers Chapter 4 (closes 03/04)
Week of 02/08
Chapter 4
  • Quiz 4– Covers Chapter 4 (closes 03/04)
Week of 02/15
Chapter 5
  • Financial Planning Exercise 3 due 02/18
  • Quiz 5 – Covers Chapter 5 (closes 03/04)
Week of 02/22
Chapters 6 & 7
  • Quiz 6 – Covers Chapters 6 & 7 (closes 03/04)
Week of 03/01
Review and complete assignments.
  • Quizzes 1 through 6 AND the midterm exam are due by 11:59pm on Thursday, 03/04
  • Midterm Exam – Covers Chapters 1 through 7
Week of 03/08
Chapter 8
  • Quiz 7 – Covers Chapter 8 (closes 05/06)
Week of 03/15
Spring Break - No Classes
  • Spring Break - No Classes
Week of 03/22
Chapter 9
  • Quiz 8 – Covers chapter 9 (closes 05/06)
Week of 03/29
Chapter 10
  • Financial Planning Exercise 4 due 04/01
  • Quiz 9 – Covers Chapter 10 (closes 05/06)
  • Last day to withdraw with a grade of "W" is Friday, April 2.
Week of 04/05
Chapter 11
  • Quiz 10 – Covers Chapter 11 (closes 05/06)
Week of 04/12
Chapter 12
  • Financial Planning Exercise 5 due 04/15
  • Quiz 11 – Covers Chapter 12 (closes 05/06)
Week of 04/19
Chapters 13 & 14
  • Quiz 12 – Covers 13 & 14 (closes 05/06)
Week of 04/26
Review and complete assignments.
  • Quizzes 7-12 and Final Exam – Covers Chapters 8 through 14 (close 05/06)
Week of 05/03
Final Exam Week
  • Quizzes 7 through 12 AND the Final Exam are due by 11:59pm on Thursday, 05/06
  • Final Exam – Covers Chapters 8 through 14

College/School Policies

Wolf Pact

Having read the Honor Code for the University of West Georgia, I understand and accept my responsibility to uphold the values described therein and to conduct myself in a manner that will reflect the values of UWG and the Richards College of Business so as to respect the rights of all UWG community members. As a UWG student, I will represent myself truthfully and complete all academic assignments honestly and within the parameters set by my instructor.

I understand and accept that if I am found guilty of violations (through processes due me as a UWG student and outlined in the UWG Student Handbook), penalties will be imposed.

I also recognize that my responsibility includes a willingness to confront members of the UWG community if I feel there has been a violation of the Honor Code.  

Ultimately, I will conduct myself in a manner that promotes UWG as the best place to work, learn, and succeed for my generation, and those to come!

About the Richards College of Business

To become a globally recognized college of business preparing forward-thinking, responsible leaders.

We are in the business of transforming lives through education, engagement, and experiences.

Strategic Goals and Values

Student Success
Admit quality students and provide them with an education that is rich in experiences and engagement opportunities to prepare them to be effective and ethical professionals.

Academic Success
Recruit, retain and develop faculty and staff by providing sufficient resources to support dynamic and up-to-date bachelor and master-level curricula, to conduct research and other professional activities, and to support engagement with all stakeholders.

Operational Success
Recruit, retain and develop administrative management and staff personnel to manage, develop and support infrastructure and those activities that build internal and external partnerships while working in an ever-changing environment.

Ethical Values
The Richards College of Business community (administrators, faculty, staff, students, and business partners) share a commitment to the principles of honesty and integrity in interactions and undertakings, accountability for personal behavior, and respect for the rights, differences, and dignity of others. In addition, we strive to continuously improve our abilities to recognize unethical behavior and to make ethical and moral decisions.

Institutional Policies

Academic Support

Accessibility Services: Students with a documented disability may work with UWG Accessibility Services to receive essential services specific to their disability. All entitlements to accommodations are based on documentation and USG Board of Regents standards. If a student needs course adaptations or accommodations because of a disability or chronic illness, or if he/she needs to make special arrangements in case the building must be evacuated, the student should notify his/her instructor in writing and provide a copy of his/her Student Accommodations Report (SAR), which is available only from Accessibility Services. Faculty cannot offer accommodations without timely receipt of the SAR; further, no retroactive accommodations will be given. For more information, please contact Accessibility Services.

Center for Academic Success: The Center for Academic Success provides services, programs, and opportunities to help all undergraduate students succeed academically. For more information, contact them: 678-839-6280 or [email protected]

University Writing Center: The University Writing Center assists students with all areas of the writing process. For more information, contact them: 678-839-6513 or [email protected]

Online Courses

UWG takes students’ privacy concerns seriously: technology-enhanced and partially and fully online courses use sites and entities beyond UWG and students have the right to know the privacy policies of these entities. For more information on privacy and accessibility for the most commonly used sites, as well as technology requirements visit the UWG Online site.

Students enrolled in online courses can find answers to many of their questions in the Online/Off-Campus Student Guide.

If a student is experiencing distress and needs help, please see the resources available at the UWG Cares site. Online counseling is also available for online students.

Honor Code

At the University of West Georgia, we believe that academic and personal integrity are based upon honesty, trust, fairness, respect, and responsibility. Students at West Georgia assume responsibility for upholding the honor code. West Georgia students pledge to refrain from engaging in acts that do not maintain academic and personal integrity. These include, but are not limited to, plagiarism, cheating, fabrication, aid of academic dishonesty, lying, bribery or threats, and stealing. 

The University of West Georgia maintains and monitors a confidential Academic Dishonesty Tracking System. This database collects and reports patterns of repeated student violations across all the Colleges, the Ingram Library, and the School of Nursing. Each incidence of academic dishonesty is subject to review and consideration by the instructor, and is subject to a range of academic penalties including, but not limited to, failing the assignment and/or failing the course. Student conduct sanctions range from verbal warning to suspension or expulsion depending on the magnitude of the offense and/or number of offenses. The incident becomes part of the student’s conduct record at UWG.

Additionally, the student is responsible for safeguarding his/her computer account. The student’s account and network connection are for his/her individual use. A computer account is to be used only by the person to whom it has been issued. The student is responsible for all actions originating through his/her account or network connection. Students must not impersonate others or misrepresent or conceal their identities in electronic messages and actions. For more information on the University of West Georgia Honor Code, please see the Student Handbook.

UWG Email Policy

University of West Georgia students are provided a MyUWG e-mail account. The University considers this account to be an official means of communication between the University and the student. The purpose of the official use of the student e-mail account is to provide an effective means of communicating important university related information to UWG students in a timely manner. It is the student’s responsibility to check his or her email.

Credit Hour Policy

The University of West Georgia grants one semester hour of credit for work equivalent to a minimum of one hour (50 minutes) of in-class or other direct faculty instruction AND two hours of student work outside of class per week for approximately fifteen weeks. For each course, the course syllabus will document the amount of in-class (or other direct faculty instruction) and out-of-class work required to earn the credit hour(s) assigned to the course. Out-of-class work will include all forms of credit-bearing activity, including but not limited to assignments, readings, observations, and musical practice. Where available, the university grants academic credit for students who verify via competency-based testing, that they have accomplished the learning outcomes associated with a course that would normally meet the requirements outlined above (e.g. AP credit, CLEP, and departmental exams).

HB 280 (Campus Carry)

UWG follows University System of Georgia (USG) guidance:

You may also visit our website for help with USG Guidance:

Mental Health Support

If you or another student find that you are experiencing a mental health issue, free confidential services are available on campus in the Counseling Center. Students who have experienced sexual or domestic violence may receive confidential medical and advocacy services with the Patient Advocates in Health Services. To report a concern anonymously, please go to UWGcares.

ELL Resources

If you are a student having difficulty with English language skills, and / or U.S. culture is not your home culture, specialized resources are available to help you succeed. Please visit the E.L.L. resource page for more information.


Proctored Exams/Online Instruction: Students should be aware and plan ahead for the possibility of having to complete all courses and/or exams online or in a proctored environment. This means talking with your instructors about what minimum technical requirements (software and hardware) will be required should your class move online or a student's personal needs dictate. This also includes making plans for internet access at whatever location participation may occur.

Virtual or in-person proctored exams, if your instructor should require them, may result in an additional cost to the student. Please discuss these details with your instructor or see the information provided here.

Face Coverings: Effective July 15, 2020, University System of Georgia institutions, including the University of West Georgia, will require all faculty, staff, students, and visitors to wear an appropriate face covering while inside campus facilities/buildings where six feet social distancing may not always be possible. Face covering use will be in addition to and is not a substitute for social distancing.

Face coverings are not required in campus outdoor settings where social distancing requirements are met. Anyone not using a face covering when required will be asked to wear one or must leave the area.

Reasonable accommodations may be made for those who are unable to wear a face covering for documented health reasons.

Student FAQs: For more information about UWG COVID-19 guidance for students visit the Student FAQ webpage


Additional Items

  • Information regarding course grades will not be given over the telephone. Grades will be posted in CourseDen.
  • Student Rights and Responsibilities: Common language for course syllabi review here.  Documents at this link contain important information pertaining to your rights and responsibilities in this class.  Because these statements are updated as federal, state, university, and accreditation standards change, you should review this information each semester.
  • Learning Domains
    • Cognitive: Knowledge, Comprehension, Analysis, Synthesis, and Evaluation
    • Affective: Receiving, Responding, Valuing, Organization, and Characterization