1 University of Rome Unitelma Sapienza (ITALY)
2 Virtual Reality Lab, University of Rome Unitelma Sapienza (ITALY)
About this paper:
Appears in: INTED2019 Proceedings
Publication year: 2019
Pages: 3262-3266
ISBN: 978-84-09-08619-1
ISSN: 2340-1079
doi: 10.21125/inted.2019.0852
Conference name: 13th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 11-13 March, 2019
Location: Valencia, Spain
As it is quite well-known, financial literacy may be pivotal for financial behavior: people with low financial literacy more frequently has problems with debt (Lusardi and Tufano 2009), tends not to participate in the stock market (van Rooij, Lusardi, and Alessie 2007), is less likely to choose mutual funds with lower fees (Hastings and Tejeda-Ashton 2008), seems to be less able to accumulate wealth and manage wealth in an effective way (Stango and Zinman 2007; Hilgert, Hogarth, and Beverly 2003), and tends to plan less for retirement (Lusardi and Mitchell 2006, 2007a, 2009). According to the latest OECD Report “Students’ Financial Literacy”, the financial literacy of the Italian kids is lower with respect to other advanced countries. And, even if ten years ago, the Ministry of Education launched a financial education program that is still running, financial education is not part of the school curriculum and this may have huge implication for their future financial behaviour. On the other side, the Italian Statistics Institute recently released a Report on young people and the Internet: 54% of the Italian children aged 6-10 surf the web while they’re home, so they seem to be very familiar with technologies.

On these basis, we propose a novel strategy to educate Italian kids on financial basic concepts by using immersive virtual reality. Our research aims to reach aged 6-12 kids. Since kids are very attracted by virtual reality and, in general, by video-games, we set up an interactive immersive game presented by means of an oculus head-mounted display (Tieri et al. 2018). Through the game, kids learn about interest rates, consumption and savings by playing and interacting with virtual objects and characters. While they are playing, the virtual reality device records data including, the kind and outcome of choices as well as the time spent to make a choice (for example, consumption/savings, to invest/not to invest). Data will be analysed via multilevel models to assess the differences between different groups, such as female and male and their age and, importantly, to test the efficacy of a game-based learning task for facilitating the education Italian kids on basic financial concepts.
Education, technology, financial literacy, gender studies, psychology.