The Psychology of Family Finances

Course: The Psychology of Family Finances

Online courseAudience: Financial Planners, Business Professionals, Financial Coaches, Counselors and Therapists
Method: Online
Length: 8 weeks

This course is designed to develop knowledge and skills for financial planners, business professionals, coaches, counselors, and therapists to help give them the knowledge and tools to work effectively with families and couples. This course examines the practical application of financial psychology theory and technique to help improve client financial health.

This course introduces students to:

  • The structure and dynamics of family systems
  • At-risk family systems and family money disorders
  • Family system interventions,
  • Coupleship
  • Working with couples
  • The psychology of family legacies

This is an online course through Creighton University worth three credits. It is one of five courses in the Certificate in Financial Psychology & Behavioral Finance.


  • Week 1: Intro to the Psychology of Family Finances
  • Week 2: Family Systems
  • Week 3: Family Money Disorders: Financial Enabling, Financial Dependence & Financial Enmeshment
  • Week 4: Family System Interventions
  • Week 5: The Coupleship
  • Week 6: Working with Couples
  • Week 7: The Psychology of Family Financial Legacies
  • Week 8: The Psychology of Family Finance: Paper

Required Materials

  • Klontz, B., Kahler, R., & Klontz, T. (2016). Facilitating financial health: Tools for financial planners, coaches, & therapists, 2nd edition. Cincinnati, OH: National Underwriter Company.
  • Klontz, B.T., Britt, S.L., & Archuleta, K.L. (2015). Financial therapy: Theory, research, and practice. New York, NY: Springer.
  • Wegscheider-Cruse, S. (1989). Another chance, 2nd edition. Mountain View, CA: Science & Behavior Books Inc.
  • Access to the movie “The Great Santini.”
  • Articles as assigned.

Learning Objectives

  1. To provide an environment conducive to the study of financial psychology using written and oral presentations and applied financial psychology theory and techniques.
  2. To strengthen students’ ability to understand financial psychology and its implications with regard to financial health of clients and clients’ ability to reach their financial goals.
  3. To apply theory and technique to gain a deeper understanding of the student’s own personal financial psychology.
  4. To describe conditions that put families at risk for conflict and money disorders.
  5. Identify common roles and patterns that emerge in families under stress.
  6. Learn strategies for supporting the financial health of families in conflict.
  7. Identify the dynamics of transference and countertransference in working with couples.
  8. Describe a method for working with couples in conflict.
  9. Demonstrate knowledge of common family money disorders and strategies for addressing them.
  10. Describe strategies for assisting clients in family legacy planning.