Graduation Year


Document Type




Degree Name

Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)

Degree Granting Department

Adult, Career and Higher Education

Major Professor

Waynne B. James, Ed.D.

Committee Member

Jeffrey D. Kromrey, Ph.D.

Committee Member

William H. Young, III, Ed.D.

Committee Member

Katerina Annaraud, Ph.D.


financial knowledge, financial capability, small business, entrepreneur


The purpose of this study was to assess the financial literacy continuing profession education cognitive needs of Florida small business owners through exploring their profile. To determine the financial literacy profile, an instrument containing 18 tested knowledge and 5 self-assessed knowledge questions was created. Using a panel of experts, the instrument was developed from previously tested financial literacy questions from several sources.

Data were collected from clients of the West Central Region of the Florida Small Business Development Center at the University of South Florida. The online survey completed by participants included demographic questions to provide data to profile small business owners’ financial literacy by gender, age, education level, and small business classification.

The results indicated small business owners have a high financial literacy. There were significant differences found between the financial literacy of men and women. Men’s scores were higher for both tested knowledge and self-assessed knowledge. Younger small business owners scored lower than older small business owners. There were significant scoring differences between the highest and lowest levels of education. Tested scores and self-assessed scores increased with higher education levels. Pre-venture/start-up business owners scored lower than the small-medium enterprise owners. Implications included developing educational programs attentive to women small business owner’s needs, as well as newer and/or younger small business owners.