Financial Literacy

Drake University has adopted Buttonwood, an online financial literacy course designed to give you a better understanding of your personal finances and the student loan process. Buttonwood will empower you to make well-informed decisions about your finances and loan management responsibilities before you make the types of decisions that could have consequences for years to come.

To this end, we call for every new incoming Drake student to achieve Buttonwood’s Level One Certification.

We also recommend you play the highly adaptive and interactive life simulation called Buttonwood Life. In Buttonwood Life, you will strive to create a healthy, smart, and well-rounded lifestyle for your virtual self.

To take the course, you will need a computer with Internet access and audio capabilities.  A computer lab provided by Student Accounts in Old Main is available for these courses.  Please see the information below to get started.

How do I achieve Level One Certification and how long will it take?

There are two sections that must be completed in order to receive your Level One Certificate.

 Part 1 will take approximately 2 hours and is comprised of 4 modules of content, surveys and various knowledge assessments. Part 1 ends with a final exam in which you must receive a 70% or higher to pass.

 Thirty to forty-five days after you complete Part 1, you will receive an e-mail asking you to complete Part 2. This section consists of the final survey and will take about 15 minutes - after which you will receive your Level One Certification.


When will I take Buttonwood & how do I log in?

  • To register, go to:
  • “Create an account” following the step-by-step directions on the website.
  • Click the Buttonwood icon on the College Student homepage.
  • Select Drake as your college.
  • Select your group (Freshman, Sophomore, Junior, Senior) 
  • Complete Part 1 (all 4 modules)
  • About 30 days after you complete Part 1, you will receive an e-mail asking you to complete Part 2.

Are my responses in Buttonwood confidential?

The course includes three surveys that measure students’ financial-related attitudes and behaviors. All survey responses are strictly confidential; the school will only receive information about the student body as whole and will never see individual students’ answers.

If you have any questions about Buttonwood, you may contact the following Drake employees:

Sentwali Bakari
Dean of Students

Shannon Langan
Residence Hall Coordinator/Coordinator of  Wellness Education

Randi Boelkes
Student Loan and Collections Specialist