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FIN302 ONLINE (rev 2015a): Personal Financial Planning (for GE Credit) - Fall 2019

Section: 13569-13694
Taught by: G. Michael Phillips


Prerequisite: Completion of the lower division writing requirement. Now also open to business and economics majors. Examination of the concepts necessary for the rational allocation of personal resources. Emphasis is on the significant financial decisions facing each household during its life cycle. The role of financial institutions and governmental economic policy is evaluated in the context of their potential impact on personal financial planning. (Available for General Education, Lifelong Learning & Information Competency)

This version of Fin302 is an online version of Personal Finance taught using the www.BoringFinance.com platform and the www.WileyPLUS.com learning platform.

There is no additional fee for CSUN students to use the www.BoringFinance.com website for this class.

There is a charge to acquire access to the class online textbook, Personal Finance by Bajtelsmit, which is available at the campus bookstore or at www.WileyPLUS.com.


This is an online version of Finance 302.  The course is built around the online textbook available at www.WileyPLUS.com along with many learning resources.  Additional learning resources and a platform for submitting all graded work are at www.BoringFinance.com, the primary class website.  This course is self-paced and does not have any regularly scheduled or required meetings or examinations.

Please note: There are approximately 150 points possible through various short essays.  You must earn at least 90 points for an A, 80 for a B, and 65 for a C. We do not give D grades in this class.  Anything below 65 (of approximately 150 possible) is an F.

FIN 491ABH and FIN 491 BBH: Student Portfolio Seminar - Fall 2019

Section: 13935-13940
Taught by: G. Michael Phillips


This course is for the Undergraduate Student Portfolio seminars.

This intense course is a seminar team-taught by Prof. G. Michael Phillips and Prof. James T. Chong.  While there are two separate classes, they primarily meet together in JH2228, the Financial Planning & Investments Lab.  Students will be exposed to what is happening in each class. 

From time to time the classes will meet separately in times and locations to be announced in the syllabus or in class.

Admission to this class is by application and permission only.  It is a high intensity, high value, learning experience in which students work as part of a portfolio management team responsible for several large real-money portfolios. 

Students will be exposed to professional money management techniques, particularly as applied to endowment funds, pension funds, and other pooled investments with longer time horizons.

This class is NOT a day trading course, does NOT focus on "stock picking" or voting on "what's hot".  This class DOES focus on cutting edge portfolio construction and management techniques and how they relate to a variety of other coursework presented in the College of Business curriculum.

Grading is predominantly based on class participation.  Students are expected to be prepared, attend regularly and on time, and to fully participate in class discussion, assigned activities, and out-of-class projects and exercises.  Students unwilling or unable to work harder for this class than for almost any other class at the University may be well advised to take a different course instead.

The classes are designed so that some students will be able to take both Fin491ABH and Fin491BBH (but only one at a time) to make a year long hands-on portfolio management experience. 

online application manager: Application for Portfolio Seminar Admission - Spring 2020

Section: 13915-13925
Taught by: James Chong and G. Michael Phillips

In FIN 491ABH and FIN 491BBH, a small group of students with faculty input manage three portfolios, worth millions of dollars, on behalf of CSUN and its affiliated organizations.

Both courses are offered in Fall and Spring, and are open to all students, regardless of major, by competitive admission.  (You may read the "syllabus" link for this semester's class if you would like more information about the classes.)

In order to apply for the class, please sign in to www.BoringFinance.com. You might need to create a free account first. After logging in, "add" the Online Application Manager as one of your "courses". 

The application essays are in the "Assignments" area of the "Online Applications Manager".  Please note that "adding" the Online Application Manager does not enroll you in the actual portfolio seminar, but simply gives you access to the tools to provide your background information and application essay so you may be considered for the seminar.

If you are not a finance major, you will need to have successfully completed at least one of the 400 level courses in your major.  If you ARE a finance (or related) major, you will need to have successfully completed Fin352 and it is suggested that you have also completed Fin 355.  Fin352 or equivalent is a prerequisite for the B section for all students.

These courses involve a tremendous amount of class participation and discussion, independent and group research, public presentations, and writing.  The use of computers and associated software is assumed.  These courses can be remarkably challenging, but they can also be extremely rewarding.

CSUN's best students are especially encouraged to participate in this focused experience.

The portfolio management seminar is a rigorous, time-consuming, class taught as a challenging "Honors Seminar".  It meets most weeks in JH2228. 

After you provide the necessary application essays using the Online Admission Application tool, you will be informed whether you are admitted to the seminar or not.  If you are admitted, you will be provided a section number and a permission number so you can enroll.