University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Introduction to Finance: The Basics
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Introduction to Finance: The Basics

Taught in English

Some content may not be translated

53,228 already enrolled


Gain insight into a topic and learn the fundamentals

Xi Yang

Instructor: Xi Yang


(358 reviews)

Beginner level
No prior experience required
18 hours to complete
3 weeks at 6 hours a week
Flexible schedule
Learn at your own pace
Progress towards a degree

What you'll learn

  • Build a financial knowledge base by understanding essential topics in modern finance.

  • Develop an understanding of the issues managers must consider when making financial decisions.

  • Be ready to conduct analysis using information from financial statements.

  • Understand and apply the time value of money in order to value financial and real asset investments and to make investment decisions.

Details to know

Shareable certificate

Add to your LinkedIn profile


25 quizzes

See how employees at top companies are mastering in-demand skills


Earn a career certificate

Add this credential to your LinkedIn profile, resume, or CV

Share it on social media and in your performance review


There are 5 modules in this course

What's included

3 videos7 readings1 quiz1 discussion prompt

In this module, you will be introduced to three basic forms to organize a business based on the nature of the business and its financing needs. Examining the goal of financial business helps us to develop a concrete framework to evaluate a corporate manager’s financial decisions. The corporation organization form is widespread because it can solve problems facing big business, but it also incurs the agency cost. You will also learn about some strategies companies are using to mitigate the agency problem.

What's included

10 videos2 readings6 quizzes

In this module, you will learn the basics of financial statements. The balance sheet captures the assets, liabilities, and stockholders’ equity of a company. The income statement is used to show profit and loss. You will explore the link between these two financial statements. You will also learn how to derive cash flows from financial statements, and the sources and uses of cash flow.

What's included

8 videos2 readings7 quizzes

This module is the application of financial statements. You will be introduced to the concept of standardized statements. You will learn how to conduct ratio analysis to evaluate the financial health of a company. In addition, you will use financial ratios to measure the liquidity of the company, the leverage of the company, the profitability of the company, and the asset management of the company.

What's included

10 videos2 readings5 quizzes1 peer review

In this module, you will be introduced to the basic concepts about the time value of money: the present value, the future value, and the net present value. You will also examine the difference between the quoted interest rate and effective annual rate. Two explicit patterns of cash flow will be studied in detail: annuity and perpetuity. There are widespread applications of time value of money in our daily life and business valuation. Some examples include mortgage plan selection, pension plan choice, and investment decisions.

What's included

7 videos4 readings6 quizzes1 peer review


Instructor ratings
4.7 (146 ratings)
Xi Yang
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
2 Courses59,877 learners

Offered by

Recommended if you're interested in Finance

Get a head start on your degree

This course is part of the following degree programs offered by University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. If you are admitted and enroll, your coursework can count toward your degree learning and your progress can transfer with you.

Why people choose Coursera for their career

Felipe M.
Learner since 2018
"To be able to take courses at my own pace and rhythm has been an amazing experience. I can learn whenever it fits my schedule and mood."
Jennifer J.
Learner since 2020
"I directly applied the concepts and skills I learned from my courses to an exciting new project at work."
Larry W.
Learner since 2021
"When I need courses on topics that my university doesn't offer, Coursera is one of the best places to go."
Chaitanya A.
"Learning isn't just about being better at your job: it's so much more than that. Coursera allows me to learn without limits."

Learner reviews

Showing 3 of 358


358 reviews

  • 5 stars


  • 4 stars


  • 3 stars


  • 2 stars


  • 1 star



Reviewed on Aug 13, 2023


Reviewed on Jan 2, 2022


Reviewed on Apr 30, 2023

New to Finance? Start here.


Open new doors with Coursera Plus

Unlimited access to 7,000+ world-class courses, hands-on projects, and job-ready certificate programs - all included in your subscription

Advance your career with an online degree

Earn a degree from world-class universities - 100% online

Join over 3,400 global companies that choose Coursera for Business

Upskill your employees to excel in the digital economy

Frequently asked questions