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MScQuantitative Finance

Why this course?

 

Globally, financial tools, products and software are becoming increasingly complex and sophisticated. There's a demand for market-aware graduates who can demonstrate an understanding of mathematical models used in these products.

The MSc in Quantitative Finance – an innovative cross-faculty alliance between the Strathclyde Business School and the Faculty of Science – has been developed to address this need. The course has been designed so that students who have a strong aptitude for mathematics, statistics and computing but who have not studied these topics in detail in their first degree can learn the necessary skills to move into the financial industry.

This course will prepare you for a career in financial engineering and risk management. Careers include roles as a hedge fund manager or financial analyst.

You’ll gain:

  • a good understanding of financial theory and analysis
  • an appreciation of financial markets
  • a practical understanding of numerical methods in finance
  • an introduction to programming for financial applications
  • an understanding of the role of computers in business processes

What you’ll study

The curriculum provides a balance between finance and mathematical theory, computer implementations of this theory, and practical skills and knowledge.

Core classes are undertaken in the first semester, and address themes such as principles of finance and quantitative methods for finance, as well as foundation classes in mathematics, statistics and computing science.

Work placement

You may be able to undertake an industrial based MSc project.  This takes place in the third semester of the course between June and September.  The placement can be based in the UK or in another country and are typically paid internships.  In 2014 we had students placed in banks in France and Malta.

Facilities

The Department of Mathematics & Statistics has teaching rooms which provide you with access to modern teaching equipment and access to University computing laboratories with all necessary software available.

You'll also have access to a common room facility which gives you a modern and flexible area which can be used for individual and group study work and is also a relaxing social space.  

Course content

 

Semester 1

Compulsory classes

Foundations of Mathematical & Statistical Finance

The educational intention of this class is to bring all of the students up to the same level of mathematical and statistical training so that they can then undertake the financial theory classes in semester 2.

Principles of Finance

This class provides an introduction to the basic principles of financial decision taking and the theory of finance. It will develop the basic principles of valuation, the nature of risk and uncertainty, the relationship between risk and returns. While the analysis will be developed in the context of corporate finance, looking at companies’ decisions on the investments in assets and how these investments will be funded and the nature of the markets in which it will also consider the principles underlying financial reasoning that can be applied on a more general basis.

Find out more in the 2015/16 class outline for Principles of Finance.

International Financial Markets & Banking

The aim of the class is to provide you with an understanding of the financial system and the roles and functions of financial markets and institutions. A particular emphasis is placed on understanding the roles of intermediaries such as banks and investment firms.

You'll develop an understanding of the various characteristics and roles of fixed income, equity, and foreign exchange markets. While some attention will be given to the UK financial markets, the global nature of financial markets will be widely discussed. This class aims to equip you with an awareness and understanding of financial markets and institutions in the context of the global economy. Particular emphasis will be placed on the role and contribution of the banking sector.

This class covers the reasons for, and nature of, of financial markets and institutions with a particular focus on banking, the global nature of these markets and their regulation.

Find out more in the 2015/16 course outline for International Financial Markets & Banking.

Foundations of Computer Science

This module will help you gain practical experience of computer science and programming including practical exercises in a range of computer languages. You'll develop skills in algorithmic problem solving.

Semester 2

Elective classes

You're required to take 60 credits of optional classes from those listed below to ensuring that your curriculum contains 20 credits from each list. You should refer to relevant programme regulations in the University calendar regarding class selection requirements and credits in order to meet the programme requirements.

List A
Behavioural Finance

The aim of the class is to provide you with an understanding of the main ideas of behavioural finance. A particular emphasis is placed on understanding the roles of non-rational actions and the development of new financial models that incorporate these ideas.

You'll engage with up to date research and develop a critical view of existing and new finance theories and models. It aims to introduce you to the rapid evolving area of behavioural finance. You'll develop an understanding of behavioural finance and an appreciation of its possible implications and applications.

This class introduces you to behavioural finance and provides you with an understanding of the main flaws of “traditional” finance theory from a behavioural finance viewpoint. It will allow you to develop the ability to discuss issues arising from violations of the rationality assumption and will enable you to evaluate new theoretical models based on research in psychology.

The course will allow you to appreciate the role of new developments in finance and their possible implications for established views of the functioning of financial markets.

Find out more in the 2015/16 class outline for Behavioural Finance.

Security Analysis

The aims of this class are to develop an appreciation of the investment characteristics of different types of securities, particularly bonds and shares, and to develop an understanding of how such securities are valued. This class will build on the analysis developed in the first semester class, Principles of Finance. It will consider the determination of interest rates, the valuation of bonds, the management of bond portfolios, and the valuation of equities.

Find out more in the 2015/16 class outline for Security Analysis.

Portfolio Theory & Management

The aim of this class is to examine the Markowitz (1952) approach to optimal portfolio selection. The class explores issues relating to optimal portfolio choice and issues in practical fund management.

Find out more in the 2015/16 class outline for Portfolio Theory & Management.

Derivatives & Treasury Management

The aim of this class are to provide a strong grounding in derivatives that may be used to manage the financial risks faced by individuals, financial institutions and business corporations. It places an emphasis on corporate treasury management and the role of derivatives in managing treasury risk.

Find out more in the 2015/16 class outline for Derivatives & Treasury Management.

List B
Database & Web Systems Development

This module aims to provide conceptual and practical understanding of data modelling, database design and database technology. It also aims to give practical experience of developing web-based applications that integrate database server interaction.

Business Analytics

This module aims to:

  • provide an integrated set of tools and techniques for the effective delivery of information based services
  • identify appropriate measures, metrics and methods for specifying and evaluating the performance of information based services
  • address key concepts in system and information security in relation to end users and networked systems
Evolutionary Computation for Finance

This module will help you to understand (a) nature of evolutionary computing (b) suitability of evolutionary computing for financial applications. It will provide practical experience in developing and operating evolutionary computing approaches for financial applications.

List C
Financial Stochastic Processes

The class aims to expose you to a number of diverse topics in stochastic processes that can be used to model real systems, with an emphasis on the valuation of financial derivatives. In additional to theoretical analysis, appropriate computational algorithms using R are introduced.

Financial Econometrics

You'll be exposed to a number of diverse topics in econometrics that can be used to model real financial data, with an emphasis on the analysis of financial time series. The statistical software R is introduced for financial modelling.

Networks in Finance

This module will introduce you to a number of diverse topics in game theory and its applications to financial problems as well as giving a sound background on network theory at both theoretical and applied level.

Semester 3

Compulsory module for students enrolled on the MSc.

Research Project
You'll undertake a research project.

Learning & teaching

Classes are delivered by a number of teaching methods:

  • lectures (using a variety of media including electronic presentations and computer demonstrations)
  • tutorials
  • computer laboratories
  • coursework
  • projects.

Teaching is student-focused, with students encouraged to take responsibility for their own learning and development. Classes are supported by web-based materials.

Assessment

The form of assessment varies from class to class.  For most classes the assessment involves both coursework and examinations.

Entry requirements

An Honours degree, or overseas equivalent, in accounting, economics, engineering, business studies or a subject area with a strong quantitative element.

Applications are also welcome from those with appropriate professional qualifications, or those who can demonstrate relevant practical experience.

Fees & funding

How much will my course cost?

All fees quoted are for full-time courses and per academic year unless stated otherwise.

Scotland/EU

  • 2017/18 - £12,000

Rest of UK

  • 2017/18 - £12,000

International

  • 2017/18 - £21,500

How can I fund my course?

A number of scholarships are available for outstanding UK, EU and international applicants. For details, please visit our scholarship search.

Scottish and non-UK EU postgraduate students

Scottish and non-UK EU postgraduate students starting in 2017 may be able to apply for support from the Student Awards Agency Scotland (SAAS). The support is in the form of a tuition fee loan and for eligible students a living cost loan. Find out more about the support and how to apply.

Don’t forget to check our scholarship search for more help with fees and funding.

Students coming from England

Students ordinarily resident in England can apply for Postgraduate support from Student Finance England. The support is a loan of up to £10,280 which can be used for both tuition fees and living costs. Find out more about the support and how to apply.

Don’t forget to check our scholarship search for more help with fees and funding.

Students coming from Wales

Postgraduate students starting in 2017 who are ordinarily resident in Wales can apply for support from Student Finance Wales. The support is a loan of up to £10,280 which can be used for both tuition fees and living costs. We are waiting on further information being released about this support and how to apply.

Don’t forget to check our scholarship search for more help with fees and funding.

Students coming from Northern Ireland

Postgraduate students starting in 2017 who are ordinarily resident in Northern Ireland can apply for support from Student Finance NI. The support is a tuition fee loan of up to £5,500. We are waiting on further information being released about this support and how to apply.

Don’t forget to check our scholarship search for more help with fees and funding.

International students

We have a large range of scholarships available to help you fund your studies. Check our scholarship search for more help with fees and funding.

Please note

The fees shown are annual and may be subject to an increase each year. Find out more about fees.

Careers

Financial tools, products and software are becoming increasingly complex and sophisticated and there's a need for the finance industry to self-regulate as it witnesses unprecedented growth. Market-aware finance graduates, who understand the mathematical models used to develop these products and their computer implementations will be much in demand by international organisations.

Drawing on expert academic input from three departments – Accounting & Finance, Mathematics & Statistics, and Computer & Information Sciences – this one-year programme has been developed to prepare participants for careers within areas such as financial engineering and risk management, and for highly quantitative roles, such as hedge fund managers and financial analysts.

We also work closely with the University's Careers Service. They offer advice and guidance on career planning and looking for and applying for jobs. In addition they administer and publicise graduate and work experience opportunities.

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Quantitative Finance

Qualification: MSc, Start date: Sep 2017, Mode of delivery: attendance, full-time

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