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PG Diploma Financial Decision Making with Applications

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  • Objectives
    To offer students the opportunity to study mathematics and financial decision making to an advanced level within an environment informed by current research. To provide students with advanced training that will be of use in a career as a mathematician or finance agent, or trader. To provide students with training in financial reporting, and the preparation of reports involving mathematical material, including correct referencing, appropriate layout and style. To enhance the transferable skills of students (including IT, presentation skills, problem solving abilities, numeracy and their ability to efficiently retrieve information and use it in an effective manner.) To provide students with information that will help them to make an informed judgement as to the appropriate methods to employ when analysing a mathematics or finance problem.
  • Entry requirements
    Entry Qualifications BSc degree, of Upper Second class standard or above, in Mathematics or a related subject (or an equivalent qualification). Knowledge of finance, a computer programming language, cognitive psychology would be an advantage, but is not essential. Language requirements: IELTS 6.0 or TOEFL 540 (200) or comparable.
  • Academic Title
    PG Diploma Financial Decision Making with Applications
  • Course description

    Course Description
    The course is aimed at filling the gap between traditional financial analysts and the new breed of traders who are taking on board cognitive psychology as well as mathematical methods to manage risk attached to financial decision making. The structure therefore includes mathematical modules, accounting, management and finance modules, and psychology modules.

    Teaching and Assessment Methods
    A: Knowledge and Understanding
        Learning Outcomes
        A1 : A range of ideas concerning mathematics, finance, and cognitive psychology including methods appropriate in specialized applications and some knowledge of relevant probabilistic/statistical/computing/decision making ideas.
        A2 : How to formulate algorithms to solve problems.
        A3 : Some of the ways in which apparently disparate parts of the subject may interconnect.

        Teaching Methods
        A1, A2, and A3 are principally acquired through the coherent programmes of lectures, exercises and problem classes. These are supplemented, where appropriate, by the use of computers, computer packages, textbooks, handouts and on-line material.

        In most courses there is regular set work. This work is marked and this process informs the course teacher of common difficulties that require extra attention during the subsequent problem classes.

        Assessment Methods
        Knowledge and understanding are assessed through coursework, examinations, essays and the summer dissertation.

    B: Intellectual/Cognitive Skills
        Learning Outcomes
        B1 : Analyse a mass of information and carry out an appropriate analysis of the problem material.
        B2 : Express a problem in mathematical terms and carry out an appropriate analysis.
        B3 : Reason critically and interpret information in a manner that can be communicated effectively.
        B4 : Integrate and link information across course components.

        Teaching Methods
        B1-3 These skills are developed through the regular coursework exercises. In seeking to answer these exercises students become accustomed to identifying key facts in a body of information. The problems classes provide back-up as required.

        B4-5 These skills are initiated during the course of the preparation of the essay.

        Assessment Methods
        The level of attainment of these skills is assessed through coursework, the summer examinations, and through examination of the essay (MA902 project).

    C: Practical Skills
        Learning Outcomes
        C1 : Model problems in Finance using relevant mathematical tools.
        C2 : Analyse and evaluate financial and company data
        C3 : Use computer programmes and/or packages.
        C4 : Use a mathematical word-processing package.
        C5 : Make an effective literature search.
        C6 : Prepare a technical report.
        C7 : Give a presentation after which they defend their ideas and work.

        Teaching Methods
        C1-C2 are developed through the programme of lectures, regular exercises and computer work.

        C3-C5 are developed during the course of the preparation of the essay.

        C6-C7 are developed in MA902

        Assessment Methods
        C1-C2 is assessed by the regular coursework and examinations.

        C3 is assessed in this way and also by any computer output that forms part of the MA902 essay.

        C4-C7 are assessed through the MA902 essay .

    D: Key Skills
        Learning Outcomes
        D1 : Write clearly and effectively
        D2 : Use computer packages and/or programming languages for data analysis and computation.
        D3 : Enhance existing numerical ability
        D4 : Choose the appropriate method of inquiry in order to address a range of practical and theoretical problems.
        D5 : Learn from feedback and respond appropriately and effectively to supervision and guidance
        D6 : Work pragmatically to meet deadlines.

        Teaching Methods
        D1 is promoted by the supervisor of the essay and thesis work and by class teachers' feedback on written solutions to problems.

        D2 results from the coursework associated with various lecture courses.

        D3 is a natural consequence of courses with high numeric content.

        D4 is a consequence of the coursework, problems classes, lectures and laboratory work.

        D5-D6 result from a tightly timetabled course of lectures and submission dates that require the student to effectively organise time to meet deadlines.

        Assessment Methods
        Key skills are assessed throughout the degree via coursework, examinations, and the essay.

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