Rapid changes in information technology, a changing and complex industry and the globalisation of the economic and financial systems place numerous demands on the modern day finance professionals. It requires them to have analytical and technical skills alongside the
intellectual curiosity to enable them to learn and adapt throughout their working lives. They must also be able to work in teams of diverse technical and cultural backgrounds. To meet these demands, the Schools of Economic and Management Studies & Computing and Mathematics jointly offer an MSc in Finance and Information Technology for students who wish to pursue a career in finance or wish to apply their IT skills within a financial School or organisation.
Course Structure and Content
The MSc programme starts in September and lasts 12 months. During the first semester (September to January) students take four core
modules, followed in the second semester (January to May) by a further four modules, some of which are chosen by the student. Some option modules may require prior computing knowledge. Each taught module is worth 15 credits. From May to September students undertake a project or a dissertation, which is worth 60 credits. Students gaining 120 credits from taught modules and successfully completing the dissertation will be awarded an MSc. Students gaining 120 credits but not proceeding to the dissertation/project will be awarded a Postgraduate Diploma.
Students who do not gain 120 credits but pass modules worth 60 credits will be awarded a Postgraduate Certificate.
The following indicate the range of modules that may be offered:
• Financial Markets: Studies national and international financial markets and introduces the basis for asset pricing and portfolio choice.
• Quantitative Methods in Finance: Introduces the key mathematical and statistical techniques used in finance. Practical use of software tools is made.
• Financial Accounting: Financial accounts provide needed information about an organisation for external decision makers such as shareholders, banks, suppliers and government. This module provides standing of the underlying business transactions that are needed in constructing financial accounts.
• Corporate Finance: Analyses the capital structure, dividend policy and capital budgeting decisions of corporations.
• Financial Modelling: Introduction to the modelling of bonds, stocks and derivatives. Appropriate computer software is used.
• International Finance and Derivatives: This module studies and analyses foreign exchange markets, including risk factors and the implications of exchange rate risk.
• Conceptual Modelling: Provides an overview of the system development life cycle and proficiency in conceptual modelling, in particular, analysing and specifying system requirements.
• Information Systems: This module describes the range of information systems needed by organisations, and the use and management of the database systems that support them.
• Networks and Communication: Develops an understanding of computer networks through the study of the technologies, characteristics and application of networks.
• Management of Information Systems and Projects: Provides thenowledge and skills required to develop and manage IT systems in a business environment.
• Object-Oriented Programming & Modelling: An advanced programming option module. By the end of the module students
will be able to design and construct multi-threaded object-orientated Java programs.
• Web Technologies: An option module, which develops an understanding of system architectures, software architectures,
standards and protocols involved in the implementation of Internet and intranet applications.
• Medical Information Systems: Studies the medical uses of information systems such as patient-centred care, epidemiology,
clinical training and diagnostic support tools, and health service planning and management.
Teaching and Assessment
The Course Director is responsible for running the programme and providing support and information for students. Modules are taught in lectures, tutorials and computer laboratory classes. Practical use is made of standard software and data sources. Taught modules are usually assessed by a combination of unseen examination and coursework which mayinclude essays, mini projects and tests. Guidance is provided on dissertation/ project topics and each student will be assigned a supervisor.
Career Destination information
It is anticipated that at the end of this course the majority of graduates will progress directly into related employment. Typical career destinations may include corporate treasury functions (such as cash management, risk management, capital budgeting), fund management and investment banking. Some graduates are likely to be employed in the management, control or design or development of information systems within these sectors.