MSc in Finance
The MSc in Finance is for individuals who want to develop as finance professionals. The scope of the knowledge, skills and applications covered in this qualification enables professional development and practice in wide-ranging roles in finance such as investment and portfolio management, corporate finance and treasury, consultancy and investment banking. Both early career finance professionals and those aspiring to enter a finance profession will find our MSc in Finance a professionally rewarding and intellectually challenging experience. It also offers an opportunity to acquire and develop research skills and techniques relevant to higher academic qualifications in finance.
This is a rigorous masters degree requiring aptitude for analytical and quantitative methods to engage with theories of finance and their applications. It will provide a grounding in finance discipline areas such as corporate finance, financial decision-making, portfolio management, financial and risk management, financial reporting, governance and an introduction to Islamic finance and behavioural finance.
Through the study of our MSc in Finance you will be able to:
- gain an up-to-date perspective on both theory and practice in national and international contexts
- estimate cost of capital, to evaluate company and project valuations
- apply the knowledge of financial risk management techniques
- appreciate the importance of corporate governance and ethical issues in finance and acquaint yourself with essential features of Islamic finance
- learn and apply the most important tools for financial analysis and decision support in corporations, financial institutions and other organisations
- learn to critically evaluate the rigour and validity of published research and assess its relevance to new situations
- learn to apply some of the research techniques to form your own views on the theory and its application in practice
- develop professional finance and investment management practice.
The scope of the knowledge, skills and applications covered in this MSc aims to provide you with a masters-level educational experience in the specialist area of finance.
The key objectives of the qualification are to enable you to:
- develop an up-to-date perspective on both theory and practice in national and international contexts
- strengthen your ability to keep pace with future developments in financial management including the knowledge of markets, players and instruments
- learn and apply with the tools used for financial analysis and decision support in corporations, financial institutions and other organisations
- develop appropriate information search, retrieval and analytical skills in the digital environment
- critically evaluate the rigour and validity of published research and assess its relevance to new situations
- demonstrate ability to apply some of the research techniques to form their own views on the theory and its application in practice.
Teaching, learning and assessment methods
The overall teaching will offer an integrated learning experience using a wide range of teaching and learning resources and assessment approaches.
This will include study of materials supplied by OU, online tuition provided by a tutor, activities including reflective practice, practical exercises, literature review, critiquing and collaboration with other students and finally, continuous and end-of-module assessments.
The study materials will include a range of specially-written module materials, case studies, original texts, study guides assignments and multi-media material.
A tutor will communicate with you via a tutor group forum. The tutor is your first point of contact. They will answer questions on materials,, mark assignments and run online tutorials.
You will be expected to engage in range of activities including reading texts, solving numerical problems and scenarios, researching and using relevant literature on contemporary issues in finance and applying theories to practical situations. Cognitive and practical skills are developed through a range of activities within the modules including prompted and guided search and retrieval of information, literature and databases
You will work on case studies based around financial accounts. Case studies, reports and activities will be provided to enable you to practice financial calculations and company valuations. The materials and the tutor support will help you to develop your skills in managing workloads. You will spend a large percentage of time working under your own direction and initiative. Throughout the MSc your progress and learning is measured by tutor-marked assignments and examinations. Each 30-credit module will have two tutor-marked assignments (TMAs) and one end-of-module examination. Assignments and examinations will demonstrate your understanding of principles and relevant theories and their application to problem-solving situations. In addition these will demonstrate your ability to critically read and comment on academic literature in cognate areas. They will also require evidence of practical and professional skills as well as demonstrated levels of knowledge and understanding.
The final dissertation module will be an independent piece of academic or applied piece of research that will provide you with the opportunity to learn and demonstrate research skills and to develop a deeper understanding of one or more parts of the qualification curriculum.
For the academic year 2014/15 the tuition fee for students based outside the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland is £12,030.
Unlike many schools, the OU fee includes the cost of books and study materials, access to a bespoke e-learning environment and project supervision.
The MSc can be achieved in three years based on approximiately 12 hours of study per week. You can complete the MSc in a shorter time but you should allow 12-13 hours of study a week for each 30 credit module you study.
From November 2014 you will have the option to complete your MSc in two years, but you will only have a full selection of optional modules if you take your first module in November rather than May.
You must complete this qualification within seven years.
This qualification offers knowledge in a wide range of finance areas that include corporate finance function, investments, banking and financial institutions and risk management. You will gain both theoretical and practical insights into the working of financial markets, valuation of securities, understanding financial statements, risk management and portfolio management. You will develop the skills and capabilities required by investment analysts, finance managers, finance directors and chief financial officers. Exploring issues related to ethics and corporate governance, reporting and disclosure, financing and investment in uncertain and global business environments will equip you to support decision making at the higher levels of organisations. Prudent practice of finance is relevant across all sectors – public, private and voluntary. This qualification will therefore prepare you to work in the corporate sector, financial services, banking industry, multinational organisations and other sectors where analytical and decision tools in treasury, investment and financing decisions are required. Through a carefully chosen dissertation you will be further able to analyse the financial issues in a particular context.
This qualification will also provide sound training in research and academic skills for those wishing to develop academic careers in finance.
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