MSc Finance and Data Analytics

General

Program Description

This program is available for 2021


As the modern financial industry increasingly turns to big data to inform investment decisions, there is a growing demand for professionals with a specialisation in data analytics. This course equips you with data analysis skills that are in short supply, including algorithmic trading, use of machine learning, and artificial intelligence.

As you study, you’ll develop core skills in finance, investments and data analytics – all of which can be applied in a final dissertation on a finance-related topic of your choice. You’ll also be taught how to use programming languages (e.g. Python, R) to analyse data and get a thorough understanding of core financial theory and investment practices. In addition, you'll have the opportunity to use professional financial databases, such as Bloomberg, Eikon and S&P Capital IQ.

Other features of the course include the Amplify Trading Boot Camp, where you can get the first-hand experience of real-world trading, and the Student Managed Investment Fund, which provides experience of managing actual funds through targeted investments. All these features help to enhance employability, give you practical skills, and play a part in the world-leading student experience.

Top reasons to study with us

  1. Use programming languages (e.g. Python, R) to analyse data.
  2. Access professional databases such as Bloomberg, Eikon and S&P Capital IQ.
  3. Get real-world experience with Amplify Trading Boot Camp and the Student Managed Investment Fund.

Course objectives

Over the course of your studies on this Masters course you will:

  • Gain a deep understanding of finance theories.
  • Acquire skills in programming languages.
  • Develop knowledge and skills in analysing data to inform investment decisions.
  • Enhance your critical and analytical skills.

Professional accreditations

The course offers students the opportunity to cover the prerequisite material of the Financial Data Professional (FDP) programme from the FDP Institute, using the DataCamp route. It thus helps you progress towards obtaining the FDP credential.

Faculty facilities

You'll have access to professional financial databases including Bloomberg, Thomson Reuters Eikon, Datastream, S&P Capital IQ and Financial Times.

The course provides real-world experience by giving you the opportunity to participate in the Student Managed Investment Fund and Amplify Trading Boot Camp.

The SMIF is a student-led project, aiming to provide students with the experience of managing actual funds through targeted investments with diversification according to agreed rules and procedures.

Amplify is a global financial trading and training company, which provides training to some of the largest global financial institutions, including HSBC and Bank of America. During the Spring semester’s reading week, Amplify delivers a Boot Camp to our students, helping them to gain practical experience to financial markets driving factors. Learn more about the Amplify Trading Boot Camp.

Research

The University of Stirling Management School is rated among the top 25 in the UK for research impact, according to REF 2014. In Scotland, the School was ranked in the top five. The Guardian University Guide 2020 ranks the University in the top 5 in Scotland for Accounting and Finance.

64% of our research outputs were classified as world-leading and internationally excellent in terms of their originality, significance and rigour. We were ranked 14th in the UK in terms of research impact with over 60% of our research impact judged to have an outstanding reach and wide-ranging impact on the policies of public, private and governmental organisations.

Entry requirements

Academic requirements

A minimum of a second class honours degree or equivalent. Applicants without these formal qualifications but with significant appropriate/relevant work/life experience are encouraged to apply.

English language requirements

If English is not your first language you must have one of the following qualifications as evidence of your English language skills:

  • IELTS: 6.0 with 5.5 minimum in each skill
  • Cambridge C2 Proficiency (CPE) 180 with minimum 162 in each skill
  • Cambridge C1 Advanced (CAE) 169 with a minimum of 162 in each skill
  • Pearson Test of English (Academic): 54 with 51 in each component
  • IBT TOEFL: 80 with no subtest less than 17

Pre-sessional English language courses

If you need to improve your English language skills before you enter this course, our partner INTO the University of Stirling offers a range of English language courses. These intensive and flexible courses are designed to improve your English ability for entry to this degree.

Course details

Our MSc Finance and Data Analytics course provides all the necessary tools for a successful career in the financial industry. You’ll learn how to use programming languages (e.g. Python, R) to analyse data and get a deep understanding of core financial theory and investment practices.

The first semester of the program is devoted to developing core financial and data analytics skills. In the second semester, you can choose from a wide selection of modules that will allow you to further strengthen your skills in data analytics and investments. During the summer, you’ll write a dissertation on a finance-related topic of your choice, applying the skills you’ve learned during the year.

Modules

The modules listed below are those currently intended for delivery in the next academic intake of this course. These may be subject to change as the University regularly revises and refreshes the curriculum of our taught programmes.

Year 1 - Autumn semester

Compulsory modules

  • Flying Start Leadership Programme (MANPFSL)
  • Corporate Finance (INVP001)
  • Representing and Manipulating Data (ITNPBD2)
  • Quantitative Methods in Finance (BFIP013)
  • Blockchain Technologies (ITNPFT1)

Year 1 - Spring semester

Compulsory modules

  • Data Analytics (ITNPBD6)
  • Applied Data Analytics Using R (ECNP003)

Option modules

  • Empirical Methods in Finance and Accounting (ACCP009)
  • Behavioural Finance (FINP006)
  • Financial Risk Assessment (FINP007)
  • Investment Regulation and Ethics (INVP005)
  • Derivatives (INVP010)
  • Investments: Equity Portfolios and Pricing (INVP012)
  • Investments: Fixed Income and Alternative Investments (INVP013)
  • Cluster Computing (ITNPBD7)
  • Stochastic Processes and Optimisation (MATPMD4)

Year 1 - Summer semester

  • Dissertation

Course Details

Teaching

Teaching is carried out through lectures, seminars, problem-solving lectures, computer workshops and practical case study sessions.

Guest lectures

As a student on the MSc Finance and Data Analytics, you’re given the chance to go to regular guest lectures. These are typically held on a Wednesday afternoon and are delivered by eminent speakers drawn from leading financial institutions, think tanks, regulatory and professional bodies. Previous speakers include:

  • Russell Napier - Co-founder of ERIC (Electronic Research Interchange)
  • Nick Bartlett - Director of Education at CFA Society of the UK
  • Ross Lorrimer - Client Service Associate at State Street
  • Maxim Skorniakov - Investment Manager at Walter Scott Global Investment Management
  • Richard Dunbar - Head of Economic and Thematic Research at Aberdeen Asset Management
  • Kweku Adoboli - Former Trader at UBS
  • John Goodwin - Executive Vice-President and CFO at Lego
  • Colin McLean - CEO at SVM Asset Management

Assessment

Our Master's degree is awarded on satisfactory completion of a dissertation, following the Diploma examinations. Dissertation topics range over all areas of relevance to finance and data analytics.

Classroom hours

Students can expect to have around 4-5 contact hours per module each semester and a timetable will be available shortly before the course begins in September.

After you graduate

You’ll graduate from the MSc Finance and Data Analytics course with the skills to meet the modern financial industry’s demand for the use of big data to inform investment decisions. Our innovative week-long global financial boot camp run by Amplify will give you the real-world experience of trading, while our guest lecturer programme gives you the chance to learn from, and network with, industry leaders.

This course opens up a range of exciting career opportunities, including:

  • Fund management
  • Security dealing
  • Financial engineering
  • Management consultancy
  • Corporate finance
  • Data analysis work within investment and central banks, and accountancy firms

The University of Stirling Management School has a dedicated Employability Manager and from the very beginning of the course, your career is our focus.

  • You’ll take part in an innovative week-long global financial trading boot camp run by Amplify;
  • 96% of our postgraduate leavers are in employment or further study within six months of graduating (Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education survey 2016/17).

HigherEd Global Talent Portal

As a Management School student, you'll have access to the HigherEd Global Talent Portal where you’ll find internships, trainee positions, apprenticeships and graduate positions from companies around the world. It helps international students looking for placements back at home and local students that want to explore an international experience.

The global talent portal is in addition to all other existing initiatives and resources available for you through the Careers and Employability Service, and the Target Connect vacancy and events system.

Employability skills

Everything you do while studying here is designed to help you build the personal skills that will make you stand out to future employers. You’ll start your MSc course on our Flying Start leadership programme which will challenge your perspective of culture and develop your self-awareness, as well as team-working, problem-solving and presentation skills.

Companies we work with

As a student on the MSc Finance and Data Analytics, you’re given the chance to go to regular guest lectures. These are typically held on a Wednesday afternoon and are delivered by eminent speakers drawn from leading financial institutions, think tanks, regulatory and professional bodies. Previous speakers include:

  • Russell Napier - Co-founder of ERIC (Electronic Research Interchange)
  • Nick Bartlett - Director of Education at CFA Society of the UK
  • Ross Lorrimer - Client Service Associate at State Street
  • Maxim Skorniakov - Investment Manager at Walter Scott Global Investment Management
  • Richard Dunbar - Head of Economic and Thematic Research at Aberdeen Asset Management
  • Kweku Adoboli - Former Trader at UBS
  • John Goodwin - Executive Vice-President and CFO at Lego
  • Colin McLean - CEO at SVM Asset Management
Last updated Aug 2020

About the School

At the University of Stirling, being the difference is in our DNA – providing education with a purpose and carrying out research that helps to shape society.

At the University of Stirling, being the difference is in our DNA – providing education with a purpose and carrying out research that helps to shape society. Read less