MSc Finance

Key benefits

  • Gain the knowledge, understanding and skills appropriate for a career in the financial and insurance sectors
  • Access the most innovative tools available, including a dedicated Reuters dealing room facility, asset market trading simulations and a range of databases
  • Undertake your dissertation at a large financial institution, such as a central bank (places are limited and conditions apply).

MSc Finance develops your knowledge of finance theory with practical applications and research tools. The facilities and equipment used on the programme are of the highest standard, giving you access to the most innovative tools available. These include a dedicated Reuters trading room facility, market trading simulations and a range of databases.

You will develop your knowledge and understanding of financial markets and how they impact on decision-making finance. You will be provided with a thorough understanding of how and when to apply the relevant mathematical and statistical tools that are appropriate for decision-making. The programme also contains a strong quantitative content with practical applications. 

As part of the programme, you will also have the opportunity to complete the Reuters Certification – an industry-recognised professional qualification. During the summer term you will also have the opportunity of attending preparation and revision classes for the CFA (Chartered Financial Analyst®) Level one programme. 

In addition to your Aston degree, you will have the opportunity to participate in our international study exchange programme. Studying with one of our partner institutions, the programme will enhance your international experience and communication skills, preparing you for a career in the international business environment.

Core Modules: 

Optional Modules (Choose one):

The programme then concludes with a dissertation project

Professional Development Programme Module

Business skills for life: the essential Aston Professional Development Programme

The Aston Professional Development Programme (PDP) is an integral module that forms part of your MSc taught course from day one.This compulsory module runs throughout the academic year. We have designed it around knowledge through practice - to enhance your employability as you customise the PDP experience to suit your own learning goals and skills development needs.

We take a multidimensional, qualitative and individually tailored approach. Using reflective models, we integrate a competency-based framework into our existing academic programmes.  You will engage with different kinds of experiential learning, such as skills workshops, work-based experience, study abroad and develop your own unique skillset.  

This pathway between theory and the world of work brings together Aston’s faculty, careers practitioners and business and academic partnerships teams to help you step into your future careers as culturally aware, global professionals.

Taught modules are assessed by examinations and coursework. The taught element of the programme is complemented by a substantial piece of research leading to the completion of a dissertation.

Personal development

You will acquire skills in the following areas: giving presentations; team working; report writing; negotiation and IT skills.

Modules taught on this MSc will enable you to develop a wide range of technical and transferable skills and knowledge demanded by graduate employers in banking and finance. Specialist knowledge areas developed on this programme include:

  • Understanding of investment valuation and portfolio management, focusing on fixed income securities, pricing of futures and options contracts, performance and risk management
  • Application of option pricing models and understanding of trading and hedging strategies
  • Understanding of market microstructures including auction and dealer trading systems and the influence of liquidity, inventory and adverse selection on trading costs
  • Understanding of key mathematical and statistical techniques underpinning finance and investment models including use of sampling and estimation theory, multiple regression analysis and approximation techniques
  • Application of econometric techniques (including time series methods, smoothing techniques, principal components techniques) to modelling financial markets
  • Multi-cultural teamwork and presentation skills developed through group-work
  • Analytical skills developed through research dissertation

Course director

Dr Leonidas Tsiaras
BA, MSc, PhD 
Leonidas is a Lecturer in Finance at Aston Business School. Prior to this, he was a PhD student at Aarhus School of Business, Aarhus University. During his PhD studies, he became affiliated with the Centre for Research in Econometric Analysis of TimE Series (CREATES) as a Junior Fellow and the Kellogg School of Management (Northwestern University) as a Visiting Research Scholar. He has also worked as a Principal Analyst at the Prime Minister’s Implementation Unit (Cabinet Office, U.K.).His current research interests are in areas of Financial Econometrics and Empirical Finance.

This programme is designed to prepare you for a range of careers in the financial and insurance sectors.

Recent graduate positions include:

  • Analyst – Goldman Sachs (UK)
  • Consultant – Transaction Services – Ernst & Young (France)
  • Investment Risk Officer – BNP Paribas (Luxembourg)
  • Trading Risk Analyst – Deutsche Bank (UK)
  • Treasury Dealer – Bangkok Bank (Thailand).

Our international alumni ambassadors share their experiences of studying at Aston Business School with students all over the world who consider applying for a course at Aston. Feel free to contact our ambassadors if you have any questions about 'Aston Life', the Campus, the courses or living in the UK/Birmingham.

As an Aston student, you get the best of both worlds: a green, well-equipped, friendly campus in the centre of a vibrant city. Find out more about Aston campus here.

Only a 10 minute walk from campus, Birmingham is a city with many sides. Find out what living in Birmingham is like here.

You must demonstrate a good level of quantitative and analytical skills gained from a degree in finance or economics (we will also consider an upper second class degree in mathematics, statistics, computing, engineering or the sciences).

Plus one of the following:

  • A good UK honours degree (minimum upper second class)

  • Equivalent overseas degree recognised by Aston University.

As well as:

  • Two professional references – at least one must be from an academic referee

  • An official academic transcript of your university grades to date

  • A completed application form.

For International Students:

  • An official academic transcript, with an official English translation, of your university grades to date

  • Students whose native language is not English will also need to satisfy our English language requirements Pre-sessional English language programmes are available for good applicants whose English qualification falls just short of these requirements.

Duration of programme: Full-time - 12 months 
Start date:

UK/EU:          £11,800 
International:  £17,350   

Scholarships for 2016/7 entry are now open. Find out more here

Enrico Onali 
Senior Lecturer in Finance

0121 204 3060

Contact details:

Aston Business School postgraduate admissions office
Tel: +44 (0) 121 204 3200
Email: abspgenquiry@aston.ac.uk

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