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Masters in Finance

Masters in Finance

At a glance

  • ICMA Centre's longest established Finance Masters programme with a global community of over 2,800 alumni
  • Ranked no.7 in the UK (no.40 in the World) for Masters in Finance by the Financial Times
  • Ranked No.1 in the UK for International Course Experience in Masters in Finance by the Financial Times
  • Ranked in the world’s top 100 Masters in Finance programmes by QS (2023)
  • Enhance your career prospects by studying CFA level 1 as part of the programme
  • Benefit from exclusive features including Applied Professional Development, a Fintech field trip to Greece, and Financial Modelling training delivered by Financial Edge, the leading company training the analysts of the world’s top 3 investment banks
  • Unique to this programme and University, you have the opportunity to obtain the Ofqual regulated, The Intercontinental Exchange (ICE) and CISI recognised Advanced Diploma in Options Trading
  • Enhance your employability skills by undertaking a summer work placement as part of your study
Locations
Whiteknights campus (Reading)
Subject area(s)
Finance (ICMA Centre)
Start Date
September 2024
Duration
12 months
Attendance
Full-time
Programme Director
Michael smith
Dr Michael Smith

Overview

94% of students would recommend their programme
Masters Careers Survey 2022
97% employed post graduation
Masters Careers Survey 2022

The MSc Finance programme at the ICMA Centre is one of our two flagship Finance Masters. World-ranked by the Financial Times, this is our longest established programme with over 2,800 alumni around the world, previously known as MSc International Securities, Investment and Banking.

It has been designed with the support of industry practitioners to equip you with highly practical skills and expertise sought after by major employers in the financial services industry. The programme is ideal if you are interested in a wider choice of potential career paths in finance. MSc Finance graduates typically enjoy successful careers in Trading, Investment Banking/Corporate Finance, Investment Management, Commercial Banking, and several other pathways within the financial services spectrum.

A number of features differentiate this programme from other Finance Masters, aiming to offer you a competitive edge. At the centre of it all is the hands-on, practice centred approach. You will benefit from interactive, technically advanced teaching and applied training, bespoke simulations, case-study based projects and masterclasses by our distinguished academics and industry guest speakers.

CFA institute logo CMYK

Parallel with your studies, you will have the opportunity to prepare online for the CFA level 1 exam with Fitch Learning, one of the worlds' leading Financial Training providers. Access to Fitch Learning's advanced online learning platform, ‘Fitch Learning Cognition', is included in the programme tuition fees. CFA exam fees are not included in the programme fees but 15 students on the programme will be offered CFA exam scholarships on the basis of their engagement with the learning platform and performance in the mock CFA test. The ICMA Centre is a CFA University Affiliate- this is in recognition that this degree covers at least 70% of the CFA Program Candidate Body of Knowledge, the CFA Institute Ethical and Professional Standards, and other requirements.

You will be eligible for exemptions from the CISI Capital Markets Diploma and students who successfully complete the Advanced Options Trading module will have the unique (to this module and to the University of Reading) opportunity to be awarded the Ofqual regulated, ICE and CISI recognised Advanced Diploma in Options Trading. This is an employer-led, industry accredited programme centred on professional development, practical application and transferrable skills, making individuals work-ready for job role profiles including options trader, options broker, market maker, options analyst or risk manager.

If you are considering a career as an equity or corporate finance analyst, students on our flagship programmes will have exclusive access to a Financial Modelling module delivered by Financial Edge, the leading company training the analysts of the world’s top 3 investment banks.

As part of the programme’s international exposure, you will also have the option to undertake one month of study during the summer semester on Fintech and Digital Transformation in Athens at ALBA Graduate Business School, American College of Greece or attend a not for credit Summer School at Tsinghua University in China.

Along with a comprehensive Finance focused careers development programme available to all ICMA Centre students, you will also have exclusive access to a core module on professional development designed to improve key employability skills and develop a bespoke career progression plan. You will also have the opportunity to undertake a summer work placement anywhere in the world as part of your studies.

You will benefit from a wider choice of summer electives including Alternative Investments, Structured Products and Algorithmic and High Frequency Trading modules.

My project 1 9
No.7 in the UK (no.40 in the World)
for Masters in Finance
(Financial Times 2023)
No.1 in the UK
for International Course Experience in Masters in Finance
(Financial Times 2023)
No.7 in the UK
For average salary percentage increase after graduating from Masters in Finance
(Financial Times 2023)
No.1 in the UK
for carbon footprint credentials
(Financial Times 2023)

Our on-campus MSc programmes are available only on a full-time basis, studying for 12 months.

Students will be resident and undertake full-time study in the UK, taking a combination of compulsory and elective modules throughout the academic year.

Course Structure

September - December: Semester 1

January - February: Semester 1 Assessments

February - May: Semester 2

May - June: Semester 2 Assessments

June - September: Summer Semester

August - September: Summer Assessments and Semester 1 & 2 Resits

Assessments can also be due during the teaching weeks. Summer Semester resits are scheduled as needed and could be as late as January/February of the following year.


The Henley pre-study course suite

Exclusively available to Henley Business School offer holders, the Pre-study course suite comprises of innovative short courses designed and developed by Henley faculty on the Futurelearn platform, one of the leading online learning platforms.

An innovative short course designed and developed by Henley faculty on the Futurelearn platform, one of the leading online learning platforms.

This pre-study interactive course is designed by ICMA Centre faculty to prepare you for your learning journey at Henley if you are undertaking postgraduate study in any finance-oriented subject. Through the course, you will appreciate the purpose of finance and investment, the main types of investment and financial markets, as well as the process of valuing investments and the role of risk and return in investment performance. These are all important fundamentals in understanding the workings of financial markets and being able to apply them to real and practical problems as part of your course. We encourage you to take the course even if you have studied finance before. The course is delivered online, requires around 15 hours of study and can be completed at your own pace.

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This pre-study interactive course is designed by ICMA Centre faculty to prepare you for your learning journey at Henley if you are undertaking postgraduate study in any finance-oriented subject.

Quantitative techniques and statistics are among the main tools finance and investment professionals utilise in analysing data linked to financial markets and securities. This interactive pre-study course is designed to deliver these essential building blocks in maths and quants and prepare you for a Finance Master’s if you don’t have a finance, maths, or quants background. For those with a relevant background, it can serve as a refresher of this essential knowledge.

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A course delivered online by Henley faculty and you will receive online support from one of our teaching staff members and be able to interact with other prospective students in your course.

This pre-study interactive course is designed by Henley Business School faculty to introduce you to the world of coding in Python. According to recent employer surveys, coding is a top 5 employability skill in the new world of work. The World Economic forum includes technology design and programming in the top 10 skills of 2025. Coding is an extremely powerful skill to have going forward in all areas of business and finance. Due to the importance of coding skills in your future, you will be using coding in some of your courses depending on your choice of programme at Henley Business School. So, this pre-study course can be seen as a stepping stone in your learning journey. Even if coding is not directly utilised as a part of your programme, completing this course, earning the certificate and complementing this with some further independent learning, could set you apart in an increasingly competitive job market. Python is the most utilised programming language in the world and so the purpose of this course is for you to learn the fundamentals of Python, and how to use it to solve practical problems in your area of interest.

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This course will provide building blocks of knowledge to help you prepare for your learning journey in the area of your choice as well as equip you with key employability and study skills for successfully navigating your studies and professional career.

This pre-study interactive course is designed by Henley Business School faculty, the University of Reading Study Advice Team and the International Study and Language Institute. The course aims to prepare you for your learning journey at Henley and focuses on helping you build important study skills to succeed in your Masters and beyond. Skills such as curiosity and independent thinking, effective communication and collaboration, digital capabilities, storytelling, empathy and professional integrity are not only important in your course itself but are also sought after by employers in all areas of business. Therefore, they are instrumental in succeeding in your professional career. The learning journey of our Masters programmes is designed in a way that allows you to build such skills and this course intends to demonstrate exactly how, and therefore help you to make the most of your Masters.

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Below is a list of programme modules that will be available in 2024/25, please note that some of these modules are new for the academic year. For any other modules which are available for both this academic year and next, follow the “More Information” link to see more.

Semester 1

Compulsory modules Credits

The module aims to equip students with the main principles of Investment Theory. It begins with an overview of the interaction between users and suppliers of capital and the theory behind investor behaviour towards financial risk and reward.

It then analyses the main framework of portfolio theory and optimum asset allocation, and how portfolio diversification can help minimise investment risk. Through the introduction of the main pricing models (single-factor and multi-factor) and the fundamental concept of arbitrage-free pricing, students are exposed to techniques for valuing and comparing different risky assets. The theory of Market Efficiency and its violation completes students’ perception of how financial market equilibrium is reached in modern economies. Furthermore, the module provides an in-depth introduction to financial derivatives (futures and options) and their key role in leveraging and hedging investments. All the techniques introduced are widely applied in other elements of the programme.

Academic authors
Nadia profile photo
Dr Konstantina Kappou
20

This module focuses on fixed income and equity securities evaluation and provides an introduction to international financial markets and an overview of financial institutions.

Part I of the module applies general valuation methods to specific financial instruments: fixed income and equity securities. It describes the basic characteristics of each security and develops practical strategies for finding its value and assessing its risk.

In Part II, the main characteristics and risks of a range of financial markets are presented: equity, fixed income, foreign exchange, futures and commodity markets. A series of interactive workshops are used to learn about ethical investing and alternative trading systems. The aim of part II is to provide an economic framework for understanding global financial markets, financial institutions, market players and the importance of liquidity and price efficiency.

This module is core for several financial programmes. It provides a rigorous academic framework for assessing security values, interpreting changes in the price of financial instruments, managing risks, and comparing alternative market structures. Also, it provides a practical group project and trading simulation sessions, where students will gain hands-on experience with trading in alternative market structures.

Academic authors
Miriam Marra
Dr Miriam Marra
Alfonso Dufour
Dr Alfonso Dufour
20

This module equips you with the quantitative tools used by market participants. The module uses a mixture of (1) lectures where the theory and concepts are introduced and (2) seminars and workshops where we apply the knowledge to practical cases.

It is an introductory applied econometrics module with an emphasis on finance.

The aims and objectives of the module are to give students an introduction to econometrics so that they might understand the econometric techniques used in the finance research literature. Via case studies and computer modelling exercises, students then learn how to apply these techniques to real data. Emphasis is placed on practical applications of the techniques in the global financial markets. The module aims to encourage the development of IT and data handling skills: in particular, the use of Python as the software to apply the econometric techniques to data from Eikon and Bloomberg.

Academic authors
Lisa 1 002
Dr Lisa Schopohl
Michael Clements
Professor Michael P. Clements
20

This module is designed to help you achieve your career aspirations by realising your full potential and building employability skills for the future of work. The module is designed by the careers and professional development team and Henley academics with input from the Henley World of Work Institute and is broadly divided in two core pillars.

The first pillar will take you through a discovery process focused on building a comprehensive career strategy. This process is based: i) understanding yourself and your strengths through behavioural strengths assessment, ii) mapping the job market, the key career paths in your field and ingredients of career success, ii) mastering job roles and building employer maps and iv) building effective self-selling and networking strategies.

The second pillar is aimed at helping you hone key employability skills, focused on effective communication. You will appreciate the power of language and become a more confident speaker and presenter, mastering narrative building, and applying this in the context of a simulated job interview.

As part of the module you will be exposed to the theories and evidence on most recent career development and apply these to develop a critical view of your own skills, to the job market and to where your skills and the job market opportunities intersect.

Academic authors
George Alexandridis headshot
Professor George Alexandridis
20

Semester 2

Compulsory modules Credits

The module is designed to develop practical corporate financial modelling skills that can be applied in roles within corporations, investment banks, and investment firms. It provides a rigorous grounding on the practice of valuation in application to a real-world company with a focus on Mergers and Acquisitions. The module is co-taught by Financial Edge, a leading industry trainer for analysts at top investment banks.

By the end of the module, it is expected that students will be able to:

  • Critically assess the scope and motives of merger and acquisitions (M&A), the pros and cons of alternative M&A financing methods, and the potential for value creation
  • Value a real corporation using best-practice valuation methods (DCF, Multiples, LBO)
  • Design and build a comprehensive ‘pitchbook’ for a real-life transaction, undertaking independent research analysis and employing financial modelling techniques
  • Present a coherent investment story and strategic alternatives for a real company
Academic authors
Dina Ghanma jpeg
Dr Dina Ghanma
20

Students select one optional module from each of the following baskets;

Optional modules Credits

This investment portfolio management module covers key topics, techniques and discussions, including investment styles, in relation to constructing and maintaining an optimal investment portfolio. The teaching approaches all topics from academic and market, practical perspectives. More detailed aims and learning outcomes are included below.

The module aims to build on the investment management foundation that has been introduced in the Securities, Futures and Options module. This investment portfolio management module covers the issues involved in understanding the investment management industry, constructing and maintaining an optimal investment portfolio (active, passive or smart beta investment styles), diversification, evaluating portfolio performance, risk management and portfolio rebalancing. The module will also introduce you to the world of alternative investments - the hedge fund industry, in particular. The compulsory, practical group project of the course will provide students with hands-on experience in constructing and managing a realistic investment portfolio.

20

This real-world module prepares finance students for careers in risk, compliance, audit, regulation and in government / policy positions. Students explore how power, control and autonomy are moderated by regulation, how regulators can preserve or undermine the public interest, how regulators can demand and act in the interest of accountability, and how institutional, procedural and cultural safeguards can be created so the public interest is preserved.

To do this, students will examine contemporaneous case studies that cover key instances of financial failure, crisis and/or misconduct, and understand the risks the community is exposed to these. Students will also study how safeguards such as whistleblowing processes and regulatory accountability mechanisms, enable the exercise of financial power and regulatory power to be kept in check.

Academic authors
Deepa Driver photo
Dr. Deepa Govindarajan Driver
20

The main aims of the module are to provide the tools for understanding the functioning and pricing of money markets, their connection with bond markets and central bank interventions, the fundamental determinants of interest rate markets and the commonly used trading strategies and portfolio management strategies.

Academic authors
Ivan Sangiorgi
Dr Ivan Sangiorgi
20
Optional modules Credits

The module objective is to give students a practical working knowledge of the pricing, hedging and trading of derivative securities, in particular options, via the use of trading simulations and pricing case studies/software. The emphasis of the module is on practical application and it is expected that by the end of the module students will understand and be able to analyse the time/risk dynamics of derivatives in a trading environment. Trading sessions are delivered in our state-of-the-art dealing rooms and utilising our bespoke trading simulation software ICTrader, offering exposure into real trading environment and the price formation process. Students will learn how to “think on their feet”, an essential skill in the investment banking industry.

Academic authors
Michael smith
Dr Michael Smith
20

The principal aim of the module is to familiarise students with the private equity (PE) and venture capital (VC) fund raising and investment process and with M&A deals. The purpose is to develop students’ appreciation of the practical aspects of investing by PE and VC firms, understanding the dynamics between the PE and VC investor and the entrepreneur, and also the practicalities of raising PE&VC funds from institutional investors and transacting M&A deals.

The focus of the module is on PE and VC and high-growth ventures from the viewpoints of both the entrepreneur or management team and of the investing institution (general partner), although private equity as a whole is covered (including management buyout transactions) as well as the relationship between the private equity or venture capital firm and its own investors (limited partner institutions) as are mergers and acquisition deals. adherence to environmental, social and corporate governance (ESG) and diversity & inclusion (D&I) considerations.


This is a highly practical module; extensive use will be made of case studies and a group project in addition to guest seminars from invited experienced practitioners and entrepreneurs.

This module is intended for students who may be interested at some stage in their careers in raising private equity or venture capital finance for an entrepreneurial venture or management buyout, or who see themselves working in a professional investment capacity (eg with a private equity firm as an investment executive or with an investment bank) or as an investor with a pension fund, bank or insurance company or as a corporate finance adviser, or who simply want to gain an understanding of how the private equity & venture capital fundraising and investment and M&A processes work.

Academic authors
Keith Arundale
Dr Keith Arundale
20

Fixed Income Cash and Derivative Markets applies more advanced valuation and risk assessment methods that build on the knowledge introduced in the fixed income component of the first term Fixed Income and Equity Investments module: It describes the basic characteristics of fixed income derivatives, structured products and credit sensitive securities and develops practical strategies for valuation and risk assessment. It also considers how the markets for these securities are related and begins the task of showing how these relationships can be exploited for trading or investment. The module is designed not only for students wanting a more advanced knowledge of the fixed income markets, but also for students wishing to take the exam for the ICMA Fixed Income Certificate (ICMA FIC)

Academic authors
Gail Rolland
20

This module explores how financial investors incorporate sustainability considerations and environmental, social and governance (ESG) criteria into their investment decisions. The module offers an introduction to the main sustainable investment strategies, the main players (governments, supranational institutions, corporations, investment funds, banks) in the sustainable investment space and the application of sustainable investment in different asset classes.

A particular focus in this module is on green and climate change-related investments, but the module also explores the social and ethical dimensions of sustainable investment.

The aim of the module is to familiarise students with the main strategies employed in sustainable investments and the role that sustainable investment can play in addressing societal challenges such as climate change. Using real-world examples and ESG data, students will learn about the key challenges and opportunities that investors incorporating ESG criteria face. Students will also be introduced to the crucial role of financial regulation and voluntary standards/principles in the sustainable investment space.

Academic authors
Lisa 1 002
Dr Lisa Schopohl
20
Optional modules Credits

Financial theories have traditionally assumed that rational, risk-averse investors trade in efficient and free-flowing asset markets. Academic research and practitioner experience have cast doubt on this paradigm, instead proposing that investors may not be utility maximisers, and that there may be impediments to the functioning of markets. This module will describe recent developments in the application of principles drawn from psychology to financial issues.

This course is positioned in the cross-section of Finance and Psychology. It provides an alternative framework to that of traditional neo-classical finance principles in explaining market behaviour and interpreting stylised characteristics. A variety of psychological principles and well-established cognitive biases are examined and connections are made with the influence they have on the investment (and corporate) decision making process. Market anomalies and puzzles are interpreted based on these connections.

Academic authors
Yueting Cui
Dr Yueting Cui
Samah El Hajjar online profile
Dr Samah El Hajjar
20

The purpose of the module is to provide an understanding of the latest developments in banking regulations that are the main driving force behind changes in our approaches to risk measurement. It focuses on the foundations of market risk analysis and the basic models for assessing market risk. Participants utilise market risk measurement techniques that are used daily in the front and middle offices of banks; particular emphasis is placed on the appraisal of the covariance matrices that are used to measure the market risk of portfolios. They also learn to build various Value-at-Risk (VaR) models for market risk for international portfolios of equities, FX, interest rate products, commodities, derivatives etc. The module has a significant practical component with computer-based workshops that are designed to support the lecture material.

Academic authors
Emese Lazar
Professor Emese Lazar
20

Building on the material introduced in Quantitative Methods for Finance, this module covers a number of more advanced techniques that are relevant for financial applications, and in particular for modelling and forecasting financial time series. These include an introduction to maximum likelihood estimation and two-stage least squares, models of volatility, simulation techniques, and multivariate models. Case studies from the academic finance literature are employed to demonstrate potential uses of each approach. Extensive use is also made of financial econometrics software to demonstrate how the techniques are applied in practice.

Academic authors
Michael Clements
Professor Michael P. Clements
20

The aim of the research project is to allow students to define and execute a piece of research in finance on a topic of their choice, with direction from an academic supervisor and with assistance from a doctoral student support supervisor.

The self-directed nature of study for this model should encourage students to be resourceful in their search for relevant literature and data, and to manage the various stages involved effectively, leading to timely submission of the finished piece.

Academic authors
Charles Sutcliffe
Professor Charles Sutcliffe
20

Summer Semester

Students take one optional module;

Optional modules Credits

This module gives students the opportunity to pursue a work placement with an external organisation broadly related to the general sphere of their degree studies. The aim of the module is to allow participants to gain work experience in a career path of interest, develop a wide range of employability skills, build their network and enhance market awareness. The maximum duration of the placement is 3 months and it takes place during the summer period (June-August). Placements should be secured by students independently. The Centre’s career development office can support students in their search and application process. Placements secured by students are subject to the approval of the module convenor. The module is assessed by a 3,000-word project based on the work experience gained.

Academic authors
Michael smith
Dr Michael Smith
20

Industry participants estimate that 70-80% of equity trades are executed through computers. Market-makers in equity, fixed income and currency markets use algorithms to automatically adjust their quotes.

This module reviews the current state of the trading industry and identifies aims, features, regulations, and limitations of three main groups of algorithmic trading strategies: market making, trade execution and statistical arbitrage. Practical seminars are used to demonstrate how to apply trading algorithms to high-frequency data.

This module will equip the students with a basic knowledge of algorithmic and high frequency trading strategies which are commonly used in the trading industry.

Academic authors
Alfonso Dufour
Dr Alfonso Dufour
20

This module aims to provide students with an understanding of financial decision making in the context of alternative investments and to introduce the key principles and techniques of financial engineering used in structured product design.

By the end of the module, students will be able to

  • Discuss the particularities of different forms of alternative investments, especially hedge funds, commodities and real estate
  • Characterize the benefits and risks of different alternative investment classes
  • Apply key concepts of financial engineering to structured product design
  • Explain and analyse different types of structured products currently available in the global capital markets.
Academic authors
Marcel Prokopczuk
Professor Marcel Prokopczuk
20

The module is less quantitative option open to all MSc students that builds on the coverage of futures contracts from term 1. By the end of the module it is expected that students will be aware of the different ways of constructing stock market indices and the implications of these differences, how futures contracts are traded and the identity of some of the close substitutes for trading index futures, how futures can be priced using an arbitrage relationship, how futures can be used for hedging the price risk of the underlying, and the various uses that fund managers make of these instruments.

Academic authors
Charles Sutcliffe
Professor Charles Sutcliffe
20

The Advanced Options Trading module, exclusive to the ICMA Centre’s Masters in Finance programme, is an employer-led, industry accredited programme centred on professional development, practical application and transferrable skills, making individuals work-ready for job role profiles such as: Options Trader, Options Broker, Market Maker, Options Analyst or Risk Manager.

Throughout this module, students will develop their knowledge and understanding of trading, management and supervision of options within financial markets.

Delivered in an investment bank internship style by leading market practitioners and in collaboration with one of the world’s largest financial exchanges, The Intercontinental Exchange (ICE), students will engage with employers and use industry leading software such as Volcube, ICE Connect and ICE Options Analytics to support their learning, development and application. Students who successfully complete and pass the course will qualify for a sought-after interview with the OSTC Group for different roles, including Junior Trader.

Throughout this module, students will develop their knowledge and understanding of the trading, management and supervision of options within financial markets. They will also develop the ability to practically apply the knowledge, understanding and required skills to trade options actively within the financial markets. Students will:

  • · Develop a high-level understanding of option theory and application at practitioner level.
  • · Be able to interpret both volatility and volatility skew.
  • · Be able to use and interpret the key primary and secondary option sensitivities including gamma and gamma trading.
  • · Understand the key features, risk/reward and trading rationales of vertical, horizontal and volatility option trading strategies and refinements such as ratio spreads, butterflies and condors (both “vanilla” and “iron”).
  • · Understand the key principles and practice of option market making.
  • · Understand the principles of option risk management on both a single-position and portfolio basis.
  • · Know how and where to source option-related information and metrics – and how to interpret and use such information.

The module is delivered by market practitioners in the style of an internship to support the behavioural development of enhanced employability skills and ultimately make students work-ready and professionally competent for future careers.

20

This module is available as an elective to MSc Finance students as part of a 1-month study-abroad trip during the summer at ALBA Graduate Business School at the American College of Greece, in Athens, Greece. The study fees are covered by the ICMA Centre but the candidates are responsible for their travel, accommodation and subsistence expenses. Student accommodation can be arranged via the American college of Greece at student prices.

The principle aim of the module is to provide the students with practical and theoretical understanding of how the financial services industry has been transformed through the adoption and use of digital innovation and information technologies as well as the abundance of data. The module takes both an external perspective on technological and market developments, as well as an internal perspective on organizational transformation and new ways of working for innovation and agility.

Academic authors
Michael smith
Dr Michael Smith
20

*The module or course content descriptions set out on this page are correct for those being taught in the current academic year. Modules or course content marked as optional are indicative and may be subject to change. Please note, constraints in timetable scheduling may mean you are unable to take some optional modules at the same time as others.

Fees
2024 entry £16,000

Scholarships

Scholarships are available to support high-potential students. All applications are automatically considered for a scholarship. No separate scholarship application is necessary. Simply submit your application for a Masters programme starting in 2024 and you will be automatically notified if you are successful. Shortlisting and selection are based on academic merit and the candidate’s potential as demonstrated in the application form. For more details, visit our scholarships webpage.

Fees
2024 entry £28,000

Scholarships

Scholarships are available to support high-potential students. All applications are automatically considered for a scholarship. No separate scholarship application is necessary. Simply submit your application for a Masters programme starting in 2024 and you will be automatically notified if you are successful. Shortlisting and selection are based on academic merit and the candidate’s potential as demonstrated in the application form. For more details, visit our scholarships webpage.

  • Undergraduate Degree – Minimum 2:1 or the equivalent from an overseas institution*
  • Degree Discipline – Any degree discipline, but must have a satisfactory existing level of numeracy
  • Building Blocks of Maths and Stats for Finance course – We may ask you to complete and pass the free online 2-week Building Blocks of Maths and Stats for Finance course developed by the ICMA Centre on the FutureLearn platform, if we think it is appropriate in your individual case. For example, if you have been out of education for more than a few years or have little evidence of any numerical ability.

* Please note that due to increasing competition for places on our Masters programmes our entry requirements may change.

We operate a rolling admissions system and you are therefore advised to apply early in order to be sure of your place on our programmes. We experience high levels of demand, and it is possible we might have to close applications to some programmes once places are filled.

English requirements

Studying in a second language can be challenging. If your English language ability is below the minimum requirement, we may ask for evidence of proficiency. Alternatively, we may ask you to attend an English language course before you begin your studies with us.

Requirement Criteria
IELTS 6.5 with no component below 6.0 in any sub-skills
IELTS with pre-sessional English 6.5 with no component below 5.5 in each of the four sub-skills

Pre-sessional English Programme

The Pre-sessional English Programme is for international students who need to meet their degree programme English language requirements. Our courses equip you with the skills and language needed for academic success, including critical thinking, self-reflection, learner autonomy, research skills and integrating sources. The Pre-sessional English Programme is accredited by the global association of Lecturers in English for Academic Purposes, which guarantees you will receive a high-quality student experience.

Find out about our comprehensive range of Pre-Sessional English courses

Acceptance of LanguageCert Online and DuoLingo English qualifications

We appreciate the difficulties that some students are having with the availability of English Language tests, as the impact of the global pandemic continues. As a result of this, we are pleased to announce that we can now accept the non-SELT version of LanguageCert (which includes the online version) and DuoLingo as suitable English language qualifications. These can be accepted for direct entry onto Undergraduate (except Speech and Language Therapy), Postgraduate Taught (except Speech and Language Therapy) and Postgraduate Research programmes.

For information on individual programme requirements and other English language qualifications, please visit our English requirement equivalent page.

If you require specific advice on your qualification please contact admissions directly by e-mail  or telephone on +44 (0) 118 378 5289.

UK visa requirements

If you are not a national of the European Union (EU), you may need to obtain a UK visa. This visa will allow to live and study in the UK. See the  UK Border Agency website. Contact the University's International Office with any questions:  intoff@reading.ac.uk.

Graduate Route

The UK's Graduate Route post-study work visa allows you to apply to stay in the UK for up to two years after you graduate, with the opportunity to undertake skilled work. Visit the University website for the latest information.

Where are our 2021 graduates now?

97% employed post graduation
Masters Careers Survey 2022
94% of students would recommend their programme
Masters Careers Survey 2022
£38,712 average salary one year post-graduation
Masters Careers Survey 2022
91% said the careers team had a positive impact on their career
Masters Careers Survey 2022

2021 graduates in this area are working at the following organisations:

Morgan Stanley
Fidelity
Bank New York Mellon
Deutsche Bank
ICBC
S&P Global
Bangkok Bank
AIG
PwC
Erst & Young
L'Oreal
State Street Bank
Bank of East Asia
Metlife Investment Management
BlueBay Asset Management
Santander Bank

23 UPM 041 PGT Pie ICMA p
22 MIS 036 ICMA map

Please note the above statistics are based on respondents to our Masters Outcomes Survey in 2022, which was completed by our 2021 graduates, 12 months after graduation.

Respondents are from the following programmes: MSc Behavioural Finance, MSc Corporate Finance, MSc Finance, MSc Finance and Financial Technology, MSc Financial Risk Management, MSc Investment Management.

Careers

How can Henley Careers work with you?

Here at Henley we have an award-winning careers team here to support you through your time here and four years after graduating from us.

Here is how Henley Careers can help you:

  • Careers Consultant appointments - Our Careers Consultant are here to help and support you with any careers related concern that you might have. Whether it’s advice on your CV, practicing for an interview, looking at possible reasons why applications aren't being successful or support planning your career goals, we’re here to help empower you to progress in your career.
  • Events - Henley Careers organise numerous events aimed to help you build your confidence, develop the skills employers are looking for, network with employers and expand your industry knowledge.
  • Alumni support - You can continue to book one-to-one appointments with your Careers Consultant and use our online resources for up to four years after you graduate to get help and support in your career.
  • Career Smart - Get a head start in securing a graduate job by taking part in our online course, Career Smart. You can expect to learn about the graduate recruitment cycle in the UK, where to look and how to start applying to jobs, and the different types of roles available to you.

For more information please see our Careers page.

Continuing your career

You will enhance your employability as you will leave us well equipped to pursue a wide range of careers in financial services. You may join investment banks to train as a financial markets professional in trading, sales and research. You can also specialise in complex derivative products or join brokers and commodity bankers. In addition, you may decide to follow other career paths including consultancy, accountancy, operations, IT, and higher education and doctoral research.

Professional Accreditation

Chartered Institute of Securities & Investment (CISI)

Chartered Institute of Securities & Investment (CISI)

ICMA Fixed Income Certificate

ICMA Fixed Income Certificate

Apply for 2024 entry now

Apply online now through the University of Reading’s online application service.

The online application service allows you to complete your application information, and attach electronic copies of your academic transcripts, certificates and other supporting information. It also provides a facility for an email request to be sent to your referees. This enables the referees to send your supporting references directly to us.

When to apply

We operate a rolling admissions system and it is recommended that you apply early to secure your place. There is no specific deadline and applications will be considered until the programme is full. However, to allow us time to process your application we recommend that you apply by the following dates:

UK/Home applicants International applicants
1 August 1 July

After you apply

You will receive a confirmation email when we receive your application form. Your application is then reviewed by a member of staff. If successful, you will receive a formal offer letter outlining any necessary entry criteria you will need to meet. You'll then be asked to confirm your acceptance of this offer.

If you require a Certificate of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) for your visa, details will be sent by email once all conditions of the offer have been met.

Throughout the admissions process we will keep you updated with key information via email. We also provide opportunities to interact with faculty and staff online.

Find us on Facebook  and keep up-to-date with news and events at Henley or ask us a question. In addition, you can speak to a current student, our students are always happy to share their Henley experience.

The ICMA Centre is among the pioneers in finance education and renowned for its strong links with the financial services industry. The Centre was ranked number 7 in the UK for its Masters in Finance programme in 2023 (Financial Times Masters in Finance Ranking). It is also part of Henley Business School – among an elite group of 75 business schools in the world to hold triple-accredited status from the leading UK, European and US accrediting bodies: AMBA, EQUIS and AACSB.

The Centre’s unique practice centred approach includes a number of finance education innovations. These will provide you with a solid grounding for a career in the industry. The approach aims to equip you with a skill set that sets you apart from graduates of other finance programmes. Your employability track record is also bolstered by an in-house comprehensive career development programme.

Reading has proximity to the world’s top financial centre (25 minutes from London Paddington). Several leading professional bodies including the CFA, CISI, GARP and ICS validate our programmes and offer exam exemptions to our students.

Joining one of the top schools of finance in Europe, you will benefit from state-of-the-art facilities. You will have access to the latest technology and will be taught by world-renowned faculty and industry experts. Our innovative teaching and learning environment includes trading and financial analysis simulations. We also have the latest financial data and programming software. Our three dealing rooms are one of the largest facilities of its kind in the world. They provide an ideal setting for understanding how businesses and markets function in practice.

Our students’ learning experience is a top priority for academic faculty and administrative staff at the ICMA Centre. This is reflected in the latest student satisfaction rates in the PTES and NSS student surveys.

Student blogs

Hs91 Ana Maria Carrenomendoza

Ana Maria discusses how she maintains her work/study-life balance, along with attending different events for career development. Coming from a Law background, she shares her motivations for pursuing a Master's in Finance and the skills she has developed. Read the full blog here.

Picture 2

How did studying at Henley Business School change my career? Fenghui Guo, explains why she decided to study her Master's in Finance. From winning the Portfolio Management Challenge to networking with bankers from top financial institutions. Find out more about Fenghui's student experience in this blog.

Speak to a current student

Contact us

For any questions of academic nature about this programme, you are welcome to directly contact the Programme Director, Dr Michael Smith at m.j.smith@icmacentre.ac.uk.

Admissions

If you have any questions about admissions, please don't hesitate to contact us.

Email: admissions@icmacentre.ac.uk
Telephone: +44 (0)118 378 6497
An image of Amitsingh Rungoo
“The syllabus was great and very comprehensive and detailed. The group project helped me to create synergy with the team. Other aspects I have enjoyed are the environment, international community of students and the practical examples for many modules.”
Amitsingh Rungoo Senior Financial Analyst at Orange Business Services Masters in Finance
An image of Jack Norbury
“The practical nature of the course strongly helped me. I could lean on my experience to better understand topics, completing tasks accurately and easily. As a result, I’ve had more responsibilities and been able to develop my career quickly. ”
Jack Norbury Portfolio Analyst at Neuberger Berman Masters in Finance
An image of Fenghui Guo
“The trading courses and faculty are very attractive to me and I have mastered a lot of professional skills during my Masters. Henley provides a wealth of extracurricular resources and the knowledge and application skills I learnt help my work.”
Fenghui Guo Investment Consultant at Changjiang Securities Masters in Finance

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