About the course
How are banks innovating to meet customer demands? Is globalisation increasing risk in the banking and finance sector?
This course builds on your existing knowledge of finance, banking or business to prepare you for a challenging and rewarding career in any banking specialism. You follow an advanced and up-to-date programme of study using industry-standard trading software.
We provide you with a broad vision and understanding of the changing nature of modern banking firms. You develop a detailed understanding of areas including:
- portfolio management
- modern banking methods
- bank strategy and risk
- regulation and the internationalisation process
This course is taught at Essex Business School. We're proud to be an internationally diverse and research intensive school, ranked in the top 25 in the UK for research excellence (REF, 2014). By embedding the latest academic and industry thinking into our teaching, you experience an education that’s at the forefront of the issues impacting today’s banking and finance sectors.
We help you understand the financial drivers of an increasingly complex banking world to give you the best foundation for your career.
Our MSc Banking and Finance is also available to study part-time and you may be eligible for scholarships and discounts provided by the University of Essex. Essex Business School also offers a limited number of scholarships for the CFA level one exam to exceptional Masters students. Essex Business School is a Recognised Partner of the CFA.
Postgraduate loans for Masters courses are now available from the Student Loans Company, worth up to £10,000, for students from the UK and EU.
“Studying at Essex Business School helped me to identify my key skills so I
could decide on a suitable career path. I developed expertise in banking and
finance and undertook an undergraduate placement in Shanghai to apply what I’d learnt, whilst
studying Mandarin.”Alina Skuba, MSc Banking and Finance and BSc Banking and Finance
Our expert staff
Our finance group is one of the largest in the UK.
Our expert team are at the forefront of financial debate and have presented their research at the Bank of England, the European Central Bank and the Federal Reserve. They combine academic and industry experience to explore issues such as:
- business ethics
- corporate social responsibility
- organisation studies
- leadership and strategy
- finance and banking
- risk management
- international management
Essex Finance Centre is based at the School and uses social science theories to address the important issues faced by today’s organisations in the commercial, public and third sectors.
Our zero carbon building reflects our ethical approach to business.
Located on our Colchester Campus on the Knowledge Gateway and Parkside Office Village, our Essex Business School building features a unique winter garden, which gives the building its own micro-climate.
The Eden-style dome provides an innovative working environment, which includes:
- Bloomberg Financial Market Labs in our virtual trading floor
- modern lecture theatres
- study pods and innovation booths – perfect for group working
- networking opportunities with visiting businesses
- Bonds café
- study skills support, such as workshops and learning resources
Our course provides you with the foundations for a rewarding career in banking and finance, equipping you with the skills to lead at a global level. In 2015, 78% of our postgraduate taught students were in work or further study (DLHE).
Many of our graduates enjoy roles in a host of occupations, including financial analysis, management, public administration and accountancy. They work for high-profile organisations and innovative SMEs such as:
- National Bank of Kazakhstan
- Cerulli Associates
- European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD)
- Capital Markets Intelligence, a financial publisher
- Credit Data Research, a business funder
We’re also proud of our student entrepreneurs, including international business incubator 0100Ventures and entrepreneurship website SlovakSTARTUP.
We work with the University’s Employability and Careers Centre to help you enhance your CV by taking part in employability opportunities, such as work experience, internships, placements, and voluntary opportunities. There is also access to employer talks on campus.
Postgraduate study is the chance to take your education to the next level. The combination of compulsory and optional modules means our courses help you develop extensive knowledge in your chosen discipline, whilst providing plenty of freedom to pursue your own interests. Our research-led teaching is continually evolving to address the latest challenges and breakthroughs in the field, therefore to ensure your course is as relevant and up-to-date as possible your core and optional module structure may be subject to change.
For many of our courses you’ll have a wide range of optional modules to choose from – those listed in this example structure are, in many instances, just a selection of those available. Our Programme Specification gives more detail about the structure available to our current postgraduate students, including details of all optional modules.
Explore the basics of the structure and environment of banking, and selected aspects of the applied economics of the modern banking firm. You study structure-conduct-performance, competition, bank efficiency, regulation, international banking and bank failures and crises.
Your dissertation is the culmination of your Masters programme, where you apply the knowledge gained on your course to produce an extended independent piece of work. You generate an original idea, analyse literature and current knowledge and produce a coherent argument that shows your ability to relate theory to practice. Your dissertation will help you develop vital skills for the workplace, as well as the ability to analyse real problems through an academic lens. You are assigned a supervisor for the duration of your project.
This module equips you with the econometric tools and necessary experience to conduct empirical research in finance. You review statistical and basic econometric models and learn to apply econometric techniques in finance by considering topics such as (G)ARCH models, unit roots and cointegration.
Analyse the key strategic developments in banking and the main aspects of risk management in modern banks. You are introduced to the concept of shareholder value in banking, the main banking strategies to create shareholder value, the key risks in banking, and the most important tools required to manage bank risks.
Understand the process of portfolio management. You cover the main concepts such as efficient diversification, managing risk exposures, and the valuation of financial assets that are at the core of managing investment portfolios, and pay special attention to the practicalities of the implementation of these concepts.
This module covers topics in mathematics that are required in Masters-level finance courses at the University of Essex. You focus on the basics of linear algebra, differential calculus including optimisation and dynamics.
Gain an understanding of international arbitrage relationships, models of exchange rate determination, and recent issues and debates in the international finance literature. Learn to describe the basic international parity relationships, to outline some of the basic models of exchange rate determination, and have a good grasp of issues such as the international debt crisis, capital mobility, and the advent of the European single currency.
Gain theoretical knowledge and a practical understanding of financial markets, trading strategies, risk and money management and trader analytics at the highest level. You study a mix of classroom-based instruction, case studies and practical trading exercises where you trade on real-time simulated global markets through the use of industry-strength proprietary trading software in the trading lab.
- Tailor the content of your course to more closely fit your interests and aspirations
- Courses focus on practical applications and links with industry
- We run an open seminar series
- Regular assessment is by coursework, presentations, case studies, group work, tests and examinations
- You submit a 15,000 word dissertation
UK entry requirements
A 1st, 2:1 or good 2:2 degree, or equivalent, in finance, economics or business. We also welcome applications from candidates with any science or engineering degree.
International and EU entry requirements
We accept a wide range of qualifications from applicants studying in the EU and other countries.
for further details about the qualifications we accept. Include information in your email about the
undergraduate qualification you have already completed or are currently taking.
English language requirements
If English isn’t your first language, we require IELTS 6.5 overall with a minimum component score of 5.5
If you do not meet our IELTS requirements then you may be able to complete a pre-sessional English pathway that enables you to start your course without retaking IELTS.
You can apply for our postgraduate courses online. You’ll need to provide us with your academic qualifications, as well as supporting documents such as transcripts, English language qualifications and certificates. You can find a list of necessary documents online, but please note we won’t be able to process your application until we have everything we need.
There is no application deadline but we recommend that you apply before 1 July for our taught courses starting in October. We aim to respond to applications within two weeks. If we are able to offer you a place, you will be contacted via email.
We hold postgraduate events in February/March and November, and open days for all our applicants throughout the year. Our Colchester Campus events are a great way to find out more about studying at Essex, and give you the chance to:
- tour our campus and accommodation
- find out answers to your questions about our courses, student finance, graduate employability, student support and more
- meet our students and staff
If the dates of our organised events aren’t suitable for you, feel free to get in touch by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll arrange an individual campus tour for you.
If you live too far away to come to Essex (or have a busy lifestyle), no problem. Our 360 degree virtual tour allows you to explore the Colchester Campus from the comfort of your home. Check out our accommodation options, facilities and social spaces.
Our staff travel the world to speak to people about the courses on offer at Essex. Take a look at our list of exhibition dates to see if we’ll be near you in the future.