About the course
Do you want to learn about international financial markets? Did you miss the opportunity to study Mandarin at A Level or college? Do you want to experience Chinese culture and business customs?
As the world’s largest economy, China is an expanding market for UK and international businesses. With the country’s capital markets widening to foreign investors, there are significant opportunities for finance graduates who can communicate in China’s official business language, Mandarin.
This course combines study of the global financial system with the opportunity to learn beginners’ level, intensive Mandarin. You spend your third year studying in China, where you experience the country’s culture and business customs.
Your language models are taught by a native Mandarin speaker during your first and second years. You gain a comprehensive introduction to the language, vocabulary and grammar to help you make the most of your year abroad.
In your finance modules, you explore the nature and role of financial markets and examine the subject from the perspective of investors, analysts, academics and policy-makers. You learn how financial decisions are made in varying circumstances and explore topics such as:
- corporate finance
- portfolio analysis
- financial modelling
- international finance
Your first year also includes introductions to accounting and economics.
In your final year, you have the opportunity to put your knowledge into practice by completing an in-depth, independent research project or dissertation (subject to approval). This will give you the chance to further develop vital employability skills in areas of research, time management and critical thinking.
This course also gives you the option to follow a specialised pathway in Applied Quantitative Methods (AQM).
With employers looking for graduates with data analysis skills, The University of Essex is one of just three UK universities to have received Q-Step Affiliate status. By completing necessary AQM modules, your quantitative skills are evidenced on your transcript to give you the competitive edge in the jobs market. We can also provide work placement bursaries to develop your skills in evaluating numerical evidence, analysing data and designing research.
You spend your third year studying abroad in China to develop your language skills. You also undertake additional business modules in Mandarin to learn about the Chinese business environment and legal frameworks.
Living and studying in the country will provide a much greater understanding of the unique Chinese business customs and cultural norms. This knowledge will prove invaluable throughout your career, whether conducting business in China or working with Chinese nationals in the UK.
The University of Essex has strong links with Chinese industry and higher education establishments, giving you the chance to study at some of the country’s finest universities. Amongst others, we have partnership arrangements with Shanghai University of Finance and Economics, in the country’s leading financial city, and Nankai University in Tianjin, just an hour from Beijing.
Unlike some other universities, you will not pay tuition fees during your year abroad.
Our expert staff
This course is provided by Essex Business School, the University of Essex’s largest department, where you are taught by a highly qualified team with wide-ranging research interests and proven academic track records. Our finance group is one of the largest and most respected in the UK.
Our staff specialise in areas including financial crises, behavioural finance, hedge fund performance, financial bubbles, and growth and poverty.
The University of Essex gives you the opportunity to expand your language education outside of the lecture theatre. We’re home to more than 1,000 Chinese students, as well as many of the nation’s leading academics, offering plenty of opportunities to practise your Mandarin skills and immerse yourself in Chinese culture on campus.
Our Students’ Union and Chinese Student Scholars Society organise numerous events and activities to celebrate and experience the country’s customs, including the Mid-Autumn Moon Festival and Chinese New Year. Our Chinese Language Club even offers the chance to learn Cantonese, as well as further develop your Mandarin.
Essex Business School is ranked in the UK’s top 20 for finance. Our finance courses have 91% student satisfaction (NSS, 2016) and we’re ranked in the UK’s top 20 by the Chartered Association of Business Schools.
You also experience the UK’s first zero carbon business school building. Set around a lush winter garden, the Eden-style dome gives the building its own micro-climate.
You benefit from excellent facilities and services, such as:
- a virtual trading floor with Bloomberg Terminals offering direct use of Bloomberg data, information and analytics
- light and spacious lecture theatres
- study pods and innovation booths for group working
- a café with an adjacent sun terrace
- study skills workshops and advice
- employability advice
Our Colchester building is located on the Knowledge Gateway, home to Parkside Office Village which offers potential networking opportunities with innovative Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises (SMEs).
You learn Mandarin in our Department of Language and Linguistics, ranked among the top 150 departments on the planet for linguistics, according to the QS World University Rankings 2016.
You also benefit from the learning resources available within our Department of Language and Linguistics:
- Melissi Digital Classroom software for subtitling and interpreting
- a new 20-position Interpreting Lab
- meet other linguists and practise your language skills at our Language Cafés
experience world cinema at our Modern Languages Film Club
- our Languages for All programme offers you the opportunity to study an additional language alongside your course at no extra cost
We understand the skills and knowledge employers look for in graduates and ensure you have the opportunity to develop these throughout your course. Your first year includes a module that develops your professional skills in analysis, critical thinking, presentation and communication. In your second year, our Successful Futures module introduces the graduate recruitment process, including practical advice to excel at interviews and assessment centres.
Outside of your course, the University’s Employability and Careers Centre provides access to employability opportunities, such as work experience, internships, placements and voluntary opportunities.
On completion of this course, you will be well-placed to seek employment in financial organisations in both the UK and China. Our recent graduates work for organisations such as:
- Bank of England
- John Lewis Partnership
In 2015, 84% of Essex Business School undergraduates and 98.6% of our international (non-UK/EU) undergraduates were in graduate level work or study within six months of graduating (DLHE 2015 leavers).
UK entry requirements
GCSE: Mathematics C
IB: 30 points, including Standard Level Mathematics or Maths Studies grade 4, if not taken at Higher Level. We are also happy to consider a combination of separate IB Diploma Programmes at both Higher and Standard Level. Please note that Maths in the IB is not required if you have already achieved GCSE Maths at grade C or above.
Exact offer levels will vary depending on the range of subjects being taken at higher and standard level, and the course applied for. Please contact the Undergraduate Admissions Office for more information.
Entry requirements for students studying BTEC qualifications are dependent on units studied. Advice can be provided on an individual basis. The standard required is generally at Distinction level.
Please note this course is not available to first language speakers of Mandarin.
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
high school qualifications you have already completed or are currently taking.
IELTS entry requirements
English language requirements for applicants whose first language is not English: IELTS 6.0 overall. (Different requirements apply for second year entry.)
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.
If you are an international student requiring a Tier 4 visa to study in the UK please see our immigration webpages for the latest Home Office guidance on English language qualifications.
Other English language qualifications may be acceptable so please contact us for further details. If we accept the English component of an international qualification then it will be included in the information given about the academic levels required. Please note that date restrictions may apply to some English language qualifications.
Applications for our full-time undergraduate courses should be made through the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS). Applications are online at: www.ucas.com. Full details on this process can be obtained from the UCAS website in the how to apply section.
Our UK students, and some of our EU and international students, who are still at school or college, can apply through their school. Your school will be able to check and then submit your completed application to UCAS. Our other international applicants (EU or worldwide) or independent applicants in the UK can also apply online through UCAS Apply.
The UCAS code for our University of Essex is ESSEX E70. The individual campus codes for our Loughton and Southend Campuses are ‘L’ and ‘S’ respectively.
Applicant Days and interviews
Resident in the UK? If your application is successful, we will invite you to attend one of our applicant days. These run from January to April and give you the chance to explore the campus, meet our students and really get a feel for life as an Essex student.
Some of our courses also hold interviews and if you’re invited to one, this will take place during your applicant day. Don’t panic, they’re nothing to worry about and it’s a great way for us to find out more about you and for you to find out more about the course. Some of our interviews are one-to-one with an academic, others are group activities, but we’ll send you all the information you need beforehand.
If you’re outside the UK and are planning a trip, feel free to email firstname.lastname@example.org so we can help you plan a visit to the University.
Our Colchester Campus events are a great way to find out more about studying at Essex. In 2017 we have three undergraduate Open Days (in June, September and October). These events enable you to discover what our Colchester Campus has to offer. You have 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
Check out our Visit Us pages to find out more information about booking onto one of our events. And if the dates aren’t suitable for you, feel free to get in touch by emailing email@example.com 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.