Postgraduate Course

MSc Financial Engineering and Risk Management

MSc Financial Engineering and Risk Management

Overview

The details
Financial Engineering and Risk Management
October 2022
Full-time
1 year
Colchester Campus

Is it possible to prevent another financial crisis? In a post-Covid-19 world the global finance sector requires financial engineers and risk managers to work alongside its traders in order to develop robust security measures to maximise financial stability.

MSc Financial Engineering and Risk Management aims to develop finance sector workers who are able to evaluate risk, act rationally and understand the economic impact of their actions in order to find solutions. While the trader is trying to make money, the risk manager is trying not to lose it and the financial engineer is building the tools to reduce associated risks.

If you feel comfortable in pressurised environments and can rise to the challenge of making ethical and robust financial decisions, this could be the finance specialism for you.

This course will enable you to follow advanced, contemporary study in financial engineering and risk management and develop a deeper understanding of the risks within modern financial securities. You will also become skilled in the design of powerful management systems to measure risk. Upon graduation, you should possess the skills and knowledge for a successful career in commercial, investment and central banks, hedge funds, regulatory authorities and rating agencies.

You will master areas including:

  • asset pricing
  • derivative securities
  • financial modelling
  • risk management
  • empirical analysis of financial data

MSc Financial Engineering and Risk Management is taught at Essex Business School, at our Colchester Campus. Our students and staff join us from all over the world and our teaching is grounded in contemporary issues and professional practice, supported by industry-standard facilities, such as our Bloomberg virtual trading floor.

Essex Business School offers a limited number of scholarships for the CFA level one exam to exceptional Masters students.

Discover our trading floor:

Why we're great.
  • We work with City traders to present you with real-life risk situations in order for you to hone your skills and put your theories into practice
  • Graduate with the skills and knowledge for a successful career in commercial, investment and central banks, hedge funds, regulatory authorities and rating agencies
  • Benefit from round the clock access to our Bloomberg Financial Data Trading Floor

Our expert staff

Finance research at Essex Business School is world-leading in a number of areas, including:

  • banking
  • corporate finance
  • behavioural finance
  • financial econometrics
  • forecasting
  • commodities markets

Our expert finance researchers work alongside the financial industry, regulators and policy-makers both in the UK (for example at the Royal Bank of Scotland and the Bank of England) and internationally (such as the European Central Bank, the Federal Reserve and the Bank for International Settlements). This ensures their research is having a genuine impact on people’s everyday lives.

You’ll be taught by this team of experts, including Professor Alex Kontonikas. Professor Kontonikas’ main research interests are in the areas of asset pricing, liquidity, monetary policy and sovereign risk.

Alex has acted as a research consultant for the European Commission, the European Central Bank and the Bank of Finland and has secured a number of large grants from prestigious funders, including the Leverhulme Trust and the Nuffield Foundation.

All our finance researchers are members of the Essex Finance Centre (EFiC), our research centre that promotes internationally renowned, high-quality academic research in areas such as asset pricing, banking, behavioural finance and financial modelling.

Finance academics are also members of the Essex Centre for Macro and Financial Econometrics, our interdisciplinary research centre established in partnership with the world-class Economics Department at Essex. The Centre aims to conduct and publish world-leading research in macro and financial econometrics.

The Centres run regular seminars that are open to all postgraduate students and which offer an opportunity for you to hear the very latest research and developments in the finance sector.

Specialist facilities

MSc Financial Engineering and Risk Management is based at our Colchester Campus.

You’ll be studying at Essex Business School, home to the first zero carbon business school in the UK – demonstrating our sustainable approach to business first-hand. Set around a lush winter garden, with shared spaces to encourage collaborative working, you’ll find a wealth of inspiring teaching and study zones:

  • a virtual trading floor with Bloomberg Financial Market Labs, where you’ll gain hands-on experience and learn how to model financial data in a practical setting
  • learn in modern lecture theatres with ‘listen again’ recording to aid your study
  • dynamic blended learning provision for uninterrupted study and engaging online lectures with virtual guest speakers
  • utilise study booths in our winter garden and versatile break out areas for group working throughout the building
  • study skills support provided by the Essex Business School Learning Team
  • networking opportunities with visiting businesses and careers events
  • Bonds café and adjacent foyer to enjoy on-site fresh food and drink

You'll also benefit from fantastic University facilities located close by, including our state-of-the-art Silberrad Student Centre, complete with an open-access 24-hour Learning Hub and a cutting-edge media centre. You benefit from access to a wide range of specialised banking and finance databases, textbooks and e-books and can book appointments with our subject librarian.

Essex Business School students also have access to quantitative analysis software, such as MatLab, Stata and Eviews which can be accessed remotely and from all university computer labs.

Our building is located on the Knowledge Gateway, home to some of the region’s most exciting enterprises in the science, technology and creative sectors. The Knowledge Gateway provides potential networking and career opportunities for students directly on campus.

Your future

Essex Business School is helping to create the business leaders of the future, those who are creative, innovative and ethically aware.

Many of our graduates enjoy careers in financial analysis, management, public administration and accountancy at some of the world’s most well-known organisations and exciting SMEs, including:

  • Groupon, a global e-commerce marketplace
  • KPMG Group, a multinational professional services network
  • Right Freight Pvt Ltc, an Independent freight forwarder
  • Copal Partners, a financial consultation agency
  • Capital Markets Intelligence, a financial publisher
  • Credit Data Research, a business funder

Read Ludovico's story, and see how he benefited from his Masters degree.

Our Student Support team work closely with the University’s Employability and Careers service to help you with careers information and advice and CV support. They will help you find work experience, internships, placements and voluntary opportunities and provide access to employer talks on campus. We also work closely with the Essex Startups team to support our budding entrepreneurs get their business ideas off the ground.

”My current experience of working for a hedge fund company has served to help make my ambitions clearer. I like my work and I like the hedge fund sector. In the future, I see myself doing a job which will be more related to the market analysis side. A job that also allows me to fully put into practice the knowledge and skills I gained during my Masters.”

”I can honestly state that my MSc in Financial Engineering and Risk Management at the University of Essex gave me all the knowledge and tools I needed, and that I still need to face the quite complex word of the hedge funds.”

Ludovico Luce, MSc Financial Engineering and Risk Management (2019)

Find out more about Ludovico's story.

Entry requirements

UK entry requirements

A 2:2 degree, or international equivalent, in a numerate discipline such as: Economics, Finance, Mathematics, Statistics, Science or Engineering.

Or a 2:2 degree, or international equivalent, in any other discipline, which includes at least two modules from the fields of either Quantitative Methods, or Economics, or Finance and/or Investment, or Banking.

International & EU entry requirements

We accept a wide range of qualifications from applicants studying in the EU and other countries. Get in touch with any questions you may have about the qualifications we accept. Remember to tell us about the qualifications you have already completed or are currently taking.

Sorry, the entry requirements for the country that you have selected are not available here. Please select your country page where you'll find this information.

English language requirements

If English is not your first language, we require IELTS 6.5 overall with a minimum component score of 5.5

Additional Notes

The University uses academic selection criteria to determine an applicant’s ability to successfully complete a course at the University of Essex. Where appropriate, we may ask for specific information relating to previous modules studied or work experience.

Structure

Course structure

We offer a flexible course structure with a mixture of core/compulsory modules, and optional modules chosen from lists. Please be aware that we are planning changes to our first year to make it more relevant to your chosen course.

Our research-led teaching is continually evolving to address the latest challenges and breakthroughs in the field. The following modules are based on the current course structure and may change in response to new curriculum developments and innovation.

We understand that deciding where and what to study is a very important decision for you. We’ll make all reasonable efforts to provide you with the courses, services and facilities as described on our website. However, if we need to make material changes, for example due to significant disruption, or in response to COVID-19, we’ll let our applicants and students know as soon as possible.

Components and modules explained

Components

Components are the blocks of study that make up your course. A component may have a set module which you must study, or a number of modules from which you can choose.

Each component has a status and carries a certain number of credits towards your qualification.

Status What this means
Core
You must take the set module for this component and you must pass. No failure can be permitted.
Core with Options
You can choose which module to study from the available options for this component but you must pass. No failure can be permitted.
Compulsory
You must take the set module for this component. There may be limited opportunities to continue on the course/be eligible for the qualification if you fail.
Compulsory with Options
You can choose which module to study from the available options for this component. There may be limited opportunities to continue on the course/be eligible for the qualification if you fail.
Optional
You can choose which module to study from the available options for this component. There may be limited opportunities to continue on the course/be eligible for the qualification if you fail.

The modules that are available for you to choose for each component will depend on several factors, including which modules you have chosen for other components, which modules you have completed in previous years of your course, and which term the module is taught in.

Modules

Modules are the individual units of study for your course. Each module has its own set of learning outcomes and assessment criteria and also carries a certain number of credits.

In most cases you will study one module per component, but in some cases you may need to study more than one module. For example, a 30-credit component may comprise of either one 30-credit module, or two 15-credit modules, depending on the options available.

Modules may be taught at different times of the year and by a different department or school to the one your course is primarily based in. You can find this information from the module code. For example, the module code HR100-4-FY means:

HR 100  4  FY

The department or school the module will be taught by.

In this example, the module would be taught by the Department of History.

The module number. 

The UK academic level of the module.

A standard undergraduate course will comprise of level 4, 5 and 6 modules - increasing as you progress through the course.

A standard postgraduate taught course will comprise of level 7 modules.

A postgraduate research degree is a level 8 qualification.

The term the module will be taught in.

  • AU: Autumn term
  • SP: Spring term
  • SU: Summer term
  • FY: Full year 
  • AP: Autumn and Spring terms
  • PS: Spring and Summer terms
  • AS: Autumn and Summer terms

COMPONENT 01: CORE

Dissertation
(40 CREDITS)

Your dissertation is the culmination of your Masters programme, where you apply the knowledge gained on your course to produce a 10,000 word 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're assigned a supervisor for the duration of your project.

View Dissertation on our Module Directory

COMPONENT 02: CORE

Research Methods in Finance
(20 CREDITS)

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.

View Research Methods in Finance on our Module Directory

COMPONENT 03: COMPULSORY

Derivative Securities
(20 CREDITS)

Master the pricing of financial derivatives and their use for hedging financial risks. You study the basics of futures and options, analyse the Black-Scholes and binomial option pricing models, and consider various numerical techniques for pricing financial derivatives. Futures and options are then utilised in the context of hedging financial risks, and you are introduced to the concept of volatility trading and the treatment of volatility as an asset class.

View Derivative Securities on our Module Directory

COMPONENT 04: COMPULSORY

Asset Pricing
(20 CREDITS)

Gain a formal introduction to asset pricing theories and empirical findings. You review the fundamental theories of the expected utility, asset pricing kernels, and risk-neutral valuation, covering the Capital Asset Pricing Model (CAPM), and linear factor models arising from the Arbitrage Pricing Theory (APT). You also discuss empirical asset pricing studies.

View Asset Pricing on our Module Directory

COMPONENT 05: COMPULSORY

Financial Modelling
(20 CREDITS)

Consider the use of modern econometric techniques in the analysis of financial time series. You cover multivariate models for stationary and non-stationary processes, such as Vector Autoregressive models, consider appropriate models for volatility, and study Markov processes and simulation methods used for financial modelling.

View Financial Modelling on our Module Directory

COMPONENT 06: CORE

Risk Management
(20 CREDITS)

The recent financial crisis and credit crunch have demonstrated that risk management was too narrowly defined. In this course you examine the Value at Risk (VAR) measure of financial risk developed in the 1990s, before discussing the new post-crisis Regulatory environment.

View Risk Management on our Module Directory

COMPONENT 07: OPTIONAL

EBS (Colchester Campus) option from list
(20 CREDITS)

COMPONENT 08: COMPULSORY

Finance Research Techniques Using Matlab
(20 CREDITS)

This module introduces Matlab, software commonly used in financial organisations and academia to model portfolio construction and solve banking and finance challenges. You learn how to use Matlab programming language to solve financial problems. These may include finding optimal portfolio weights, calculating and simulating derivative prices and implied volatilities, and estimating and simulating GARCH models, amongst others.

View Finance Research Techniques Using Matlab on our Module Directory

COMPONENT 09: COMPULSORY

Postgraduate Mathematics Preparation
(0 CREDITS)

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.

View Postgraduate Mathematics Preparation on our Module Directory

Teaching

  • 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

Assessment

  • Regular assessment is by coursework, presentations, case studies, group work, tests and examinations

Dissertation

  • You submit a 10,000 word dissertation

Fees and funding

Home/UK fee

£13,030

International fee

£20,350

What's next

Open Days

We hold 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 tours@essex.ac.uk and we’ll arrange an individual campus tour for you.

2022 Open Days (Colchester Campus)

  • Saturday, September 17, 2022
  • Saturday, October 22, 2022

Applying

You can apply for this postgraduate course online. Before you apply, please check our information about necessary documents that we’ll ask you to provide as part of your application.

We aim to respond to applications within two weeks. If we are able to offer you a place, you will be contacted via email.

For information on our deadline to apply for this course, please see our ‘how to apply’ information.

Colchester Campus

Visit Colchester Campus

Home to 15,000 students from more than 130 countries, our Colchester Campus is the largest of our three sites, making us one of the most internationally diverse campuses on the planet - we like to think of ourselves as the world in one place.

Set within the 200-acre award-winning beautiful parkland - Wivenhoe Park and located two miles from the historic city centre of Colchester – England's oldest recorded development. Our Colchester Campus is also easily reached from London and Stansted Airport in under one hour.

Whether you are planning to visit us at one of our Open Days, or coming to an Applicant day. Our campus conveniently located and easy to reach by car, train or bus.

View from Square 2 outside the Rab Butler Building looking towards Square 3

Virtual tours

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.

Exhibitions

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.

At Essex we pride ourselves on being a welcoming and inclusive student community. We offer a wide range of support to individuals and groups of student members who may have specific requirements, interests or responsibilities.

Find out more

The University makes every effort to ensure that this information on its programme specification is accurate and up-to-date. Exceptionally it can be necessary to make changes, for example to courses, facilities or fees. Examples of such reasons might include, but are not limited to: strikes, other industrial action, staff illness, severe weather, fire, civil commotion, riot, invasion, terrorist attack or threat of terrorist attack (whether declared or not), natural disaster, restrictions imposed by government or public authorities, epidemic or pandemic disease, failure of public utilities or transport systems or the withdrawal/reduction of funding. Changes to courses may for example consist of variations to the content and method of delivery of programmes, courses and other services, to discontinue programmes, courses and other services and to merge or combine programmes or courses. The University will endeavour to keep such changes to a minimum, and will also keep students informed appropriately by updating our programme specifications. The University would inform and engage with you if your course was to be discontinued, and would provide you with options, where appropriate, in line with our Compensation and Refund Policy.

The full Procedures, Rules and Regulations of the University governing how it operates are set out in the Charter, Statutes and Ordinances and in the University Regulations, Policy and Procedures.

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