Our BSc Banking and Finance (including foundation year) is open to Home and EU students. It will be suitable for you if your academic qualifications do not yet meet our entrance requirements for the three-year version of this course and you want a programme that increases your subject knowledge as well as improves your academic skills.
This four-year course includes a foundation year (year zero), followed by a further three years of study. During your year zero, you study four academic subjects relevant to your chosen course as well as a compulsory English language and academic skills module.
You are an Essex student from day one, a member of our global community based at the most internationally diverse campus university in the UK.
How does financial theory aid corporate decision making? How do banks manage risk across global markets?
The past 20 years have seen banks and financial markets become increasingly globalised. Deregulation and advances in technology have empowered banks to expand their offerings, making them an integral component of all financial sectors.
BSc Banking and Finance combines academic rigour with practical financial skills to meet the needs of demanding careers in banking and finance. You have access to real-world Bloomberg Market Data Feed (B-PIPE), information and analytics in our virtual trading floor, where you can practise trading and analysing financial data.
You explore topics including:
Your year one ensures you experience a fully-rounded business education by introducing you to topics such as accounting, management, marketing 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. This will give you the chance to further develop vital employability skills in areas of research, time management and critical thinking.
Essex is one of just three UK universities to have received Q-Step Affiliate status, including for our BSc Banking and Finance, to support the way we develop the quantitative skills of our graduates.
This means we can provide work placement bursaries to develop your skills in evaluating numerical evidence, analysing data and designing research. We also offer the opportunity to follow a specialised degree path, where you graduate with enhanced quantitative skills. These are evidenced on your degree transcript to help give you the competitive edge in the graduate job market.
BSc Banking and Finance is taught at Essex Business School. Our finance group is one of the largest in the UK and our focus on ethical management means you graduate with the ability to make sound, responsible financial decisions.
Our students and staff join us from all over the world, so you join an international business community.
Essex Business School is an Investment Management Certificate (IMC) Advantage Partner and this course is aligned to the IMC syllabus, the industry’s benchmark entry-level qualification.
The University of Essex is also a member of the CFA Institute University Affiliation Program, enabling us to award up to six exceptional students each year with a scholarship that goes towards the fees for the CFA Program Level One exam, so you can start your journey to becoming a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA). Achieving this accolade is one way to enhance your CV if you're interested in pursuing a career in investment management.
This course can also be taken with an optional study abroad or placement year.
Completion of this course gives you accreditation exemptions from up to nine professional examination papers with The Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA).
This means that you are able to gain a professional qualification more quickly by taking fewer exams when you graduate, giving your career a head start.
The study abroad version of this course enables you to study overseas during your penultimate year. In all other areas, this version of the course remains identical to the standard variant.
You can study abroad with one of our exchange partners in the United States, Europe, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Latin America, the Middle East, Hong Kong and Japan. In doing so, you experience other cultures and languages, meet new people, and gain intercultural skills that are sought-after by employers.
Alternatively, you may choose to take on a placement year to gain relevant work experience within an external business.
The Essex Business School Placements Manager can offer bespoke support throughout the process of researching, applying and interviewing for placements. However, it is your responsibility to apply, prepare for and secure your own role. In recent years, our students have gained placements with organisations such as BMW, Samsung and Cummins.
You’re taught by a group of highly qualified and enthusiastic academics and practitioners with diverse research interests. Their work has been discussed in the Bank of England and the Federal Reserve.
Our staff specialise in areas including:
Professor of Banking and Finance, Claudia Girardone, leads the way in finance research as Director of the Essex Finance Centre (EFiC), our long-established and world-renowned teaching excellence and research centre in finance and banking.
Professor Girardone is also Director of Research for Essex Business School and leads on embedding EFiC group research in the curriculum. You will benefit from her application of banking sector performance indicators and corporate governance in our finance programmes.
Our staff embed the latest research into your course, so you learn about real-world issues affecting business right now.
Our BSc Banking and Finance is based at our Colchester Campus.
In our landmark Essex Business School building - the first zero carbon business school in the UK - you’ll see our sustainable approach to business first-hand. Set around a lush winter garden, are a wealth of inspiring teaching and study zones.
Our new building provides you with superb facilities:
Discover our trading floor:
Our business school is located on the University’s Knowledge Gateway, where you may be able to take advantage of networking and work experience opportunities with businesses located on site.
The dual disciplines of banking and finance mean that you will be well suited to sector specific roles in trading, analyst or wealth management as well as more generalist financial roles such as management consultancy or financial management.
The banking and financial services sector is highly competitive but it is also a huge employer of graduates and the skills you will gain in trading, data and portfolio analysis will make you an attractive prospect.
Many of our graduates go on to graduate finance training schemes or financial analyst roles straight after graduation as Essex Business School prepares you for the world of work from day one.
The BSc Banking and Finance curriculum taught here embeds transferable employability skills in analysis, critical thinking, presentation and communication across all modules.
The Study Skills module in year one will develop your academic skills, while the Successful Futures module in year two will foster your professionalism and introduce you to the graduate recruitment process, including practical advice to excel at interviews and assessment centres.
Recent graduate destinations include:
The School will support you with a range of skills and careers opportunities, including: skills development workshops; employer talks; skills events and careers conferences.
BSc Banking and Finance students can also take advantage of the services offered by the Student Development Team, including: careers advice; work experience; internships; placements; and voluntary opportunities.
My favourite aspect of my course is that it taught me how banks operate in the financial system and it provided me with the ability to study risks and different ways to manage them. The course has a practical side to it that enables me to understand how the different financial institutions work and operate and how their interrelation is crucial to the stability of the financial system.
Soukayna Hachimi, BSc Banking and Finance with Placement Year, 2019
Find out more about Soukayna's story.
UK and EU applicants:
All applications for degree courses with a foundation year (Year Zero) will be considered individually, whether you
Our standard offer is 72 UCAS tariff points from at least two full A-levels, or equivalent.
Examples of the above tariff may include:
For this course all applicants must also hold GCSE Maths at grade C/4 or above (or equivalent). We may be able to consider a pass in Level 2 Functional Skills Maths where you cannot meet the requirements for Maths at GCSE level. However, you are advised to try to retake GCSE Mathematics if possible as this will better prepare you for university study and future employment.
If you are unsure whether you meet the entry criteria, please get in touch for advice.
Mature applicants and non-traditional academic backgrounds:
We welcome applications from mature students (over 21) and students with non-traditional academic backgrounds (might not have gone on from school to take level 3 qualifications). We will consider your educational and employment history, along with your personal statement and reference, to gain a rounded view of your suitability for the course.
You will still need to meet our GCSE requirements.
Essex Pathways Department is unable to accept applications from international students. Foundation pathways for international students are available at the University of Essex International College and are delivered and awarded by Kaplan, in partnership with the University of Essex. Successful completion will enable you to progress to the relevant degree course at the University of Essex.
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.
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English language requirements for applicants whose first language is not English: IELTS 5.5 overall. Specified component grades are also required for applicants who require a Student visa to study in the UK.
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
If you are an international student requiring a Student visa to study in the UK please see our immigration webpages for the latest Home Office guidance on English language qualifications.
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.
Our Year 0 courses are only open to UK and EU applicants. If you’re an international student, but do not meet the English language or academic requirements for direct admission to your chosen degree, you could prepare and gain entry through a pathway course. Find out more about opportunities available to you at the University of Essex International College.
The course structure is designed to cover everything a future leader in the banking and financial industries may need to know.
During your year zero, you study four academic subjects relevant to your chosen course as well as a compulsory English language and academic skills module. In year one you’ll cover a more broad range of business topics, as well as being introduced to accounting and finance. After that your compulsory modules will cover topics such as corporate finance, portfolio analysis, international banking, financial markets and policy. You’ll also be able to pick from a variety of optional modules to further your understanding of your favourite banking and finance topics or to explore other areas of the business world.
The structure shown below is just one example from the current academic year of how the degree could look, including some popular optional modules.
Our research-led teaching is continually evolving to address the latest challenges and breakthroughs in the field, therefore all modules listed are subject to change.
To view the full programme structure and lists of available optional modules currently on offer please click on the link below.
Following the impact of the pandemic, we made changes to our teaching and assessment to ensure our current students could continue with their studies uninterrupted and safely. These changes included courses being taught through blended delivery, normally including some face-to-face teaching, online provision, or a combination of both across the year.
The teaching and assessment methods listed show what is currently planned for 2021 entry; changes may be necessary if, by the beginning of this course, we need to adapt the way we’re delivering them due to the external environment, and to allow you to continue to receive the best education possible safely and seamlessly.
On a placement year you gain relevant work experience within an external business or organisation, giving you a competitive edge in the graduate job market and providing you with key contacts within the industry. The rest of your course remains identical to the standard degree.
On your year abroad, you have the opportunity to experience other cultures and languages, to broaden your degree socially and academically, and to demonstrate to employers that you are mature, adaptable, and organised. The rest of your course remains identical to the standard degree.
£16,850EU students commencing their course in the 2021-22 academic year will be liable for the International fee.
Our events are a great way to find out more about studying at Essex. We run a number of Open Days throughout the year which enable you to discover what our campus has to offer. You have the chance to:
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.
For information on transferring from another university, applying when you are not at school or college, and applying for readmission, please see How to apply and entry requirements
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.
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.
The Campus is set within 200 acres of beautiful parkland, located two miles from the historic town centre of Colchester – England's oldest recorded town. Our Colchester Campus is also easily reached from London and Stansted Airport in under one hour.
If you live too far away to come to Essex (or have a busy lifestyle), no problem. Our 360 degree virtual tours allows you to explore our University from the comfort of your home. Check out our Colchester virtual tour and Southend virtual tour to see 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.
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.
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 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.
Want to quiz us about your course? Got a question that just needs answering? Get in touch and we’ll do our best to email you back shortly.