About the MSc programme
The MSc Finance (full-time) programme is one of the world’s leading generalist finance master's degrees. Predominantly aimed at pre-experience students, the programme has been designed to meet the needs of high-level graduates from fields not specifically related to finance, whose career objectives lie broadly within the financial services sector. The programme benefits from teaching by the Department’s leading faculty in a range of innovative and cutting edge courses, which are available to MSc Finance and MSc Finance and Private Equity students only.
The programme is designed for students whose academic background is not necessarily in finance; however it is aimed at people with good undergraduate degrees and good quantitative skills. Admission to the programme is very competitive. In previous years, majority of students accepted into the programme have obtained first class honours degrees or the equivalent. The mathematics used in the programme includes basic calculus and statistics.
Applicants are required to have studied a minimum of A-level Mathematics (or its equivalent). Applicants without a UK undergraduate degree are required to submit a GMAT or GRE test (GMAT is strongly preferred). The GMAT/GRE is also recommended for all students with UK undergraduate degrees, especially those who have not achieved, or are not expected to achieve a first class honours degree, or those whose quantitative skills are not demonstrated by their undergraduate studies. Prior work experience is not necessarily a pre-requisite for entry into the programme.
The MSc Finance (full-time) programme follows the same syllabus as that of the MSc Finance (part-time) evening programme, which is focused towards professionals currently working in London's financial services sector. Both modes of the MSc Finance programme allow students access to a number of specifically designed applied courses, taught in part using case studies, and the opportunity to gain deeper practical insight and links to the City. Students on the full-time programme have the opportunity to meet and network with the MSc Finance (part-time) students at a number of occasions throughout the year.
The foundation of the programme is built in the first term with the study of two core courses – Asset Markets and Corporate Finance. Asset Markets takes the student from fundamental concepts to up to date applications in fixed-income, equity, and derivatives markets. Corporate Finance begins with the firm's investment decision and the cost of capital. This in turn is linked to the firm's financial structure and market environment where the firm operates. It studies in detail major financial decisions including dividend choice, going public, mergers and acquisitions, and restructuring in financial distress. In the second term, students deepen their knowledge by taking four optional half unit courses, on topics such as financial systems, risk management, portfolio management methods, advanced derivatives and structured financial products, fixed income, advanced corporate finance, and applied financial valuation. Students will also be required to write an extended essay in the place of an exam in one of the four optional courses.
Admitted students are required to attend a pre-sessional course which includes quantitative methods for finance, interpreting financial statements and an in-depth focus on careers skills and professional development, on a one-to-one, group and peer lead basis. Throughout the programme, students are given access to a range of practitioners; in class, via the programme’s vibrant alumni network and more widely through the LSE Careers Service and events programme.
(* half unit)
Corporate Finance provides a comprehensive overview of firms' financial decision-making.
Asset Markets familiarises students with the workings of financial markets, and equips them with the fundamental tools of asset valuation.
Students take four half-unit electives:
You can find the most up-to-date list of optional courses for MSc Finance (full-time) in the Programme Regulations section of the current School Calendar.
You must note however that while care has been taken to ensure that this information is up to date and correct, some circumstances may cause the School to subsequently change, suspend or withdraw a course or programme of study, or change the fees that apply to it. The School will neither be liable for information that after publication becomes inaccurate or irrelevant, nor for changing, suspending or withdrawing a course or programme of study due to circumstances outside of its control. You must also note that places are limited on some courses and/or subject to specific entry requirements. The School cannot therefore guarantee places on its courses. You should visit the School's Calendar, or contact the relevant academic department, for information on the availability and/or content of courses and programmes of study. Certain substantive changes will be listed on the Updated graduate course and programme information page.
Many of our graduates look to join Analyst programmes at major investment banks. Other students have joined consultancies, boutique firms, hedge funds, asset management firms, start-ups or have gone on to further study. This programme is not intended as suitable preparation for the PhD Finance at LSE (if you are interested in PhD study, please see MSc Finance and Economics).