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Financial Mathematics MSc/PGDip

Learn about the course below
September 2023
1 year full-time
2 years part-time
£10,500 (UK) *
£15,700 (EU/INT) *
Course leader
Nicholas Sharples
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Financial mathematics is a specialism vital to the day-to-day functioning of the world's economic institutions. Technical and theoretical aspects of mathematics are applied practically in this fascinating discipline, which involves predicting the behaviour of markets, suggesting strategies for investment and managing risk.

Why study MSc Financial Mathematics at Middlesex University?

We believe strongly that the work you do must be relevant to the world of work. Through our partnership with the Chartered Institute for Securities and Investment (CISI), a finanical sector professional body, we ensure you will develop a professional overview of the financial sector as well as advanced quantitative skills. Successfully completing all assessment on our course grants an MSc/PGDip as well as two internationally recognised professional qualifications and entitles you to become an Affiliate of the CISI to begin your career in finance.

You’ll develop an advanced understanding of the concepts and techniques of financial mathematics and statistics, and the quantitative and analytic skills highly sought after by employers in the financial sector.

Our degree has the significant advantage of no-experience necessary training in computer programming and data analysis, allowing you to develop first-class computing skills alongside your mathematical expertise.

You'll need a good degree in a subject with mathematical content (such as maths, physics or engineering) but no prior knowledge of finance.

Course highlights

  • Our degree is designed for graduates who want to begin careers in the financial sector: previous students have gone on to Actuarial/Tax/Quantitative/Research Analyst positions in a variety of large companies and government bodies
  • Our thorough and rigorous syllabus requires no prior experience of finance, and will refresh your mathematical skills in the first few weeks
  • The degree is the only MSc Financial Mathematics course in partnership with the CISI. Our course includes two professional qualifications: Bloomberg Market Concepts and CISI Introduction to Investment to give you a broad overview of the financial sector from a professional perspective
  • Core modules and most options are 100% coursework based, helping you build a portfolio of solutions to complex problems in finance using real market data relevant to employers
  • Through our partnership with the CISI you will gain access to academic and professional talks, training and network events on campus and in the financial heart of London, with the option of writing about these talks for credit
  • You’ll learn a variety of software packages and programming languages and develop the technical skills necessary for the rapid analysis of large volumes of financial data
  • Successfully completing all assessment entitles you to become an Affiliate of the CISI.

Find out more

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What will you study on the MSc Financial Mathematics?

You’ll develop an advanced understanding of the concepts and techniques of financial mathematics and statistics, and of how financial data is analysed. You’ll also study the workings of a range of financial instruments: bonds, equities, futures and options, and their role and importance in financial institutions.

You’ll appreciate that quantifying the value, and the risk, in these assets can be highly technical: you’ll study theories and methods for pricing a wide variety of assets, and building and optimising investment portfolios. You’ll understand and apply a range of methods for measuring and managing risk to make better financial decisions.

We'll help you develop the ability to critically interpret and evaluate real-life financial data using a variety of software packages, including the professional standard Bloomberg Terminal, and advanced analysis using programming languages.

Through our partnership with CISI you will have opportunities for academic and professional talks, training and networking events and continuing professional development in the financial heart of London.

There are 6 core modules, plus 2 optional modules from a choice of 5. At the end of your course you will submit a dissertation, which will allow you to gain in-depth knowledge of an area that interests you.


  • Modules

    • Risk Measurement (15 credits) - Compulsory

      You will be introduced to the fundamental concepts in risk measurement and the technical analysis of financial data, and will learn a variety of modern theoretic approaches to  risk. You will gain practical experience applying these techniques to real market data.

    • Portfolio Analysis (15 credits) - Compulsory

      In this module you will develop the knowledge and skills required for financial product development. We will learn to analyse real market data to make informed investor decisions and optimise investment portfolios.

    • Financial Data and Professional Practice (15 credits) - Compulsory

      In this module to gain a broad overview of the financial sector you will be taught the syllabus for the professional qualification CISI Introduction to Investment, and will be supported to pass this professional exam. You will also be study for the industry standard Bloomberg Market Concepts professional qualification, before undertaking advanced analyses of financial data using software packages.

    • Fixed Income and Derivatives (15 credits) - Compulsory

      In this module you will develop a thorough understanding of bonds – a critically important class of financial instrument used by many different types of investor. You will then develop a working understanding of derivatives, to be able to make informed investment decisions about these instruments. You will learn the theory underpinning these pricing models in the module “Stochastic calculus and pricing derivatives”.

    • Stochastic Calculus and Pricing Derivatives (15 credits) - Compulsory

      In this module you will learn modern methods and theory for pricing derivatives, such as forward contracts and options.  Starting with fundamental concepts, such as a risk-neutral probability and discrete-time processes, we will then explore how stock movements are modelled by continuous-time stochastic processes and the corresponding stochastic differential equations (SDEs).

    • Probability Theory and Mathematical Analysis (15 credits) - Compulsory

      In this module you will refresh your mathematical skills for studying probability and statistics at level 7. We will then build a thorough grounding in probability theory developing both intuition and rigorous analytic tools to formulate and solve a variety of practical problems in probability.

    • Project (60 credits) - Compulsory

      Financial mathematics is a continually evolving field. Many careers in the financial sector require continued independent study, whether as continuing professional development or research. This module allows students to develop their research skills and demonstrate their capacity for self-motivated study. In this module you will consolidate and extend your learning in a substantial piece of independent work

    • Current Topics in Financial Mathematics (15 credits) - Optional

      In this module you will be equipped to access the cutting edge of financial mathematics innovation through engaging with academic guest lectures, talks by industry specialists, guided reading of journal articles and/or implementing and contributing to open source software packages.

    • Stochastic Processes (15 credits) - Optional

      In this module you will build a solid grounding in modern topics and techniques in stochastic processes, developing both intuition and rigorous analytic tools to formulate and solve a variety of practical problems.

    • Game and Decision Theories (15 credits) - Optional

      In this module you will learn the major concepts of decisions and game theories and how to use these to develop the best strategies to optimise outcomes.

    • Time Series and Forecasting (15 credits) - Optional

      Data obtained from observations collected sequentially over time are extremely common. The purpose of time series analysis is to understand or model the stochastic mechanism that gives rise to an observed series and to predict or forecast the future values of a series based on the history of that series, and, possibly, other related series or factors.

    • International Risk Management (15 credits) - Optional

      This module aims to equip your with knowledge essential to critically engage with modern financial risk management theory and practice undertaken by both financial and non-financial institutions. It offers advanced study of key issues, including categories of managed financial risk, the arbitrage-free theory of spot-forward price relations, valuing optionality in a financial risk environment, a comparison of over-the-counter and exchange-traded risk management arrangements, the limitations of risk management techniques and the evolving regulatory environment. You will be able to develop risk modelling skills, analytical and quantitative skills through engagement with current market data on Bloomberg Financial Database and Capital IQ.

More information about this course

See the course specification for more information:

If we have insufficient numbers of students interested in an optional module, or there are staffing changes which affect the teaching, it may not be offered. If an optional module will not run, we will advise you after the module selection period when numbers are confirmed, or at the earliest time that the programme team make the decision not to run the module, and help you choose an alternative module.

We are regularly reviewing and updating our programmes to ensure you have the best learning experience. We are taking what we've learnt during the pandemic and enhancing our teaching methods with new and innovative ways of learning. Please regularly check this section of the course page for updates.

How will the MSc Financial Mathematics be taught?

Lectures will introduce you to concepts and techniques, which you’ll explore further through workshops, seminars, and discussions in class. The use of real market data will help you to relate theory to practice, and we’ll encourage you to think critically; some of your work will be done in groups. You’ll supplement all this with your own independent reading and study, including the use of online resources.


Our programme contains a professional qualification in partnership with the Chartered Institute for Securities and Investment, which is a multiple-choice exam that you will take alongside financial professionals. All other assessments are done through coursework assignments, helping you build a portfolio of solutions to complex problems in finance using real market data.

Teaching and learning from 2023

We have developed new approaches to teaching and learning for the 2022/23 academic year, and have resumed the majority of our teaching on campus.

We are currently reviewing our approach to teaching and learning for 2022 entry and beyond. We've learned a lot about how to give you a quality education - we aim to combine the best of our pre-pandemic teaching and learning with access to online learning and digital resources which put you more in charge of when and how you study. We will keep you updated on this throughout the application process.

Your timetable will be built around on campus sessions using our professional facilities, with online sessions for some activities where we know being virtual will add value. We’ll use technology to enhance all of your learning and give you access to online resources to use in your own time.

This information is likely to change slightly for 2022 entry as our plans evolve. You'll receive full information on your teaching before you start your course.

The core modules of this programme are taught entirely on campus, however some optional modules may be taught using blended delivery.

Outside of these hours, you’ll be expected to do independent study where you read, listen and reflect on other learning activities. This can include preparation for future classes. In a year, you’ll typically be expected to commit 1200 hours to your course across all styles of learning. If you are taking a placement, you might have some additional hours.

Definitions of terms

  • Live in-person on campus learning – This will focus on active and experiential sessions that are both:
    • Led by your tutors including seminars, lab sessions and demonstrations We’ll schedule all of this for you
    • Student-led by you and other students, like small group work and presentations.
  • Live online learning – This will include lectures, tutorials and supervision sessions led by your tutor and timetabled by us. It also includes student-led group work that takes place online
  • Tutor set learning activities – This covers activities which will be set for you by your tutor, but which you will undertake in your own time. Examples of this include watching online materials, participating in an online discussion forum, completing a virtual laboratory or reading specific texts. You may be doing this by yourself of with your course mates depending on your course and assignments. Outside of these hours, you’ll also be expected to do further independent study where you’ll be expected to learn, prepare, revise and reflect in your own time.


You have a strong support network available to you to make sure you develop all the necessary academic skills you need to do well on your course.

Our support services will be delivered online and on campus and you have access to a range of different resources so you can get the help you need, whether you’re studying at home or have the opportunity to come to campus.

You have access to one to one and group sessions for personal learning and academic support from our library and IT teams, and our network of learning experts. Our teams will also be here to offer financial advice, and personal wellbeing, mental health and disability support.

  1. Standard entry requirements
  2. International (inc. EU)
  3. How to apply
  1. UK
  2. EU/International
  3. Additional costs
  4. Scholarships and bursaries

How can the MSc Financial Mathematics support your career?

A solid command of the principles and techniques of financial mathematics is essential for anyone working in trading, pricing, hedging, asset management, risk control and a variety of other areas of finance. There is currently a major drive to improve the mathematical abilities of staff working in financial institutions, and banks and companies which deal with risk are looking to hire employees with a solid mathematical background. This course will equip you for a wide range of careers in financial product development, risk analysis and management, pricing, investment decision making and portfolio development, with banks and financial companies or the government.

As well as in-depth knowledge of your subject, our course will provide you with many transferable skills. It will improve your research, data collection and interpretation, communication, presentation and teamwork skills, as well as your confidence and your ability to work under your own initiative and manage your own time.

Previous graduates have gone on to gain employment is a range of roles in the financial sector such as

  • Actuarial Analysts
  • Tax Analysts
  • Quantitative Analysts
  • Research Analysts
  • Data Scientists
  • Strategic Information Technicians

in a variety of large companies and government bodies.

  • Marlen Mercedes

    MSc Financial Mathematics, class of 2017

    I find my current role as Research Analyst really interesting and challenging. I have to seek information over 15 countries and their different ways of doing business to provide advice on the investment pipeline projects of the Fund.

    The MSc in Financial Mathematics developed my creativity and analytical thinking to evaluate situations. It provided me with the tools to enter in an Asset Management Firm as a Research Analyst. Bloomberg certification has been helpful to my current role.

    The CISI offer locals and international students a well-known certification about Finance which provide multiple areas of specialization in the future.

    It opens new opportunities for employment and students have access to a network of professionals that can mentor them to their next position after finishing their education.

We’ll carefully manage any future changes to courses, or the support and other services available to you, if these are necessary because of things like changes to government health and safety advice, or any changes to the law.

Any decisions will be taken in line with both external advice and the University’s Regulations which include information on this.

Our priority will always be to maintain academic standards and quality so that your learning outcomes are not affected by any adjustments that we may have to make.

At all times we’ll aim to keep you well informed of how we may need to respond to changing circumstances, and about support that we’ll provide to you.

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