MSc Finance

Mode of Study



1 year full-time

Start date

September 2023




Our MSc Finance degree explores financial theory and develops your financial analysis skills as you prepare for a financial career in cities like London. You’ll use industry tools and software to develop the skills and knowledge you need to succeed as a city professional. 

This course has a mathematical focus, so you’ll ideally have a background in accounting, economics or finance.

As a Chartered Institute for Securities and Investment (CISI) student member, you’ll have networking opportunities and be able to build relationships with potential future employers during your studies. 

Taught by industry experienced lecturers including ex-traders, you’ll cover topical subjects including behavioural finance, derivatives and financial management. You’ll learn to value stocks and bonds, explore a range of economic models, and use accurate financial data as you study so you'll graduate with a solid understanding of modern financial markets and instruments. 

Use our Bloomberg Suite to access and analyse financial data for your assessments, and work towards your Bloomberg certificate with training and an online exam paid for by the University. 

This course is ideal if you want to start your career as a stockbroker or trader in the city. 


This course accepts UK, EU, and International students.

Course highlights 

  • Use our Bloomberg Suite to analyse real world financial data 
  • Explore topics including financial markets and behavioural finance
  • Develop your software skills, including Excel and stats packages
  • Work towards your Bloomberg Market Concepts (BMC) certification, an essential qualification for City professionals
  • Be a CISI student member, accessing networking opportunities and industry talks as you study
  • Learn from industry experienced lecturers including ex-traders
  • Study a CISI accredited course and prepare for your CISI examinations

Recognised by:

The University of Portsmouth is recognised as a Centre of Excellence for finance teaching by the Chartered Institute for Securities and Investment (CISI).

On successful completion of your Bloomberg Market Concepts training, you'll be awarded the Bloomberg Certificate, an essential qualification for all city professionals.

What you'll study on this MSc Finance degree course


Additional content

The learning outcomes of this module are:

  • Evaluate the application of behavioural finance to investment and financial decisions in an international and global context
  • Develop a critical understanding of empirical research in behavioural finance
  • Appraise psychological, institutional and agency theory concepts underlying behavioural finance

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Additional content

The learning outcomes of this module are:

  • Evaluate theoretical and empirical approaches to corporate financial management and decision making
  • Judge the strengths, and weaknesses of financial models used in the empirical analysis of corporate financial decision making
  • Assess the role of professional ethics, integrity and sustainability in corporate financial management

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Additional content

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Additional content

The learning outcomes of this module are:

  • Assess the properties and limitations of different econometric methods
  • Test economic models using a range of econometric techniques
  • Evaluate the results of econometric analysis

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Additional content

The learning outcomes of this module are:

  • Assess the properties and limitations of econometric methods as applied to the analysis of financial data
  • Formulate and test econometric models to examine different forms of financial data
  • Evaluate the results of econometric analysis

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Additional content

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Additional content
The learning outcomes of this module are:
  • Design an independent research project
  • Appraise extant research
  • Formulate conclusions and recommendations from research outcomes in a clearly written and structured dissertation
  • To be competent in using the Bloomberg platform

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Changes to course content

We use the best and most current research and professional practice alongside feedback from our students to make sure course content is relevant to your future career or further studies.

Therefore, some course content may change over time to reflect changes in the discipline or industry. If a module doesn't run, we'll let you know as soon as possible and help you choose an alternative module.

Careers and opportunities

Careers this Master’s prepares you for

Prepare for your city career with this MSc Finance degree.

You will graduate with expertise in technical subjects including derivatives and in influential areas like behavioural finance. This specialist knowledge builds on your undergraduate degree and boosts your employability.

Our MSc Finance is accredited with the Chartered Institute for Securities and Investment (CISI). This accreditation is internationally recognised, with CISI offices in 64 countries.

We’ll prepare you for your CISI examinations by covering the CISI Corporate Finance Technical Foundations paper syllabus during your Corporate Finance: Technical Foundations (CFTF) module. You’ll complete University assessments on the same subjects you’ll need for the CISI paper, and have the chance to complete the CISI paper after the module. This CISI paper is optional and is not a part of the MSc Finance course. 

You’ll receive a CISI student membership as part of your degree, which means you’ll have opportunities to attend CISI presentations, talks by industry experts, and networking events as you study. We’ll pay for this membership as part of your degree. 

Graduates of this course have gone onto roles in:

  • Banking
  • Investment banking
  • Securities broking
  • Trading

Career outcomes shown are sourced from the latest available graduate outcome surveys. The data shows career outcomes at 15 months after graduation.

Career planning

During your course you'll have expert career support from our Careers and Employability Centre, your tutors and our Business and Law Career-Ready Programme. This support will continue for 5 years after you graduate.

Female student standing at careers and employability help desk

Career support

You'll benefit from:

  • Networking events
  • Regular emails from the Career Ready Programme sharing job opportunities, application tips and events
  • Applied projects with companies such as IBM, Boeing and Hampshire County Council
  • Workshops to enhance your employability skills
  • Recruitment events including the Student and Graduate Opportunities Fair
  • 1-to-1 appointments 
  • CV and cover letter advice
  • Interview preparation and practice
  • Support starting your own business

Learn more about your career support

How you'll spend your time

We recognise that you'll probably be juggling more demands when you do your Master's degree, as you may be working or you may have family responsibilities.

We'll give you as much indication here as we can of how much time you'll need to be on campus and how many hours you can expect to spend in self-directed study, but please note that these indications are always subject to change. You should receive your full timetable several weeks before you start with us.

Course structure

This MSc Finance Master's degree will take 1 year full-time. Your teaching activities will take place on campus. 

You can expect:

  • A weekly one hour lecture per module 
  • A weekly one hour seminar per module 

You will study 4 modules in teaching block one, another 4 modules in teaching block two, and work on your dissertation throughout the year.  

You may have access to pre-recorded videos on Moodle for modules which ran during the lockdown period. You can review this videos as part of your revision.

Master's study is deeper and more specialised than an undergraduate degree. This means you'll focus on something that really matters to you and your career as you work closely with academics committed to the subject.

You'll spend more time in independent study and research than you did for your undergraduate degree, but the majority of your teaching time will be in-person and face-to-face.


You'll be assessed through:

  • coursework 
  • exams

Full details of assessment can be found in the modules in the 'What you'll study' section.

Teaching staff

These are some of the expert staff who'll teach you on this course:

Alexis Stenfors Portrait

Media ready expert

Dr Alexis Stenfors

Reader in Economics and Finance

Economics and Finance

Faculty of Business and Law

PhD Supervisor

Read more
Paraskevas Kipouros Portrait

Dr Paraskevas Kipouros

Senior Teaching Fellow

Economics and Finance

Faculty of Business and Law

Read more

Term dates

September start

The Master's academic year runs from September to the following September. There are breaks at Christmas and Easter. Over the summer you'll be writing your project/dissertation.

See key dates

Graduation Class of 2021

Joining us as an international student

You'll feel at home in our international community and our diverse city. You'll be joining over 5,000 international students from more than 150 countries who are studying with us.

Learn more about international student life and how we can help you with visas, applications, arrival and settling in. 

Information for international students


Use our specialist facilities, including: 


For web use only

Bloomberg Suite

Access data from the world's global financial markets, gain experience using industry standard software and have the option to earn your Bloomberg certificate with training and an online exam, paid for by the University. 
Discover our Bloomberg Suite

Supporting your learning

Master's study is more focused on independent learning than undergraduate study, but you'll get lots of support via video, phone and face-to-face from teaching and support staff to enhance your learning experience and help you succeed. You can build your personalised network of support from the following people and services:

Types of support

Your personal tutor helps you make the transition to postgraduate study and gives you academic and personal support throughout your Master's.

As well as regular scheduled meetings with your personal tutor, they're also available at set times during the week if you want to chat with them about anything that can't wait until your next meeting.

In addition to the support you get from your personal tutor, you'll also have access to our student engagement officers. They can give you confidential, impartial advice on anything to do with your studies and personal wellbeing, and refer you to specialist support services if you need extra help or support.

The Maths Cafe offers free advice and help with maths skills in a friendly, informal environment. You can come to our daily drop-in sessions, develop your maths skills at a workshop, or use our online resources.

You'll have help from a team of study support tutors. Based within the Faculty of Business and Law, these tutors are familiar with the specific requirements your assignments and work closely with faculty academics. This means they can give you focused support with the specific study skills you need to be successful on your course. They're available face-to-face, by phone, email, and by video call.

They can help with:

  • academic writing (for example, essays, reports, dissertations, projects and literature reviews)
  • reflective writing skills
  • critical thinking skills
  • delivering presentations (including observing and filming presentations)
  • understanding and using assignment feedback
  • managing your time and workload
  • revision and exam techniques

If you're a mature student, specialist support to help you return to learning is available.

As well as support from faculty staff and your personal tutor, you can use the University's Academic Skills Unit (ASK).

ASK provides one-to-one support in areas such as:

  • academic writing
  • note taking
  • time management
  • critical thinking
  • presentation skills
  • referencing
  • working in groups
  • revision, memory and exam techniques

Library staff are available in person or by email, phone, or online chat to help you make the most of the University’s library resources. You can also request one-to-one appointments and get support from a librarian who specialises in your subject area.

The library is open 24 hours a day, every day, in term time.

Our online Learning Well mini-course will help you plan for managing the challenges of learning and student life, so you can fulfil your potential and have a great student experience.

You can get personal, emotional and mental health support from our Student Wellbeing Service, in person and online. This includes 1–2–1 support as well as courses and workshops that help you better manage stress, anxiety or depression.

If you require extra support because of a disability or additional learning need our specialist team can help you.

They'll help you to

  • discuss and agree on reasonable adjustments
  • liaise with other University services and facilities, such as the library
  • access specialist study skills and strategies tutors, and assistive technology tutors, on a 1-to-1 basis or in groups
  • liaise with external services

If English isn't your first language, you can do one of our English language courses to improve your written and spoken English language skills before starting your degree. Once you're here, you can take part in our free In-Sessional English (ISE) programme to improve your English further.

Course costs and funding

Tuition fees (September 2023)

  • Full time: £11,400 per year

(including Transition Scholarship)

  • Full-time: £11,400 per year
    • Full time: £19,200

    University of Portsmouth graduates may receive a 20% alumni tuition fee discount

    Fees are subject to annual increase. Read our tuition fees terms and conditions.

    You'll be able to pay your fees in instalments. Find out how to pay your tuition fees.

    Funding your studies

    Explore how to fund your studies, including available scholarships and bursaries.

    If you're a UK student, you may be eligible for a Government Postgraduate Master's Loan, which you can use to help with course fees and living costs.

    If you're a UK student who achieved a first in your undergraduate degree you may be eligible for a £3,000 University of Portsmouth scholarship.

    Loans, scholarships and bursaries

    Browse funding such as the Government Postgraduate Loan, our scholarships for new and returning students, and subject specific loans.

    Explore funding

    Funding for international students

    Learn more about sponsorships, scholarships and loans for students applying from outside of the UK.

    international business students
    Discover your options

    Fees and funding for postgraduate taught courses

    Discover how you can fund your postgraduate studies at Portsmouth – including loans, scholarships and bursaries – and read our guidance on topics like how to budget, and how to get support if you're disabled or have dependents.

    Explore funding

    Additional costs

    These course-related costs aren't included in the tuition fees, so you'll need to budget for them when you plan your spending. Additional costs could include:

    • Accommodation: Accommodation options and costs can be found on our accommodation pages.
    • Recommended reading: You can borrow key texts from the library and if you choose to purchase these texts they may cost up to £60 each.
    • General costs: Such as photocopying, memory sticks, printing charges, binding and specialist printing. We suggest budgeting £75 per year.
    • Final project transport or accommodation: where necessary, which related to your research activities. The amount will depend on the project you choose.

    Read more about tuition fees and living costs, including what your tuition fees cover.

    Entry requirements


    This course accepts UK, EU, and International students.

    September 2023 start

    • A second-class honours degree in a relevant or related subject, which includes some element of statistics or quantitative methods, or equivalent professional experience and/or qualifications.


    Please get in touch if you're not sure if your undergraduate subject is relevant to this degree.

    Equivalent professional experience and/or qualifications will also be considered, such as previous study, employment, voluntary work and training courses, including courses and qualifications you didn't complete. Learn more about our Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL).

    If you're applying as an international student with a non-UK degree, you’ll need to show you meet the UK entry requirements listed above.

    To find out if your non-UK degree or other qualification is accepted, please visit our page for your country and view the UK equivalent of your qualification. 

    • English language proficiency at a minimum of IELTS band 6.5 (or equivalent) with no component score below 6.0.

    You do not need an IELTS or equivalent certification if:

    • you have a UK degree
    • you have a degree from a majority English speaking country (not taught by Distance Learning)
    • you are a national of a majority English speaking country

    Degrees taught solely in English from non-majority English speaking countries will be considered on a case by case basis. Find out more about our English language requirements.

    If you do not meet the English language requirements yet, you can achieve the level you need by successfully completing a pre-sessional English programme before you start your course.

    How to apply

    Unlike undergraduate applications, which go through UCAS, applications for this Master's course are made directly to us.

    There's no deadline for applications to this course. We accept applications right up until the start date in September, as long as there are places available. If you wait until September to apply, you may find that the course is full.

    If you're applying as an international student, remember that you'll need to leave plenty of time to get your visa organised.

    You can find more advice about applying in our Master's application checklist. International students and current students and recent graduates of the University of Portsmouth also have some different application options, which are detailed below.

    Extra information for international students

    If you're an international student, you can apply directly to us using the same application form as UK students.

    You could also get an agent to help with your application. Check your country page for details of agents in your region. To find out what to include in your application, head to the how to apply page of our international students section.

    If you don’t meet the English language requirements for this course yet, you can achieve the level you need by successfully completing a pre-sessional English programme before you start your course.

    Ready to apply?

    Standard applications

    Start this course in September 2023

    Apply now (Full-time – 1 year)

    I'm a current Portsmouth student, or a recent Portsmouth graduate

    If you're currently in your final year of study at Portsmouth, or you graduated since July 2021, you're eligible to make a fast track application. You'll have:

    • a shorter application form to complete
    • access to the 20% Alumni fee discount
    • a guaranteed conditional offer, for most Master's courses 

    Learn more about fast track

    After you apply

    Once we receive your application, we may ask you for further information. We will then either make you an offer or suggest alternatives if your application is unsuccessful.

    You'll usually get a decision within 10 working days, so you shouldn't have to wait too long. Some courses have an interview stage – we'll let you know if you need to prepare for one.

    Learn more about how we assess your application.

    Admissions terms and conditions

    When you accept an offer to study at the University of Portsmouth, you also agree to abide by our Student Contract (which includes the University's relevant policies, rules and regulations). You should read and consider these before you apply.