Introduction

Financial Economics is designed to provide students with an extensive knowledge and understanding of the world of economics and finance. The programme explores core theories in economics and how to apply them to finance and exposes students to advanced quantitative techniques used in industry.

This programme is studied on campus.

The first two years of the MA in Financial Economics are the same as those of the joint degree. Differentiation occurs in years 3 and 4. Our MA in Financial economics offers focused and specialised training that often cannot be achieved in the joint degree. In particular the programme prescription has been designed in such a way that the positive benefits that economics courses have on finance courses (and vice versa) are maximised. Students will be able to study degree-specific courses, such as the Dissertation in Financial Economics.

Many of the courses can only be taken by a student on the single honours programme and not on the joint degree, offering a level of differentiation.

There will be an opportunity to specialise in the fourth year of study by choosing suggested pathways, which will include “Behavioural and Experimental Finance”, “Financial Investment” and “Macroeconomics, Policy and Finance”.

Our behavioural route, in particular, provides expertise in an area that has increasingly gained prominence in terms of both academic importance (the 2017 Nobel-Prize in Economics was awarded to Prof Richard Thaler – a father of modern Behavioural Economics and Finance) and has repercussions to everyday-life decisions (e.g. the Behavioural Insight Team provides policy advice to the UK government by applying behavioural sciences. Students will benefit from having both close links to employers and exposure to professional training facilities, such as our trading floor, which is used by major financial services companies across the world.

This degree prepares students with the knowledge and skills required for a career in finance and graduates would expect to find employment in all sectors of the financial services industry, both in the UK and overseas, including financial institutions such as banks, insurance companies, pension funds, investment and unit trusts and in roles, such as a financial analyst, portfolio manager or risk management consultant.

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Key Programme Information

At a Glance

Learning Mode
On Campus Learning
Degree Qualification
MA
Duration
48 months
Study Mode
Full Time
Start Month
September
UCAS Code
L111

What You'll Study

Year 1

Year 1

  • Academic Writing for Business
  • Professional Skills Part 1
  • Finance, Risk and Investment
  • Accounting and Entrepreneurship
  • The Economics of Business and Society
  • The Global Economy

Compulsory Courses

Academic Writing for Business (AW1003)

This compulsory evaluation is designed to find out if your academic writing is of a sufficient standard to enable you to succeed at university and, if you need it, to provide support to improve. It is completed on-line via MyAberdeen with clear instructions to guide you through it. If you pass the evaluation at the first assessment it will not take much of your time. If you do not, you will be provided with resources to help you improve. This evaluation does not carry credits but if you do not complete it this will be recorded on your degree transcript.

View detailed information about this course

Professional Skills Part 1 (PD1001)

This course, which is prescribed for level 1 students and optional for level 2 students, is studied entirely online and covers topics relating to careers and employability, equality and diversity and health, safety and wellbeing. During the course you will learn about the Aberdeen Graduate Attributes, how they are relevant to you and the opportunities available to develop your skills and attributes alongside your University studies. You will also gain an understanding of equality and diversity and health, safety and wellbeing issues. Successful completion of this course will be recorded on your Enhanced Transcript as ‘Achieved’ (non-completion will be recorded as ‘Not Achieved’). The course takes approximately 3 hours to complete and can be taken in one sitting, or spread across a number of weeks and it will be available to you throughout the academic year.This course, which is prescribed for level 1 students and optional for level 2 students and above, is studied entirely online and covers topics relating to careers and employability, equality and diversity and health, safety and wellbeing. During the course you will learn about the Aberdeen Graduate Attributes, how they are relevant to you and the opportunities available to develop your skills and attributes alongside your University studies. You will also gain an understanding of equality and diversity and health, safety and wellbeing issues. Successful completion of this course will be recorded on your Enhanced Transcript as ‘Achieved’ (non-completion will be recorded as ‘Not Achieved’). The course takes approximately 3 hours to complete and can be taken in one sitting, or spread across a number of weeks and it will be available to you throughout the academic year

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Finance 1: Finance, Risk and Investment (FI1004) - 15 Credit Points

This foundation course in finance, risk and investment is the requisite for several degree programmes and for level 2 real estate and finance courses. The module considers the nature and operation of investment markets, focusing on three asset classes; shares, bonds and real estate. It looks at the characteristics of these investment options in terms of their risks and returns. The module introduces basic financial mathematics: time value of money, calculation of present values and investment rates of return. Finally, it considers the role of financial institutions and regulatory bodies in personal finance, where consumers and financial markets interact.

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The Economics of Business and Society (EC1006) - 15 Credit Points

This course is an introductory course in microeconomics where we study the decision making of individual actors (consumers, employees, firms, governments, etc.) in an economy. Actors must make decisions about behaviours because they face scarce resources, but often they find that trading with other actors in markets can increase the wellbeing of all parties. This course models and examines the nature of these interactions, highlighting when they work well and when they fail to increase wellbeing and what might be the solution to these failures.

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Accounting and Entrepreneurship (AC1515) - 15 Credit Points

This is an introduction to accounting which aims to provide an understanding of how organisations – particularly small and medium sized businesses – capture, create and use accounting information both to guide their activities internally within the management function and to communicate their financial performance and position to external users of the accounts. This course allows students to develop practical and analytical skills through a problem-solving approach to accounting-related aspects of business performance reporting and control, particularly in relation to bookkeeping, accounts preparation, budgeting and management accounting.

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The Global Economy (EC1506) - 15 Credit Points

This course is an introductory course in macroeconomics where we study the behaviour of the economy as a whole. Whereas microeconomics focuses on individual markets, macroeconomics addresses the “big issues” such as unemployment, inflation, economic growth, and financial crises. Macroeconomics is a lively subject, full of discussion and debate, as economists and policymakers take different views on macroeconomic issues, their causes and appropriate policy responses. Issues such as: Is the economy growing? What causes unemployment and how can we reduce it? How can we avoid recessions? When is inflation a problem? Are banks lending too much?

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Optional Courses

In addition to the above, students are required to study 60 credit points from courses of choice.

Year 2

Year 2

  • Intermediate Microeconomics
  • Intermediate Macroeconomics
  • Business Finance
  • Financial Markets and Regulations

Compulsory Courses

Intermediate Microeconomics (EC2003) - 30 Credit Points

This course builds on and is a natural extension of EC 1006. By examining in a more rigorous way concepts introduced in EC 1006 students will develop further their analytical skills and they will obtain a better understanding of consumers and producers behaviour, market structure as well as the effectiveness of economic policy. The course is designed to appeal to all students interested in economics. This includes students who may wish not to enter into any further studies of economics, as well as students who may wish to continue studying economics at the honours level.

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Finance 2: Business Finance (FI2004) - 15 Credit Points

The main aim of this course is to develop a sound understanding of fundamental principles underlying the theory and practice of finance, thereby providing a strong basis for further study of advanced finance theory and cognate disciplines. The course introduces students to important concepts in finance: principles of assets pricing, concept of risk and return, theory of interest rates and pricing fixed income securities, evaluation of investment project with a focus on embedded real options. It equips students with good analytical skills in order to understand the implications of financial decisions by understanding the fundamentals that govern them.

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Intermediate Macroeconomics (EC2503) - 30 Credit Points

This course focuses on macroeconomic policy in a global economy. The first part builds an open-economy Keynesian model to investigate what determines the effectiveness of fiscal and monetary policies, and how exchange rate regimes and capital mobility impact on policy effectiveness. The second part investigates what determines the level of macroeconomic activity and its growth over time. The final part looks at what determines inflation and unemployment. This intermediate level course uses live lectures to develop your analytical skills evaluating economic policy in a rigorous and technical way to equip you with the skills needed for honours level study.

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Financial Markets and Regulation (FI2501) - 15 Credit Points

This course provides students with an understanding of the financial system, primarily from a UK perspective, introducing students to the reasons for, and nature of, financial markets and institutions before moving on to explore the need and importance of financial regulation, and investigating the causes and consequences of the recent global financial crisis. The course will introduce students to a variety of topics including the role of wholesale and retail banks, non-bank financial institutions, the debt and equity markets, and the derivative markets; market efficiency, UK and international regulation, consumer protection and market abuse.

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Optional Courses

In addition to the above, students are required to study 30 credit points from courses of choice.

Year 3

Year 3

  • Mathematical and Statistical Methods in Economics
  • Econometrics
  • Finance 3: Corporate Finance
  • Asset Pricing

Compulsory Courses

Mathematical & Statistical Methods in Economics (EC3023) - 30 Credit Points

This two parted course aims to develop the students’ practical analytical skills and economic problem solving abilities. The first section deals with mathematics in an economic setting. It should enable the student to apply mathematical problem solving techniques to relevant economic issues. Material covered includes differentiation, unconstrained and constrained optimisation, integration and matrix algebra. The second section is dedicated to statistical methods in economics. It seeks to introduce the students to a variety of statistical concepts, relating among others to probability and distributions. It systematically develops hypotheses testing and regression analysis to enable analysis of real world data.

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Finance 3: Corporate Finance (FI3004) - 30 Credit Points

This course introduces students to a number of areas of corporate finance including examining capital structure theory, project valuation models, the financing decisions of the firm, and corporate restructuring (including reorganisations and mergers and acquisitions). The main aim of the course is to equip students with good analytical skills in order to understand the implications of corporate financing decisions by understanding why companies behave the way they do with respect to financing choices and how this interacts with the real world financial markets, and to enable students to understand the theoretical underpinnings of corporate finance theory.

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Econometrics (EC3529) - 30 Credit Points

The course aims to provide students the basics of econometric theory and teach them a range of different estimation techniques that can be applied in practice when working with data. The first part of the course will focus mainly on teaching a working knowledge of basic methods and principles of econometric theory, while the second part will focus more on a sequence of specific problems involving the specification, estimation and interpretation of econometric models. Students participating in the course will have the opportunity to solve theory exercises and to estimate econometric models in a computer lab using actual data.

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Asset Pricing (FI3504)
Year 4

Year 4

  • Dissertation in Financial Economics

Suggested Pathways

Behavioural and Experimental Finance.
A whole new sub-discipline is arising in behavioural finance, and experiments provide key empirical guideposts for developments in this areas. Highly research-related pathway with policy-relevant applications to financial markets. Ideal choice for a career in financial institutions. Also suitable for preparing for an MSc.

Financial Investment
This pathway provides solid foundations for those interested in learning how to manage an investment portfolio. Perfect choice for a career as investor, broker, financial analyst.

Policy, Macroeconomics, and Finance
A theoretical, an empirical, and an applied perspective for a comprehensive view on key aspects of macroeconomics and finance. Suitable for students interested in a career as professional economists/policy advisers. Also perfect choice for those interested in continuing to an MSc.

Compulsory Courses

Dissertation in Financial Economics (FI4532) - 30 Credit Points

This course is meant to provide students an opportunity to apply the knowledge and expertise they have acquired by writing an original piece of work on some aspects of financial economics.

View detailed information about this course

Optional Courses

In addition to the above, students are required to study 90 credit points from available EC, FI and PO coded courses at level 4.

Course Availability

We will endeavour to make all course options available; however, these may be subject to timetabling and other constraints. Please see our InfoHub pages for further information.

How You'll Study

Learning Methods

  • Lectures
  • Research
  • Seminars
  • Tutorials

Assessment Methods

Students are assessed by any combination of three assessment methods:

  • Coursework such as essays and reports completed throughout the course;
  • Practical assessments of the skills and competencies they learn on the course; and
  • Written examinations at the end of each course.

The exact mix of these methods differs between subject areas, years of study and individual courses.

Honours projects are typically assessed on the basis of a written dissertation.

Why Study Financial Economics?

  • A UK top three university for the impact of world leading research carried out by our business and management experts.
  • Aberdeen is the main European centre for the oil and gas industry, and international accountancy firms, multinational companies and financial services all have offices in the city.
  • Professional training facilities, including our virtual trading floor, integrating real activity in financial markets into our students’ courses
  • Our research centres, including ACREEF (the Aberdeen Centre for Research in Energy Economics and Finance) headed by leading international petroleum economist and author Professor Alex Kemp, adviser to the Scottish Government.
  • Aberdeen is home to CELMR (the Centre for European Labour Market Research) which leads research in education, skills and labour markets. 

Entry Requirements

You will find all the information you require about entry requirements on our dedicated 'Entry Requirements' page. You can also find out about the different types of degrees, changing your subject, offers and advanced entry.

Qualifications

The information below is provided as a guide only and does not guarantee entry to the University of Aberdeen.

Please note: entry requirements may differ for 2018 and 2019 entry.


Entry Requirements (2018):

SQA Highers - AABB
A Levels - BBB
National 5/ S Grade/ GCSE - Maths
IB - 32 points, including 5, 5, 5 at HL
ILC - 5H with 3 at H2 AND 2 at H3 OR AAABB, obtained in a single sitting. (B must be at B2 or above)

Advanced Entry - Available only with experiential or other qualifications at post A Level or Advanced Higher Standard.


Entry Requirements (2019):

SQA Highers
Standard Offer: AABB - BBB
Applicants who have achieved between AABB - BBB are encouraged to apply and will be considered. Good performance in additional Highers / Advanced Highers may be required in order to receive an offer of admission.

Adjusted / Access Threshold: BB (or below)
Applicants who have achieved BB, and who meet one or more Widening Participation criteria, are encouraged to apply and will be considered. Good performance in additional Highers / Advanced Highers will be required in order to receive an offer of admission.

More information on our definition of Standard, Adjusted and Access Threshold entry qualifications.

A LEVELS
Standard offer: BBB

Adjusted / Access Threshold: BB (or below)

More information on our definition of Standard, Adjusted and Access Threshold entry qualifications.

International Baccalaureate
32 points, including 5, 5, 5 at HL.

Irish Leaving Certificate
5H with 3 at H2 AND 2 at H3 OR AAABB, obtained in a single sitting. (B must be at B2 or above)


Further detailed entry requirements for Arts and Social Sciences degrees.

English Language Requirements

To study for an Undergraduate degree at the University of Aberdeen it is essential that you can speak, understand, read, and write English fluently. The minimum requirements for this degree are as follows:

IELTS Academic:

OVERALL - 6.0 with: Listening - 5.5; Reading - 5.5; Speaking - 5.5; Writing - 6.0

TOEFL iBT:

OVERALL - 78 with: Listening - 17; Reading - 18; Speaking - 20; Writing - 21

PTE Academic:

OVERALL - 54 with: Listening - 51; Reading - 51; Speaking - 51; Writing - 54

Cambridge English Advanced & Proficiency:

OVERALL - 169 with: Listening - 162; Reading - 162; Speaking - 162; Writing - 169

Read more about specific English Language requirements here.

Fees and Funding

You will be classified as one of the fee categories below.

Fee Waiver

For international students (all non-EU students) the tuition fee charged upon entry will apply to all years of study; however, most international students will be eligible for a fee waiver in their final year via the International Undergraduate Scholarship.

Most RUK students (England, Wales and Northern Ireland) on a four year honours degree will be eligible for a full-fees waiver in their final year. Scholarships and other sources of funding are also available.

Fee information
Fee category Cost
Home / EU £1,820
All Students
International Students £14,600
Students Admitted in 2018/19 Academic Year
RUK £9,250
Students Admitted in 2018/19 Academic Year

Additional Fees

  • In exceptional circumstances there may be additional fees associated with specialist courses, for example field trips. Any additional fees for a course can be found in our Catalogue of Courses.
  • For more information about tuition fees for this programme, including payment plans and our refund policy, please visit our InfoHub Tuition Fees page.

Our Funding Database

View all funding options in our Funding Database.

Careers

  • Financial Analyst
  • Portfolio Manager
  • Investment Banker
  • Trainee Accountant
  • Stock Broker
  • Risk Management Consultant

Our Experts

Information About Staff Changes

You will be taught by a range of experts including professors, lecturers, teaching fellows and postgraduate tutors. Staff changes will occur from time to time; please see our InfoHub pages for further information.

Unistats

Unistats draws together comparable information in areas students have identified as important in making decisions about what and where to study. You can compare these and other data for different degree programmes in which you are interested.

Get in Touch

Contact Details

Address
Student Recruitment & Admissions Service
University of Aberdeen
University Office
Regent Walk
Aberdeen
AB24 3FX