Finance (MSc) 2023 entry

The MSc in Finance trains students in advanced analytical abilities and technical skills in empirical finance and modelling. Students acquire an in-depth understanding of the financial markets and institutions both in the UK and abroad, preparing them for a professional career in the financial industry.

Start date
September 2023
End date
September 2024
One year full time
School of Economics and Finance

Application deadline

Thursday 10 August 2023

Applicants should apply as early as possible to be eligible for certain scholarships and for international visa purposes.

Entry requirements

The qualifications listed are indicative minimum requirements for entry. Some academic Schools will ask applicants to achieve significantly higher marks than the minimum. Obtaining the listed entry requirements will not guarantee you a place, as the University considers all aspects of every application including, where applicable, the writing sample, personal statement, and supporting documents.

Application requirements

  • CV or résumé 
  • either a detailed personal statement including a list of current modules being undertaken (1,000 words) or a sample of your own, single-authored academic written work (2,000 words) 
  • two academic references 
  • academic transcripts and degree certificates  

For more guidance, see supporting documents and references for postgraduate taught programmes.

English language proficiency

If English is not your first language, you may need to provide an English language test score to evidence your English language ability. See approved English language tests and scores for this course.

Course details

The MSc in Finance is a one-year taught postgraduate programme run by the School of Economics and Finance. 


  • You will learn the research methods used in modern corporate finance in order to understand the relevance of corporate finance theory in an applied work setting.  
  • The case study approach in core modules helps develop analytical skills that can be used in everyday financial measurement applications.  
  • Small group teaching allows a high level of student-teacher interaction, encouraging a warm and friendly learning environment.  
  • You will become knowledgeable about the functioning and rationale of leading financial institutions both in the UK and abroad.  
  • You will pursue advanced studies in finance and cognate areas, allied to a strong tradition of graduates from the School working in the financial community.  


Each compulsory module typically comprises: 

  • 20 lecture contact hours 
  • 5 or 10 contact hours for seminars, workshops and tutorials 
  • intensive independent study. 

For more details about each module, including weekly contact hours, teaching methods and assessment, please see the latest module catalogue, which is for the 2022-2023 academic year; some elements may be subject to change for 22023 entry. 


You must take four compulsory modules for the MSc. 

  • Corporate Finance: investigates the relationship between corporate liabilities and corporate actions. 
  • Financial Econometrics: the theory and practice of financial econometrics. 
  • International Finance: key issues in international finance including analysing models of exchange rate determination. 
  • Investment Analysis: investment value analysis, risk and return. 

In your second semester, you will have the opportunity to choose two modules from a selection of topics. The assessment patterns for individual optional modules may vary from the details given above.  

Here is a sample of optional modules that may be offered: 

  • Behavioural Finance: examines the effects of behavioural biases in financial markets. 
  • Corporate Governance: covers three key components: corporate governance, risk management, and financial management. 
  • Experimental Economics and Finance: focuses on the methodology of experimental economics and the dialogue between theoretical and laboratory-based empirical work.
  • Portfolio Management: studies key issues in asset allocation, and portfolio composition and management at an advanced level. 
  • Risk Management: teaches standard techniques in risk and insurance problems. 

The topics, and therefore module titles, vary year on year as they reflect staff research interests. Optional modules require a minimum number of participants to be offered; some may only allow limited numbers of students (see the University’s position on curriculum development). 

The final element of the MSc is a 15,000-word dissertation. The dissertation should be on an area of finance that you are interested in, chosen in discussion with your supervisor who will support you through the process.  

You will receive training in Semester 1 in framing a hypothesis, conducting bibliographic research, writing a literature survey, and structuring a dissertation. 

The modules listed here are indicative, and there is no guarantee they will run for 2023 entry. Take a look at the most up-to-date modules in the module catalogue

The modules listed here are indicative, and there is no guarantee they will run for 2023 entry. Take a look at the most up-to-date modules in the module catalogue.


The programme consists of traditional lectures, as well as tutorials, seminars and computer lab work in small groups.

You will also complete a 15,000-word dissertation in an area of your choice that is relevant and appropriate to the MSc.  

 Courses are assessed both continuously and with end-of-semester exams.  

Every MSc student is assigned an adviser at the beginning of the year. Your adviser will provide you with individual guidance on module choice and academic conduct.




More information on tuition fees can be found on the postgraduate fees and funding page.

Funding and scholarships

The University of St Andrews is committed to attracting the very best students, regardless of financial circumstances. Find out more about the scholarships and postgraduate loans available.

All taught postgraduate scholarships

After your degree


There is a long-standing tradition of Finance graduates working in a wide variety of challenging and rewarding posts including: 

  • academia 
  • banking 
  • commerce 
  • diplomatic service 
  • economics 
  • finance 
  • government 
  • industry 
  • insurance. 

They work in the UK, Europe, and North America, and more frequently in locations such as China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Japan and Thailand. 

The Careers Centre offers one-to-one advice to all students as well as a programme of events to assist students in building their employability skills.

Postgraduate research

What to do next

Online information events

Join us for one of our information events where you can find out about different levels of study and specific courses we run. There are also sessions available for parents and college counsellors.

Postgraduate virtual days

We encourage all students who are thinking of applying to the University to attend one of our online visiting days.

Contact us

+44 (0)1334 46 2439
School of Economics and Finance
The Scores
St Andrews
KY16 9AR

School of Economics and Finance website