Financial Risk Management (MSc)

Year of entry

2018

Start date

October 2018

Location

Central London

Status

Fully Approved

Duration

One year full-time or two years part-time

Attendance

Four to five evenings a week full-time or two to three evenings a week part-time, September to June

In the wake of recent financial crises, a better understanding - and application - of financial risk management is playing an increasingly critical role in the financial sector. Birkbeck's MSc Financial Risk Management has been designed to meet the demand from the financial sector for individuals with expertise in this field. The course will equip you with the broad range of statistical and mathematical tools you need to tackle practical, real-world problems in financial risk management. 

Upon successful completion of this course, you will have the expertise to identify and manage the major sources of risk in the financial markets. You will understand the role of financial derivative products, their use (and misuse) and how they are priced, and you will be able to analyse financial data and build risk models, detect trends in data, test a given hypothesis and forecast future values. You will also understand how to build an investment portfolio (of risky assets) and carefully monitor its performance over time. 

Birkbeck's postgraduate finance courses are built around our long-running experience in research-led evening teaching. Many of our students work in the finance industry, which generates a lively atmosphere in class and ensures that you'll be studying alongside committed, enthusiastic students with a wealth of experience. You will be taught by active researchers, working at the cutting-edge in their respective fields, who are also experienced professional practitioners, giving specialist advice and in-house training to government departments and banks and firms in the City of London. This course is challenging and demanding, so you should demonstrate strong intellectual ability in your application and be willing to work hard. 

If you are unsure which of our finance courses is right for you, then read an overview of each programme

Highlights

  • This course combines a high level of academic rigour with a solid grounding in practical problem-solving skills.
  • We have an excellent reputation for the quality of our teaching, which includes providing training for the Treasury and the Bank of England.
  • Birkbeck's Department of Economics, Mathematics and Statistics enjoys an international reputation and its economics and finance research groups stand among the foremost research groups in the country.
  • In the 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF), more than half of our research outputs in Economics were ranked world-leading or internationally excellent. 
  • Entry Requirements

    Entry requirements

    The usual requirement is a first-class or good second-class degree (2:1 or above) from a UK university, or an overseas university qualification of an equivalent standard, in a quantitative subject, such as mathematics, physics, statistics, economics or engineering.

    Alternatively, a merit or higher in our MSc Finance or our MSc Financial Engineering.

    Work experience will be taken into account in assessing applications.

    International entry requirements

    If English is not your first language or you have not previously studied in English, our usual requirement is the equivalent of an International English Language Testing System (IELTS Academic Test) score of 6.5, with not less than 6.0 in each of the sub-tests.

    If you don't meet the minimum IELTS requirement, we offer pre-sessional English courses, foundation programmes and language support services to help you improve your English language skills and get your place at Birkbeck.

    Visit the International section of our website to find out more about our English language entry requirements and relevant requirements by country.

    Credits and Accredited Prior Learning (APL)

    If you have studied at university previously, you may have accumulated credits through the modules you studied. It may be possible to transfer these credits from your previous study to Birkbeck or another institution. You should discuss this with the Programme Director when you are making your application.

    Find out more about credits and Accredited Prior Learning (APL).

  • Fees

    Fees

    Part-time home/EU students: £6150 pa
    Full-time home/EU students: £12275 pa
    Part-time international students: £9000 pa
    Full-time international students: £17975 pa

    Students are charged a tuition fee in each year of their programme. Tuition fees for students continuing on their programme in following years may be subject to annual inflationary increases. For more information, please see the College Fees Policy.

  • Teaching and assessment

    Teaching

    At Birkbeck, almost all of our courses are taught in the evening and our teaching is designed to support students who are juggling evening study with work and other daytime commitments. We actively encourage innovative and engaging ways of teaching, to ensure our students have the best learning experience. In the 2017 Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF), the government’s system for rating university teaching, Birkbeck was allocated a Silver award.

    Teaching may include formal lectures, seminars, and practical classes and tutorials. Formal lectures are used in most degree programmes to give an overview of a particular field of study. They aim to provide the stimulus and the starting point for deeper exploration of the subject during your own personal reading.

    Seminars give you the chance to explore a specific aspect of your subject in depth and to discuss and exchange ideas with fellow students. They typically require preparatory study.

    In addition, you will have timetabled meetings with your Personal Tutor.

    Methods of teaching on this course

    A combination of lectures and problem-solving classes, including computer sessions.

    Timetables

    Timetables are usually available from September onwards and you can access your personalised timetable via your My Birkbeck Profile online (if you have been invited to enrol).

    Indicative class size

    Class sizes vary, depending on your course, the module you are undertaking, and the method of teaching. For example, lectures are presented to large groups, with 30 to 100+ students in attendance, whereas seminars usually consist of small, interactive groups of 10 to 30 students, led by an academic.

    Academic support

    Birkbeck offers study and learning support to undergraduate and postgraduate students to help them succeed. Our Learning Development Service can help you in the following areas:

    • academic skills (including planning your workload, research, writing, exam preparation and writing a dissertation)
    • written English (including structure, punctuation and grammar)
    • numerical skills (basic mathematics and statistics).

    Our Disability and Dyslexia Service can support you if you have additional learning needs resulting from a disability or from dyslexia.

    Our Counselling Service can support you if you are struggling with emotional or psychological difficulties during your studies.

    Our Mental Health Advisory Service can support you if you are experiencing short– or long-term mental health difficulties during your studies.

    Assessment

    Assessment is an integral part of your university studies and usually consists of a combination of coursework and examinations. You will be given time to complete coursework and prepare for exams.

    Unseen written examinations are usually taken in the Summer term, during May to June, and, in most cases, are held during the day on a weekday – if you have daytime commitments, you will need to make arrangements for daytime attendance. Exam timetables are published online in March each year.

    Find out more about assessment at Birkbeck, including guidance on assessment, feedback and our assessment offences policy.

    Methods of assessment on this course

    Coursework, examinations and a dissertation.

    Feedback

    As well as a mark for your coursework and exams, you will also receive feedback from your marker(s) to help you learn, improve and succeed. We encourage you to discuss feedback with your module tutor.

    Feedback can come in different forms: notes via Moodle (our online learning environment); a paper copy of a completed feedback form; or in-class or face-to-face feedback. The College Policy on Feedback on Assessment sets out what you can expect from your feedback.

    Your department will usually provide you with your marked coursework within four weeks of submission. Your initial mark is provisional until the relevant Board of Examiners has confirmed it.

    Your official coursework and exam results will be made available to you via your My Birkbeck Profile online.

  • Careers and employability

    Careers and employability

    Graduates can pursue a career in banking and finance, the public sector, industry, and research and analysis. Possible professions include financial risk analyst, economist, or purchasing manager. This degree can also be useful in becoming a management consultant or actuary. 

    We offer a comprehensive Careers and Employability Service to help you advance your career, while our in-house, professional recruitment consultancy, Birkbeck Talent, works with London’s top employers to help you gain work experience that fits in with your evening studies.

  • How to apply

    How to apply

    You apply directly to Birkbeck for this course, using the online application.

    Birkbeck can give you all of the information and help you need to complete your application form, including our online personal statement tool, which will guide you through every step of writing your personal statement.

    Application deadlines and interviews

    No specific deadline, but application as early as possible.