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BSc Hons Financial Mathematics

Mode of Study: Full Time Department: Mathematics and Statistics
UCAS Code: GN13 Duration/Length: 3 Year(s)
QAA Subject Benchmark: Mathematics, Statistics and Operational Director of Studies: Dr ML MacDonald
Total Credit Points: 360 Credit Points Year 2: 120
Credit Points Year 3: 120

Syllabus Rules and Pre-requisites

  • PartI
  • The student must take the following modules:
  • PartII (Year 2)
  • The student must take the following modules:
  • The student must take 1 modules from the following group:
  • PartII (Year 3)
  • The student must take the following modules:
  • The student must take 2 modules from the following group:
  • The student must take 3 modules from the following group:

Educational Aims: Knowledge, Understanding and Skills

  • We run this joint degree owing to the strong links between pure mathematics, probability, statistics, finance and economics. Students taking this scheme of study will obtain training in all these fields.

    Through joint study of these disciplines, students can benefit from:

    • intellectual development in a range of subjects, both pure and applied, and the fertile area between them;
    • a strong demand for graduates with these theoretical and practical skills in many areas of employment.

    The ultimate aim of the BSc Financial Mathematics is to give students a mathematically rigorous introduction to finance. Graduates will be highly employable, being well equipped to enter the finance sector and related industries.

    Mathematics and Statistics

    The Department's educational aims are to:

    • create a teaching and learning environment which supports all students in reaching their full potential in their study of mathematics and statistics at BSc level;
    • offer a high-quality teaching and learning programme, informed by staff research, designed to provide adequate preparation for postgraduate studies or employment involving a similar high level of knowledge and skills.

    The explicit aims of this programme are to:

    • provide students with analytical techniques and problem-solving skills that can be applied systematically and creatively in many types of employment, especially those involving logical skills, decision-making in complex circumstances, or advanced skills of numeracy;
    • offer modules of study which, individually and collectively, enable students to appreciate both the theoretical and problem-solving aspects of mathematics, and encourage students to show self-direction and originality in tackling problems;
    • provide students with enough core material, of sufficient depth and variety, in the first two levels of study that they are adequately prepared and informed for subsequent study in either or both of pure mathematics and statistics;
    • provide a programme of study that allows students to specialise in probability and statistics at the third year of study of a BSc;
    • maintain a programme of study that introduces the background of current research in probability and statistics;
    • produce alumni recognised for the distinctive value of their education on this programme.


    The overall aim of the programme is to produce graduates with the theoretical and practical skills needed to embark on a career in finance worldwide. The programme provides an understanding of the fundamental concepts required within the finance discipline, and encourages critical reflection on these concepts as a basis for evaluating future changes in financial markets and the finance sector.

    The explicit aims of this programme are to:

    • develop an understanding of corporate finance theory paradigms;
    • develop an understanding of the operation of financial markets in the global context;
    • develop knowledge of the fundamental concepts in economics necessary for the study of finance;
    • develop an understanding of methods for valuing financial securities, using economic principles, and appropriate mathematics and accounting concepts;
    • develop a knowledge of risk management;
    • develop an understanding of how accounting statements are compiled and used within organisations and by outsiders;
    • develop a desire for life long learning and thinking;
    • provide a sound basis for future professional development and additional qualifications.

    Students will demonstrate:

    • that they are effective learners and planners;
    • that they are critical and reflective thinkers;
    • that they are effective communicators;
    • that they are effective team workers (including multi-cultural and diverse groups);
    • an awareness of ethical issues, specifically in the context of finance.

Learning Outcomes: Knowledge, Understanding and Skills

  • This joint degree allows students to:

    • appreciate the mathematical and statistical techniques which underpin important areas of finance; and
    • gain an insight into many areas of mathematics and statistics through their use in quantitative finance.

    The students on this degree scheme are likely to develop all the general knowledge, understanding and skills of those taking single honours degrees in mathematics, statistics or finance, and many of the subject-specific ones too, though within each subject this will be over a narrower range of material, given the fewer modules they take in each department.

    Mathematics and Statistics

    Subject-specific knowledge, understanding and skills

    On completing the programme students should have acquired:

    • An understanding of and competence in the key ideas and techniques, and knowledge of the statement and proof of key results, both within the core areas of real and complex analysis, linear and abstract algebra, and probability and statistics, and in the more advanced topics chosen in the third year of study;
    • An appreciation of the progressive and hierarchical structure of mathematical knowledge;
    • An understanding of mathematical notation, and an ability to use it correctly and coherently;
    • An appreciation of the importance of proof, generalization and abstraction in the logical development of formal theories;
    • An ability both to follow and correctly to construct mathematical proofs of appropriate degrees of complexity;
    • An understanding of the mathematical and contextual basis of statistics as a science, and an appreciation of the statistical paradigm, linking design and conduct of experiments and observations with data analysis, modelling and inference;
    • Experience of implementing the statistical paradigm in a range of general applications;
    • An ability to read and comprehend mathematical literature at an appropriate level;
    • An ability to use computers and specialist software to investigate and solve practical mathematical problems.

    General knowledge, understanding and skills 

    On completing the programme students should have acquired:

    • An ability to learn from various styles of presentation of material;
    • An ability to apply previously acquired knowledge to new situations, both to gain understanding and to solve problems;
    • An ability to use information skills to gain access to library and IT resources effectively in researching topics;
    • An ability to produce documents which accurately and effectively communicate scientific material to the reader;
    • An ability to make presentations based on prepared material;
    • An ability to work effectively both independently and as part of a small group;
    • An ability to work to deadlines, and experience in time management when working to a range of deadlines.


    Knowledge and understanding of:

    • The fundamental concepts of finance and risk management and their application in the global market place;
    • The methods available for, and the basic principles governing, the production of financial reports to be used by those outside the company;
    • Quantitative techniques and skills with an appreciation of when and how they may be appropriately used;
    • The main roles performed by the finance-related professions and their significance for individual companies and the workings of the general economy.


    Cognitive Skills

    • Reason analytically and critically;
    • Apply finance theory to appropriate practical situations;
    • Identify, analyse and suggest plausible solutions to problems encountered by finance professionals;
    • Create linkages between the material covered in the various modules of the programme.

    Practical Skills

    • Locate, analyse and assimilate company information and data from various sources, both in paper and electronic form;
    • Plan, structure and conduct individual and group assignments of both written and computational forms;
    • Undertake computations of varying levels of complexity in various aspects of finance;
    • Be able to apply the use of information technology (IT) to the tasks outlined previously.

    Transferable Skills

    • Rapidly assimilate facts and draw valid inferences;
    • Communicate ideas effectively, both orally and in writing;
    • Manage their time, and produce work by required deadlines;
    • Work productively in groups;
    • Work independently under the general guidance of a supervisor.

Learning and Teaching Strategies and Methods: Knowledge, Understanding, Skills

  • The primary method of instruction is the lecture. Lectures are used to teach key concepts and offer learning guidance.

    All lecture courses in the Department of Mathematics and Statistics are supported by weekly problem-solving classes. Students are set weekly assignments which are marked and returned, with feedback, by tutors who are either academic staff or graduate teaching associates. This assessment is designed to be formative, but a small amount of summative credit is awarded. Regular computer lab sessions, especially in the first two years, are used to teach the programming language R and train students to solve problems using software. The labs are designed to complement the lecture courses and problem-solving classes.

    Courses offered by the Department of Accounting and Finance and Department of Economics comprise a mixture of lectures and seminars.

    Cognitive skills are developed through tutorials and workshops, and within coursework assignments (CWAs) and examinations. Several modules have weekly workshops to develop analytical and critical reasoning skills, and the ability to apply theoretical models to problems, in areas such as the management of portfolios (AC.F321) and the valuation of derivative securities (AC.F215). Students are continually encouraged to link knowledge taught in a module to case studies encountered in others.

    Practical skills form an integral part of coursework assessment, feedback, tutorials, workshops and seminars throughout the degree scheme. Guidance is provided by staff, with all staff having defined and notified office hours for student consultation. Optional courses, where students can acquire IT skills, are provided centrally by Information System Services (ISS) for the university. As English is not the first language of some students, resources are provided through the Academic Learning Zone for the attainment of linguistic and writing skills.

    Transferable skills are taught through seminars and within tutorial groups and workshops, and obtained via experience from undertaking both CWAs and non-assessed study. All students are required to submit CWAs by stated deadlines; failure to comply incurs penalties, as published in course material and on departmental notice boards. AC.F100 requires all students to produce a group project analysing company accounts, using the skills and knowledge developed throughout the year. Written work and oral communication skills are promoted through presentations.

Assessment Strategy and Methods: Knowledge, Understanding and Skills

  • Testing of knowledge and understanding is conducted through a range of formative and summative assessment methods. The assessment strategy reflects the progressive nature of the subject and moves from testing simple skills and methods through to more complex arguments and independent projects. Work in Year 1 is usually based closely on lecture material and includes basic skills in mathematical techniques, the understanding and application of simple abstract concepts and an appreciation of the role of proof. As the level of study progresses, the work becomes more demanding and requires a firm understanding of the main theoretical approaches and methodological techniques in core topic areas, and a developing experience of transferring these skills to new problems.

    In Year 1 all courses are assessed by a combination of written examination and coursework, in equal proportions. Coursework includes weekly assessed work, end-of-module tests, computer lab work and short project work.

    In Year 2 all courses are assessed by a combination of written examination and coursework, with the examination allocated the majority of marks.

    In Year 3 the majority of courses are assessed by a combination of written examination and coursework, with the examination allocated the majority of marks.

    Examinations are designed to test the learning objectives. The guiding philosophy is to reward students for what they know rather than penalise them for what they do not know. Formal examinations provide experience of single-minded concentration, critical time-management, preparation skills and working under pressure.

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