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Financial Management

The MA – Financial Management is a two-year, part-time programme that explores key subjects in financial management. It seeks to raise the level of financial analysis in the public service and equip students with the knowledge and skills necessary for effective financial management.

On completing the first year of the programme students receive the interim award of a Postgraduate Diploma in Public Management. The second year of the course is divided into two semesters. In the first of these, students study three key topics in financial management. In the second, students write a dissertation on a specific financial management issue. Year two will normally only commence in autumn of each year. Students that do not wish to take all three subjects in any particular semester may choose to study one or two on a phased basis.

Is This Programme For You?

With relevance to those who work in both the public and the private sector, this programme will obviously be of particular interest to anyone who wants to gain some expertise in financial management. The programme is delivered through a blend of distance education and intensive weekend seminars and workshops at the IPA. Students can, therefore, pursue this programme no matter where they live and can remain in full-time employment.

Entry requirements

Admission Requirements

Applicants for Postgraduate Diplomas, Postgraduate Certificates, MA, MEconSc and MSc programmes must have a primary degree or equivalent qualification.


Two academic years.

Delivery Method

A blend of distance learning and weekend seminars at the IPA campus in Dublin.

Careers or further progression


Students may enter the first year of the MA (Postgraduate Diploma) in September or January. Those who enter in September can, on successful completion of the academic year, proceed to the second year. Those who enter in January can finish within the calendar year and proceed to the second year the following September.

Further enquiries

Tel: +353 1 240 3600


Subjects taught

Year One

Postgraduate Diploma in Public Management

Interim Award

The first year of the MA programme is divided into two

semesters and each semester is devoted to the study of three

key subjects in public management.

Semester One

- Economics

- Managing Human Resources

- Finance

Semester Two

- Organisation and Strategy

- Research Methods

- Managing Service Delivery/Managing in Europe

Year Two

Semester One

Financial Strategy

On completing this course, students will understand the theory and practice of financial strategy and be able to apply the theories of corporate finance to the Irish and international financial environment. The course focuses on capital investment decisions and risk, capital structure, financial planning, the management of working capital, derivatives and corporate governance.

Public Sector Finance

The size and role of government activity in an economy effect every citizen in the State. This course explores the level, trend and economic consequences of such activity. Among the specific topics addressed are public/private partnerships, costing and pricing, expenditure reviews, the economics of tax and debt, and international developments in public sector finance.

Governance and Audit

This course is concerned with governance and audit and the related issue of risk management. With reference to modern governance scandals, it explores reform in the Irish public service around governance and accountability, regulatory frameworks, financial reporting requirements in the public and private sectors, internal audit, internal control systems and risk management.

Semester Two

In the second semester of year two, students write a dissertation on a specific financial management issue. Students must successfully complete the taught courses before moving to the dissertation phase.


Accreditation: National University of Ireland

Place on NFQ: Level 9 (Major Award).

Award: Master of Arts

Interim Award: Postgraduate Diploma in Public Management

Assessment method

Students submit assignments, sit final examinations and complete a minor dissertation.

Application date

Apply Online from August 2020, students can apply online at

Apply by Post

Please complete the application form and return it to the IPA, together with:

• One copy of your degree or relevant qualification

• One passport-type photograph

• The semester fee


• A letter from your employer confirming that fees will be paid directly to the IPA.

Places on the programmes are limited and demand for places is likely to exceed the number available. Consequently, you are strongly advised to apply as early as possible.

Course fee

The cost of the programme is €5,000 per annum (includes all matriculation and examination fees, all seminars, textbooks and course material), payable in two instalments.

Enrolment and start dates

Commences: September 2020.

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