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Suitable for graduates with an educational track record in business, economics, finance or any degree with a significant quantitative element, this programme is a top 50 ranked programme by Financial Times (34 in 2016).

This programme is designed to give you advanced specialist knowledge and a practical understanding of finance theory and practice relevant to the financial services industry.

You will acquire the necessary theoretical and practical knowledge, as well as the skills required for a career in the financial services industry - in investment banks, commercial banks, fund management, insurance companies, securitisation and trading houses, stock brokers, and in finance divisions of firms in other industries.

The focus on empirical and theoretical finance research nurtures the desire to conduct independent research beyond completion of the programme, enabling graduates to remain up-to-date with changes in international financial markets.

The MSc in Finance receives special recognition from the Chartered Financial Analyst Institute (CFA). As our programme contains at least 70 percent of the CFA body of knowledge, you will benefit from a head start towards the internationally recognised CFA qualification.

The programme can be undertaken on a part-time basis, thus enabling current professionals with the relevant background to combine working life with study, however this is dependent on students' employment commitments. Note that this is not a dedicated part-time programme and that students will be required to attend lectures, tutorials and complete group assignments in conjunction with the full-time cohort, for whom the schedule is primarily during working hours for a block of hours on several days a week. Modules in autumn trimester will be delivered in a compressed format meaning that modules are taught intensively over two 6 week periods, requiring additional attendance at lectures and tutorials. Employer support is therefore essential.

What will I learn?
Acquisition of applied theoretical research and the essential practical skills for a future career in financial services. Particular emphasis is placed upon the study of corporate finance and investment markets.

1. A wide-ranging curriculum develops and tests graduates comprehension of management principles, market operations and functions, and the risks inherent in investment management, enabling them to comprehend the entire management and strategic contexts in which financial decision-making is taken.

2. A firm grasp of financial processes and procedures as well as the knowledge and skills (both professional and personal) necessary for a career in financial services, from investment and commercial banks through to insurance companies and trading houses and stock brokerage.

3. In the summer term, a choice from a range of summer term modules, or a dedicated research project.

4. A limited Summer Internship Programme is also offered.

How will I benefit?
The programme has been carefully devised to challenge graduates on theoretical and practical levels via a wide-ranging curriculum that will provide them with the knowledge and skill set sought by recruiting companies from the industry.

1.Recruitment: graduates go on to be recruited by such global companies as the Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan and Fidelity and most of the leading Irish finance houses including Davys, Goodbodys, Bank of Ireland, Irish Life .

2.CFA Partner: due to the course comprising 70% of the requirements for the Chartered Financial Analyst qualification, graduates receive special recognition with the CFA Institute and benefit from a head start towards the internationally-recognised CFA qualification.

3.Ranked Programme: as a ranked programme (FT Top 50) programme, the MSc (Finance) has a significant standing amongst international employers.

4.Breadth and Depth of Curriculum: a wide-ranging curriculum develops and tests graduates' comprehension of financial management principles, market operations and functions, and the risks inherent in investment management, enabling them to comprehend wide-ranging management and strategic contexts relating to financial decision-making necessary for a career in financial services.

5.Global Student and Alumni Network: over 50% of the student body is international, presenting opportunities to work with peers globally and to participate in a global Alumni network.

Entry requirements

Please review the entry requirements below. The UCD Smurfit Admissions Office staff have expertise in reviewing international qualifications from around the world and will be able to assess your application's comparability to the Irish entry requirement.

An honours bachelors degree in:
a. Business/Commerce to include a number of quantitative subjects such as Economics or Finance


b. Engineering, Mathematics, Physics or a Finance-related-area
with a minimum 2.1 award at NFQ Level 8 (or international equivalent) in a. or b. above.


Applicants should have demonstrated strong academic ability (a 1.1 or 2.1) in a number of quantitative modules in their degree, such as mathematics, statistics, or econometrics.


Candidates may be asked to sit the Graduate Management Admissions Test (GMAT) subject to individual application.


12 months full-time, 24 months Part-Time.

Careers or further progression

Career opportunities
The MSc in Finance from UCD Michael Smurfit Graduate Business School gives you the specialised skills and knowledge you need for a career in the financial services sector.

In 2016, 93% of our graduates from this programme were employed after 6 months across a range of industry sectors. (Source: First Destination Report 2016)

Potential careers for our graduates include:
•Stock Brokerage
•Portfolio Management
•Corporate Finance Consulting
•Investment Banking
•Venture Capita
•Senior Treasury Analyst

Further enquiries

Contact details
+353 1 716 8934

Subjects taught

The one year full-time and two year part-time formats of this course comprise core modules covering many aspects of finance management and capital markets.

To complete the programme, students must complete twelve core modules. In the summer term students can complete a research project, two option modules or in a small number of cases, apply for a limited number of possible internships. With any possible internship opportunity students have to go through a competitive recruitment process, including interviews with employers, to be selected.

Autumn Trimester
•Capital Markets and Instruments
•Derivative Securities
•Financial Analysis
•Financial Econometrics
•Financial Theory
•Quantitative Methods for Finance

Spring Semester
•Banking and Financial Institutions
•Empirical Corporate Finance
•Portfolio and Risk Management
•Strategic Finance
•Financial Asset Valuation

Summer Trimester
•Ethics in Financial Services

Pathway A: choose any two of the list below:
•Advanced Treasury Management
•Aircraft Finance
•Financial Modelling
•International Finance
•Behavioural Finance
•Mergers and Acquisitions

Pathway B: Applied Investment Management (Internship)

Pathway C: Research Project

Note: option modules listed are indicative of what has been delivered in previous years. What is offered each academic year is subject to change.


Vision/Values Statement
The MSc Finance programme is aimed at pre-experience graduate students with a background in economics, finance and business to prepare them for a career in the financial services industry. Notwithstanding a number of part-time students with industry experience also undertake the programme. The purpose of the
programme is to provide students with the knowledge and skills and confidence necessary to the pursuit and enhancement of a career in the global financial services industry, whether in investment banking, corporate finance stock brokerage and related fields (Purpose).

The educational values of the programme are to provide students with the knowledge and skills to: appreciate the range of capital markets, institutions and financing instruments that facilitate the funding of corporate investment activity; critically evaluate corporate financial information in order to make strategic  investment decisions; apply statistical analysis techniques to the valuation and management of portfolios of financial securities; evaluate and manage financial risk and return across portfolios of financial securities; and, incorporate an ethical imperative in financial decision making. The programme is externally accredited by the Chartered Financial Analyst Institute (CFA) (education and subject/discipline/professional values).

The learning environment consists of both theoretical and applied components. Lectures comprise a combination of theory and practice including case studies. Students engage in autonomous learning though individual assignments including literature reviews. Team work is also encouraged through presentations of data analysis and case studies. Students also have access to state of the art financial databases in a designated dataroom. An optional internship programme is also integrated into the programme (the nature of the learning environment for students). The programme uses a variety of teaching and learning methods such as lectures presentations, project work, group work, case studies and work placements.

Modules are presented mainly by academics and are also complemented by practitioners with significant industry experience who contribute to the design and delivery of the curriculum. Assessment strategies include traditional exams, case study presentations and written reports (key approaches to teaching, learning and assessment).

Application date

The first step is to collate the required documentation needed to assess your application*.

These can include but are not limited to:
English Language Test
Additional Documentation

Step 2: The Application Process

Once you have collated the required documentation and reviewed the entry requirements for your programme of interest, you can now apply online.

You must apply online using our dedicated student information portal. You will be required to enter contact details, upload your documents and answer two essay questions (each approximately 300 words). We would ask that you seriously consider both essays and answer these in the context of the programme you are applying to. Try to not replicate your CV and demonstrate what makes you different from other applicants. There are no right or wrong ways to complete these essays.

You will then be asked to submit your application and pay the €50 application fee. No application can be assessed until the fee has been paid. You can apply for multiple programmes with the one application fee, but please be sure to mark your preferred course.

Once submitted, it usually takes 2-3 weeks before a decision is made on fully completed applications. This time period can sometimes be longer and can vary at different times in the year and in different regions. We may offer you a conditional place based on the completion of a number of criteria, such as degree, English test, or another qualification. This reserves you a place on the course and once you have fulfilled this criteria we will issue you a full offer.

Acceptance is completed by paying a non-refundable deposit (€500 - €1000). Once you have accepted you will then be handled by the programme office who will contact you with further course and start details.

Course fee

Fees Full-Time EU:
€18,205 (academic year 2020/2021)

Full-Time Non-EU:
€23,950 (academic year 2020/2021)

Part-Time EU:
€9,105 per year (academic year 2020/2021)

Part-Time Non-EU:
€9,950 per year (academic year 2020/2021)

Important Note: Tuition fees and other charges are subject to change each year.

Enrolment and start dates

Starting September 2020

Remember to mention gradireland when contacting institutions!