Our Finance and Management MSc is a top-ranked finance master's course. This postgraduate finance course is ranked as a UK top 10 and world top 40 Finance Master’s in International Business Rankings. The course provides you with a solid grounding in finance and management principles and offers rigorous training in relevant tools and techniques and how to apply them practically in the global finance workplace.


  • Start date27 September 2021
  • Duration1 year
  • DeliveryTaught modules 60%, Dissertation 40%
  • QualificationMSc
  • Study typeFull-time
  • CampusCranfield campus

Who is it for?

  • Graduates with a desire to develop their knowledge and skills in finance and management before seeking their first professional role
  • Professionals with work experience in the area of finance or management who are seeking to take their career to the next level
  • Individuals who want to be taught by faculty who have experience of business and industry and can bring their knowledge to the programme


This course is recognised in International Business Rankings, consistently ranking top 10 in the UK and top 40 in the world across them all. These include:

  • 6th in the UK and 32nd in the world: The Financial Times Master’s in Finance Pre-experience ranking 2018
  • 2nd in the UK and 6th in the world: The Times Higher Education/Wall Street Journal World University Rankings 2019 – Master’s in Finance
  • 9th in the UK and 40th in the world: QS World University Rankings: Masters in Finance ranking 2021

Class profile 2020/21*

Male 60% - Female 40%
Age range:
20 - 34 years
Average age:
25 years
Number of nationalities: 21
Nationality: UK/EU: 26% - International: 74%
Cohort size: 73
Average class size: 37

*The above data combines the 2020/21 class profiles for the Finance and Management MSc and Investment Management MSc.

Why this course?

  • Our Finance and Management MSc is recognised in international business rankings, consistently ranking top 10 in the UK and top 40 in the world across them all.
  • The course is distinctive in covering the principles, tools and techniques of both finance and management, as well as how to apply them in real work situations.
  • You will gain an in-depth understanding of financial and management accounting, economics, international financial markets, statistical analysis, financial modelling and corporate financial management.
  • Modules focus on real-world challenges, and include a combination of case studies, participative exercises, interactive lectures and group projects
  • You may also have the opportunity to take part in activities, including the CFA Institute UK Research Challenge
  • You will be taught by faculty with experience of the real world of finance and business, as well as having the opportunity to listen to guest speakers
  • You will have access to highly effective infrastructure including Bloomberg live financial data via our Bloomberg Suite.
  • You will have the opportunity to study within a truly international environment, with students and academics coming from over 50 countries.

I have been able to apply the skills and knowledge I learnt on the course in my current role. Prior to undertaking the course I wasn’t confident with financial concepts, but since completing the course I feel much more adept at solving problems, and understanding the basic and more complex situations I encounter at work.

Cranfield offers a unique mix of lecturers. We had theoretical courses with outstanding academic faculty, but also practical courses like financial markets taught by practitioners that gave us the perfect mixture of perspectives on a specific topic.

We have guest speaker sessions on Fridays where established professionals in the industry come and talk to us about topical issues that they are facing. We have been visited by individuals that work in Asset Management and Private Equity. Alumni have even come back to campus to talk to us about their journey. The course has been very practical and that’s what I have found really interesting.

Informed by Industry

An external advisory panel informs the design and development of the course, and comprises senior finance practitioners, reinforcing its relevance to the modern financial world. Our faculty are also supported by a team of international visiting industry speakers and professors who bring the latest thinking and best practice into the classroom.

Course details

The course comprises 10 core modules and four elective modules. This enables you to tailor the programme of study to suit your personal career plan. Throughout the course you will have access to a highly effective infrastructure including Bloomberg live financial news and data, BoardEx, CRSP data, DataStream, EBSCO, FAME, Fitch Connect, SDC Platinum and Thomson One resources. You will use real-world, international case studies to support your learning. The culmination of the learning process is your opportunity to undertake research for your individual thesis.

If COVID-19 restrictions persist into the 2021/22 academic year, our practical and social course activities may be subject to change to ensure your safety and ensure we are compliant with Government guidelines.

Course delivery

Taught modules 60%, Dissertation 40%


You will undertake research for your individual thesis, enabling you to apply the knowledge and skills you have learnt during the course. This provides the opportunity to work in an original way.

Orientation and Pre-session Programme

Orientation week takes place between 28 September and 2 October 2020. If you do not have a background in finance and accounting, you may be required to attend the Introduction to Accounting pre-session course. Please note that the Statistics and the Basic Finance lectures are compulsory for all students.

Introduction to Accounting
This course will introduce you to the basic elements of financial and management accounting techniques to prepare you for the core accounting module. The sessions cover:

  • Accounting information, concepts and standards
  • Preparing financial statements
  • Preparing financial statements - cash flows and adjustments
  • Cost-Volume-Profit analysis
  • Budgeting

Week 1 – Statistics and Basic Finance (compulsory for all students to attend)
The Statistics sessions will help you revise or update your understanding of some statistical concepts that you will use during the Finance and Management MSc and Investment Management MSc. These will cover:

  • Introduction to matrix algebra and descriptive statistics
  • Introduction to basic linear regression analysis

The Basic Finance sessions will introduce you to two essential concepts in finance. You will have the opportunity to update your understanding of how to value assets given forecasts of future cash flows. You will then explore the different sources of finance available to business and discuss their relative importance. The sessions cover:

  • Time value of money
  • Investment and financing

Course modules

Compulsory modules
All the modules in the following list need to be taken as part of this course.


Module Leader
  • Dr Matthias Nnadi

    The module looks at both financial and management accounting. You will be provided with a thorough understanding of company accounts, how they are construed and how to interpret them. Further to this, you will look at and understand the key issues in management accounting from the point of view of business leaders needing to make practical decisions in their organisation.

    • The course is split approximately 50/50 between Financial Accounting and Management Accounting.
    • Financial Accounting covers the preparation and presentation of accounts by firms for outside parties such as shareholders or creditors.  
    • Such preparation is governed by certain fundamental principles and various rules.  
    • Over the first five sessions students will cover these principles and rules in order to understand how the key financial statements (income statement, balance sheet, cash flow statement) are prepared.  
    • The module also covers the interpretation of financial statements.  This involves learning financial ratio analysis and interpreting the information contained in a full set of annual accounts.
    • The last five sessions are devoted to Management Accounting that covers internal accounting by managers for planning and control.  

    Students will cover the nature and classification of costs, break-even analysis, allocation of overheads; preparing and using budgets, variance analysis.

Intended learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module you will understand:

  1. Understand the fundamental principles of financial accounting and be able to prepare key financial statements from basic information.
  2. Be able to analyse and interpret company accounts.
  3. Be able to classify different types of costs and conduct break even analysis.
  4. Understand the different ways in which overheads can be allocated.
  5. Be able to prepare budgets and interpret variances from budget.

Economics for Financial Markets

Module Leader
  • Professor Constantinos Alexiou

    To introduce the concepts and techniques of Microeconomics (e.g. market analysis, price theory, rationality)  and Macroeconomics (e.g. inflation, exchange rates and interest rates) in a way which provides a core foundation for later applied financial analysis in a range of other core and elective courses on the MSc in Finance and Management and MSc in Investment Management. 

    In the Context of the Financial markets, it is imperative that students be aware of the fundamental principles and concepts pertaining to Economic Theory per se. Studying economics not only does it provide knowledge for making decisions but it also offers a tool with which to approach questions such as the desirability of a particular financial investment opportunity, the benefits and costs of alternative careers, or the likely impacts of public policies.


    The initial few sessions are spent on discussion of the concept of equilibrium as it applies to the micro and macro structures of a broad range of financial markets. In next four sessions, an understanding of choice theory and rational economic decision making as it applies to the levels and structure of prices of assets in a broad range of financial markets is developed. Finally, remaining sessions are devoted to discussion of the concepts and ideas in macroeconomics which have a direct relevance to financial markets. Particularly, discussion is centered on understanding of monetary economics and the institutional context to which it applies. Discussion of structure of money and capital markets rounds up this module.

Intended learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module a student should be able to:

  1. An awareness of the concept of equilibrium as it applies to the micro and macro structures of a broad range of financial markets.
  2. An understanding of choice theory and rational economic decision making as it applies to the levels and structure of prices of assets in a broad range of financial markets.
  3. An understanding of monetary economics and the institutional context to which it applies, in particular money and capital markets in the UK and the US.
  4. An ability to use relevant geometric and quantitative models to explain and analyse monetary and financial phenomena.
  5. An ability to apply economic theory to real world problems, e.g. via case study analysis.

Financial Markets Regulation and Ethics

Module Leader
  • Dr Walter Gontarek

    The course begins in Part I with an overview of the international financial markets, the major financial institution participants and product types. Students will understand the roles, motivations and behaviours of market players including the importance of risk-taking. The role of regulation will be highlighted and examined in Part II. This will include the aims and structures of regulation. In Part III, students will examine using a seminal textbook on business ethics the role and limitations of ethics in financial markets, ethical decision-making frameworks, and evaluate real world cases of lapses in culture and impact upon society and the markets. The challenge of identifying and promoting ethical behaviour will be acknowledged.

    • This module will identify key financial intermediaries including banks and non-banks (i.e., FinTech firms, finance companies, mutual banks, multilateral banks, insurers, pensions, hedge funds, retail investors, shadow banks).
    • Financial products overview includes equity, subordinated debt (notably issued by financial institutions including their motivation), senior debt (including loans, bonds) as well as the role and consequences of deposit-taking/money market activities for financial institutions given the regulatory context of this module.
    • The role, advantages and dis-advantages and recent market developments associated with cash versus derivative markets will be identified and discussed.  Lastly, simple securitisations of credit portfolios will be examined both as a funding tool but how it was misused before the crisis in sub-prime markets.
    • Product types identified will include equity and debt (including loans and debt securities), investment banking/advisory, and asset/wealth management. Recent controversies will be looked at in market practice including the scope for market abuse, conflicts of interest, moral hazard, and financial institution misconduct.  Various stakeholders will be identified for the key market types.
    • Students will investigate criticisms of financial market policies and shortcomings of supervision and review the response by regulators, notably in the banking sector for greater capital, more conservative liquidity provisions, and improved risk governance. Key corporate governance theories will be identified. While regulation presents a legal means to mitigate misconduct by institutions and individuals operating in the financial markets, ethical decision-making and an effective risk culture can offer greater hope over time when conventional supervision and law fail to live up to their promise. Two ethical-decision making frameworks will be introduced in a case study format, one from Jennings (2013) and the other via Ferrell et al. (2011).

Intended learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module a student should be able to:

  1. Understand different financial market structures, players including their roles and respective stakeholders
  2. Develop a basic knowledge of key financial markets, major product types, and the scope for misconduct, agency failures and moral hazard
  3. Identify the aims, role and structures to provide financial markets supervision including their limitations and recent criticisms
  4. Identify the key theories for corporate governance and risk governance practices for financial institutions, and how governance mechanism may interact to impact performance or risk-taking
  5. Examine the potential for ethical behaviour and improved conduct to fill the void where law and regulations fail to succeed

Organisational Management

Module Leader
  • Dr Valentina Battista
    • To provide an introduction to the individual and the group in the organisation – how and why people differ - and to introduce frameworks that aid interpersonal understanding, communication and relationships.
    • To introduce the notion of personality and its application.
    • To consider the importance of relationships at work.
    • To introduce the concept of effective teams.
    • To explore the concept of leadership style.
    • To provide an introduction to power, politics and influence in organisations.

    The module covers:

    • Overview of organisational behaviour theory
    • Individual and team characteristics, using Myers-Briggs
    • Leadership and management
    • Organisational power and politics
    • Negotiation skills
    • Presentation skills
Intended learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module a student should be able to:

  1. Identify the factors that affect peoples (including their own) behaviour within teams and organisations.
  2. Present organisational information in persuasive and interesting ways.
  3. Apply a range of leadership and management theories to real-life organisational settings.
  4. Discuss the nature and role of power and politics within organisations.
  5. Apply negotiation skills within organisations.

Research Methods in Finance

Module Leader
  • Dr Vineet Agarwal

    This module is designed to provide participants with the required skills for structuring their research projects including conceptualising research questions and writing literature reviews. The module also imparts a greater understanding of the empirical methods in finance and develops important skills in the assessment, analysis and interpretation of published financial research.

    • This module uses the positivist approach to finance and introduces the need for and validity of empirical models.
    • It will cover formulating research questions, critical review of literature, empirical design, model testing, interpretation of results and acknowledgement of limitations in empirical research designs.
    • During the module we will discuss topics of continuing interest in finance such as asset pricing and efficient markets hypothesis anomalies, capital structure and new issue puzzles, corporate governance, and mergers and acquisitions.
Intended learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module a student should be able to:

  1. Conceptualise research questions
  2. Identify and critically evaluate relevant literature
  3. Understand a range of methodologies employed in empirical finance.
  4. Understand the limitations of empirical methodologies and draw robust conclusions from empirical studies.
  5. Conduct empirical research.

Statistical Analysis for Finance

Module Leader
  • Dr Nemanja Radic

    Finance is a highly quantitative subject and this core programme provides the relevant mathematical and statistical training necessary to be able to conduct appropriate empirical studies and apply theoretical financial models in practice.


    The module will cover probability theory, sampling and estimation, hypothesis testing, analysis of variance, regression analysis, and logistic regression.

Intended learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module a student should be able to: 

  1. Understand a variety of statistical techniques for data analysis.
  2. Learn application of appropriate statistical techniques to analyse a variety of problems in finance.
  3. Understand and appreciate finance theory and related empirical work covered in other subjects within the programme.

Strategic Management

Module Leader
  • Dr Paul Raspin

    Strategic Management is concerned with the direction and scope of the organisation. This involves determining the purpose of the organisation, establishing objectives and formulating strategies to achieve the objectives. It predominantly explores how an organisation positions itself with regard to its changing environment and in particular its competitors, in order to gain and sustain competitive advantage. This means that strategic management considers how an organisation’s internal resources and capabilities can be developed to meet the changing demands of customers, in such a way as to achieve the expectations and objectives of its stakeholders.


    The module begins by focusing on strategy at the strategic business unit level. It is orientated around five key questions 1) where to compete? 2) how to gain competitive advantage? 3) what capabilities are required? 4) what capabilities do we have? 5) how do we change? The module then explores corporate level strategy and the issue of strategy implementation and change. Throughout the module a range of tools and techniques for strategic analysis and choice will be introduced.

Intended learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module a student should be able to:

  1. Describe the key questions and associated challenges to be addressed in formulating an organisation’s competitive and corporate-level strategies.
  2. Appreciate that to sustain competitive advantage an organization must harness its internal resources and capabilities and react appropriately to changes in its external environment.
  3. Appraise and differentiate between corporate, competitive (business unit) and functional strategies.
  4. Critically apply a range of tools and techniques to illuminate the key questions of competitive strategy and corporate strategy.

Valuation and Financial Modelling

Module Leader
  • Dr Vineet Agarwal

    A good understanding of techniques of valuation of firms as well as the different securities issued by firms is vital for managers and financial analysts. This understanding has a bearing on both financing decisions (issue of equity or debt) and investment decisions (identifying securities for inclusion in a portfolio, acquisitions, buy-backs, divestitures etc.). In addition, building sound financial models is critical for understanding and communicating valuations. This course provides the framework for valuing equity and firms as well as financial modelling to aid decision making.


    The module covers:

    • Different valuation approaches: discounted cash flow, relative valuation and residual income valuation framework
    • Estimating the cost of capital using models like CAPM
    • Estimating earnings, cash flows, growth and terminal value
    • Principles of good financial modelling
    • Building a robust financial model
Intended learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module you will understand:/p>

  1. Basic principles of corporate valuation.
  2. Estimating discount rates.
  3. Range of valuation methods.
  4. Assumptions and limitations of valuation models.
  5. Building Valuation models and scenarios using Excel.

International Corporate Finance

Module Leader
  • Professor Sunil Poshakwale

    This module aims to develop a solid understanding of foreign exchange and interest rate risks that multinational corporation encounter. The main focus is on developing insights on how and why these risks arise and what can be done to manage these risks. The other aim is to provide students with commonly used applications of derivatives in managing exchange rate and interest rate risks.


    The initial sessions are used to introduce students to the world of foreign exchange markets, how exchange rates are quoted and interpreted and what role FOREX markets play in the international finance.

    The following sessions are devoted to the detailed discussion of underlying theoretical models which explain the relationship between interest rates, inflation, and other macro-economic variables and the exchange rates. How forward rates are determined in the market and why covered interest rate arbitrage and carry trades occur and how they are used by investors to exploit disequilibrium in the foreign exchange rates. This is followed by the discussion of why and how multinational corporations invest in foreign markets. The key determinants of FDI with a particular emphasis on emerging markets are explored in detail.

    This is followed by discussion of basics of currency derivatives and how they work. The remaining sessions are devoted to the discussion of different types of foreign exchange exposures and how they affect market value. How transaction and operating exposure are managed by both internal hedging techniques and derivatives are discussed in detail using case studies.

    A detailed discussion of how interest rate risks arise and how it affects the multinational corporations is followed by how these risks are managed. Students learn about interest rate and currency swaps, how they are set up and how they are valued. The final sessions are used for discussion of international capital budgeting process, how it is done and how key risks need to be considered and managed.

Intended learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module a student should be able to understand:

  1. Discuss relationship between interest rates, inflation and purchasing power parity and exchange rate.
  2. Identify and discuss different types of foreign exchange exposures.
  3. Analyse interest rate and exchange risks and application of different types of derivatives for managing these risks.
  4. Evaluate the issues for multinational firms in their international capital budgeting decisions.
  5. Apply knowledge through a Business simulation.

Corporate Finance

Module Leader
  • Professor Yacine Belghitar

    This core module provides a foundation in the essentials of corporate financial management. The course focuses on three principal aspects of corporate finance: the investment decision; the cost of capital; and the financing and payout decisions. Based on recent theoretical and empirical developments, the course explores the framework in which corporations make their financial and investment decisions.

    • The Objective Function for Corporations
    • Corporate Governance
    • Making Investment Decisions with the NPV Rule
    • Valuing Bonds and Common Stocks
    • Introduction to Risk and Return
    • Portfolio Theory and the CAPM
    • How Corporations Issue Securities
    • Capital Structure
    • Payout Policy
Intended learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module a student should be able to:

  1. Describe the impact of the separation of corporate ownership, management and control.
  2. Understand the concept of the time value of money and the theoretical justifications for using discounted cash flow techniques in project appraisal.
  3. Be aware of the range of investment appraisal techniques including traditional as well as discounted cash flow methods.
  4. Appreciate and incorporate risk in project appraisal and investment.
  5. Discuss the factors a company should take into account in determining the firm’s capital structure and dividend policy.

Elective modules
A selection of modules from the following list need to be taken as part of this course

Applied Financial Econometrics

Module Leader
  • Professor Yacine Belghitar

    To provide the participants with a solid knowledge of a variety of econometric techniques, useful in modelling and solving financial problems.


    The module covers:

    • Extensions to Multiple Regression Analysis covered in the course Statistical Analysis in Finance
    • Relaxing the assumptions of the classical model: multicollinearity, heteroscedasticity and autocorrelation
    • Panel data analysis
    • Stochastic regressors and the method of instrumental variables
    • Stationarity, Unit Roots and Cointegration in Time Series
    • ARCH/GARCH Models
Intended learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module a student should be able to:

  1. Model financial problems, using econometric techniques.
  2. Understand the advantages and limitations of regression analysis.
  3. Use a number of tools designed to improve financial modelling.
  4. Use a system of equations to solve problems that occur simultaneously.
  5. Investigate the properties of financial data and understand their influence on financial modelling.

Corporate Restructuring

Module Leader
  • Professor Yacine Belghitar

    This elective is concerned with firms that for a variety of reasons experience serious performance decline and begin to destroy value rather than create it. Such firms are generally described as financially distressed firms although the causes of their decline are not entirely financial. The course focuses on some of the most prominent types of corporate restructuring such as debt restructuring, equity restructuring, and corporate spin-offs.  The course will also focus on transactions significantly affecting the corporation’s assets, liabilities and/or equity claims and will stress the economic motives for undertaking them. Transactions will be examined from the perspective of the corporation (e.g., firm managers), from the perspective of capital markets (e.g., investors, stockholders, creditors) as well as from the perspective of the society.


    The module covers:

    • Definition, nature and causes of corporate restructuring.
    • Strategies for corporate turnaround and corporate renewal – operational, strategic, managerial, organisational and financial restructuring.
    • Framework for turnaround strategy choices.
    • Effectiveness of restructuring strategies – measuring effectiveness, empirical evidence.
    • Corporate insolvency and reorganisation – insolvency and bankruptcy regimes in the UK, US, Continental Europe and other countries; empirical evidence on reorganisation.
Intended learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module a student should be able to:

  1. The circumstances under which companies undertake to restructure themselves;
  2. The proximate causes, nature and scope of such restructuring;
  3. The financial consequences of restructuring for various stakeholders such as different types of lenders, shareholders, the board of directors and managers and how they generate conflicts of interests among them;
  4. The criteria for successful restructuring and reorganisation of firms in bankruptcy/ administration.

Entrepreneurial Finance

Module Leader
  • Dr Andrea Moro

    This module focuses on financing issues faced small business ventures/entrepreneurial firms. It explores the issues from the perspective of the entrepreneur, the investors and the providers of debt finance. The module aims to provide students with awareness and understanding of the risk incurred by investing in an entrepreneurial firms (entrepreneurs, providers of equity and providers of debt). It also allows for a thorough examination and evaluation of alternative financing strategies that small/entrepreneurial ventures can pursue by exploring different financial tools. The students will also explore aspects of deal negotiations and deal structures.

    • Overview of the entrepreneurial venture and its peculiarities.
    • Identifying and valuing entrepreneurial opportunities and related risk.
    • Equity funding (entrepreneur’s finance, bootstrap finance, business angels, venture capital, etc.).
    • Debt finance (trade credit, short term finance, factoring, long term finance, leasing)
    • Innovative finance (Crowdfunding, ICOs)
    • Growth and exit strategies.
Intended learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module a student should be able to:

  1. Critically discuss the peculiarities of entrepreneurial ventures and how they affect entrepreneurs’, investors’ and banks’ decision about financing entrepreneurial ventures.
  2. Appreciate the critical role that financing plays in new venture creation (in terms of start-up survival and firm’s growth).
  3. Critically apply the various sources of financing available to small business ventures.
  4. Formulate a deal structure for an entrepreneurial venture.
  5. Critically assess different investment harvesting alternatives.

Private Equity


    Private equity differs from public equity, which is generally the focus in corporate finance. Private equity has become a major source of capital for innovation, growth and corporate restructuring. To succeed as a PE professional, one needs to embrace and tackle various challenges relating to the financing of the company, its operations and the entrepreneurial & uncertain nature of business venturing. The module will cover the nature of and rationale for PE investing, the spectrum of PE activities and the potential conflicts among stakeholders. Another focus will be on value creation programmes to generate PE fund returns.

    • The PEQ cycle, from fund raising to investing and exiting.
    • Strategies to create firm value in private equity: due diligence, operational concept, exit strategies.
    • Measures to align interests among stakeholders in PE.
Intended learning outcomes

Upon successful completion of this module, a student will be able to:

  1. Specify the idiosyncrasies of PE investments from the perspective of investors in this asset class.
  2. Describe and distinguish the various types of PE investment: venture capital, buyouts, restructuring, etc.
  3. Propose concrete measures through which private equity firms can enhance the value of their portfolio companies.
  4. Design a due diligence programme to assess the risks involved in a particular proposed PE transaction.

Strategic Management Accounting and Control

Module Leader
  • Professor Michael Bourne

    The module is designed to give the students a thorough understanding of what is meant by organisational performance and the theories of control, performance measurement and management. The module will encourage students to consider the applications of direction setting and management control systems, why organisations measure, how performance measure set direction and how performance is delivered.

    The aims of this module are twofold:

    • For the students to fully understand what is organisational performance in different areas and levels of an organisation.
    • For the students to fully understand theories of control and performance measurement and to equipped them to critique and apply tools and systems in different organisational settings.
    • Control theory and control systems
    • Managing Performance
    • Measuring performance
    • Performance measurement and management systems
    • Managing risk in context
Intended learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module a student should be able to:

Demonstrate a critical awareness of and critically assess:

  1. The effects control systems can have on an organisation.
  2. The ontology of performance, theories of control and measurement.

Demonstrate the ability to apply:

  1. Tools and techniques to performance measure and manage an organisation
  2. Tools and techniques for guiding the implementation of strategy

Contribute to governance, performance and risk management policies within an organisation.

Mergers and Acquisitions

Module Leader
  • Dr Andrea Moro
  • Professor Ruth Bender

    The module is designed to introduce students to the issues raised by corporate mergers and acquisitions. The subject is one that calls on the services of many professionals including company executives involved in the initial search and screening of candidates, investment bankers and stockbrokers who may advise on bid tactics, dealing with regulations and raising finance. The module integrates various technical skills learned earlier in the MSc programme such as accounting, corporate finance, and valuation.

    • Theoretical rationale of M&A
    • Empirical evidence in M&A
    • The strategic analysis of an M&A
    • The role of competition and Shareholder protection regulation
    • Merger Financing
    • Merger Valuation
Intended learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module a student should be able to:

  1. Critically assess the financial, strategic and political motivations driving mergers and acquisitions.
  2. Discuss and evaluate the regulations on competition and shareholders’ protection and their impact on merger and acquisition.
  3. Critically evaluate alternative valuation techniques to assess a deal.
  4. Examine and assess the strategic and managerial implications of methods of payment.
  5. Discuss measure of acquisition performance.

Fund Management


    This elective aims to take students beyond security analysis and into the broader topic of investment management, and how portfolios can be constructed to meet client objectives. Students will come away with a deeper understanding of how investment managers differ from each other, how to assess them, and an appreciation of the issues involved in setting realistic risk and return objectives. We look at how managers design their decision making processes, including asset allocation, risk budgeting, and implementation and trading. 

    The investment management industry has often appeared opaque to outsiders, in spite of the fact that most of us are or will be its clients in one way or another. The purpose of this elective is to shed light into the workings of an industry that affects us all, and to look at how theory is actually implemented in practice, and consider the latest developments in the industry.


    This module will cover:

    • Overview of the institutional investment management industry; industry structure, clienteles; regulation and governance.
    • Types of manager; internal organizational structure; active and passive management; hedge funds; quantitative managers; managers of managers.
    • Portfolio construction; factor models, building a decision-making process; sources of added value; the information ratio and the fundamental law of active management; risk budgeting; style analysis; setting realistic risk and return targets.
    • Implementation issues. Managing the trading function; measuring frictional costs; how much turnover makes sense; how much capacity in terms of assets under management does the manager have to add value?
    • Contemporary asset allocation and the move towards outcome based investing.
    • Performance measurement techniques and interpreting fund performance.
    • Choosing an investment manager.

Intended learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module a student should be able to:

  1. Understand how investment managers construct portfolios including asset allocation decisions.
  2. Understand the arguments for and against active and passive management and the different styles of active management for bond and equity funds.
  3. Assess critically a manager’s investment decision-making process, and delve into how managers attempt to add value.
  4. Evaluate the performance of fund managers and interpret fund reports.
  5. Consider trends in the industry, including greater use of solutions-driven investment, separation of alpha and beta, and factor investing.

Fixed Interest Securities

Module Leader
  • Dr Vineet Agarwal

    The global bond market exceeds $36 trillion which is more than the world’s stock markets. The market has become increasingly quantitative due to the proliferation of new products. Combined with increased volatility of financial prices and exposure to new sources of risk, there are now greater risks and opportunities for fixed income portfolio management.

    This module provides the participants with a solid grounding in the mechanics of fixed income markets and introduces them to bond portfolio management techniques.


    The module will cover bond mathematics, product fundamentals, the structure of the yield curve and yield spreads, risks of investing in bonds, bonds with embedded options, securitisation, interest rate derivatives and basics of bond portfolio management.

Intended learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module you will understand:

  1. The risks involved in fixed interest securities and how to price fixed rate and floating rate bonds;
  2. Duration and convexity of bonds and their use in hedging and investment;
  3. The term structure of interest rates and using yield curve to price fixed rate bonds;
  4. Basic analytics for bonds with embedded options; and
  5. The basics of active and passive bond portfolio management.

Technical Analysis and Trading Systems


    Technical analysis is the method of identifying investment opportunities by analysing historical price and volume data. Quantitative methods for evaluating price movements have become the dominant method used for short term forecasting of prices of all traded assets including stocks, bonds, currency and commodities. Technical analysis has become much more than simply identifying trends from charts, it encompasses inter-market analysis, complex indicators, aspects of portfolio construction and multilevel risk control. It is estimated that well over half the managed money uses algorithmic trading. This module covers the basic building blocks of Technical analysis and allows students to develop their own trading strategies by recognising recurring patterns in price movement and determining the most likely result. 


    This module covers:

    • Introduction to charting and Dow theory
    • Charting systems and techniques
    • Identifying trading signals through regression analysis
    • Momentum and oscillators
    • Seasonality and cyclicality
    • Volumes, spreads and arbitrage
    • Adaptive techniques of Technical Analysis
    • Trading systems testing and risk control
    • Portfolio diversification and asset allocation

Intended learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module a student should be able to: 

  1. Have a comprehensive understanding of theories and techniques of Technical Analysis.
  2. Be able to construct charts and test trading rules using real financial data.
  3. Understand how statistical tools such as regression analysis can be used for forecasting with technical indicators.
  4. Critically assess the performance of technical forecasters and forecasting systems.
  5. Develop the ability to select and apply practical techniques for trading.

International Investment and Emerging Markets

Module Leader
  • Professor Sunil Poshakwale

    The landscape of international investing has been constantly evolving. The historical dominance of the developed countries has been declining whilst the relative importance of developing countries with their emerging economies has been on the rise. The high rates of economic growth and access to their large markets have attracted international investors to invest in emerging markets. However, despite these trends, there is not enough known or understood about the opportunities and challenges that international investors face while investing in emerging markets. The aim of this elective is to provide students with a good understanding of rewards and risks of investing in emerging markets.  The module aims to offer both academic research and practical guidance on investing in emerging markets. The module also aims to explain why policies and regulations matter and how to risks can be managed.

    • Understanding  the Emerging Markets
    • Reasons for Investing in Emerging Markets: Growth and Diversification
    • How to Invest in Emerging Markets
    • The risks involved and their management: Boom to Bust: How, When, and Why?
    • Long- and short-term perspectives of investing in emerging markets
Intended learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module a student should be able to:

  1. Understand how and why countries are categorised as emerging markets;
  2. Research, evaluate and reflect on the investment opportunities and benefits of investing in emerging markets;
  3. Appraise the different investment styles and routes that can be used for investing in emerging markets;
  4. Appraise risks & challenges while investing in emerging markets.
  5. Reflect on the practical relevance of academic research on emerging markets.

Blockchain, Cryptocurrencies and Smart Contracts

Module Leader
  • Dr Andrea Moro

    This module covers three aspects of FinTech:

    1. Blockchain technology
    2. Cryptocurrencies
    3. Smart contracts

    The aim of the module is to explain how technology is revolutionising the financial context in particular. The first part of the module provides a short technical introduction to the blockchain technology and explains the principles of its operation. In addition, this part investigates the disruptive potential of this technology with respect to the current structure of the financial system and the regulatory context.

    The second part of the module builds on the application of blockchain technology to cryptocurrencies and tokens and how they work. In particular, it explores their current popularity, advantages and risks; ethical implications in terms of fraudulent or criminal use; and the use of cryptocurrencies as an investment tool.

    The last part of the module explores the application of blockchain technology to smart contracts. In particular, it introduces the principles of smart contracts; examines their advantages and risks; and discusses the implications of smart contracts for business and finance.


    The module covers:

    • Overview of the blockchain technology
      • The use of blockchain technology in finance
      • Ledgers in interbank transactions
    • Cryptocurrencies and tokens: structure and use
      • As currencies
      • As investment tools
      • As a vehicle for raising capital
    • Smart contracts: structure and use
    • Ethical and regulatory issues related to blockchain technology
    • Blockchain applications beyond finance
Intended learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module a student should be able to:

  1. Understand the fundamental principles of financial accounting and prepare key financial statements from basic information.
  2. Analyse and interpret company accounts.
  3. Classify different types of costs and conduct break even analysis.
  4. Understand the different ways in which overheads can be allocated.
  5. Prepare budgets and interpret variances from budget.


Keeping our courses up-to-date and current requires constant innovation and change. The modules we offer reflect the needs of business and industry and the research interests of our staff. As a result, they may change or be withdrawn due to research developments, legislation changes or for a variety of other reasons. Changes may also be designed to improve the student learning experience or to respond to feedback from students, external examiners, accreditation bodies and industrial advisory panels.

To give you a taster, we have listed above the compulsory and elective (where applicable) modules which are currently affiliated with this course. All modules are indicative only, and may be subject to change for your year of entry.


The course content covers much of the syllabus of the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) qualification, giving you the opportunity to work towards an additional professional qualification while you are studying with us through the CFA Institute University Affiliation Program. If you choose this option, you will receive revision support from our faculty ahead of sitting the first examination in term three of your course. You can then sit parts two and three of the qualification after completing your course. More information about the CFA Institute University Affiliation Program and associated CFA Program Awareness Scholarships can be found on the CFA website.

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Your career

We are ranked second in the UK for graduate employment (DLHE longitudinal survey, 2017).

The Cranfield Career Development Service offers a comprehensive service to help you develop a set of career management skills that will remain with you throughout your career.

During your course you will receive support and guidance to help you plan an effective strategy for your personal and professional development, whether you are looking to secure your first management role, or wanting take your career to the next level.

Cranfield graduates are highly valued in the job market and aim for careers in investment banking, financial services or the financial function of a diverse range of global corporations. Our Finance and Management MSc graduates have secured jobs with organisations including PricewaterhouseCoopers, Barclays Investment Bank, Bloomberg, Bank Indonesia, Lloyds Banking Group, Credit Agricole, Diageo, Ernst & Young, Thomson Reuters, Toyota, UBS and Morgan Stanley. Their roles have included Data Analyst, Financial Planner, Consultant, Private Equity Analyst and Financial Risk Manager.

How to apply

Our students do not always fit traditional academic or career paths. We consider this to be a positive aspect of diversity, not a hurdle. We are looking for a body of professional learners who have a wide range of experiences to share. If you are unsure of your suitability for our Finance and Management MSc programme we are happy to review your details and give you feedback before you make a formal application.

To apply you will need to register to use our online system. Once you have set up an account you will be able to create, save and amend your application form before submitting it.

Application deadlines

There is a high demand for places on our courses and we recommend you submit your application as early as possible. The following application deadlines apply.

Entry for September 2021

  • Applicants domiciled in mainland China must submit their applications by Monday 31 May 2021.
  • Applications from all other international and European students requiring a visa to study in the UK must submit their application by Friday 30 July 2021.
  • There is no application deadline for Home/EU applicants, but places are limited so we recommend you submit your application as early as possible.

Once your online application has been submitted together with your supporting documentation, it will be processed by our admissions team. You will then be advised by email if you are successful, unsuccessful, or whether the course director would like to interview you before a decision is made. Applicants based outside of the UK may be interviewed either by telephone or video conference.