Banking and Finance - MSc
- Mode of study
- Full time, Part time
- Start date
- September 2021, January 2022
- Duration of Study
- 1 year / up to 20 months with entrepreneurship or placement pathway 2 years part-time / up to 24 to 36 months depending on pathway
- Subject Area
- Business and Management
- FEES (2021/22 academic year)
- UK - FT £9,750 / PT £5,370
- EU/International - £18,000
The financial services is arguably the global economy’s most important influential sectors with banks considered to be the life-blood of the modern economy. With advances in technology streamlining operations, improving customer service and fraud detection, set against increasing regulation following the major financial crises, there is a strong demand for professionals with advanced analytical and technical skills. Taking advantage of our Bloomberg Finance Lab, our new hands-on MSc Banking and Finance focuses on the business practices, banking client relations, professional and computing skills required to succeed in banking and finance in a digital age.
- Keele is ranked 3rd in the UK for business by the Postgraduate Taught Experience Survey (PTES 2019).
- Curriculum tracks key modules of the Chartered Bankers Institute (CBI) syllabus required to gain the Advanced Diploma in Banking and Leadership in a Digital Age– and we’ll pay your CBI membership fee.
- Opportunity to apply for Associated Chartered Banker status on successful completion of the MSc after accreditation can be sought.*
- Access to our Bloomberg Suite with all its economic, financial and business real-time data, world news, analyses and reports from the world’s biggest financial organisations.
- Hands on testing of theories and methods via extensive use of databases and advanced software packages.
- Option to complete the Bloomberg Market Concepts (BMC) certificate free of charge.
- Large choice of optional modules allows you to tailor your studies to match your interests.
- Gain substantial practical experience through a consultancy project or work placement.**
- Get paid to work alongside an academic expert on a ‘live’ research project to help local SMEs bring innovative products and services to market quicker through Keele Research and Innovation Support Programme (KRISP).
* Courses must run for at least one yea (full-time) and two years (part-time) before an institution can apply for CBI accreditation.
**Please note that our students’ health and wellbeing is paramount, therefore contact and work-based activities have been suspended due to the global pandemic.
About the course
One of the oldest industries still in existence, ever since the first bartering and exchange systems the role of banking has been constantly evolving. Now, ground-breaking technology – the driving force behind new developments like digital lending, neobanking, automated and personalised customer experiences – is making a career in the financial services more exciting and rewarding than ever before.
Fundamental to the design of our programme is the emphasis on practical skills needed to work in the banking sector. While learning about retail and private banking, banking regulations, capital markets, econometric analysis and finance in a global markets, you’ll tackle multiple financial scenarios and work with real-world data in our state-of-the-art Bloomberg Suite, which features industry-leading technology and information captured from the world’s largest financial organisations.
You will develop a rigorous understanding of modern banking challenges faced by industry and wider society, following the latest research in the field of banking and finance.
Studying alongside a diverse international body of students from a wide range of national and social backgrounds, you will develop as a global citizen, vital in today’s globalised world of work. You will expand your professional networks and learn to appreciate different cultural backgrounds and personalities.
This MSc Banking and Finance will be suited to those aspiring to or currently working within the banking sector and wider financial services. Achieving this qualification will demonstrate to employers here in the UK and overseas that you have advanced your knowledge in financial management, particularly in core banking activities, financial planning, investment, liquidity and risk management.
Content of this master’s degree has been purposefully designed to meet the criteria set out by the Chartered Banker Institute (CBI). It is our intention to apply for accreditation as soon as the relevant conditions to do so have been met.* Long-term, if you want to progress up the ranks within retail banking or corporate/private banking, Chartered Banker status is considered the ‘gold’ standard. Holders of the title are recognised as highly qualified, professionals with a detailed knowledge of the modern banking sector and its ethical and professional requirements.
* Courses must run for at least one yea (full-time) and two years (part-time) before an institution can apply for CBI accreditation.
What you'll learn
With a focus on the challenges faced by banks, insurance companies and other financial services in dynamic and competitive environments, you will learn to appreciate and evaluate the role that global finance plays in addressing these challenges.
Course content is kept up-to-date through ongoing analysis of industry developments, for example, in digital banking and green finance, examining the impact of digital technology on how modern banking is developing and how banks are adapting to meet the needs of climate change.
You will master the ability to solve complex banking and finance related problems, learning how to integrate and apply financial and risk management decisions into coherent plans. In doing so, you will develop a wide-ranging set of skills sought after by the financial services sector, ranging from critical analysis and interpretation to implementation of complex financial models using data taken from Bloomberg.
Moreover, this programme tracks the syllabus for the Advanced Diploma in Banking and Leadership in a Digital Age of the Chartered Institute of Bankers (CBI). On completion, you will be prepared to sit for the Diploma and be on track to meet the academic requirements to be a professional banker.
You will study a variety of core and optional taught modules in Semesters 1 and 2. You will then undertake a large project to further develop your knowledge in a specific area of marketing.
Banking and Finance module structure
- Economics for Investment Analysis and Business. You’ll gain an understanding of the fundamental economic forces that shape the global economic order and global trade, exploring both micro and macroeconomics from the perspective of the investment industry. You will learn the importance of the currency market in ensuring successful capital markets, and the impact of human labour on economic growth and government policies to ensure economic growth and investments.
- Financial Ethics and Regulations. We consider the importance of ethics and trust which sit at the core of the financial services sector. You’ll develop insight and the skills required to critically analyse the pre-requisite ethical standards, alongside a solid understanding of the legal and regulatory requirements that forms the basis of the industry.
- Bank Operations and Strategy. This module provides an overview of modern banking and its impact on wider society. You’ll gain insights into the factors that contribute to successful banking operations, as well as an understanding of the importance of customers to banks and how managing the relationship with customers contributes to overall success.
- Portfolio Management and Investment Analysis.You will learn to apply modern portfolio theory, starting with a background to the portfolio industry and the basic building blocks of modern portfolio theory. You’ll examine the performance of single and multi-factor investment models, learning to assess the performance of portfolio managers in the context of market risk. Finally, you’ll be introduced to modern behavioural finance and briefly explore hedge fund strategies.
- Bank Risk Management. This module examines the risks facing banks from different angles and consider the cultural environment in which banks operate in. You will explore risk both from a qualitative and a quantitative perspective, together with the in-depth calculations which need to be performed by banks to meet their regulatory risk management requirements.
- FinTech and Mobile Banking. Designed to provide insight into the current digital revolution and how it is radically changing the financial services of the future, this module starts by examining the underlying technology, namely the Blockchain and how this is used for digital currencies and digital banking. You will also gain an appreciation of how cybersecurity challenges lie at the heart of digital banking and digital finance.
- Research Methods
You will choose two of the following:
- Multinational Accounting and Control
- Contemporary Issues in Accounting
- Derivative Instruments. Introducing you to the modern multi-trillion-dollar derivative markets, you’ll learn about the different types of derivative instruments widely traded in the derivatives markets, as well as those developed for specific needs. You will explore the complex valuation techniques which have been developed to manage derivatives. Finally, you’ll learn how derivative instruments can be used to manage complex market positions and the catastrophic losses that may occur if they are misunderstood and misapplied.
- Fixed Income Securities and Credit Risk. This module tracks the CFA syllabus on fixed income securities. It provides in-depth insight into the valuation and management of the fixed income market, preparing you to sit for the CFA professional exam. Moreover, it also explores the latest methodologies to assess and measure credit risk. Finally, you’ll develop an in-depth understanding of the potential losses that can accrue due to the failures in the fixed income market.
- International Financial Reporting
- Green Finance. Studying this module will provide you with key insights into the key roles that will be played by the capital markets and financial services firms, such as banks and insurance companies, in transitioning to a sustainable world. You will examine key scientific evidence and core factors behind climate change, going on to consider some of the unique financial products developed to mitigate its impact, such as green bonds.
After you have completed the taught modules, you will undertake an independent project to further develop your knowledge in a specific area of management or to tackle a specific management issue within an organisation, all of which is designed to enhance your employability and research skills. You will choose one of the options below:
· Economics for Investment Analysis and Business
You’ll gain an understanding of the fundamental economic forces that shape the global economic order and global trade, exploring both micro and macroeconomics from the perspective of the investment industry. You will learn the importance of the currency market in ensuring successful capital markets, and the impact of human labour on economic growth and government policies to ensure economic growth and investments.
· Financial Ethics and Regulations
We consider the importance of ethics and trust which sit at the core of the financial services sector. You’ll develop insight and the skills required to critically analyse the pre-requisite ethical standards, alongside a solid understanding of the legal and regulatory requirements that forms the basis of the industry.
· Bank Operations and Strategy
This module provides an overview of modern banking and its impact on wider society. You’ll gain insights into the factors that contribute to successful banking operations, as well as an understanding of the importance of customers to banks and how managing the relationship with customers contributes to overall success.
· Portfolio Management and Investment Analysis
You will learn to apply modern portfolio theory, starting with a background to the portfolio industry and the basic building blocks of modern portfolio theory. You’ll examine the performance of single and multi-factor investment models, learning to assess the performance of portfolio managers in the context of market risk. Finally, you’ll be introduced to modern behavioural finance and briefly explore hedge fund strategies.
The research dissertation is a formal written academic project of between 15,000 and 20,000 words, making it ideal preparation for future academic research at MPhil or PhD level or for the report-writing and scrutiny expected of senior management professionals. Taking inspiration from your own interests, and with support throughout from a supervisor with relevant expertise, you’ll choose a topic to research in the field of marketing. To give you an idea, it could be anything from country perceptions of outdoor guerrilla marketing to a comparison between charity and corporate marketing strategies.
During June and September, you will spend eight to 12 weeks undertaking a marketing research project on behalf of an organisation (chosen by Keele Business School). You’ll put into practice what you’ve learned, developing and applying your skills to solve a business problem, issue or focus on a specific project. As part of the eventual assessment, you’ll present your findings to the host organisation, exactly as you would do within the workplace. As an example, one student worked with a pet food company to explore new and innovative marketing techniques to promote their brand, while another undertook research and developed a marketing plan and social media campaign for fire training facilities. We also had one student help an online retail company develop and relaunch its brand, with another developing PR and marketing activities for a local arts centre.
Please note that participation in the Consultancy Project is only available after a comprehensive selection process. Please view our terms and conditions to find out more.
Entrepreneurship pathway (UK students)
An excellent opportunity if you have an idea for a new business venture, this module will provide you with the time, space and expertise to develop it. For between six to 12 months, you’ll be given the option of a base within the Smart Innovation Hub and have access to workshops and guidance from a network of entrepreneurs and business advisers. During this time, you’ll complete a portfolio of evidence on your idea and present this to an external stakeholder. Places are limited, and you will be required to undertake an interview prior to acceptance on this module. The Entrepreneurship Pathway is only available to UK students due to visa restrictions. Please view our terms and conditions to find our more.
In an increasingly competitive job market, employers are looking to recruit employees who have high-level knowledge, skills and workplace experience. With support from the School’s Placement Officer, you will gain first-hand professional experience on a suitable, paid work placement for between six to 12 months. During your placement, you will be required to complete an extended project on behalf of the organisation. As part of the eventual assessment, you’ll present your findings to the host organisation, exactly as you would do within the workplace. Studying an MSc in Marketing could lead to a wide variety of potential placements in Public Relations, Advertising, Social Media Management, and Market Research. Your placement can be based anywhere in the UK giving you the opportunity to work with local, national and international organisations.
Students who require a Visa to study in the UK may be able to add in a work placement depending upon the programme. The ability to add a work placement is dependent upon the UK Immigration rules at the time of the request. It may be that for some programmes students will not have the option to request a placement period to be added to their programme before they arrive in the UK and would need to apply for a new Visa. There is no guarantee that a placement will be provided and that students who have a Visa are subject to a number of restrictions on the type of work, including placements they can undertake.
How the course is taught
Our teaching and learning strategy is wide-ranging and innovative, seeking to give you a rich learning environment that draws actively upon leading edge research, as well as current business practice. It includes traditional lectures, workshops and small group tutorials and innovative approach of flipped classes which, through debate, discussion and case study, will encourage you to become a socially responsible business thinker.
A key strength of our programme is our commitment to developing your critical thinking and practical skills, whether you are preparing for an academic or professional career. The carefully designed modules combined with research and other placement-related projects will give you valuable insight into the interface between theory and real-world accounting practice
You will gain hands-on experience of terminal function and portfolio management, practising some of the core financial concepts, such as economic indicators, currencies, fixed income and equities, in the Bloomberg Suite.
Bloomberg’s professional service is a powerful platform for financial professionals that delivers real-time data and news and contains a wide range of analytical tools for asset valuation and portfolio and risk management. This platform is used by banks and other financial services organisations in their daily operations. You have the option to gain the Bloomberg Marketing Concepts (BMC) certificate, which will enable you to work as an investor analyst, banker, financial analyst, policy advisor or academic.
Our Grand Challenges lecture series invites speakers to provide fresh perspectives on the political, ethical and intellectual problems we face as a world today, while our Lunchtime Lectures centre on leadership in the context of complexity and inclusion.
Teaching takes place over the first two semesters. There are no formal group classes during Semester 3, but you consult with supervisors and access the University’s learning and teaching facilities and support services.
- Semester 1 runs from the end of September to the end of January, with an assessment period in January.
- Semester 2 runs from the last week of January to the middle of June, with the assessment period in June.
- Semester 3 runs from June to the end of September.
How you'll be assessed
Assessment is varied and includes the use of group and individual essays, reports, presentations, exams and practical projects. Most modules combine multiple forms of assessment.
Where possible, assessment is designed to reflect skills and practices in the workplace, including team working, idea generation, critical thinking, problem solving, meeting deadlines and so on, so you get a feel for the pressures of everyday working life. You may, for example, be tasked with preparing a report and presentation on how to measure the performance of a real company by accessing financial and non-financial data from Bloomberg.
Academic entry requirements
Undergraduate degree in any subject with second class lower (2:2) or an international equivalent. We will also consider students with equivalent industrial work experience.
English Language Entry Requirement for International Students
IELTS 6.5 with a minimum of 5.5 in each component. The University also accepts a range of internationally recognised English tests. If you do not meet the English language requirements, the University offers a range of English language preparation programmes. During your degree programme you can study additional English language courses. This means you can continue to improve your English language skills and gain a higher level of English.
Fees and scholarships
Fees (2021/22 academic year)
UK students FT £9,750 / PT £5,370 per year
EU/International students £18,000 per year
Some travel costs may be incurred if an external project or placement is undertaken; any such costs will be discussed with you before a project is confirmed. It will be possible for you to select an internal project and that would not incur any additional travel costs. There may be additional costs for textbooks and inter-library loans.
Keele University is located on a beautiful, extensive and secure campus and has all the facilities of a small town. Student accommodation, shops, restaurants and cafes are all within walking distance of the teaching buildings. This is a very cost effective way to live and to reduce your living costs.
Scholarships and Funding
The University is committed to rewarding excellence and potential. Each year we offer a range of prestigious scholarships;
UK/EU students - more information on scholarships and funding
International students - more information on scholarships and funding
KBS staff have extensive teaching, research and industrial experience in a variety of fields both in the UK and internationally. The School maintains a strong commitment to excellence and innovation in teaching and research. Our staff members have substantial teaching experience and are committed to continuing professional development; some are members (Fellows/Senior Fellows) of the Higher Education Academy. All of our lecturers have PhDs or equivalent, and hold professional qualifications.
The programme team maintains a strong commitment to excellence, innovation and multi-culture in teaching and research. Teaching is informed by research with all teaching staff presenting and publishing academic papers at national and international conferences, in books and in internationally ranked accounting, economics, finance and management journals.
The course is run from Keele Business School’s new home – the Denise Coates Foundation Building – a state-of-the-art facility complete with 220-seat lecture theatre, a ‘think lab’ study space, data laboratory, cafe and business lounge.
Home to our accounting, business management, economics, finance, HRM, international business, management and marketing programmes, our Business School is the first to be located on a Science Park. As well as new teaching spaces, our building is unique in that it is also home to the Smart Innovation Hub, a project part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), which includes space and support programmes for innovation-led businesses, providing opportunities for students and staff to work collaboratively with entrepreneurs and business owners, gaining invaluable networks and experience.
You’ll have access to the Bloomberg Suite with all its economic, financial and business real-time data, world news, analyses and reports from the world’s biggest financial organisations. You can choose to complete the Bloomberg Market Concepts (BMC) certificate free of charge, an eight-hour e-learning, self-paced course which covers economic Indicators, currencies, fixed income and equities.
Based in the heart of England, Keele University is easily accessible by motorway and public transport. You’ll find everything’s on your doorstep, with the most important facilities gathered together at the centre of campus, which, at over 600 acres, is the biggest in the UK.
Recognised for the highest quality teaching, the University was awarded Gold in the Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF), while 97% of our research is classed as world-leading or of international importance (REF 2014). In the global top 20 for campus sustainability, environmental and corporate responsibility underpin the running of our own business and these themes are embedded into our teaching of future professionals and leaders.
This Master’s degree will deepened your knowledge and understanding of the role and operational behaviour of banks in a modern economy and the current challenges and issues facing banks, financial markets and investors.
As a graduate of this programme, you will be well prepared for senior positions in banking, asset management, pension funds, regulators and financial institutions. Graduates from Keele Business School work for major employers including the Bank of England, Campus Group, Grant Thornton and Eastern International University Vietnam.
Our educational programmes and the learning environment at Keele is designed to help you to develop further as a well-rounded postgraduate and a critical thinker who is capable of making a positive and valued contribution in a complex and rapidly changing global world, whichever spheres of life you engage in during and after your studies at Keele.
Team building, group work, research, presentations and projects will help you develop essential skills, such as business planning, decision-making, problem-solving, communication, delegation and time management.
Should you wish to continue your studies, you’ll be placed to pursue further postgraduate studies at MPhil or PhD level.
Our graduates obtained positions as:
- Accounting Director
- Audit Manager
- Chartered Accountant
- Chief Financial Officer
- Finance Manager
- Financial Advisor
- Financial Analysts
- Financial Controller
- Professional Banker