Postgraduate study

Computational Mathematical Finance MSc

Awards: MSc

Study modes: Full-time

Funding opportunities

The courses, like Machine Learning in Python and Reinforcement learning, honed my programming skills and helped me gain deeper insights into applying machine learning techniques to finance. I believe every student can find courses that align with their interest in the programme.

Galen Cao MSc Computational Mathematical Finance, 2020/21
Galen Cao               MSc Computational Mathematical Finance, 2020/21

The MSc in Computational Mathematical Finance (CMF) is a dynamic new programme with the aim to deliver high quality training in the theory of Mathematical Finance with strong emphasis on computational methods.

Currently graduates in this field are expected to have a working knowledge of advanced computational finance (including construction of algorithms and programming skills) as well as a sound knowledge of the theory of Probability and Stochastic Analysis. These are the core theories needed in the modern valuation of complex financial instruments.

This MSc programme delivers:

  • a flexible programme of study relevant to the needs of employers such as: top investment banks, hedge funds and asset management firms
  • a solid knowledge in financial derivative pricing, risk management and portfolio management
  • the transferable computational skills required by the modern quantitative finance world

Links with Industry

The School of Mathematics has connections with a wide number of industrial partners, organisations, charities and government departments. As an MSc student in the School you will have opportunities to engage with these external organisations through regular employability events, careers workshops, and our annual analytics challenge (whose recent partners have included Edinburgh Airport and the Data and Marketing Association). There is also the opportunity to undertake a dissertation project with an external partner.

Recent partners for industry-based dissertations in the Computational Mathematical Finance MSc include:

  • Moody’s Analytics
  • Lloyds Banking Group
  • Bank of England
  • Hymans Robertson

This programme involves two taught semesters of compulsory and optional courses followed by your dissertation project. There are three streams: the Financial stream, the Computational stream and the Machine Learning stream. Each stream features different sets of compulsory and optional courses.

There are three streams: the Financial stream, the Computational stream and the Machine Learning stream*. Each stream features different sets of compulsory and optional courses.

Compulsory courses (for all streams) have previously included:

  • Stochastic Analysis in Finance
  • Discrete-Time Finance
  • Python Programming
  • Numerical Probability and Monte Carlo
  • Risk-Neutral Asset Pricing
  • Stochastic Control and Dynamic Asset allocation
  • Research Skills for Financial Mathematics

Financial stream compulsory courses have previously included:

  • Financial Risk Theory
  • Optimization Methods in Finance

Computational stream compulsory courses have previously included:

  • Time Series
  • Numerical Partial Differential Equations

Machine Learning stream compulsory courses have previously included:

  • Machine Learning in Python

Optional courses have previously included:

  • Blockchains and Distributed Ledgers*
  • Programming Skills*
  • Finance, Risk and Uncertainty
  • Bayesian Theory
  • Reinforcement Learning*
  • Algorithmic Game Theory and its Applications*
  • Financial Risk Theory
  • Credit Scoring
  • Optimization Methods in Finance
  • Bayesian Data Analysis
  • Integer and Combinatorial Optimization
  • Time Series
  • Numerical Partial Differential Equations

*delivered by the School of Informatics

Dissertation projects

Dissertation projects on this programme can be undertaken in partnership with public and private sector organisations. Other students choose an academic project without a direct link to an external organisation.

At the end of this programme you will have:

  • developed personal communications skills, initiative, and professionalism within a mathematical context
  • developed transferable skills that maximise your prospects for future employment, including writing, oral presentation, team-working, numerical and logical problem-solving, planning and time-management
  • improved your ability to convey ideas in an articulate fashion, to build upon previous mathematical training and further develop logic and deductive skills
  • mastered standard and advanced mathematical tools used to solve applied problems relevant to the mathematical finance industry
  • developed quantitative and computational skills for the proficient fulfilment of tasks in the financial sector

Graduates can expect to go on to work in major financial institutions or to continue their studies by joining PhD programmes.

Student Support Team

In the School of Mathematics, we have a dedicated Student Support Team consisting of six staff members. You will have a Student Adviser who is your first point of contact during your time at the University of Edinburgh, and who is available to help and advise on a range of issues connected to your postgraduate study. Study support will be provided by academics acting as Cohort Leads, with wider teaching teams, who will work with students to connect you with your programme of study and provide you with more specialist subject support.

Student blogs

Learn about what life is like as a MSc student in the School of Mathematics, by hearing from the people that have experienced it first-hand! Our student bloggers come from all across the world, and have studied on a variety of our MSc programmes.

These entry requirements are for the 2023/24 academic year and requirements for future academic years may differ. Entry requirements for the 2024/25 academic year will be published on 2 October 2023.

A UK 2:1 degree, or its international equivalent, in mathematics or a mathematical subject such as statistics, physics or engineering. You must also have relevant programming experience (at least one semester undergraduate programming course, in any language e.g. C, C++, Java, Python, passed at 2:1 level).

Students from China

This degree is Band C.

International qualifications

Check whether your international qualifications meet our general entry requirements:

English language requirements

You must demonstrate a level of English language competency at a level that will enable you to succeed in your studies, regardless of your nationality or country of residence.

English language tests

We accept the following English language qualifications at the grades specified:

  • IELTS Academic: total 6.5 with at least 6.0 in each component.
  • TOEFL-iBT (including Home Edition): total 92 with at least 20 in each component. We do not accept TOEFL MyBest Score to meet our English language requirements.
  • C1 Advanced (CAE) / C2 Proficiency (CPE): total 176 with at least 169 in each component.
  • Trinity ISE: ISE II with distinctions in all four components.
  • PTE Academic: total 62 with at least 59 in each component.

Your English language qualification must be no more than three and a half years old from the start date of the programme you are applying to study, unless you are using IELTS, TOEFL, Trinity ISE or PTE, in which case it must be no more than two years old.

Degrees taught and assessed in English

We also accept an undergraduate or postgraduate degree that has been taught and assessed in English in a majority English speaking country, as defined by UK Visas and Immigration:

We also accept a degree that has been taught and assessed in English from a university on our list of approved universities in non-majority English speaking countries (non-MESC).

If you are not a national of a majority English speaking country, then your degree must be no more than three and a half years old at the beginning of your programme of study.

Find out more about our language requirements:

Application fee

None.

Deposit

None.

Additional programme costs

None.

Living costs

You will be responsible for covering living costs for the duration of your studies.

Tuition fees

School of Mathematics funding

There may be School funding available for well-qualified candidates.

UK government postgraduate loans

If you live in the UK, you may be able to apply for a postgraduate loan from one of the UK’s governments.

The type and amount of financial support you are eligible for will depend on:

  • your programme
  • the duration of your studies
  • your tuition fee status

Programmes studied on a part-time intermittent basis are not eligible.

Other funding opportunities

Search for scholarships and funding opportunities:

  • Programme Administrator
  • Phone: +44 (0)131 650 5386
  • Contact: cmfmsc@ed.ac.uk
  • Programme Director, Dr David Siska
  • Phone: +44 (0)131 651 9091
  • Contact: d.siska@ed.ac.uk
  • School of Mathematics
  • James Clerk Maxwell Building
  • The King's Buildings Campus
  • Edinburgh
  • EH9 3FD

Due to high demand, the school operates a number of selection deadlines.

We strongly recommend you apply as early as possible. Applications may close earlier than the published deadlines if there is exceptionally high demand.

We will make a small number of offers to the most outstanding candidates on an ongoing basis, but hold the majority of applications until the next published selection deadline.

We aim to make the majority of decisions within eight weeks of the selection deadline.

If we have not made you an offer by a specific selection deadline this means one of two things:

  • your application has been unsuccessful, in which case we will contact you to let you know, or
  • your application is still being considered, will be carried forward for consideration in the next selection deadline and we will be in touch once a decision is made

Selection Deadlines

Round Application Deadline Decisions made or applications rolled to next deadline
1 31 January 31 March
2 31 March 31 May
3 31 May 31 July

*(Revised 11 November to update selection deadline dates and clarify when decisions on applications will be made.)

Find out more about the general application process for postgraduate programmes:

Further information

  • Programme Administrator
  • Phone: +44 (0)131 650 5386
  • Contact: cmfmsc@ed.ac.uk
  • Programme Director, Dr David Siska
  • Phone: +44 (0)131 651 9091
  • Contact: d.siska@ed.ac.uk
  • School of Mathematics
  • James Clerk Maxwell Building
  • The King's Buildings Campus
  • Edinburgh
  • EH9 3FD