Students develop an advanced knowledge of computational methods in finance, which is a prerequisite for a successful career in the financial industry within 'quant' teams. Quants (quantitative analysts) design and implement complex models and are sought after by banks, fund managers, insurance companies, hedge funds, and financial software and data providers.
Modes and duration
Tuition fees (2021/22)
Note on fees: The tuition fees shown are for the year indicated above. Fees for subsequent years may increase or otherwise vary. Further information on fee status, fee increases and the fee schedule can be viewed on the UCL Students website: ucl.ac.uk/students/fees.
Fee deposit: All full time students are required to pay a fee deposit of £2,000 for this programme. All part-time students are required to pay a fee deposit of £1,000.
An upper second class UK Bachelor's degree (or equivalent overseas qualification) in a relevant discipline with a strong quantitative component evidenced by good performance in mathematics and statistics exams. Good performance is defined as scores in these subject not falling below a UK 2.1, or international equivalent level). There is not an exhaustive list of relevant disciplines, but individuals with a background mathematics, statistics, physics, computer science, engineering, economics and finance are encouraged to apply.
English language requirements
If your education has not been conducted in the English language, you will be expected to demonstrate evidence of an adequate level of English proficiency.
The English language level for this programme is: Good
UCL Pre-Master's and Pre-sessional English courses are for international students who are aiming to study for a postgraduate degree at UCL. The courses will develop your academic English and academic skills required to succeed at postgraduate level. International Preparation Courses
Further information can be found on our English language requirements page.
Country-specific information, including details of when UCL representatives are visiting your part of the world, can be obtained from the International Students website.
International applicants can find out the equivalent qualification for their country by selecting from the list below.
Select your country:
About this degree
This degree comprises of advanced modules on quantitative, modelling and programming skills, which are essential for quant roles in trading research, regulation and risk. This applied MSc programme is distinctive in that it provides a combination of finance, mathematics, statistics and computer science.
Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.
The programme consists of four compulsory modules (60 credits), four optional modules (60 credits) and a dissertation (60 credits).
Upon successful completion of 180 credits, you will be awarded a MSc in Computational Finance.
Please note that the list of modules given here is indicative. This information is published a long time in advance of enrolment and module content and availability is subject to change.
- Data Science (15 credits)
- Financial Engineering (15 credits)
- Machine Learning with Applications in Finance (15 credits)
- Numerical Methods for Finance (15 credits)
- MSc Computational Finance Project
Students select 60 credits from the optional group.
- Algorithmic Trading (15 credits)
- Applied Computational Finance (15 credits)
- Blockchain Technologies (15 credits)
- Digital Finance (15 credits)
- Financial Institutions and Markets (15 credits)
- Financial Market Modelling and Analysis (15 credits)
- Market Microstructure (15 credits)
- Market Risk and Portfolio Theory (15 credits)
- Networks and Systemic Risk (15 credits)
- Numerical Optimisation (15 credits)
- Operational Risk Measurement for Financial Institutions (15 credits)
- Probability Theory and Stochastic Processes (15 credits)
Please note: the availability and delivery of optional modules may vary, depending on your selection.
- Further information about these modules is available on the department website.
All students undertake an independent research project which culminates in a dissertation of about 10,000 words or 50 pages. Usually this will be undertaken during a summer placement in an industry environment arranged by the department.
Teaching and learning
The programme is delivered through a combination of lectures, tutorials, seminars, and project work. It comprises two terms of teaching, followed by examinations and a dissertation. Assessment is through coursework, unseen examinations and a dissertation.
Students will require a modern laptop (PC or Mac). The minimum specifications should be 8GB RAM and 500GB SSD storage. A laptop with the stated specifications will cost approximately £500.
For more information on additional costs for prospective students please go to our estimated cost of essential expenditure at Accommodation and living costs.
For more information about funding opportunities for Department of Computer Science postgraduate programmes, please see the departmental Scholarships page.
Scholarships relevant to this department are displayed below.
- Deadline: 7 June 2021 at 9am (BST)
- UK Home fees, maintenance grant, plus travel and equipment grants (1 year )
- Based on both academic merit and financial need
For a comprehensive list of the funding opportunities available at UCL, including funding relevant to your nationality, please visit the Scholarships and Funding website.
The latest survey supplied by UCL Careers in 2019 shows that 58% of the alumni were employed in the Accountancy and Financial Services industry sector, 17% in IT, Technology and Telecomms, and the rest in Academic Research & HE, Banking and Investment, and Retail and Wholesale Activities. The employers include Bank of England, BNP Paribas, Commerzbank, Credit Suisse, hedge funds, fintech, consulting and e-commerce companies.
Our graduates are particularly valued as a result of the department's international reputation, strong links with industry, and ideal location close to the City of London. Graduates are especially sought after by leading finance companies and organisations.
Why study this degree at UCL?
The UCL MSc Computational Finance programme has been ranked 5th in Europe and 19th in the world by Risk.net's Quant Finance Master's Guide 2020.
UCL received the highest percentage (96%) for quality of research in Computer Science and Informatics in the UK's most recent Research Excellence Framework (REF2014).
UCL Computer Science hosts the Centre for Doctoral Training in Financial Computing and Analytics, which is the only one of its kind in the UK.
UCL's central London location is ideally close to one of the world's most important financial centres, with which UCL pioneers industrial/academic engagements. Students of the MSc Computational Finance programme will benefit from teaching by practitioners in the City of London and summer projects done within placements at financial companies and organisations based in London.
Department: Computer Science
Application and next steps
Students are advised to apply as early as possible due to competition for places. Those applying for scholarship funding (particularly overseas applicants) should take note of application deadlines.
This programme requires two references. Further information regarding references can be found in our How to apply section.
There is an application processing fee for this programme of £90 for online applications and £115 for paper applications. Further information can be found at: ucl.ac.uk/prospective-students/graduate/taught/application.
Who can apply?
The programme is suitable for those with a first degree in a quantitative subject wishing to develop a successful career in the financial industry.
- All applicants
- 31 May 2021
Due to competition for places on this programme, no late applications will be considered. Students with visa requirements or applying for scholarships are advised to apply early.
For more information see our Applications page.Apply now
What are we looking for?
When we assess your application we would like to learn:
- why you want to study Computational Finance at graduate level?
- why you want to study Computational Finance at UCL?
- what particularly attracts you to the chosen programme
- how do your academic and professional background and skills meet the demands of this challenging programme?
- where would you like to go professionally with your degree?
Together with essential academic requirements, the personal statement is your opportunity to illustrate whether your reasons for applying to this programme match what the programme will deliver.
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