Prospective students

The MSc Computational Finance introduces advanced modules focused on providing quantitative and modelling skills which appeal to 'quant' roles in trading, research, regulation and risk. There is large demand in the financial services industry, the Bank of England and financial regulatory authorities to raise the level of computational knowledge, data manipulation and analytic skills. A notable aspect of this applied MSc programme is that students will be educated to advanced level programming together with a sound mathematical and statistical basis, making it distinct from the large number of courses offered by business schools and also from other finance-oriented masters at UCL. This MSc sits alongside the Centre for Doctoral Training in Financial Computing and grounds its teaching resources on the Financial Computing and Analytics Group.

Students will develop an advanced knowledge of computational methods in finance enabling them to develop a successful career in the financial industry within ‘quant’ teams.


MSc Computational Finance consists of 8 taught modules (4 core, 4 optional) and a dissertation.

Compulsory / Core Modules

  • COMP0040 - Financial Data and Statistics (15 credits)
  • COMP0048 - Financial Engineering (15 credits)
  • COMP0075 - Financial Market Modelling and Analysis (15 credits)
  • COMP0043 - Numerical Methods for Finance (15 credits)
  • COMP0077 - MSc Computational Finance Project (60 credits)

All modules in this group are compulsory.

Optional Modules

  • COMP0051 - Algorithmic Trading (15 credits)
  • COMP0041 - Applied Computational Finance (15 credits)
  • COMP0022 - Database and Information Management Systems (15 credits)
  • COMP0105 - Financial Institutions and Markets (15 credits)
  • COMP0050 - Machine Learning with Applications in Finance (15 credits)
  • COMP0049 - Market Microstructure (15 credits)
  • COMP0046 - Networks and Systemic Risk (15 credits)
  • COMP0120 - Numerical Optimisation (15 credits)
  • COMP0044 - Operational Risk Measurement for Financial Institutions (15 credits)
  • COMP0045 - Probability Theory and Stochastic Processes (15 credits)
  • MATH0094 - Market Risk Measures and Portfolio Theory (15 credits)

Choose 60 credits from these optional modules.

Please check to ensure there are no timetabling clashes. All choices are subject to space, timetabling constraints and the approval of the relevant Module Tutors and the Programme Director.

Syllabus content for all postgraduate modules can we found in the Department of Computer Science 2018/19 online syllabus pages.


Programme diet (modules available to you)

Your programme has a set curriculum (also called a diet) which prescribes in what combinations modules can be taken, any restrictions on doing so, and how much credit can and must be taken. The programme information pages show which modules form part of each programme, with links to descriptions and module syllabus information. Modules within a programme can be core, optional, or elective, which reflects whether they must be taken or are optionally taken.

Core modules

Core modules are fundamental to your programme’s core curriculum and are mandatory. You will automatically be registered on your programme's core modules, so will not have to select them. You are guaranteed a place on modules that are core for your programme. There will be no timetable clashes between core modules within a programme.

Optional modules

Optional modules are usually closely related to the programme's core curriculum and you will be able to choose which to take; choices are usually made from within specific groups (for example, choose two optional modules from one group and three from another, etc.) You are not guaranteed a place on optional modules as space is strictly limited. We allocate places on a first come, first serve basis, with preference given to Computer Science students over those of other departments. Bear in mind that some modules have prerequisites that must be met in order to be eligible for a place (see the module syllabus for information.)

Elective modules

Elective modules are usually not specifically related to the programme's curriculum. There is no guarantee of being accepted onto an elective module; they are core and/ or optional on other programme diets, so students on those programmes will be given priority. As with optional modules, some electives have prerequisites that must be met.


Deciding which modules to select

The programme information pages show which modules form part of each programme, with links to detailed module syllabus information and reading lists. You may be able to virtually audit lectures for some modules to get a sense of how the module is delivered. You can look up the timetable for each module via the common timetable to get a sense of the timetable that would eventuate from your module choices, which is an important consideration when making your final choices; you should aim to achieve a timetable that is feasible and will not stretch you too thinly.

Bear in mind that places on optional and elective modules are not guaranteed, so you might not always be able to take all your first choices. In that case, it is a good idea to have a second preference in mind.

If you need guidance with choosing which modules to select then please contact your Programme Director or the Departmental Tutor.

An upper-second class UK bachelor's degree (or equivalent overseas qualification) in computer science, mathematics, statistics, physics, engineering or another similar quantitative subject. Graduates in economics, finance, business administration, actuarial science or similar are considered if their transcripts show a fair number of modules in mathematics, probability, statistics and econometrics with high marks. Programming experience is a plus, but not mandatory. Relevant work experience may also be taken into account.

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

Further information can be found on our English language requirements page.

International students

Country-specific information, including details of when UCL representatives are visiting your part of the world, can be obtained from the International Students website.

UK/EU fees (FT):     £18,580 for 2017/18

Overseas fees (FT): £27,540 for 2017/18

UK/EU fees (FT):   £19,140 for 2018/19

UK/EU fees (PT):   N/A for 2018/19

Overseas fees (FT): £29,260 for 2018/19

Overseas fees (PT): N/A for 2018/19

The Department of Computer Science is offering Excellence Scholarships to our taught postgraduate students. To check your eligibility and to apply, see the Computer Science Excellence Scholarship application form.

For a comprehensive list of the funding opportunities available at UCL, including funding relevant to your nationality, please visit the Scholarship and Funding website.

Tuition Fee Deposit

This programme requires that applicants firmly accepting their offer pay a deposit. This allows UCL to effectively plan student numbers, as students are more demonstrably committed towards commencing their studies with us.

For full details about the UCL tuition fee deposit, please see the central UCL pages.

Tuition fee deposits within the Department of Computer Science are currently listed as:

UK/EUOverseas
Full-time*Part-timeFull-time*Part-time
£2000£1000£2000£1000
*where part-time is an available mode of study

The Department's graduates are particularly valued as a result of the our international reputation, strong links with industry, and ideal location close to the City of London. Graduates are especially sought after by leading global finance companies and organisations. The top 20-30% of our graduates receive a job offer from the host of their summer work placement.

Top graduate destinations:

Top graduate roles:

Top further study destinations:

  • Credit Suisse
  • Goldman Sachs
  • Morgan Stanley
  • KPMG
  • Financial Account Manager
  • Management Consultant
  • Investment Analyst
  • Chartered Accountant
  • University of Cambridge
  • UCL

Average starting salary £35,000 (all data from Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education (DLHE) survey of 2015 Graduates).

Programme Administrator

Martin Nolan

Office: 5.22, Malet Place Engineering Building

Telephone: +44 (0)20 7679 7287

Email: advancedmsc-admissions@cs.ucl.ac.uk

Click here for more information

To apply now click here.

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.

Deadline 14th June 2019.