MSc Financial Systems Engineering degree programme provides an ideal foundation for graduates who wish to pursue a career as software engineers. The programme provides the opportunity to undertake a significant group software engineering project sponsored by a financial services company, allowing students to specialise in software systems engineering from a financial computing perspective.
Students will gain knowledge and experience in all aspects of software engineering needed for the development of large, complex, highly dynamic, distributed software-intensive systems; covering software design, validation and verification, and tools for the development of software intensive systems.
MSc Financial Systems Engineering comprises 8 taught modules and a Group Project. Of the taught modules, 6 are core modules, with 1 optional and 1 elective module.
Core Modules Term 1
COMPGS01 Requirements Engineering and Software Architecture
This module will train students in the fundamental principles and latest techniques in systems requirements engineering and software architecture. Students will learn how to discover, model, analyse and communicate requirements for software intensive systems and how to design, evaluate and communicate software architecture that meet these requirements. The emphasis will be on developing the students' modelling skills and their ability to communicate requirements and architectures with clarity and precision to business stakeholders and software developers.
COMPGS04 Tools and Environments
This module will teach the principles and application of software tools and environments. The module will cover the fundamental practices that we would expect from any software professional we would want to hire. The content is based on a wealth of experience of real projects, including the latest thinking on software process. For most students, it will introduce a lot of new material. On completion, students will have good knowledge and understanding of the nature and variety of software tools and environments that are available for achieving software engineering tasks, and be able to select appropriate tools and environments for the task at hand and to apply the tools and environments to achieve the task.
COMPGS06 Financial Institutions and Markets
The module exposes participants to an overview of the financial information sector and interaction with global financial markets, which constitute an important application domain of computer science in the southeast UK as well as main global financial centers. The module facilitates transfer of substantial domain knowledge based on IB Analyst training program the lecturer delivers in major international firms.
Core Modules Term 2
COMPGS02 Software Abstractions and Systems Integration
This module will aim to develop students' skills and knowledge to design, implement and integrate large-scale software systems from heterogeneous components and services. Emphasis will be put on fundamental principles and practical issues of system integration projects. Students will also develop essential research skills needed to stay at the leading edge of software development throughout their career.
COMPGS03 Validation and Verification
The module will train students in the principles and techniques of validating and verifying software systems. The training will be intellectually demanding and will cover not only the state-of-the practice in validation and verification, but also the most significant trends, problems and results in validation and verification research.
COMPGZ07 Professional Practice
The aim of this module is to provide an viewpoint on the commercial realities of work and practical skills in project management. This is done in two parts: the first is a series of seminars given by those with practical experience of real problems at technical, managerial, financial and ethical levels. Most such speakers are drawn from industry and is intended to stimulate a questioning and inquisitive approach to the field. We expect the material covered to be topical and either informative or presented in such a way as to encourage discussion. Second is to prepare students for effective project work and, by extension and comparison, for effective teamwork in a commercial environment.
Core Modules Project
COMPGS99 Group Project in Software Systems Engineering
Further syllabus information will be available shortly.
Optional Modules Term 2
COMPGF03 Compliance, Risk and Regulation
The module will familiarize participants with compliance department processes in risk governance per requirements of regulators, shareholders, management and clients. Develop understanding of the major role of implementing the dynamic regulatory requirements in financial centers and the interdependence on risk IT, models and computational finance.
COMPGF04 Financial Market Modelling and Analysis
This module will introduce students to the field of modelling and analysing financial markets with emphasis on (i) the wide variety of deterministic and discrete-time methods that are available; and (ii) numerical simulation of the financial markets, including agent-based modeling.
You will need to choose 15 credits from the optional modules.
Elective Modules Term 1
COMPGA01 Computer Security I
This module provides an introduction to security concepts and techniques, covering core security principles to engineer systems providing confidentiality, integrity, and availability. Topics are approached from a security engineer perspective, but also from the perspective of someone who aims to bypass security protections.
Students will learn how to recognise security properties of systems, formulate security policies, and model the threats they may face.
COMPGA10 People and Security
This modules teaches students to specify usability criteria that a security mechanism has to meet to be workable for end-user groups and work contexts, as well as human-centred approaches to security. It is one of the very few courses on usable security in the world.
This module provide students with a specialist understanding of the issues and techniques in malware detection and classification as well as the human, social, economic and historical context in which it exists and is deployed.
COMPGL01 Introduction to Logic, Semantics and Verification
The module aims to familiarize students with formal methods for reasoning about transition systems and programs.
COMPGL02 Modal Logic and Transition Systems
This course introduces various formal methods of reasoning about transition systems. The focus is on modal logic, an extension of classical logic with operators, which serves as a specification language for system properties and their verification.
COMPGW01 Complex Networks and Web
This module introduces the fundamental concepts, principles and methods in the interdisciplinary academic field of network science, with a particular focus on the Internet, the World Wide Web and online social media networks. Topics covered include graphic structures of networks, mathematical models of networks, the Internet topology, structure of the Web, community structures, epidemic spreading, PageRank, temporal networks and spatial networks.
On successful completion of this module the students will be able to define and calculate basic network graphic metrics, describe structural features of the Internet and the Web, relate graphic properties to network functions and evolution, explore new angles to understand network collective behaviours, design and conduct analysis on large network datasets.
COMPGZ01 Networked Systems
The aim of this module is to offer a rigorous introduction to the problems that arise when networking computer systems, and algorithms and systems design that solve these problems. The architectural principles and protocols that underlie the internet will be explained in detail. Topics to be taught will include the physical layer, widely used link layers (wired and wireless), MAC protocols, internetworking, intra-domain routing, reliable transport, congestion control, wide-area (policy) routing, naming, network security, the end-to-end principle, and network applications.
COMPGZ03 Distributed Systems and Security
This modules explores, in a case-study fashion, the design and implementation of distributed systems, and computer system security. Among other things, the module provides students with expertise in handling correctness under concurrency by building a simple distributed system as part of coursework.
Elective Modules Term 2
COMPGA02 Computer Security II
This module is the natural follow-up to Computer Security I. It provides an advanced understanding of network and computer security vulnerabilities, as well as countermeasures, in real-world systems. Following a hands-on approach, lectures are complemented with in-lab exercises, teaching students to think about security out of the box.
COMPGS10 Language Based Security
This module provides students with specialist knowledge and understanding to solve software related problems associated with the security of software systems. Students discover the relationship between computer program design and security, how various security-related properties of computer programs are formulated and guaranteed, and in-depth knowledge of a variety of contexts in which understanding can be applied.
COMPGZ05 Multimedia Systems
The aims of this course are to describe the ways in which multimedia information is captured, processed, and rendered, to introduce multimedia quality of service (QoS) and to compare subjective and objective methods of assessing user satisfaction, to analyse the ways in which multimedia data is transmitted across networks, and to discuss privacy and copyright issues in the context of multimedia.
You will need to choose 15 credits as an elective module.
The modules that make up a programme are either core, optional or elective, which reflects whether they must be taken or can optionally be taken. The programme’s curriculum (also called a programme diet) will prescribe in what combinations modules can be taken, any restrictions on doing so, and how much credit can and must be taken.
Core/compulsory modules are fundamental to the programme’s curriculum and students must take these. You will be automatically allocated a place on any core modules for your programme and will not need to select these during the module selection process. There will be no timetable clashes between your programme’s core modules.
Optional modules are strongly related to the programme and students can choose which of these they wish to take, usually from within specific groups (for example, a student may be asked to choose two optional modules from one group and three from another, etc.) Places of optional modules are strictly limited (due to spatial, resource and timetable constraints) and will be allocated on a first come first serve basis. Some optional modules have pre-requisites which students will need to meet in order to be eligible for a place.
Elective modules are not programme specific, but allow students the opportunity to explore their interests more widely. Students are usually restricted to taking one or two elective modules. There is no guarantee of being accepted onto an elective module. These modules are core or optional on other programme diets, consequently students on these programmes will be given priority. Any remaining places will then be allocated on a first come first served basis. Some elective modules have pre-requisites which students will need to meet in order to be eligible for a place.
Please note: timetable clashes between optional and elective modules from different specialisations are inevitable and this can result in limiting the available choices. It is the student’s responsibility to select modules that do not clash in order to meet UCLs minimum attendance requirements. Please speak to your Programme Director and/or Programme Administrator if you have any queries.
Non-Computer Science students should note that priority on COMP* modules will always be given to Computer Science students in the first instance.
A minimum of an upper-second class UK Bachelor's degree in computer science, or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard. 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.
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): £11,800 for 2017/18
Overseas fees (FT): £25,890 for 2017/18
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:
|*where part-time is an available mode of study|
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Average starting salary £30,000 (Graduate Surveys, January 2015).
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 17th June 2017.