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Financial Mathematics with a Year Abroad (BSc)

Entry year


Study Mathematics because it is fascinating, challenging and elegant and because it provides the skills in demand for a wide range of careers.

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Course overview

Do you want to explore new cultures and practices while you delve deeper into the fascinating world of financial mathematics?

On this course, you’ll study at a university abroad during your third year before returning to Cardiff for a final year. There are plenty of partner institutions for you to choose from in countries across:

  • Europe
  • Australia
  • Canada
  • USA
  • New Zealand
  • China
  • and many more

To manage the complex financial sector, banks and financial institutions need talented mathematicians who are fluent in the language of finance. This course offers a broad and inspiring curriculum that will expand your understanding of mathematics and help you gain a strong background in this discipline. You will study topics such as, high frequency trading, fund management, time series analysis and stochastic OR models. This will equip you will the knowledge and skills that are essential for jobs in the finance industry.

Distinctive features

Flexible Year Abroad – You will study at a university abroad where you can learn while you travel and experience the practices and culture of a different country. You don’t need to choose a university abroad until the autumn semester of Year Two, so there’s plenty of time to explore your options and decide where you would like to go;

Specialist knowledge - Alongside learning mathematical techniques, you will gain the in-depth knowledge and skills needed to secure a role in the finance industry;

Student satisfaction – We were voted top among all Russell Group Universities in the main category of Overall Satisfaction in this year’s National Student Survey 2018;

Student support - You will have your own Personal Tutor allocated at the start of the first year as well as weekly tutorials, supervised computer laboratories, and access to daily drop-in sessions for one-to-one support.

Accreditations

UCAS code15R5
Next intakeSeptember 2019
Duration4 years
ModeFull time with year abroad

Entry requirements

AAA-AAB including an A in Mathematics. Please note, General Studies will not be accepted. 

Extended Project Qualification: Applicants with grade A in the EPQ will typically receive an offer one grade lower than the standard A level offer. Please note that any subject specific requirements must still be met.

The Welsh Baccalaureate Advanced Skills Challenge Certificate will be accepted in lieu of one A-Level (at the grades listed above), excluding any specified subjects.

DD in BTEC plus A in Maths at A-level. Any BTEC accompanied by Maths A-Level.

Achieve 34-32 overall in the IB Diploma with 6 in HL Maths or achieve the IB Diploma with 665-655 in 3 HL subjects including 6 in Maths.

Alternative qualifications may be accepted. For further information on entry requirements, see the School of Mathematics admissions criteria pages.

If you are an overseas applicant and your first language is not English, please visit our English Language requirements page for more information on our accepted qualifications.

You will require GCSE English Language at grade C or grade 4. Alternatively, IGCSE English First Language or English Second Language will be considered at grade C. 

Tuition fees

UK and EU students (2019/20)

Tuition feeDeposit
£9,000None

Visit our tuition fee pages for the latest information.

Financial support may be available to individuals who meet certain criteria. For more information visit our funding section. Please note that these sources of financial support are limited and therefore not everyone who meets the criteria are guaranteed to receive the support.

Students from outside the EU (2019/20)

Tuition feeDeposit
£20,950None

Tuition fees for international students are fixed for the majority of three year undergraduate courses. This means the price you pay in year one will be the same in years two and three. Some courses are exempt, including four and five year programmes and Medical and Dental courses. Visit our tuition fee pages for the latest information.

Costs for sandwich years

During a sandwich year (e.g. year in industry, placement year or year abroad) a lower fee will apply. Full details can be found on our fees pages.

Additional costs

Course specific equipment

No specific equipment is needed.

Accommodation

We have a range of residences to suit your needs and budget. Find out more on our accommodation pages.

Course structure

This is a four-year full-time degree with year three spent studying abroad. The course includes a carefully chosen balance of core modules and optional modules. Modules are worth 10 or 20 credits and you need to earn 120 credits a year. The modules you choose in year two will inform the choices available to you in years three and four.

The modules shown are an example of the typical curriculum and will be reviewed prior to the 2019/20 academic year. The final modules will be published by September 2019.

Year one

All of our courses have a core of pure mathematics in Year 1 but you will also take modules in financial mathematics, statistics, computing and operational research.  The finance modules will introduce you to techniques and tools of corporate financial management at firm level. 

Year two

There is a choice of optional modules in year two and the modules you select will inform the choices available to you in year three.  Alongside specialist financial mathematics modules you will continue to broaden your knowledge of areas like statistics and operational research.

Module titleModule codeCredits
Operational ResearchMA026120 credits
Calculus of Several VariablesMA200110 credits
Series and TransformsMA200410 credits
Linear Algebra IIMA200820 credits
Foundations of Probability and StatisticsMA250020 credits
Finance II: Investment ManagementMA280010 credits
Econometrics for Financial MathematicsMA280110 credits
Module titleModule codeCredits
Modelling with Differential EquationsMA023210 credits
Complex AnalysisMA200310 credits
Real AnalysisMA200610 credits
Programming and StatisticsMA250110 credits
Problem SolvingMA290010 credits

Year three: Sandwich year

The School of Mathematics gives you an opportunity to spend a year in a university abroad to experience the practices and culture of a different country. We have partner institutions in a number of European countries, as well as in Australia, Canada, and the USA.

The placement is organised by the School and in some cases funding is available for travel and living costs.

If you wish to take part in the study abroad you need to achieve at least a 50% average from your first year of study and you must pass at least 100 credits from year two.

Module titleModule codeCredits
Study AbroadMA9990120 credits

Year four

The modules available in year four are closely aligned to the research interests of the School. There are no compulsory modules and your options are wide-ranging. As well as taught modules, you may choose a 10-credit or 20-credit project, giving you the opportunity to develop communication and presentational skills and to learn how to apply your mathematical skills to an investigation of your choice.

The University is committed to providing a wide range of module options where possible, but please be aware that whilst every effort is made to offer choice this may be limited in certain circumstances. This is due to the fact that some modules have limited numbers of places available, which are allocated on a first-come, first-served basis, while others have minimum student numbers required before they will run, to ensure that an appropriate quality of education can be delivered; some modules require students to have already taken particular subjects, and others are core or required on the programme you are taking. Modules may also be limited due to timetable clashes, and although the University works to minimise disruption to choice, we advise you to seek advice from the relevant School on the module choices available.

Learning and assessment

How will I be taught?

Teaching is carried out through lectures, small-group tutorials and examples classes. Increased independent learning is encouraged throughout the course.

In all years the classes are used to discuss theoretical concepts and essential mathematical techniques. You are encouraged to undertake additional reading outside of timetabled classes and reflect upon assessments and feedback.

We have established the simulated trading room for students to have opportunities to implement what they have learned in the classroom and to gain a taste of the real financial world and investment decision making scenarios

How will I be supported?

At the start of each year you will be given a guide to module aims, learning outcomes, methods of assessment, module syllabuses, and reading lists. You will be allocated a personal tutor, a member of the academic staff who will provide pastoral support and academic advice during your course.

All lecturing staff can be contacted by email and have either an ‘open door’ policy for students with specific queries about course material, or a system to book meeting times. The School Office can answer most administrative queries immediately.

For the placement abroad in year three you will be assigned a personal tutor in the host institution, to give you pastoral support and guidance. The School’s study abroad coordinator will also maintain regular contact to review your personal and academic progress. 

You will have access through the Learning Central website to relevant multimedia material, presentations, lecture handouts, bibliographies, further links, electronic exercises and discussion circles. Opportunities for you to reflect on your abilities and performance are available through the Learning Central ‘Personal Development Planning’ module.

The University offers a range of services including the Careers Service, the Counselling Service, the Disability and Dyslexia Service, the Student Support Service, and excellent libraries and resource centres.

Further learning support is also available via the University wide Maths Support Service. This provides relaxed and informal daily drop-in sessions where students are encouraged to discuss any elements of their studies with a tutor on a one-to-one or small group basis.

Feedback:

Written feedback and outline solutions on in-course assessment give you an opportunity to reflect on your progress. Further feedback is provided in examples classes and tutorials (in year one) to review problems in more detail and discuss potential solutions. You should discuss any queries related to specific modules with individual lecturers.

How will I be assessed?

Many modules have written examinations at the end of the Autumn or Spring Semesters, with some also having an element of continuous assessment. This may include problem-solving exercises, written reports, computer programs and oral presentations.  Feedback on progress is typically provided through a combination of discussion in class, written comments on submitted work and review of outline solutions to problems. You are encouraged to discuss any queries related to specific modules with individual lecturers.

The grade of your final degree will be based on 20% from your year two studies, 10% from the year three placement and 70% from year four.

Your year abroad will be assessed on the results from the courses studied in the host institution and a presentation and oral exam at the start of the next term back in Cardiff.

You may also be asked to share your experiences with students considering the study-abroad option.

What skills will I practise and develop?

You will acquire and develop a range of valuable skills, both discipline specific and more generic employability skills. You will:

  • develop your knowledge of core mathematics including calculus, algebra, analysis and complex variable theory;
  • enhance your understanding of the principles and some of the techniques of proof;
  • develop the skills needed in mathematical reasoning and manipulation;
  • learn how to apply the principles and techniques of mathematical/statistical modelling and formulate and solve mathematical problems;
  • enhance your ability to perform mathematical calculations with attention to precision and logic;
  • develop your self-management and organisational skills;
  • develop your time management and presentational skills through independent and group working.

Careers and placements

Career prospects

You can use your BSc in Financial Mathematics with a Year Abroad as a pathway to the workforce where you may meet our alumni working in finance, government, marketing or even agriculture. Or, you might choose to widen your career options to include a range of related fields by completing postgraduate studies in mathematics, the sciences, computing or engineering.

In 2017/18, 89% of the School’s graduates who were available for work reported they were in employment and/or further study within six months of graduation. Some of our previous students are now working at the Office of National Statistics and the Meteorological Office.

Maths Careers Support

In the Spring semester of your first year, there are a range of masterclasses available to you to help support your future career prospects. The classes cover work experience, CV and covering letters, application forms, interview techniques, and an introduction to LinkedIn.

We have a regularly-updated student jobs board featuring a range of volunteering, internship, placement, and graduate opportunities. Plus, we organise a full programme of student and employer presentations every year with employers, such as Lloyds Banking Group, HSBC, PwC, Institute and Faculty of Actuaries, Sainsburys, Network Rail, GSK, Office of National Statistics, Welsh Government, the MOD, Welsh Water, and the Met Office.

The School of Mathematics also has a Careers Management Skills Programme, company presentations held in the School, presentations by students returning from industry and a range of sponsored prizes awarded for academic achievement.

Placements

The option of spending year three studying abroad extends the BSc degree to four years.  We have agreements with a number of institutions across Europe, the United States, Canada and Australia. In some cases funding is available for travel and living costs.

If you decide not to do a placement abroad, you will have two options.  You can change to a three year BSc Mathematics programme, or a degree programme that includes a year of Professional Placement.  A year of Professional Placement will keep the duration of your BSc degree at four years.  This option may be dependent on your academic performance.

Studying in Welsh

Up to 35% of this course is available through the medium of Welsh. Please contact the Admissions tutor for more information.

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Wednesday 27 March

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