Masters in Finance – MiF 2017-04-09T14:15:41+00:00

Masters in Finance

A Masters in Finance is a postgraduate program preparing graduates for careers in Finance and may be positioned as a professional degree. The length of the program is usually between one and two years, depending on the school.

Contrary to MBA programs, MiF degrees, as Masters in Finance are often called (M.Fin is also used), do not require students to have any work experience and are therefore open to applicants who come straight from completing an undergraduate degree as well. However, a requirement is often that the undergraduate degree is either in finance or a related subject, such as business, economics, mathematics etc.

For most applicants the choice between a Masters in Finance vs MBA is therefore rather easy to make: if you have at least 2 years of working experience, an MBA is the obvious choice and if you don’t, you do not meet the requirements for an MBA program and should consider a Masters in Finance instead.

Not all MiF programs require prospective students to take the GMAT or the GRE but some of them do. Additionally, for some Masters in Finance programs language proficiency tests such as TOEFL and subject-specific proficiency test may be required.

Some of the top ranked Masters in Finance programs based on recent Masters in Finance rankings are:

Program website:

The HEC Paris MSc in International Finance (MIF) program caters for highly-motivated top achieving graduates looking to succeed in a career in finance and consulting. The program has a strong analytical focus yet is accessible from either business and finance (business track) or economics, math, physics, engineering (accelerated track) backgrounds. This is a 10 months program taught in English.

The program aims to fulfill two objectives within a short period of time: lay the necessary foundations for any career in finance and provide in-depth knowledge in each student’s field of specialization.
This goal is achieved by leveraging on the specific knowledge and experience students have acquired before joining HEC Paris:

  • Business track students: have already taken at least introductory level courses in financial accounting, corporate finance, financial markets, derivatives and statistics in a Tier-1 international business school or university. They frequently have had first internships in banking or consulting and are looking for an advanced set of tools to jump-start their career.
  • Accelerated track students: have received first class education in a highly quantitative field (maths, physics, engineering, econometrics…) and wish to switch their field to finance. They may or may not have taken some courses in finance and they may or may not have had a first internship in banking or consulting.

Business and accelerated tracks mainly differ in courses taught during the Fall term.

Business track students follow the same courses as the “Majeure Finance” students of the HEC Master in Management program, starting all courses at an advanced level and getting a first opportunity to specialize through “block electives”.

Accelerated track students start all finance courses at an introductory level. However, they go through an intensive Fall term where courses are taught making full use of their strong quantitative skills.

Business track and accelerated track students have access to the same pool of electives in the Spring term and have the same career opportunities at the end of the program.

Program website:

The MSc Finance (Full-time) programme is one of the world’s leading generalist finance Master’s degrees, ideal for those whose career objectives lie broadly within the financial services sector.

The MSc Finance (Full-time) programme has been designed to meet the needs of high-level graduates from fields not specifically relating to finance, whose career objectives lie broadly within the financial services sector. The programme is designed for students whose academic background is not necessarily in finance. However, it is aimed at people with good undergraduate degrees and good quantitative skills.

Admission Criteria

Admission to the programme is very competitive. In previous years, the majority of students accepted into the programme have obtained first class degrees or the equivalent. The mathematics used in the programme includes basic calculus and statistics, so applicants are also required to have studied a minimum of A level Mathematics (or its equivalent). Prior work experience is not a pre-requisite for entry into the programme, but can be considered an advantage.

Applicants without a UK undergraduate degree are required to submit a GMAT test (GRE is acceptable exceptionally). The GMAT is also recommended for all students with UK undergraduate degrees, especially those who have not achieved, or are not expected to achieve a first class degree, or those whose quantitative skills are not demonstrated by their undergraduate studies.

Applicants for whom English is a second language or who have not studied in English before should provide evidence of their command of English. For the MSc Finance (Full-time) programme, this should be a minimum of 627 in the TOEFL paper based test (107 in the internet-based test), or at least 7.0 in the IELTS test.

Program website:

The MBF programme is offered by the School of Finance of the University of St. Gallen, one of the largest finance groups in continental Europe. Professors are internationally recognized for their leading academic research and their commitment to excellence in teaching.

The MBF prepares you for a successful careeer in banking, consulting, asset management, insurance, industry, or academia. The typical graduate can choose from more than two job offers upon graduation.
The MBF programme is intended for holders of an excellent Bachelor degree in business, economics or in the hard sciences (e.g., mathematics or physics). You should possess strong analytical skills and be ambitious to solve challenging tasks related to financial market theory, institutions, or quantitative finance. Equally important, we expect you to be an effective communicator who is able to explain findings from the frontline of academic research to the practical world. In the MBF programme, our graduates will obtain high-quality education in both theory and application.

Program website:

The ESADE MSc in Finance is a Full-time programme (10 months) which starts in September. It is taught in English, with the possibility of studying a number of electives courses in Spanish.
Location: Barcelona Sant Cugat Campus
Professional internship (optional): 3 – 6 months worldwide

Admission requirements
This programme is primarily intended for those with undergraduate degrees in Business Administration or Economics. However, those with other degrees can still be considered for admission. In the latter case, the Admissions Committee will assess their candidacies, and, if admitted they will be required to enrol in the Pre-Programme in Finance (PPF) course which usually starts three weeks before the beginning of the regular Master in Finance classes.

If you have any questions regarding your academic background, please contact the international admissions team ( and request a profile evaluation by sending your CV and university transcripts, if available.

To apply for the Master in Finance programme, students must demonstrate a solid quantitative background via their undergraduate degree, additional coursework, and/or a high GMAT quantitative score. The Admissions Committee will review each candidate’s eligibility individually.

Before beginning the MSc in Finance programme, students must have earned an undergraduate degree entitling them to undertake postgraduate studies in the degree-granting country. Find out more about this requirement here.

Fees (2017-2018):
MSc in Finance (MIF): € 26,500
MIF + CEMS: € 36,500
MIF + Internal Double Degree: € 38,500
MIF + External Double Degree: € 36,500

Program website:

Designed for future financial leaders who want to make an impact in the complex global economy, the Master of Finance program — known as MFin — may be completed in 12 or 18 months. The program builds upon MIT's unique legacy of academic leadership in the field of finance, combining its heritage with the latest in innovation, theory, and practice.

The 18-month format consists of four academic terms and the opportunity to complete a summer internship. Applicants for the 18-month format must complete an additional essay.

The Master of Finance program is designed to teach you how to use advanced mathematical models and quantitative methods to find answers to complex finance problems.

Building on the foundation of MIT Sloan’s powerful finance legacy, the MFin program offers its students an unprecedented combination of heritage, resources, rigor, and relevance, enabling them to become leaders who will shape the industry.

MFin graduates find careers in asset management, hedge funds, consulting firms, insurance companies, investment and corporate banks, brokerage firms, financial data providers, venture capital, ratings firms, and treasury and finance departments in governments and major corporations.

Applicants are eligible to apply to the MFin program if they have a bachelor's degree. Students with a three-year bachelor's degree from an international university are also eligible to apply.

Program website:

INSEAD’s Executive Master in Finance (EMFin) combines these characteristics with a tailored programme that will hone your leadership and management skills as well as deepen your knowledge of the sector. Primarily taught in the Asia campus, the programme is strategically located in Singapore, a global and regional financial hub with a progressive and ever-expanding financial market.

INSEAD's EMFin provides a much greater depth of finance skills than you would normally experience in an MBA, while offering the leadership and management education you would not find in a typical finance degree. Our goal is to prepare financial leaders for the next level so that they can drive the corporate finance and investment management industries of the future.

INSEAD's Executive Master in Finance is a unique modular programme designed for experienced working finance professionals to accelerate their career without taking an extended leave of absence. Each two week module is separated by three to four months, providing ample time to implement new skills learnt in the classroom to your workplace. The degree will equip you with a greater depth of finance and management skills than you would normally experience in an MBA, while providing the leadership and management education you would not find in a typical finance degree.

The INSEAD EMFin is a 18 months programs that starts in September. Students in this program have an average age of 31 with 7 years of work experience on average.

Program website:

The MSc Finance is a 12 months programme that aims to prepare students for successful careers through teaching highly relevant topics and their practical application, alongside specialised and integrated support from our Career and Professional Development Service. Therefore, when we are selecting candidates, an understanding of the financial sector and well researched short and long term career goals are essential criteria. You have the opportunity to demonstrate your career plan through the Career Planning Questions on the application form, and this is an extremely important aspect of your application.

All candidates, regardless of your level of previous work experience are expected to provide evidence of your research into the professional areas, roles and potential employers that you are considering pursuing after you graduate – as well as the challenges you may face in your career and the skills you possess to help you succeed.

Prospective students are strongly recommended to undertake relevant internships and work placements and list them in the ‘Industrial/Professional Experience’ section of the application form and your CV, as this will add weight to your application. If you are committed to a career in the finance sector, we expect to see evidence of how you’ve been building your professional experience and knowledge throughout your undergraduate degree.

Admission to the MSc Finance programme is very competitive and the selection committee will pay close attention to all aspects of your application. To be eligible to apply for the programme you should normally have:

  • A quantitative undergraduate degree at First or 2:1 Honours level (or international equivalent)
  • A well-researched career plan with clear short and long term goals
  • English language test results (if applicable)

Academic requirement

Preferably a First Class Honours degree or Upper Second Class Honours degree from a recognised university or the international equivalent in a highly quantitative discipline such as:

  • Mathematics
  • Engineering
  • Economics
  • Finance
  • Science

There are no specific ‘A’ Level criteria, but many banks and companies in the financial sector have very strict grade requirements for their graduate programmes.

Prerequisite knowledge requirements

MSc Finance is a highly quantitative programme and therefore all students commencing the programme are expected to be proficient in probability, calculus, matrix algebra and real analysis.

GMAT is not required for MSc Finance, but a well-balanced GMAT result with 650 or higher overall will add weight to your application. The current class average from students who have taken GMAT is 700.

If your undergraduate degree is not in a highly mathematical discipline you will need to demonstrate your suitability with excellent results in your quantitative modules. Submitting a GMAT or GRE result is also highly recommended. A score of at least 48/60 in the quantitative section of GMAT, or at least 750 (old test) or 159 (new test) in the quantitative section of GRE will add weight to your application.

You should use the ‘Quantitative Experience Statement’ on the application form to list the most advanced quantitative courses that you have taken in your academic career to date and to provide brief examples of the relevant topics covered by the programme.

Program website:

Develop a truly global view of finance and tailor the programme to suit your career aspirations. Study full-time (10 to 16 months) or part-time (22 months) and develop in-depth knowledge and skills vital for specific career paths in the finance world through one of our three concentrations. Further adapt the programme through an extensive range of electives, practitioner courses and industry-focused events for an unparalleled hands-on learning experience.

Two formats

  • Part-time: 22 months
  • Full-time: 10 or 16 month.

Class profile

  • 50 nationalities (August 2015 intake)
  • 185 students (August 2015 intake)
  • 100+ faculty from more than 30 countries
  • 40,000+ alumni across 150 countries.

Career impact

Become a top candidate for finance roles. Benefit from our strong finance reputation and connections to key institution. We have forged invaluable relationships with top employers and recruiters in London and around the world.

Practical learning

Benefit from hands-on experience and opportunities to practice your skills outside the classroom. Gain the frameworks and technical knowledge essential to advance your career in finance, along with the context that puts those new skills into action. Transform your skill set and build your financial expertise.


Tailor your learning to meet your career ambitions by completing between seven and 10 electives from a diverse choice of more than 30. Concentrations can be taken by selecting certain electives and other practical learning options, and you are given additional flexibility with weekend, daytime, evening and block-week classes.

As a full-time participant, if you commit to a fourth term, your scope of programme experiences expands: spend time on international exchange at a partner institution, undertake a company-sponsored project or discover more about the asset management industry in New York and Boston on a Global Business Experience. For maximum flexibility on the full-time programme, you can decide on this during your studies.

Global outlook

Study with a diverse group of fellow finance professionals from across the globe. Develop a truly global finance perspective, to understand the different financial processes in other countries through our international exchange programmes.

Program website:

The IE MiF is a full-time 11 months program that starts in September and taught in English. Students have 0-2 years of work experience on average. The program prepares students for the CFA level I exam & increases candidate´s appeal for recruitment processes for leading financial institutions.

The Master in Finance equips participants with the latest knowledge in key areas of finance such as leveraged buy-outs, credit derivatives, and mergers and acquisitions. Graduates typically go on to work in investment banks, private equity firms, and as asset managers. The program offers up to 60 electives, allowing students to adapt the program according to market demand.

The program offers preparatory classes for the CFA level I, which will have many benefits for our students with regards to career opportunities. Students of the Master in Finance have five scholarships available per calendar year to enable them to take this exam. Every year, five students will be selected to take part in the CFA Research Challenge.

Students in the program have an average GMAT score of 680 (Minimum required 610), and their age range is 19-25.

The application process

The main points that we evaluate during the admissions process include: the candidate´s knowledge and interest in finance, excellent quantitative skills, capability to work in a multicultural group and to handle heavy workload & stress. Also, the candidate´s enthusiasm, motivation and proved potential to highly succeed in the finance sector are important evaluation factors for us.

The online application allows us know you better in order to find out if you are the candidate we are looking for. Fill in the application in the language in which you intend to pursue the program. In order to process the application, candidates must pay a non-refundable application fee of 125€.

You can choose to present 1 of the 3 different entrance exam options:
– GMAT, minimum of 610 points (Reporting code 6XT-ZH-93)
– CFA Level I for Master in Finance & Global Master in Finance
– CFA Level II for Master in Advanced Finance

If the Admissions Committee deems that your profile meets these standards, we will contact you to arrange an interview. This interview will be conducted in person, or in the case of our international applicants, via Skype webcam.
The interview examines the data provided in the application in greater detail and evaluates whether your profile will meet the demands of the program.