Undergraduate open days 2023
Our autumn open days give you Lancaster University in a day. Visit campus and put yourself in the picture.Undergraduate Open Days
10th for in Mathematics
The Guardian University Guide (2024)
11th for Accounting and Finance in the UK
QS World University Rankings (2023)
13th for Accounting and Finance
The Guardian University Guide (2024)
Financial mathematicians are interested in making good decisions in the face of uncertainty. Through our rigorous programme, you will develop the skills and knowledge to become a major decision maker and influencer in your chosen career.
Financial maths is about learning to interpret and manipulate data to draw valuable conclusions and make predictions. This is particularly important in business and finance, but the skills gained from this programme are widely applicable and highly sought after. Over the three years, you will be able to draw on expertise from three specialist departments: Mathematics and Statistics; Accounting and Finance; and Economics.
During your first year, you will build on your previous knowledge and understanding of mathematical methods and concepts. Modules cover a wide range of topics from calculus, probability and statistics to logic, proofs and theorems. As well as developing your technical knowledge and mathematical skills, you will also enhance your data analysis, problem-solving and quantitative reasoning skills. During this year, you will also receive an introduction to accounting and finance, which will provide you with a comprehensive understanding of the concepts and techniques of the discipline, including financial accounting, managerial finance, and financial statement analysis.
In the second year, you will further develop your knowledge in analysis, probability and statistics. During this year, you will also begin to explore advanced finance and will benefit from modules in economics at managerial level. These will provide you with insight into micro and macroeconomics, and their related issues. You will develop real-world knowledge and experience by applying your analytical skills, interpreting events and evaluating policies. This will be instrumental in developing a career related to banking, finance, international payments and exchange rates, and monetary policy.
During your third year, you will delve deeper into the theory of probability and will explore the concept of statistical inference. Alongside this, you will gain valuable industry and employability skills through a dedicated careers-focused module. This final year will also be highly customisable, allowing you to select from a range of modules to suit your own interests and career aspirations.
MSci Financial Mathematics
As well as offering a BSc, we also offer a four year MSci Financial Mathematics degree. During the course of this programme, you have the option to graduate after three years with a BSc, or progress onto an advanced fourth year and complete an MSci. This additional year features Master's-level modules and a dissertation.
BSc Financial Mathematics (Industry)
Alternatively, you may wish to apply for our BSc Financial Mathematics (Industry) programme, which will offer you the opportunity to spend a year working with one of our partner organisations. This year in industry will provide you with invaluable experience and insight into the real-world workplace and will allow you to try out a possible career pathway.
Financial maths graduates are very versatile, having in-depth specialist knowledge and a wealth of skills. Through this degree, you will graduate with a comprehensive skill set, including data analysis and manipulation, logical thinking, problem-solving and quantitative reasoning, as well as adept knowledge of the discipline. As a result, financial mathematicians are sought after in a range of industries. However, graduates of this programme are ideally placed to forge rewarding careers in the business and finance, and government sectors.
The starting salary for many financial maths graduate roles is highly competitive, and career options include:
Alternatively, you may wish to undertake postgraduate study at Lancaster and pursue a career in research and teaching.
A Level AAA including A level Mathematics or Further Mathematics OR AAB including A level Mathematics and Further Mathematics
IELTS 6.5 overall with at least 5.5 in each component. For other English language qualifications we accept, please see our English language requirements webpages.
International Baccalaureate 36 points overall with 16 points from the best 3 Higher Level subjects including 6 in Mathematics HL (either analysis and approaches or applications and interpretations)
BTEC Accepted alongside A level Mathematics grade A and Further Mathematics grade A
We welcome applications from students with a range of alternative UK and international qualifications, including combinations of qualification. Further guidance on admission to the University, including other qualifications that we accept, frequently asked questions and information on applying, can be found on our general admissions webpages.
Contact Admissions Team + 44 (0) 1524 592028 or via firstname.lastname@example.org
Lancaster University offers a range of programmes, some of which follow a structured study programme, and some which offer the chance for you to devise a more flexible programme to complement your main specialism.
Information contained on the website with respect to modules is correct at the time of publication, and the University will make every reasonable effort to offer modules as advertised. In some cases changes may be necessary and may result in some combinations being unavailable, for example as a result of student feedback, timetabling, Professional Statutory and Regulatory Bodies' (PSRB) requirements, staff changes and new research. Not all optional modules are available every year.
Students are provided with an understanding of functions, limits, and series, and knowledge of the basic techniques of differentiation and integration. Examples of functions and their graphs are presented, as are techniques for building new functions from old. Then the notion of a limit is considered along with the main tools of calculus and Taylor Series. Students will also learn how to add, multiply and divide polynomials, and will learn about rational functions and their partial fractions.
The exponential function is defined by means of a power series which is subsequently extended to the complex exponential function of an imaginary variable, so that students understand the connection between analysis, trigonometry and geometry. The trigonometric and hyperbolic functions are introduced in parallel with analogous power series so that students understand the role of functional identities. Such functional identities are later used to simplify integrals and to parametrise geometrical curves.
This module provides a rigorous overview of real numbers, sequences and continuity. Covering bounds, monotonicity, subsequences, invertibility, and the intermediate value theorem, among other topics, students will become familiar with definitions, theorems and proofs.
Examining a range of examples, students will become accustomed to mathematical writing and will develop an understanding of mathematical notation. Through this module, students will also gain an appreciation of the importance of proof, generalisation and abstraction in the logical development of formal theories, and develop an ability to imagine and ‘see’ complicated mathematical objects.
In addition to learning and developing subject specific knowledge, students will enhance their ability to assimilate information from different presentations of material; learn to apply previously acquired knowledge to new situations; and develop their communication skills.
An introduction to the basic ideas and notations involved in describing sets and their functions will be given. This module helps students to formalise the idea of the size of a set and what it means to be finite, countably infinite or uncountably finite. For finite sets, it is said that one is bigger than another if it contains more elements. What about infinite sets? Are some infinite sets bigger than others? Students will develop the tools to answer these questions and other counting problems, such as those involving recurrence relations, e.g. the Fibonacci numbers.
The module will also consider the connections between objects, leading to the study of graphs and networks – collections of nodes joined by edges. There are many applications of this theory in designing or understanding properties of systems, such as the infrastructure powering the internet, social networks, the London Underground and the global ecosystem.
This course extends ideas of MATH101 from functions of a single real variable to functions of two real variables. The notions of differentiation and integration are extended from functions defined on a line to functions defined on the plane. Partial derivatives help us to understand surfaces, while repeated integrals enable us to calculate volumes.
In mathematical models, it is common to use functions of several variables. For example, the speed of an airliner can depend upon the air pressure and temperature, and the direction of the wind. To study functions of several variables, we introduce rates of change with respect to several quantities. We learn how to find maxima and minima. Applications include the method of least squares. Finally, we investigate various methods for solving differential equations of one variable.
The main focus of this module is vectors in two and three-dimensional space. Starting with the definition of vectors, students will discover some applications to finding equations of lines and planes, then they will consider some different ways of describing curves and surfaces via equations or parameters. Partial differentiation will be used to determine tangent lines and planes, and integration will be used to calculate the length of a curve.
In the second half of the course, the functions of several variables will be studied. When attempting to calculate an integral over one variable, one variable is often substituted for another more convenient one; here students will see the equivalent technique for a double integral, where they will have to substitute two variables simultaneously. They will also investigate some methods for finding maxima and minima of a function subject to certain conditions.
Finally, the module will explain how to calculate the areas of various surfaces and the volumes of various solids.
This course provides a comprehensive introduction to the basic concepts and techniques of Accounting and Finance, which include financial accounting, managerial finance, and financial statement analysis.
An important element of this course is that it provides exposure to the business and financial environment within which the discipline of Accounting and Finance operates, using real-world financial data for actual companies.
The course covers concepts, techniques and interpretive skills that relate to the external financial reporting of companies and their relationship to the stock market, and to the use of accounting information for internal management purposes.
Introducing the theory of matrices together with some basic applications, students will learn essential techniques such as arithmetic rules, row operations and computation of determinants by expansion about a row or a column.
The second part of the module covers a notable range of applications of matrices, such as solving systems of simultaneous linear equations, linear transformations, characteristic eigenvectors and eigenvalues.
The student will learn how to express a linear transformation of the real Euclidean space using a matrix, from which they will be able to determine whether it is singular or not and obtain its characteristic equation and eigenspaces.
The student is introduced to logic and mathematical proofs, with emphasis placed more on proving general theorems than on performing calculations. This is because a result which can be applied to many different cases is clearly more powerful than a calculation that deals only with a single specific case.
The language and structure of mathematical proofs will be explained, highlighting how logic can be used to express mathematical arguments in a concise and rigorous manner. These ideas will then be applied to the study of number theory, establishing several fundamental results such as Bezout’s Theorem on highest common factors and the Fundamental Theorem of Arithmetic on prime factorisations.
The concept of congruence of integers is introduced to students and they study the idea that a highest common factor can be generalised from the integers to polynomials.
Probability theory is the study of chance phenomena, the concepts of which are fundamental to the study of statistics. This module will introduce students to some simple combinatorics, set theory and the axioms of probability.
Students will become aware of the different probability models used to characterise the outcomes of experiments that involve a chance or random component. The module covers ideas associated with the axioms of probability, conditional probability, independence, discrete random variables and their distributions, expectation and probability models.
Building on the Convergence and Continuity module, students will explore the familiar topics of integration, and series and differentiation, and develop them further. Taking a different approach, students will learn about the concept of integrability of continuous functions; improper integrals of continuous functions; the definition of differentiability for functions; and the algebra of differentiation.
Applying the skills and knowledge gained from this module, students will tackle questions such as: can you sum up infinitely many numbers and get a finite number? They will also enhance their knowledge and understanding of the fundamental theorem of calculus.
To enable students to achieve a solid understanding of the broad role that statistical thinking plays in addressing scientific problems, the module begins with a brief overview of statistics in science and society. It then moves on to the selection of appropriate probability models to describe systematic and random variations of discrete and continuous real data sets. Students will learn to implement statistical techniques and to draw clear and informative conclusions.
The module will be supported by the statistical software package ‘R’, which forms the basis of weekly lab sessions. Students will develop a strategic understanding of statistics and the use of associated software, which will underpin the skills needed for all subsequent statistical modules of the degree.
This module is designed primarily for business major students looking to understand the macroeconomic environment, the current challenges in the global economy and the impacts of macroeconomic policies on economic activities. The module aims to provide tools, concepts, and models to guide your decision-making.
The topics it covers include analysis of the long- and short-run drivers of economic activity, the developments in the labour and financial market and monetary and fiscal policies. Beyond a review of key theoretical concepts, the course includes the discussion of case studies that show the concrete applications of how economic agents are addressing global issues, such as environmental challenges, financial crisis and debt problems.
The module requires logical thinking and academic writing skills and is only available to students with no prior background in Economics other than ECON 224.
Looking at microeconomic issues relating to markets and firms, and macroeconomic issues relating to money, banking and monetary policy, this module helps you to analyse economic issues from a business perspective. It demonstrates why economic concepts and principles are relevant to business issues by applying introductory economic theory to a range of issues that affect economic aspects of the business environment. Particular emphasis is given to interpreting the economic behaviour of individuals and firms, using theory to interpret events and evaluate policies.
This module covers project evaluation methods as well as risk, return and the cost of capital, including the capital asset pricing model. Corporate financing, including dividend policy and capital structure, options, and working capital management will also be investigated.
This module covers project evaluation methods, risk, return and the cost of capital (including the capital asset pricing model), corporate financing (including dividend policy and capital structure) and an introduction to options.
Probability provides the theoretical basis for statistics and is of interest in its own right.
Basic concepts from the first year probability module will be revisited and extended to these to encompass continuous random variables, with students investigating several important continuous probability distributions. Commonly used distributions are introduced and key properties proved, and examples from a variety of applications will be used to illustrate theoretical ideas.
Students will then focus on transformations of random variables and groups of two or more random variables, leading to two theoretical results about the behaviour of averages of large numbers of random variables which have important practical consequences in statistics.
Project Skills is a module designed to support and develop a range of key technical and professional skills that will be valuable for all career paths. Covering five major components, this module will guide students through and explore:
Students will gain an excellent grasp of LaTeX, learning to prepare mathematical documents; display mathematical symbols and formulae; create environments; and present tables and figures.
Scientific writing, communication and presentations skills will also be developed. Students will work on short and group projects to investigate mathematical or statistical topics, and present these in written reports and verbal presentations.
A thorough look will be taken at the limits of sequences and convergence of series during this module. Students will learn to extend the notion of a limit to functions, leading to the analysis of differentiation, including proper proofs of techniques learned at A-level.
Time will be spent studying the Intermediate Value Theorem and the Mean Value Theorem, and their many applications of widely differing kinds will be explored. The next topic is new: sequences and series of functions (rather than just numbers), which again has many applications and is central to more advanced analysis.
Next, the notion of integration will be put under the microscope. Once it is properly defined (via limits) students will learn how to get from this definition to the familiar technique of evaluating integrals by reverse differentiation. They will also explore some applications of integration that are quite different from the ones in A-level, such as estimations of discrete sums of series.
Further possible topics include Stirling's Formula, infinite products and Fourier series.
Statistics is the science of understanding patterns of population behaviour from data. In the module, this topic will be approached by specifying a statistical model for the data. Statistical models usually include a number of unknown parameters, which need to be estimated.
The focus will be on likelihood-based parameter estimation to demonstrate how statistical models can be used to draw conclusions from observations and experimental data, and linear regression techniques within the statistical modelling framework will also be considered.
Students will come to recognise the role, and limitations, of the linear model for understanding, exploring and making inferences concerning the relationships between variables and making predictions.
This module provides a detailed analysis of four key Finance paradigms:
Students will be provided with the foundational results and language of linear algebra, which they will be able to build upon in the second half of Year Two, and the more specialised Year Three modules. This module will give students the opportunity to study vector spaces, together with their structure-preserving maps and their relationship to matrices.
They will consider the effect of changing bases on the matrix representing one of these maps, and will examine how to choose bases so that this matrix is as simple as possible. Part of their study will also involve looking at the concepts of length and angle with regard to vector spaces.
Bayesian statistics provides a mechanism for making decisions in the presence of uncertainty. Using Bayes’ theorem, knowledge or rational beliefs are updated as fresh observations are collected. The purpose of the data collection exercise is expressed through a utility function, which is specific to the client or user. It defines what is to be gained or lost through taking particular actions in the current environment. Actions are continually made or not made depending on the expectation of this utility function at any point in time.
Bayesians admit probability as the sole measure of uncertainty. Thus Bayesian reasoning is based on a firm axiomatic system. In addition, since most people have an intuitive notion about probability, Bayesian analysis is readily communicated.
Statistical inference is the theory of the extraction of information about the unknown parameters of an underlying probability distribution from observed data. Consequently, statistical inference underpins all practical statistical applications.
This module reinforces the likelihood approach taken in second year Statistics for single parameter statistical models, and extends this to problems where the probability for the data depends on more than one unknown parameter.
Students will also consider the issue of model choice: in situations where there are multiple models under consideration for the same data, how do we make a justified choice of which model is the 'best'?
The approach taken in this course is just one approach to statistical inference: a contrasting approach is covered in the Bayesian Inference module.
This module is ideal for students who want to develop an analytical and axiomatic approach to the theory of probabilities.
First the notion of a probability space will be examined through simple examples featuring both discrete and continuous sample spaces. Random variables and the expectation will be used to develop a probability calculus, which can be applied to achieve laws of large numbers for sums of independent random variables.
Students will also use the characteristic function to study the distributions of sums of independent variables, which have applications to random walks and to statistical physics.
The concept of generalised linear models (GLMs), which have a range of applications in the biomedical, natural and social sciences, and can be used to relate a response variable to one or more explanatory variables, will be explored. The response variable may be classified as quantitative (continuous or discrete, i.e. countable) or categorical (two categories, i.e. binary, or more than categories, i.e. ordinal or nominal).
Students will come to understand the effect of censoring in the statistical analyses and will use appropriate statistical techniques for lifetime data. They will also become familiar with the programme R, which they will have the opportunity to use in weekly workshops.
This course equips students with the knowledge to apply corporate finance theory to real-world situations. It builds on and extends the concepts covered in the basic financial management courses and introduces advanced topics in Corporate Finance. The major topics covered include capital budgeting, capital structure, corporate valuation, real options, equity financing for startups, IPOs, leasing, short term financing, merger and acquisitions, and corporate governance
The objective of this module is to offer a practical introduction to the workings of today’s financial markets and institutions built on a theoretical base. Moving beyond the descriptions and definitions provided by other textbooks and UK university courses in the field, this module encourages students to understand the connection between the theoretical concepts and their real-world applications.
Topics include foreign exchange, stock markets, bond markets, derivatives, central banks' monetary policy and financial crises. We also look at how trading in financial markets takes place. This module prepares students for successful careers in the financial services industry or successful interactions with financial institutions, whatever their future careers.
This module provides knowledge that is important to those concerned with financial management in a multinational setting. Areas covered include the relationships between exchange rates, interest rates and inflation rates, forward, futures and options markets, and corporate exchange rate risk management.
The aim of this module is to equip students with the tools necessary to enable them to make the core investment management decisions that managers face on a daily basis as well as the knowledge as to where they can find the information necessary to apply those tools. This course is an introduction to investment analysis, with emphasis on the pricing of equity securities. This course covers fundamental concepts and key issues in asset pricing; modern portfolio theory and its applications; equilibrium theories of asset pricing; portfolio performance evaluation; mutual funds and hedge funds. It provides an entry point to advanced-level subjects and foundational knowledge on the valuation and arbitrage of investment assets.
Using the classical problem of data classification as a running example, this module covers mathematical representation and visualisation of multivariate data; dimensionality reduction; linear discriminant analysis; and Support Vector Machines. While studying these theoretical aspects, students will also gain experience of applying them using R.
An appreciation for multivariate statistical analysis will be developed during the module, as will an ability to represent and visualise high-dimensional data. Students will also gain the ability to evaluate larger statistical models, apply statistical computer packages to analyse large data sets, and extract and evaluate meaning from data.
This module formally introduces students to the discipline of financial mathematics, providing them with an understanding of some of the maths that is used in the financial and business sectors.
Students will begin to encounter financial terminology and will study both European and American option pricing. The module will cover these in relation to discrete and continuous financial models, which include binomial, finite market and Black-Scholes models.
Students will also explore mathematical topics, some of which may be familiar, specifically in relation to finance. These include:
Throughout the module, students will learn key financial maths skills, such as constructing binomial tree models; determining associated risk-neutral probability; performing calculations with the Black-Scholes formula; and proving various steps in the derivation of the Black-Scholes formula. They will also be able to describe basic concepts of investment strategy analysis, and perform price calculations for stocks with and without dividend payments.
In addition, to these subject specific skills and knowledge, students will gain an appreciation for how mathematics can be used to model the real-world; improve their written and oral communication skills; and develop their critical thinking.
The aim is to introduce students to the study designs and statistical methods commonly used in health investigations, such as measuring disease, causality and confounding.
Students will develop a firm understanding of the key analytical methods and procedures used in studies of disease aetiology, appreciate the effect of censoring in the statistical analyses, and use appropriate statistical techniques for time to event data.
They will look at both observational and experimental designs and consider various health outcomes, studying a number of published articles to gain an understanding of the problems they are investigating as well as the mathematical and statistical concepts underpinning inference.
This module is designed as an introduction to econometric and time series methods for the analysis and research of financial assets and capital markets relationships. The focus will be on the analysis of financial data and econometric methods for modelling of financial time series, risk management and forecasting. The key objectives are to i) explain how econometric methods can be used to learn about the behaviour of financial assets; ii) endow students with practical experience of analysing financial data useful for research and practical work in the quantitative finance industry using basic statistical software packages; and iii) endow students with the relevant quantitative skills for advanced studies in MSc programmes.
Important examples of stochastic processes, and how these processes can be analysed, will be the focus of this module.
As an introduction to stochastic processes, students will look at the random walk process. Historically this is an important process, and was initially motivated as a model for how the wealth of a gambler varies over time (initial analyses focused on whether there are betting strategies for a gambler that would ensure they won).
The focus will then be on the most important class of stochastic processes, Markov processes (of which the random walk is a simple example). Students will discover how to analyse Markov processes, and how they are used to model queues and populations.
Modern statistics is characterised by computer-intensive methods for data analysis and development of new theory for their justification. In this module students will become familiar with topics from classical statistics as well as some from emerging areas.
Time series data will be explored through a wide variety of sequences of observations arising in environmental, economic, engineering and scientific contexts. Time series and volatility modelling will also be studied, and the techniques for the analysis of such data will be discussed, with emphasis on financial application.
Another area the module will focus on is some of the techniques developed for the analysis of multivariates, such as principal components analysis and cluster analysis.
Lastly,students will spend time looking at Change-Point Methods, which include traditional as well as some recently developed techniques for the detection of change in trend and variance.
Our annual tuition fee is set for a 12-month session, starting in the October of your year of study.
Our Undergraduate Tuition Fees for 2024/25 are:
There may be extra costs related to your course for items such as books, stationery, printing, photocopying, binding and general subsistence on trips and visits. Following graduation, you may need to pay a subscription to a professional body for some chosen careers.
Specific additional costs for studying at Lancaster are listed below.
Lancaster is proud to be one of only a handful of UK universities to have a collegiate system. Every student belongs to a college, and all students pay a small college membership fee which supports the running of college events and activities.
For students starting in 2022 and 2023, the fee is £40 for undergraduates and research students and £15 for students on one-year courses. Fees for students starting in 2024 have not yet been set.
To support your studies, you will also require access to a computer, along with reliable internet access. You will be able to access a range of software and services from a Windows, Mac, Chromebook or Linux device. For certain degree programmes, you may need a specific device, or we may provide you with a laptop and appropriate software - details of which will be available on relevant programme pages. A dedicated IT support helpdesk is available in the event of any problems.
The University provides limited financial support to assist students who do not have the required IT equipment or broadband support in place.
In addition to travel and accommodation costs, while you are studying abroad, you will need to have a passport and, depending on the country, there may be other costs such as travel documents (e.g. VISA or work permit) and any tests and vaccines that are required at the time of travel. Some countries may require proof of funds.
In addition to possible commuting costs during your placement, you may need to buy clothing that is suitable for your workplace and you may have accommodation costs. Depending on the employer and your job, you may have other costs such as copies of personal documents required by your employer for example.
Details of our scholarships and bursaries for 2024-entry study are not yet available, but you can use our opportunities for 2023-entry applicants as guidance.
Check our current list of scholarships and bursaries.
Our autumn open days give you Lancaster University in a day. Visit campus and put yourself in the picture.Undergraduate Open Days
Join Meenal and Vlad as they take you on a tour of the Lancaster University campus. Discover the learning facilities, accommodation, sports facilities, welfare, cafes, bars, parkland and more.Undergraduate Open Days
The information on this site relates primarily to 2024/2025 entry to the University and every effort has been taken to ensure the information is correct at the time of publication.
The University will use all reasonable effort to deliver the courses as described, but the University reserves the right to make changes to advertised courses. In exceptional circumstances that are beyond the University’s reasonable control (Force Majeure Events), we may need to amend the programmes and provision advertised. In this event, the University will take reasonable steps to minimise the disruption to your studies. If a course is withdrawn or if there are any fundamental changes to your course, we will give you reasonable notice and you will be entitled to request that you are considered for an alternative course or withdraw your application. You are advised to revisit our website for up-to-date course information before you submit your application.
More information on limits to the University’s liability can be found in our legal information.
We believe in the importance of a strong and productive partnership between our students and staff. In order to ensure your time at Lancaster is a positive experience we have worked with the Students’ Union to articulate this relationship and the standards to which the University and its students aspire. View our Charter and other policies.