The course

Full-time, Part-time, Per course
Course type
Entry date


MACS postgraduate scholarships

4 scholarships of £2,500 will be awarded to outstanding applicants to our MSc in Quantitative Financial Risk Management. Find out more.


*Important note for 2017/18 applicants* 

The MSc in Quantitative Financial Risk Management (QFRM) is currently going through an exciting modication. For the academic year 2017/18 QFRM is to be amalgamated into the MSc in Quantitative Finance and Mathematics (QFM), alongside the MSc in Quantitative Financial Engineering (QFE). This programme will retain the QFM title and will continue to offer all of the courses currently provided by QFRM, as well as all those in QFM and QFE. 

This is the first joint programme Heriot-Watt has offered between the Mathematics and Actuarial, Mathematics & Statistics departments and is a very exciting step for the School of Mathematical and Computer Sciences. A full list of courses to be offered on this programme will be available on the QFM postgraduate page on the 28th September, however in the meantime you can still apply via this page or find out more by contacting the programme director, Dr Simon Malham.

Programme overview

Risk is the BIG topic that dominates the financial industry, from complying with banking or insurance regulation to making sure the whizz-kids don't blow a hole in the balance sheet with their automated trading strategies.The MSc in Quantitative Financial Risk Management (QFRM) is an excellent choice for graduates with good quantitative skills who are seeking a rewarding career as a risk manager in financial services. QFRM is an interdisciplinary subject that drawn on both finance and statistics and is aligned to the emerging professional syllabus in risk management. We aim to provide a rounded view if the subject, combining an appreciation of the practical application of risk management procedures in financial institutions with a rigorous grounding in the kind of mathematical models that underpin risk management, and a thorough coverage of risk regulation and the methodologies that are used in industry to measure and manage financial rules.

Graduates with such skills are highly desirable to employers who, typically, have developed their "rocket-science" based pricing systems and now want to focus on managing the risks of using them.

The QFRM MSc is

  • mathematical, and a good degree in mathematics, or a mathematically based subject, is a pre-requisite.
  • practical, the emphasis is on the use of mathematics rather than the theory.

Heriot-Watt boasts a leading international research group in financial and actuarial mathematics. Lectures will be given by highly experienced staff at our campus which is set in pleasant grounds in Edinburgh, Scotland's vibrant capital city.

There are strong links between the QFRM MSc and Edinburgh's significant investment industry, with one of the courses actually being taught by industry personnel. The degree is fully accredited by the Professional Risk Managers' International Association (PRMIA) and students who complete the appropriate courses, at the required level, will be eligible for exemption from PRMIA's Professional Risk Manager Certification (PRM™) Exams I and II. Other courses follow the Institute & Faculty of Actuaries professional syllabus.

Programme duration

This full-time MSc programme lasts for 12 months.

Course content

   Detailed course guide

Core modules

  • Enterprise Risk Management
  • Derivative Markets and Pricing
  • Credit Risk Modelling
  • Financial Markets
  • Financial Econometrics
  • Time Series Analysis
  • Economic Scenario Generation
  • "Special Topics", some delivered by risk management professionals


  • Statistical Methods
  • Corporate Finance

For more detailed course descriptions, please visit our current student website

Entry requirements

Entry requires a UK 2.1 degree or equivalent in Mathematics, Statistics, or a related subject with a substantial mathematics content from a British or overseas university.

We are looking to train those who not only have a strong background in mathematics, but who also possess the ability to communicate effectively, and have the desire to succeed in a dynamic and competitive industry.

The programme is not suitable for finance professionals without graduate-level mathematical training

English language requirements

Important: If your first language is not English, or your first degree was not taught in English, we’ll need to see evidence of your English language ability.

The minimum requirement for English language is IELTS 6.5, we also accept TOEFL (scores of 79 and higher).

We also offer a range of English language courses to help you meet the English language requirement prior to starting your master’s programme:

  • 14 weeks English (for IELTS of 5.5 with no more than one skill at 4.5);
  • 10 weeks English (for IELTS of 5.5 with minimum of 5.0 in all skills);
  • 6 weeks English (for IELTS 5.5 with minimum of 5.5 in reading & writing and minimum of 5.0 in speaking & listening)

Fees and funding

Tuition fees for 2017 entry (by residency status)
Status* Full-time Part-time Per course
Scotland / Non-UK EU £19100 £1880 / £4190**
England / Northern Ireland / Wales £19100 £1880 / £4190**
Overseas £19100 £1880 / £4190**

* If you are unsure which category you fall in to, you should complete a fee status enquiry form, which allows us to assess your fees.

** Fee per course

Additional fees information

** The fees per course are £1880 and the dissertation fee is £4190.

Scholarships and bursaries

We aim to encourage well-qualified, ambitious students to study with us and we offer a wide variety of scholarships and bursaries to achieve this. Over £6 million worth of opportunities are available in fee and stipend scholarships, and more than 400 students benefit from this support.

View our full range of postgraduate taught scholarships.