MA (Hons) Business and Finance

The course

UCAS code
4 years
Delivery type

MA (Hons) Business and Finance explores the interface between business and finance and looks closely at the implications of financial decision-making on business performance and management.


Got questions about this programme?

Contact our enquiries team.


The Business and Finance course is a specialist joint degree with equal emphasis given to the subject areas of business and finance. The degree is particularly suited to students who wish to gain a firm grounding in business and management coupled with an insight into the finance and financial operations of businesses and organisations.

Students on this degree can study at our campuses in Dubai and Malysia for one semester or more through Heriot-Watt's Go Global project. 

You will have the opportunity to learn hands-on financial skills in our Bloomberg Trading Lab with 16 state-of-the-art industry standard Bloomberg Trading Terminals. 

This degree has been acknowledged as incorporating at least 70 percent of the CFA Program Candidate Body of Knowledge (CBOK) and placing emphasis on the CFA Institute Code of Ethics and Standards of Professional Conduct within the program. This degree programme positions students to obtain the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA®) charter, which has become one of the most respected and recognized investment credential in the world. 

We also acknowledge CFA credentials as entry criteria, those who have passed Level II of the CFA Program are eligible to apply for direct entry into year 3.

Global College pathway for this degree

If you do not meet the entry requirements for this degree, have a look at Heriot-Watt Global College, where you can follow an accelerated pathway which will get you onto the second year of this degree.


Bloomberg Experiential Learning Partner

Heriot-Watt University is accredited as a Bloomberg Experiential Learning Partner, recognising us as a leader in experiential learning in the area of finance. 

Course content

Year 1

Semester 1

  • Introduction to Accounting and Finance
  • Introduction to Marketing
  • Academic Skills
  • Management in a Global Context

Semester 2

  • The Economy 
  • Becoming a Professional
  • Discovering Business
  • Elective

Year 2

Semester 1

  • Fundamentals of Finance
  • Personal Finance and Investment Ethics
  • Elective 
  • Elective

Semester 2

  • Financial Markets Theory
  • Quantitative Methods 1
  • Organisational Behaviour 
  • Elective 

Year 3

Semester 1

  • Mergers and Acquisitions
  • Corporate Financial Theory
  • Fundamentals of Financial Technology
  • Option

Semester 2

  • Financial Derivatives and Managing Corporate Value
  • Applied Financial Modelling in Python 
  • Business Research Methods
  • Strategic Management


  • Business Venturing
  • Introduction to Commercial Law 
  • Consumer Behaviour
  • Employment Law
  • Innovation Management
  • Marketing and Consumer Law
  • Leading in Organisations
  • Project Management
  • Resourcing and Talent Management
  • Financial Derivatives 
  • Managing Corporate Value

Year 4

Semester 1

  • Dissertation
  • Option
  • Option
  • Choose one:
    • Agency Theory and Corporate Governance
    • Risk Management and Derivatives
    • International Bond and Currency Markets

Semester 2

  • Dissertation
  • Option 
  • Option
  • Choose one:
    • Equity Markets and Fund Management
    • Contemporary Issues in Finance 


  • The Contemporary Workforce
  • Diversity Management
  • Digital Marketing
  • Global Business Analysis 2: Global Trends and Risks
  • Management Dissertation 1
  • Management Dissertation 2
  • International Law of Human Resource Management
  • Global Business Analysis 1: International Markets and Strategy
  • International Entrepreneurship
  • International Business Law
  • Leisure Marketing
  • Changing Trends in Employment
  • Marketing Sustainability
  • Retail Marketing
  • Marketing and Management of SMEs
  • Team Performance Dynamics
  • Banking
  • Agency Theory and Corporate Governance
  • Contemporary Issues in Finance
  • Accounting and Finance Dissertation 1
  • Accounting and Finance Dissertation 2
  • Risk Management and Derivatives
  • Equity Markets and Fund Management
  • Advanced Valuation of Financial Markets

Discover Uni course data

Discover Uni provides data on each university's degree courses across a range of measures including student satisfaction, graduate jobs and salaries.


Work and study

This is what our MA (Hons) Business and Finance students are doing 15 months after graduating:

  • 78% are working
  • 1% are studying
  • 9% are working and studying.


  • The average salary of students 15 months after graduating: £25000
  • The average UK salary of students 15 months after graduating from a similar course: £25000

Potential career paths

  • Business and public service associate professionals
  • Managers, directors and senior officials

Entry requirements

Year 1

Standard entry requirements

  • Highers AABB (over two sittings)
  • A-Levels BBC - ABB
  • Int. Baccalaureate 29 points
  • BTEC DDM (Business/Accountancy/Finance preferred)
  • HNC B in graded unit

Minimum entry requirements*

  • Highers BBBC
  • A-Levels BBC - ABB

* Minimum: under our Fair Access Policy, we will relax our standard entry requirements for some Scottish students depending on their circumstances. Our minimum requirements will apply if you:

  • live in an area within the Scottish Index of Multiple Deprivation lowest 20% (SIMD20), or
  • are care experienced.

We can also make exceptions for some Scottish students with grades above minimum but below standard. Read more about our Minimum and standard entry requirements

Year 2

  • Advanced Highers BB (including at least one: Accountancy, Business, Economics, Maths plus AAAB at Higher)
  • A-Levels ABB (including at least one of: Accountancy, Business, Economics, Maths)
  • Int. Baccalaureate 34 points (including at least one of: Accountancy, Business, Economics, Maths at Higher Level 5)
  • HNC A in graded unit (Accounting)
  • HND BBB in graded units (Accounting or Business)
  • Global College Successful completion of Accounting and Finance with Accelerator Programme

Year 3

  • HND AAA in graded units (Accounting)
  • CFA Level 2 of the CFA program

Additional information

English language requirements

If English is not your first language, you will have to show us that your English is good enough to succeed on your course. Please refer to our English language requirements.


Tuition fees for 2024 entry
Status* Scotland England / Wales / N Ireland / Rep of Ireland International**
Fee Paid by SAAS £9,250 £18,704

* Your residency 'status' is usually defined as the country where you have been ordinarily resident for the three years before the start of your course. Find out more about tuition fees.

** 'International' includes applicants from European Union countries who do not hold Pre-Settled or Settled status in UK. (This does not include students from the Republic of Ireland - see above). Read more about the application process for EU nationals.

Additional costs

You may incur additional costs in the course of your studies at Heriot-Watt over and above tuition fees in an academic year. Depending on your programme of study, these may include: protective equipment, field trips, professional memberships, studio fees, required course texts or other study resources.

Scholarships and bursaries

Featured scholarships

Bursaries for students from England, Northern Ireland or Wales

In addition to government loans and grants towards the costs of fees and living costs, we are offering generous financial support to attract and support eligible undergraduate students from England, Northern Ireland or Wales:

  • Heriot-Watt University Bursary (up to £3,100 per year)
View details about the Heriot-Watt University Bursary

View our full range of undergraduate scholarships.