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Postgraduate Diploma in Finance

This qualification is designed to support professional development and practice in a wide range of roles in finance – whether you are developing in your career or aspiring to enter the sector. It is applicable to roles in areas such as investment banking, portfolio management, corporate finance, treasury, and consultancy. It provides a thorough grounding in areas such as corporate finance, financial decision-making, financial reporting and governance. It develops competences in applying statistical and econometric techniques, and equips you with knowledge of the fundamentals of Islamic and behavioural finance. You can choose to specialise either in derivatives and financial risk management, or in investment and portfolio management. 

Key features of the course

  • Provides an up-to-date perspective on both theory and practice in national and international contexts
  • Learn and apply the most important tools for financial analysis and decision support
  • Acquire competencies in statistical and econometric analysis
  • Develop your digital literacy skills, research capabilities and critical thinking
  • Opens up the opportunity to top up to the MSc in Finance in just one more year by completing a dissertation module.

Diploma

Course code
E83
Credits

Credits

  • Credits measure the student workload required for the successful completion of a module or qualification.
  • One credit represents about 10 hours of study over the duration of the course.
  • You are awarded credits after you have successfully completed a module.
  • For example, if you study a 60-credit module and successfully pass it, you will be awarded 60 credits.
120
How long it takes
1–5 years
Read more about how long it takes
Study method
Distance learning
Find out more in Why the OU?
Course cost
See Fees and funding
Entry requirements

Find out more about entry requirements.

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Course details

Modules

To gain this qualification, you need 120 credits as follows:

90 credits of compulsory modules:

Compulsory modules Credits Next start
Introduction to corporate finance (B858)

This module covers the core areas of corporate finance and is the basis for developing specialist financial expertise. 

See full description

Register
30 03 Nov 2018
Financial strategy: valuation, governance and ethics  (B859)

This module provides the theoretical and analytical knowledge required in making financial policy decisions, exploring issues such as ethics and introducing Islamic finance.

See full description

Register
30 04 May 2019
Research methods for finance (B860)  

This module introduces the principles of research; its process, philosophy and methodology. You'll develop competences in applying statistical and econometric techniques to problems in finance.

See full description

Register
30 03 Nov 2018

plus
30 credits from this list:

Optional modules Credits Next start
Investment and portfolio management (B861)

The module covers investment strategies for bonds, equities, the use of derivatives in managing risk, measuring portfolio performance, portfolio optimisation and asset allocation.

See full description

Register
30 04 May 2019
Derivatives and risk management (B862)

This module introduces key tools such as derivatives and risk mapping and provides you with an understanding of how the various financial and non-financial risks faced by organisations can be managed. 

See full description

Register
30 04 May 2019

You should note that the University’s unique study rule applies to this qualification. This means that you must include at least 60 credits from OU modules that have not been counted in any other OU qualification that has previously been awarded to you.


We regularly review our curriculum; therefore, the qualification described on this page – including its availability, its structure, and available modules – may change over time. If we make changes to this qualification, we’ll update this page as soon as possible. Once you’ve registered or are studying this qualification, where practicable, we’ll inform you in good time of any upcoming changes. If you’d like to know more about the circumstances in which the University might make changes to the curriculum, see our Academic Regulations or contact us. This description was last updated on 8th June 2018.

Learning outcomes, teaching and assessment

The learning outcomes of this qualification are described in four areas:

  • Knowledge and understanding
  • Cognitive skills
  • Practical and professional skills
  • Key skills
Read more detailed information about the learning outcomes.

Credit transfer

If you’ve successfully completed some relevant postgraduate study or elsewhere, you might be able to count it towards this qualification, reducing the number of modules you need to study. You should apply for credit transfer as soon as possible, before you register for your first module. For more details and an application form, visit our Credit Transfer website


On completion

On successful completion of the required modules, you will be awarded the Postgraduate Diploma in Finance entitling you to use the letters PG Dip Fin (Open) after your name.

Regulations

As a student of The Open University, you should be aware of the content of the qualification-specific regulations below and the academic regulations that are available on our Student Policies and Regulations website. 

Entry requirements

You must hold a bachelors degree awarded by a recognised UK university or equivalent. Please contact us if you hold a qualification that you believe is an equivalent level to a UK honours degree to ensure that it meets the requirements for admission.  

Your spoken and written English must be of an adequate standard for postgraduate study. If English is not your first language, we recommend that you will need a minimum score of 6.5 under the International English Language Testing System (IELTS). Please see their website for details.

This diploma requires an aptitude for analytical and quantitative methods to engage with theories of finance and their applications. You should possess a good working knowledge of maths and be confident with spreadsheets. It would be advisable to self-assess your level of maths before registering for this qualification. To help you decide whether you are ready, you may want to try this diagnostic quiz.

How long it takes

Most students study this qualification in two years by studying two 30-credit modules a year. The minimum time to complete this qualification is one year. This can be achieved by studying four modules (120 credits) in your first year, which is the equivalent of full-time study. The maximum time to complete is five years.

Career relevance

This postgraduate qualification offers knowledge in a wide range of finance areas that include the corporate finance function, investments, banking and financial institutions and risk management. You will gain both theoretical and practical insights into the working of financial markets, valuation of securities, understanding financial statements, risk management and portfolio management. You will develop the skills and capabilities required by investment analysts, finance managers, finance directors and chief financial officers. You will be equipped with the knowledge and skills to support decision making at the higher levels of organisations by exploring issues related to ethics and corporate governance, reporting and disclosure, financing and investment in uncertain and global business environments. Prudent practice of finance is relevant across all sectors – public, private and voluntary. This qualification will therefore prepare you to work in the corporate sector, financial services, the banking industry, multinational organisations and other sectors where analytical and decision tools in treasury, investment and financing decisions are required.

Careers and Employability Services have more information on how OU study can improve your employability.