Learn about the impact of financial markets
The Finance Master’s program builds on a set of core courses that focus on the main areas of finance: asset pricing, corporate finance, and institutional finance. After that, you can specialize in one of the learning lines. You’ll also pick up valuable financial methodologies, quantitative skills, research skills, and preparation for the job market.
The program has been a top-ranked program according to the National Student Survey (NSE) for several years. With approximately 150 students it is small enough to maintain close contact with your classmates and the teachers, but large enough to ensure a good selection of electives. On top of that, one-third of the program’s professors also work in the financial industry themselves. All other courses offer at least two guest lectures from industry professionals and use cases from the industry.
You’ll take four core courses:
Asset Pricing – Learn what drives stock prices by competing against each other as portfolio managers. You’ll directly apply your knowledge of asset pricing by investing in (virtual) stocks to generate the most money – may the best team win!
Advanced Corporate Finance – You’ll work with case studies from Harvard Business to assess how real-life companies should finance their activities in the most optimal way for their situation.
Financial Markets and Institutions – Based on interviews with practitioners, the course will teach you about financial infrastructure: how financial institutions are linked and what their various responsibilities are.
Empirical Finance – You’ll study financial econometrics and statistical methodologies, and you’ll test the validity of economic theories. You’ll directly apply your newly acquired knowledge in the interactive PC labs. The best preparation for your thesis.
You’ll take at least two electives, each of which relates to one of the learning lines:
Investments – You can take electives in Derivatives, Institutional investments, and Quantitative Financial Risk Management, or Credit and Complexity.
Corporate Finance – Think of courses like Corporate Valuation, Behavioural Finance, or Bank Management
Institutional Finance – choose from Economics of Payment Systems, Macro, and International Finance and Bank Management.
Real Estate Finance – You’ll get the opportunity to further specialize in the real estate sector. We offer electives on Real Estate Finance and Investments, Real Estate Economics, and Urban Economic Challenges.
The start date of this program is September 1st.
MSc Finance Online
VU Amsterdam also offers the possibility to complete the MSc in Finance fully online. In this way, you can earn an MSc diploma from this renowned research university even when you cannot travel to Amsterdam.
Online equivalent to on-site
All features and conditions of the online version of the Finance master, such as entry requirements, learning goals, and tuition, are equivalent to the very successful on-campus version of the master’s program. Upon successful completion of the online version, you will receive the exact same diploma as in the on-site version of this degree.
Option to switch between online and on-site
Two times in the academic year you can choose to belong to the on-site group or the online group. These choices will have to be made early in August for the first semester (period September to December) and early in December for the second semester (period January to July). So, you can decide to follow the first semester online, and the second semester on-site, or vice versa, or to follow both semesters online. The choice is yours and you are free to switch between online and on-site versions provided you communicate your decision to the program administration in the aforementioned months.
To follow the online courses a sufficiently equipped computer with a webcam and a stable internet connection is required.
We want to help you through the year, get the most out of your virtual year, and make sure you have an enjoyable learning experience at VU:
Tutoring. Each online student has a tutor, who is one of the lecturers from the program.
Buddy program. Each online student is paired with an offline student.
Virtual group events, such as drinks, Zuidas tour, guest lectures, and access to department research seminars.
Summer and/or winter outing for students to come to the VU and Amsterdam for a week to physically meet fellow students, professors, and experience the vibrant VU campus and the city of Amsterdam (attendance is voluntary; travel expenses are owned by the students).
The curriculum of the online version includes the same courses as the on-site version in the first semester. In the second semester, you write your master’s thesis and choose at least two of the four most popular electives from the Master Finance: Derivatives, Behavioral Finance, Corporate Valuation for Finance, and Institutional Investments & Asset Liability Management.
Advanced Corporate Finance
Financial Markets and Institutions
Research Project for Finance
Thesis MSc Finance
Duisenberg Honours programs
For motivated students, we also offer two honors programs: the Duisenberg Honours program in Quantitative Risk Management and the Duisenberg Honours program in Finance and Technology. These honors programs offer students a challenging yet rewarding program that covers six periods in total.
The Financial Study association Amsterdam (FSA)
The FSA forms the link between ambitious students and leading companies in the financial sector. Throughout the year, we host 20 career events, designed to help you take the step from university to the labor market. These events help you orientate your career and get in contact with the right people to apply for an internship or a job. In the Netherlands, our portfolio is unmatched: we collaborate with companies such as Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan, Heineken, Bain & Company, De Nederlandsche Bank, BCG, and many more.
Some of the areas we are active in investment banking, private equity, strategy consulting, real estate, data science, and many more. Next to events, we offer career opportunities on our website.
The FSA is led by a full-time board of 6 students and 20 different committees. Are you looking to gain leadership experience, get in contact with leading companies, orientate on the financial job market, develop yourself on a personal and professional level, and have an awesome year? Then working at the FSA is the right step for you!
Change your future with the Finance program
On completing this Master’s program, you’ll be able to fulfill a valuable bridge function between the quants (as you’ll understand the numbers) and the business managers (as you’ll be able to interpret the results).
As a graduate of a Master’s in Finance, you are perfectly prepared for roles as an asset manager, risk manager, business analyst, or consultant.
Once you have completed the program, you are a valuable part of any company, by being able to provide a pivotal role in bringing the numbers and the results together.
Throughout the program, you’ll have taken workshops that will help you find your ideal role, write the perfect CV and covering letter, and ace the interview.
The university has close connections with the Dutch Central Bank as well as companies in Amsterdam’s Zuidas business district – these are reflected both in the program itself and in the future job opportunities of its graduates. Furthermore, VU Amsterdam has a reputation for its broader societal focus, which means the program also applies ethical questions to the financial sector, for example, allowing students to discuss dilemmas they may face in the industry.
Entering the job market
Graduates from the program have gone on to work at one of the large consulting firms (Deloitte, Accenture, McKinsey, etc.), the big banks (ING, ABN AMRO, etc.), the Central Bank, or large corporations. IT firms like Google are also interested in graduates from the Finance program.