Graduate Diploma/MSc in Financial Services NEW



Who is this programme for?

The MSc in Financial Services is ideal for financial services professionals who are in leadership positions, or who aspire to leadership roles. It is designed to develop a critical understanding of managerial challenges and opportunities in the globalised financial services industry.
The curriculum develops industry specific knowledge, analytical skills and utilises students’ practical experience to promote peer learning. An important aspect of the programme is the integration of current research and a focus on strategic challenges facing financial institutions to identify opportunities and threats arising in the global marketplace. Students have to critically evaluate the implications of operating in a dynamic business environment and the challenges they face in developing and executing strategies to provide value added products, services and solutions as firms seek to create compelling value propositions to support sustainable competitive advantage.

How you will benefit

This programme will support your personal and professional development by enhancing your knowledge across a broad curriculum while giving you an integrated, critical understanding of financial services.
It will:

  • Broaden your knowledge and understanding of the requirements and responsibilities of financial services firms, their activities and associated risks.
  • Develop your thinking on key challenges by evaluating evidence and ascertaining the implications of financial theory and your own professional experience.
  • Develop your ability to critically analyse contemporary issues in financial services.
  • Enable you to apply theories and frameworks to evaluate options to innovate, adjust and execute strategy.
  • Develop a holistic professional skill set to ensure commercial sustainability and the trust of customers and wider stakeholders along with a framework for life-long learning.
  • Enhance your ability to inform, recommend and report on decisions to key stakeholders.

Professional designation

This programme provides a pathway to the prestigious and internationally recognised Chartered Banker designation.

Chartered Banker is the gold standard for professionals working in the banking sector. It is recognised and supported by major financial services organisations around the world. Chartered Bankers are highly qualified professionals, well equipped for a management career or leadership role in banking.

Students who successfully complete the following three modules:

01 Ethics and Corporate Governance
02 Risk Management in Financial Institutions
03 Contemporary Issues of Financial Services
03 Fostering an Innovative Environment

will satisfy the educational requirement for Chartered Banker.

However, to be eligible for the Chartered Banker designation, these students will also have to satisfy the requirement of a minimum of three years' experience in banking or financial services. 


The Graduate Diploma comprises of six modules as follows:

  • Ethics and Corporate Governance (NFQ Level 9, 10 ECTS)
  • Risk Management in Financial Institutions (NFQ Level 9, 10 ECTS)
  • Contemporary Issues in Financial Services (NFQ Level 9, 10 ECTS)
  • Project Management (NFQ Level 9, 10 ECTS)
  • Fostering an Innovative Environment (NFQ Level 9, 10 ECTS)
  • Managing for Compliance (NFQ Level 9, 10 ECTS)

Successful completion of the first 6 modules leads to the award Graduate Diploma in Financial Services. 

Candidates who achieve a second class honours grade 2 award (or higher) in the Graduate Diploma are eligible for the award MSc in Financial Services on successful completion of three further modules:

  • Risk-Based Financial Management (NFQ Level 9, 10 ECTS)
  • Behavioural Decision-Making (NFQ Level 9, 10 ECTS)
  • Winning Business Negotiation Strategies (NFQ Level 9, 10 ECTS)


When you successfully complete the first six modules of this programme and exit the programme, you will be awarded the Graduate Diploma in Financial Services from UCD (at postgraduate level 9).

Candidates who achieve a second class honours grade 2 award in this graduate diploma are eligible for the award MSc in Financial Services on successful completion of three further modules. This MSc is also accredited and awarded by UCD (at postgraduate level 9).

Entry requirements

The minimum entry requirements for the programme are:

Honours degree (second class honours grade 2 award or higher) in business or a related discipline (e.g.) accounting, finance or economics; or

Honours degree (second class honours grade 2 award or higher) in a non-business discipline with three years' relevant work experience; or

Those who do not hold a degree, but have exceptional middle or senior management experience, are eligible to apply and will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

Professional body membership

You must be a current member of the Institute of Banking, or become a member, to register for this programme.
Membership is currently €40 per calendar year.


Postgraduate courses are lecture-based and delivered on a part-time basis. Students can register for a maximum of two modules per semester. Each 10 ECTS module comprises of up to 30 delivery hours per semester.


Graduate Diploma - 18 months, part-time.

MSc - 24 months, part-time.


Assessment is a combination of continuous assessment and written exams.

The pass mark is 40% in all modules in line with UCD academic policy.


For further information on fees please see the programme brochure for this programme.

Continuing Professional Development (CPD)

Those awarded the Chartered Banker designation on foot of having satisfied both the educational and work experience requirements will be required to complete 6 CPD hours annually to maintain the designation.

We provide all of the required CPD content with a combination of online courses and face-to-face events.

Programme commencement

September 2019

Closing date Friday, 16 August 2019

If you would like to express an interest in this programme click here

To download the programme brochure click here