This month, participants from the International Master in Finance participated in the electives that make up the strategic specialisations in the third trimester of the programmes. The elective courses are divided into three areas, or specialisations: investment banking, corporate finance and fintech. Experts from leading institutions and experienced professionals teach the courses, bringing their knowledge and skills to the classroom and providing unique insights into the industry.
Every year, students choose 3 to 4 electives from an extensive list, each specially designed to reflect skills and trends in the area of specialisation. Participants can select all of their electives from one specialisation or mix and match to reflect their long and short-term professional goals.
According to Programme Director Jaume Bonet, the electives that participants choose are often closely related to their career plans post-graduation. The option to specialise improves the overall employability of graduates by providing them with specialised tools in their area of future employment.
This year, the electives took place through a mix of online courses and on campus classes. The courses included:
- Entrepreneurial Finance taught by Dr Shailendra K. Rai: This course presents the theory and practice of the financing of entrepreneurial firms with a focus on understanding the motivations of the different players and how to reconcile their interests.
- Value Investing taught by Alirio Sendrea: This course provides a framework of different methodologies mastered by successful value investors, the art of questioning an investment idea, important governance matters, valuation assumptions, common mistakes and pitfalls that need to be considered to spot and exploit valuation gaps.
- Derivatives & Hedge Accounting taught by Dr Michael Thomas: This course presents the theoretical concepts and introduces to modelling skills required to designate and validate hedging relationships and the valuation of FX derivatives.
- Management Accounting taught by Dr Bruno Cohanier: Participants learn to understand why and how management accounting is designed and used in corporations to help manage operations and feed financial statements.
- Investing in Emerging Markets taught by Carlos Reyes: The focus of this course is on understanding the key issues impacting private investment / private equity in Emerging Markets.
- Investment Banking & Dealmaking taught by Dr Gavin Kretzschmar: This course is based on the integration of valuation, financing, structured finance, and hedging with a focus on understanding financial theories and their limitations.
- Hedge Funds Demystified ‐ In Search of Alpha taught by Àlex Alcaraz: This course covers the basics of how hedge funds work, which strategies they use exploit volatility, mispricing and inefficiencies in global capital markets and how to start a hedge fund.
- Banking taught by Dean N. Sadek: This course illustrates the importance of banks and the vital role that lending plays in the world economy, as students learn how o determine a bank’s viability, how money is created and how banks function.
- Python/Tableau taught by Luke Smalley: This course introduces students to the fundamentals of programming in Python and the basics of building interactive
dashboards and stories with Tableau.
- Fintech Investment taught by Ioannis Mergos: This course discusses the main forces behind the rise of fintechs, how new business models are disrupting banks and other incumbents, how regulators are trying to balance innovation vs. risk, and how the financial system is evolving.
- Blockchain & Cryptocurrencies taught by Joan Torras: Students develop an understanding of the key concepts related to the world of cryptocurrencies and the technology behind them, learning how to trade and invest in cryptocurrencies and how to apply blockchain to companies.
- Empirical Methods in Finance taught by Dr Lidija Lovereta: This course focuses on the most important estimation methods used by financial practitioners to assess volatility, returns and correlations.
The electives take place in May each year and are an integral part of Finance programmes, allowing participants to tailor the master’s to their career path after graduation.