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Masters (MSc) in Finance

Learn the finance essentials; from derivatives and investments, to mergers and acquisitions and global markets.

This master's in finance enables you to work with our award-winning finance experts to build in-demand quantitative skills. You will gain the essential information needed to pursue a range of exciting finance careers at an international level.

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This course is ranked 7th in the UK and 22nd globally (QS Business Masters Rankings 2019)

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The MSc Finance course has both CFA Institute Affiliate status and Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) status which positions you to progress to a research degree. It is also linked to The Manchester Accounting and Finance Group – one of the leading accounting and finance units in Europe.

Find out more about studying Accounting and Finance at Alliance MBS >>

Read about other business Master's degree courses at Alliance MBS >>

MSc Finance

Year of entry: 2019

Course unit details:
Qualitative Research Methods

Unit code BMAN71282
Credit rating 15
Unit level FHEQ level 7 – master's degree or fourth year of an integrated master's degree
Teaching period(s) Semester 2
Offered by Alliance Manchester Business School
Available as a free choice unit? No


The course will introduce students to the variety of qualitative research methodologies and research methods adopted in financial and management accounting research. Also, it will cover some “Real Life Issues” and research ethics. The intent is to equip students with practical research skills and knowledge that can be applied to the research dissertation.


BMAN71282 Programme Req: BMAN71282 is only available as a core unit to students on MSc Accounting and MSc A&F, and as an elective to students on MSc Finance


The course aims to give students a general understanding of different types of accounting research and the range of research methodologies which are available, and equip students with practical research skills and knowledge of qualitative methods that may be applied to their dissertation projects.  

Learning outcomes

On completion of this unit successful students will have achieved the following learning outcomes:

  • Demonstrate knowledge of, and distinguish between, the different accounting research methodologies.
  • Distinguish between different available research methods, with particular emphasis given to case studies and questionnaire surveys.
  • Succinctly define a research question and select appropriate research method(s) within the time and resource constraints of writing a dissertation.
  • Place a research question into its broad context(s) by review of the relevant literature(s) and surveying varied sources of data.
  • Appreciate and bring together the various elements which together contribute towards the production of a dissertation design.


Assessment methods

Method Weight
Written exam 75%
Written assignment (inc essay) 25%

Feedback methods

Informal advice and discussion during a lecture.

Responses to student emails and questions from a member of staff including feedback provided to a group via an online discussion forum.

Written and/or verbal comments on assessed or non-assessed coursework.

Generic feedback posted on Blackboard regarding overall examination performance.

Recommended reading

Core textbook:

Most lectures will be grounded in the material contained in the following textbook (its purchase is therefore highly recommended):

Bryman, A. (2015). Social research methods. Oxford University Press. 5th Edition

Several copies are available in the Main and Precinct library (“normal” and “short” loan), and the book is also stocked in the Blackwell bookstore.

Most of the other readings will be from research journals that are available from the library’s “electronic resources” – you will be expected to download these readings yourself (see Appendix 2 for details). Subject to copyright laws, any other readings will be either (1) distributed in the relevant lecture(s), or (2) placed on “short-loan” in the Precinct Centre Library.

It is expected in this course that students will undertake their own research into readings and the relevant literature. A starting point of essential readings for each topic, together with some important supplementary readings, are shown below. At the end, there is also a list of further readings on several of the topic. These are not intended to be comprehensive and reflect our own research interests – accordingly, there are many more readings on some topics than others. They are provided in the hope that they may be useful when you begin your dissertation research.

Your textbook also provides many key references for individual topics.


Study hours

Scheduled activity hours
Assessment written exam 2
Lectures 20
Independent study hours
Independent study 128

Teaching staff

Staff member Role
Jodie Moll Unit coordinator
Christos Begkos Unit coordinator

Additional notes

Informal Contact Methods

Office hours

Return to course details

Lala Jafarli, Azerbaijan, MSc Finance student

"Alliance MBS provides the opportunity to meet experts from your field of interest. You feel secure around the friendly environment and consistently feel the support of everybody. This year I lived everything to a maximum level; having fun with international friends and studying really hard. In a word, I would say that it was amazing!"

Lala Jafarli, Azerbaijan

MSc Finance, Class of 2015


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