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5 differences between MS Finance & MS Financial Engineering

Yocket Editorial Team

Finance and Financial Engineering, so similar yet so different. A lot students tend to get confused between the two, as well as MBA in Finance. All three of these degrees are quite different even though they might have the same focus area - FINANCE!!

While an MBA in Finance is a good option, it doesn’t go in depth in Finance. You study a wide variety of subjects but none truly in depth. If you wish to take a managerial position and are learning a team working in finance, then doing an MBA in Finance is a great option! It will teach you about the basics and give you a great overview in Finance along with the necessary management and business focused subjects.

Now, let's discuss the other two degrees: MS in Finance and MS in Financial Engineering.

There are a few points of comparison between the two:


1. Focus Areas

If you are interested in Analysis and Quantitative study and how they could be used in Finance, then MS in Financial Engineering is the course for you. For more details refer to the blog on MS in Financial Engineering courses.

On the other hand, if you like learning about financial concepts and theories and how they can be used in today’s market, then MS in Finance is the course for you!


2. Background

MS in Financial Engineering would require you to have some kind of technical background.

While, MS in Finance would require you to have some kind of finance related background.

MS Financial Engineering, in a lot of cases, is taught by the school of engineering as a joint program with the school of management. MS in Finance is taught by the school of management.

Make sure to check which school is teaching the course as the entry requirements will vary greatly for both.

The School of Engineering would generally require a GRE score, whereas the School of Management would require a GMAT score. In both cases, you will need to give either the TOEFL, IELTS or the PTE exam.


3. Curriculum and Subjects

MS in Financial Engineering includes subjects* like:

  • Quantitative Methods in Finance
  • Machine Learning in Financial Engineering
  • Introduction to Derivative Securities
  • Financial Economics
  • Financial Risk Management
  • R in Finance , etc.

*Subjects taken from MS in Financial Engineering from NYU Tandon School of Engineering.

MS in Finance will include subjects* like:

  • Financial Markets
  • Corporate Finance
  • Finance Theory
  • Corporate Financial Accounting
  • Finance Ethics and Regulation
  • Analytics of Finance, etc.

*Subjects taken from MS in Finance from MIT Sloan School of Management.



Both courses generally are considered STEM courses. Therefore, you are eligible for the OPT extension.


5. Job roles and opportunities

After getting a degree in Financial Engineering, you are eligible for roles that involve both finance as well as analysis and machine learning. Job roles that you could be hired for include Financial Engineer, Derivatives Analyst, Credit Risk Manager, etc. You will work with data and reports to help make conclusive decisions related to finance.

After getting a degree in Finance, you are eligible for roles that primarily involve finance. Job roles that you could be hired for include Financial Advisor, Associate Finance Manager, Financial Admin, Financial Broker, etc. Your main focus will be in the area of finance.

We hope your confusion has been cleared and you can now make an informed decision!

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