Academics

What You’ll Learn

Building on the University of Michigan’s long history of academic excellence, the Quant Program approaches the study of quantitative finance with an intensely theoretical perspective. Our close focus on advanced mathematical and statistical theory sets us apart from our peer programs in financial engineering, computational finance, and mathematical finance and provides graduates with an unparalleled foundation for a career in finance.

After successfully completing our curriculum devised and taught by faculty in Mathematics and Statistics, you will enter the workforce with an expert-level ability to:

  • Represent financial questions as mathematical models
  • Use stochastic analysis and probability theory to carry out relevant mathematical analysis
  • Implement the results using advanced numerical methods
  • Make decisions based on the results

The Quant Program requires a total of 36 credits of coursework, 24 of which are required core courses and 12 of which are electives. Most students complete the program in three semesters, but occasionally students will extend the program to a fourth term.

Course Plan

Semester 1 (Fall):

Numerical Analysis with Financial Applications
Discrete State Stochastic Processes
Advanced Financial Mathematics I
Statistical Learning I: Regression

Semester 2 (Winter):

Stochastic Analysis for Finance
Advanced Financial Mathematics II
Statistical Analysis of Financial Data
3 credits of electives

Semester 3 (Fall):

Computational Finance
9 credits of electives

Required Coursework

As a Quant student, you’ll take 24 credits (8 courses) of required coursework in graduate-level math and statistics. The master’s program is structured around four course sequences that serve as the foundation of the curriculum. Successful completion of the first course in each sequence is necessary in order to move on to the second. These sequences are described below:

I. Math 573- Advanced Financial Mathematics I and Math 574-Advanced Financial Mathematics II : introduces students to the main concepts of financial mathematics and financial engineering, with special emphasis on the application of mathematical methods to the relevant problems in the financial industry.

II. Math 526 – Discrete State Stochastic Processes and Math 506 – Stochastic Analysis for Finance: analyzes in more detail the mathematical tools used in Math 573 – Math 574 with additional focus on mathematical challenges associated with financial problems.

III. Math 472- Numerical Analysis with Financial Applications and Math 623- Computational Finance: focuses on the implementation of the models using tools from numerical methods for solving partial differential equations and Monte-Carlo methods. Students develop computer programs to calculate the prices of financial derivatives and find ways of hedging risk.

IV. Stats 500 – Statistical Analysis I : Regression and Stats 509 – Statistical Analysis of Financial Data: introduces the basic statistical tools for financial data, including regression and time series models, as well as various inference techniques.

Electives

Quant students choose 12 or more credits of electives (3 – 5 courses) from across the university, allowing students to tailor their degree toward their area of interest, whether it’s programming, data science, finance, or a deeper understanding of mathematics. In addition to those listed below, other courses may be selected and used toward the master’s degree with advisor approval.

Other Requirements

In addition to completing the above coursework, students must fulfill the following additional requirements in order to earn their master’s degree in Quantitative Finance and Risk Management:

  1. Complete online summer assignments prior to the start of the first term.
  2. Attend Orientation Bootcamp prior to the start of the first term.
  3. Attend all mandatory seminars as directed by program administration.
  4. International students: Successfully complete an English Language Institute course in the first and second terms of enrollment, unless waiver is granted by program administration.
  5. Meet all of Rackham Graduate School’s academic requirements, including maintaining a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher.
  6. Apply for graduation.