Quant Guide 2022: Imperial College London

London, UK

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Imperial College London’s MSc in Mathematics and Finance continues its march up the rankings in this year’s guide, breaking into the top five of all global quant finance-focused master’s programmes for the first time.

Course director Antoine Jacquier reports that the department has seen multiple new appointments in the past year, including Alexei Kondratyev, Cristopher Salvi, Leandro Sánchez-Betancourt, Camilo Hernández, Alexandre Pannier, Aitor Muguruza and Daniel Schwarz.

The number of applications the programme received has gone down from 800 last year, to 600 this year – probably a function of students delaying or deferring studies abroad amid the pandemic. But that appears to have helped Imperial bolster its acceptance rate, which now stands at a very narrow 15%.

Students making the grade have also been “performing extremely well in terms of placements” this year, says Jacquier. The MSc reports graduate employment rate of 98%, up from 90% last year.

When asked about the impact of remote learning on academic performance, he says that “general grades have not suffered much from remote learning”. Jacquier adds that the grading system has been adjusted to reflect the “different structure” of online exams.

The UK programme sees its position as the top-ranked European university usurped, however, by the Sorbonne, which edges Imperial into fifth position overall.

Popular aspects of the course, Jacquier says, have recently included elements involving data, machine learning and algorithmic trading. With the addition of a new core 20-hour ‘Python for finance’ course, as well as ‘Quantum computing in finance’ and ‘Data science for fintech, regtech and suptech’ electives, remote teaching is down to 30%, versus 50% last year. However, overall teaching hours have fallen from 450 last year to 400 this year, despite the introduction of new course options.

Last year, 46% of students were female and 54% male. This year, 35% of students were female and 65% male. There was also a slight increase in programme fees, from £32,000 ($43,420) last year to £35,000 ($47,490) this year.

View this institution’s entry in the 2021 guide

View other universities and a guide to the metrics tables

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