The MSc in Law and Finance is taught jointly by the Faculty of Law and the Saïd Business School of the University of Oxford.
Launched in 2010, the MLF is a full-time, ten-month programme offering students with a prior background in law the chance to develop an advanced interdisciplinary understanding of relevant economic and financial contexts, and combines a highly analytic academic core with tailor-made practical applications derived from continuing collaboration with professional and regulatory organisations.
Led by Academic Thinking... Informed by Practice
Course in brief
Each MLF student is required to take:
Three MLF core courses:
- First Principles of Financial Economics (FPFE)
- Law and Economics of Corporate Transactions (LECT)
- two law electives chosen from a select list or,
- one law elective and a dissertation or,
- one law elective and Corporate Valuation and one other finance elective chosen from a select list (the ‘Finance Stream’).
The law electives are advanced courses in different subject areas of special interest taught by Law Faculty members over the course of the whole academic year.
We require all applicants for the MLF to have an outstanding undergraduate degree in law or equivalent professional qualification in law (this includes PgDL/CPE).
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What else do we look for?
The MLF is a tough and demanding course, which offers significant professional and academic rewards to successful candidates. We expect our applicants to be exceptional and highly motivated.
We look for evidence that you:
- Have made an informed decision to study the intersection of law and finance and are highly motivated
- Have a track record of outstanding academic achievement
- Have a proven capacity for hard work and the ability to engage in a very demanding programme of study
- Have the maturity to cope with a professional learning environment, although prior work experience is not essential.
There is no formal mathematics requirement for the course, but you will be expected to understand basic quantitative skills at the start of the course, and to acquire statistical skills as the course progresses. A pre-sessional course in mathematics is offered as part of the MLF induction to all students and further support classes are then scheduled during term to assist those identified as being in need of some additional support.
You will be joining a group of highly motivated and capable individuals, all with a strong ability to think conceptually and analytically.
The MLF has really helped me get a better understanding of the commercial side of law as opposed to approaching a problem only from the legal aspect. I have a better understanding of the economics that lie behind that problem and I think that will help me become a better lawyer as I build my practice.
(MLF Student, 2017-2018)
|Pre-Sessional||Term 1 (Michaelmas)||Term 2 (Hilary)||Term 3 (Trinity|
Pre-Course Training in Maths and Financial Reporting
Two weeks before the start of the first term, MLF students attend an induction programme which includes pre-sessional courses in Maths and Financial Reporting. Preparatory work for both courses is required.
If you receive an offer, we will give you access to the MLF Maths Workbook, which you will be expected to work through before you arrive to start the maths pre-sessional course. The pre-sessional course is made up of six, three-hour classes and ends with a short diagnostic test. If you then need additional maths support this is provided during the year.
Law and Economics of Corporate Transactions
Law elective 1
Either: Law elective 2
Or: Corporate Valuation
and one finance elective
"I have gained so much tangible value from what I experienced at Oxford during the MLF. The many concepts that I was tutored on at Oxford elucidated much of the financial jargon which I did not understand during my undergraduate law degree. Recently I have been working with the Saïd Business School in relation to FinTech and have found myself assisting players in the finance sector in relation to elements of their field regardless of the fact that they have operated in their sector for many years."
Oxford is a collegiate university, which means it is made up of self-governing, independent colleges.
All Oxford students are a member of a college. Colleges provide students with an ideal opportunity for interaction with peers from different academic disciplines, countries and backgrounds, as well as a place to get involved in clubs, sports and cultural activities, socialise, eat and sometimes live.
Although colleges are very important in admissions and teaching provision for undergraduate students, it is the Faculty that manages the admissions process and provides the teaching for graduate students.
Admission to a college happens after a candidate receives an offer of a place on the MLF. Receiving an offer of a place on the MLF guarantees the candidate a place at a college, but not necessarily the college of their choice.
Living in Oxford for a year will be an unforgettable experience. The city and University offer a blend of tradition and cosmopolitan modernity, housing some of the most advanced research laboratories in the world alongside medieval colleges and dreaming spires.
As a member of a college, as well as being part of the Saïd Business School (SBS) and Law Faculty, MLF students have a huge choice of clubs and organisations to get involved with, at a variety of levels. Several MLF students have competed in sporting events for the University, achieving “Blues” status, and many have rowed for their college in the University’s inter-collegiate races in the spring and summer. Others have been involved in drama, dance and music, and in a range of societies and organisations, from journalism to debating.
The city itself offers a variety of entertainments, from enjoying the choristers singing from the top of Magdalen Tower on May morning, to punting on the waterways or exploring the Ashmolean Museum. Oxford offers a broad selection of restaurants, and live music venues. Students can even enjoy a drink in the Eagle and Child pub, where CS Lewis and JRR Tolkein used to meet.
Oxford benefits from being close to London (only an hour away by train) and to various international airports, as well as being only a short journey from the local Cotswold countryside and from attractions such as Blenheim Palace, the birthplace and ancestral home of Sir Winston Churchill.
In general, Oxford has made me hungry for knowledge, hungry to learn more, hungry for meeting new people and just improving myself with all those experiences. (MLF student 2017-18)
In addition to the pastoral support provided by college advisors, the Faculty seeks to support students by various means. Each programme has dedicated administrative support and the administrators in question will be able to help and advise students on a range of matters relating to their studies, or point them towards dedicated sources of support elsewhere in the University. Academic Supervisors and Programme Directors can also serve as a source of support.
Apart from these more general roles, the Faculty also offers support in certain specific areas (for example, Disability Contacts and Harassment Advisors).
All students on the MLF programme are members of both SBS and the Law Faculty, which allows access to the facilities and services of both. As a member of SBS MLF students have access to the SBS site (which is not available to non-SBS students), including the canteen and dining room, the Sainsbury Library, SBS-run events and discussion groups, SBS-based careers support (online SBS career-resources, SBS careers events, workshops and employer presentations, SBS and Law branded business cards), and the SBS Oxford Business Alumni network.
Careers, Events and Alumni
MLF graduates go on to successful, high impact careers in law, finance, policy, and academia. Graduates have gone on to work as trainee or associate lawyers and barristers, as well as building successful careers as entrepreneurs or working in investment and banking. Many graduates have made the transition from their home countries to careers in London, New York, Paris, Singapore and many other locations around the world.
Catherine Chandler, Course Administrator for the MSc in Law & Finance
Charlotte Crealock-Ashurst, Senior Administrator for the MSc in Law and Finance and PGT Courses
A final word from a past student
To put in words what I have learned so far is not an easy task. Living in Oxford was one of the most intense experiences I've had. It was fascinating, challenging and overwhelming at once. It was a place where every day I was challenged with learning new things, developing skills, meeting interesting and inspiring people and having profound conversations about law, economy and politics. It was the best year of my life.