Best Places to Study a Master's in Finance in the US & Canada | Top Universities

Best Places to Study a Master's in Finance in the US & Canada

By Sabrina Collier

Updated June 2, 2023 Updated June 2, 2023

If you want to study a master’s in finance, and you’re trying to decide on a university in the US or Canada, the QS Masters in Finance Rankings is a good place to start, currently featuring 191 universities and business schools, including 65 in the US and eight in Canada. The ranking is based on a methodology that assesses each institution’s reputation amongst academics and employers, alumni outcomes, student & faculty diversity and other factors.

Read on for an overview of the top 10 universities for master’s in finance degrees in the US and Canada.

1. MIT Sloan School of Management

Ranked fourth in the QS Masters in Finance Rankings, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)’s Sloan School of Management is featured for its Master of Finance degree and receives a high score for the ‘thought leadership’ indicator, demonstrating its huge academic standing and history of revolutionary ideas in management and finance, such as Theory X and Theory Y and the Solow–Swan model. Sloan’s motto, mens et manus (mind and hand) reflects the school’s emphasis on finding practical solutions to real problems. 

2. UCLA Anderson School of Management

University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA)’s Anderson School of Management is ranked fifth in the masters in finance ranking, with its Master of Financial Engineering (MFE) degree allowing students to learn from world-renowned faculty and prominent guest lecturers, and applying what they’ve learnt through a a summer internship and a hands-on Applied Finance Project (AFP), in which students can expand their professional networks and gain valuable exposure to possible employers.

3. UC Berkeley Haas School of Business

University of California, Berkeley’s Haas School of Business is ranked joint seventh for its Master of Financial Engineering (MFE) degree, with full marks in the ‘value for money’ and ‘thought leadership indicators’. The course includes a 10-week internship, with students getting placements at companies such as Barclays, Morgan Stanley, the Bank of America and Uber. Students of Haas are therefore highly employable, and earn an average starting salary of US$155,514.

4. University of Toronto Rotman School of Management

Heading to Canada, the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto is ranked 18th for its Master of Financial Risk Management degree, earning a very high score for the ‘thought leadership’ category, which takes into account staff with a PhD, research impact, and a global survey of academics. Rotman’s master’s degree offers strong connections to the finance industry and a two-month applied Risk Management Project, giving students the chance to with risk management professionals.

5. McGill University Desautels Faculty of Management

McGill University's Desaultes Faculty of Management is ranked just behind the Rotman School of Management in 19th place, earning a high score for its alumni outcomes. The Master of Management in Finance can be completed in either 12 or 16 months and offers students the unique opportunity to run Desautels Capital Management Inc. (DCM), Canada’s first university-owned, student-run registered multi-million dollar investment firm.

6. USC Marshall School of Business - MSc in Finance

The University of Southern California’s Marshall School of Business is ranked 29th, and achieves a very strong score for the alumni outcomes category. Its MSc in Finance degree includes a range of elective courses on topics such as real estate and mergers and acquisitions. No minimum years of work experience required to apply, and the programme is open to those who didn’t study business for their undergraduate degree.

7. Texas McCombs School of Business

Next in our look at the best places in the US and Canada to study a masters in finance, the University of Texas at Austin’s McCombs School of Business is just one place behind the Marshall School of Business in 30th place again earning an impressive score for its alumni outcomes. Its Master of Science in Finance degree gives students a fast-paced introduction to finance theory combined with excel modelling and a range of other quantitative skills. The class size is only 50 students, which enables good quality student-professor interaction.

8. University of Florida Warrington College of Business

Ranked 31st for its Master of Science in Finance degree, the University of Florida's Warrington College of Business receives high scores for value for money and alumni outcomes. One of the programme's major features is the Finance Professional Speaker Series which brings finance professionals to discuss their area of expertise. Speakers demonstrate how professionals approach specific problems, give insight into particular industries, discuss major trends in the various markets and industries in which they operate, and talk about career strategies.

9. Boston Questrom School of Business - Master of Science in Mathematical Finance

Next is Boston University’s Questrom School of Business which is ranked 33rd for its Master of Science in Mathematical Finance (MSMF), a 17-month programme in which students gain an indispensable knowledge of the complex relations between the numerous components of the modern financial system, specialising in Asset Management, Quantitative Analytics or Risk Management. The school achieves a very high score for its ‘alumni outcomes’, with the Class of 2016 earning an average salary of US$84,000.

10.  Georgetown University McDonough School of Business

Concluding our list is the Master of Science in Finance at the McDonough School of Business in 40th place. The programme's flexibility enables students to attend MSFLive sessions online or in-person. There are two residencies provided in the programme (Financial Markets Residency and the Global Consulting Project), which provides students an opportunity to analyse a complex, real-world project for an international firm. 

Other top universities in Canada for Master’s in Finance degrees

In addition to the University of Toronto, three more top Canadian universities are ranked among the world’s best for master’s in finance degrees. These are HEC Montreal, ranked joint 89th for its MSc in Finance degree, the Alberta School of Business, ranked 101-110th for its Master of Financial Management degree, and McMaster University's DeGroote School of Business, ranked in the 121+ range. 

This article was originally published in November 2017 . It was last updated in June 2023

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