Prepare to meet the market’s finance needs.

Lerner College recognizes that financial management is key to both asset management and asset creation in every industry. The master of science in finance program covers both quantitative and qualitative aspects of financial decision making, including risk management, capital budgeting, investments, financing, and corporate governance. Emerge ready to meet a growing demand for principled financial experts capable of practical, hands-on business problem solving.

Program Highlights

The Lerner M.S. in finance curriculum is based on the financial theory and empirical methods employed by professionals practicing corporate finance, financial security valuation, financial modeling, portfolio management, financial services management, financial risk management and corporate governance. The program explores essential theories and cases of best practice across:

  • Financial forecasting
  • Time value of money techniques
  • Operating and financial risk
  • Costs of capital
  • Methods of valuation

These important tools and concepts reveal how corporations make financial decisions that maximize shareholder value. You will gain a nuanced grasp of short- and long-term capital investment, the risks and rewards of mergers and acquisitions, and how to deal with financial distress.

Program Requirements

Students are expected to have had the equivalent of MATH 221 – Calculus and MATH 230 – Finite Mathematics with Applications. Also, students will need basic computer skills equivalent to MISY 160 – Business Computing: Tools and Concepts. As an additional prerequisite, incoming students are expected to acquire fundamental finance and accounting concepts in ACCT 600 – Financial Reporting and Analysis and FINC 650 – Financial Management. These prerequisite courses can be waived for students who have work experience or prior coursework in the area.
Courses (30 credits)
FINC 670 – Theory of Financial Decision Making
FINC 671 – Workshop in Finance Seminar
FINC 672 – Workshop in Finance: Empirical Research
ECON 622 – Applied Econometrics I
ACCT 625 – Financial Statement Analysis
FINC 662 – Fixed Income Securities
FINC 651 – Corporate Financial Analysis or FINC 619 – Financial Modeling & Valuation
FINC 652 – Investment Analysis & Portfolio Management or FINC 616 – Derivative Securities & Risk Management
Elective courses (6 credits)
Elective courses can be any pre-approved 600-level FINC, ACCT, STAT, FREC, MATH or 800-level ECON course. Students are not limited to these courses and, with the approval of the program director, other graduate courses can be used to satisfy elective requirements.

STEM OPT Program

The M.S. in finance degree is a STEM-designated degree program and provides international students 24 months of OPT (Optional Practical Training) in addition to the original 12 months.

Program Format Options

Choose from five paths through the master’s in finance program, each suited to your specific current job position, career and salary goals, and life situation.

  • M.S. Accelerated Program
    If you already hold a B.S. in finance, you can complete the M.S. in finance in one year of intensive study (fall and spring semester, Winter and Summer sessions). This program is for you if you have excellent quantitative skills and can devote your full-time efforts to your coursework.
  • Full Time
    The full-time program offers more flexibility than the accelerated program and usually takes 18 months to complete. You can choose from a wide choice of elective courses and perhaps pursue an internship.
  • Limited Part-time Program
    If your work schedule is flexible, you can complete the M.S. in finance on a part-time schedule while working by taking some courses in the daytime. Some courses may also be offered in the evening.
  • Dual MBA/M.S. in Finance Program
    Our dual MBA/M.S. in finance program combines the strategic business skills of the MBA with the in-depth study of finance.
  • B.S. + M.S. Accelerated Degree Program
    With the accelerated B.S. in finance + M.S. in finance, you can complete the necessary 145 credit hours needed to earn both the B.S. and M.S. in finance, in less time and with fewer credits than if completed separately.

Program Checklists

Accelerated Program Checklist (PDF)
Full-Time Program Checklist (PDF)
Limited Part-Time Program Checklist (PDF)

Career Opportunities

Your M.S. in finance degree can prepare you for a variety of career options and goals, from Wall Street to Main Street and business centers around the world.

Corporate finance positions can be found in companies of all sizes, from large, international entities to small start-ups. Additional corporate finance positions include financial analysts, treasurers and internal auditors.

  • Corporate finance
    Help large and mid-sized companies secure and manage the capital necessary to run the enterprise, while maximizing corporate value and reducing financial risk. Oversee financial statements, developing forecasts, creating models, studying potential acquisitions and developing capital spending programs.
  • Investment banking
    Help clients acquire capital by creating and issuing debt and equity securities. Play a key role in facilitating financial reorganizations, mergers and acquisitions.
  • Investment research
    Examine and evaluate a firm’s financial statements and economic trends. Produce reports and models used by banks or large investors to make portfolio recommendations and decisions.
  • Private wealth management
    Serve a base of high net worth clients by providing comprehensive and personalized financial planning services such as investment and risk management strategies.
  • Real estate finance
    Produce information that helps a company or client locate, purchase, develop and sell buildings and properties.
  • Advisory services and consulting
    Conduct expert and independent analysis on matters such as asset valuation or financial issues required for litigation.

Industry-Proven Faculty

Lerner finance faculty bring deep applied research knowledge, extensive corporate experience, and wide-reaching association memberships and networks — all of which can lead you to fresh insights on a changing global economy and industry. Faculty expertise includes such areas as:

  • Corporate finance
  • Valuation
  • Mergers and acquisitions
  • Corporate Governance
  • International Finance
  • Pensions
  • Initial Public Offerings


  • What is a STEM Degree - What are the advantages of STEM degrees? What are STEM-designated degrees? And, how can foreign students harness them to optimize their education and professional experiences in the U.S.?
  • Gender disclosure rules can make a difference - Lerner's Laura Field, Dept. of Finance Chair, examines a corporate governance issue that has drawn broad attention is the under­representation of females on corporate boards.
  • What Can You Do With a Finance Degree? - Finance influences almost every aspect of an organization, whether a bank, consulting firm, public or private corporation, governmental organization or non-profit. Read this article to find out if a degree in finance is right for you.
  • Lifelong Lerner: Corey Gill - Corey Gill, a member of UD’s Lerner Class of 2021, shared his favorite UD memories, how he has changed during his time at UD and his plans following graduation.
  • 2021 Carol A. Ammon Case Competition - The Carol A. Ammon Case Competition was held virtually for the first time this year, offering Lerner graduate students the opportunity to put their business skills to the test.

Admissions Information

Learn more about master of science in finance admissions requirements, deadlines, tuition and financial aid available to you.

Applying to the Program