Computing and Data Science for Economics and Finance

What you will study

    1. An introduction to economics and finance: macroeconomics, microeconomics, financial markets and institutions
    2. Essentials of investment management: financial instruments, portfolio management, risk management
    3. Applied quantitative methods for economics and finance
    4. Data science technologies in economics and finance: big data vs. small data; data mining and massive data analytics; machine learning algorithms for business analytics, economic forecasting and accuracy of financial models; data as a signal vs. noise – quantifying news narratives and conducting sentiment analysis of financial news; neural networks in finance and network analysis
    5. Financial data modelling: big data factor models; data clustering; model specification, building, comparison and evaluation
    6. An introduction to computer science: structure and organisation of computing; computational thinking; data types, structure, operations, storage, compression; IT architectures; algorithms and complexity; intelligent systems; computer networks, Internet and Internet of Things (IoT); blockchain systems and smart contracts; operating systems; programming languages; software engineering
    7. Examples of information systems, IT architectures and applications in accounting, finance, banking and insurance
    8. The role of IT in trade capture in the pre-settlement, settlement and post-settlement phases
    9. Quantitative programming for finance: C++, Java, Python, R, MATLAB and Visual Basics for Applications (VBA)
    10. IT for financial control and security in financial services: legal requirements and technical approaches
    11. IT services procurement and technology management for organisational change
    12. Ethical and professional standards for IT professionals working in the financial services sector
    13. Creating a portfolio of financial models and programming code files

You will be able to select any two optional courses* from the following LSFL course list to complete your qualification:

* The optional courses are free if taken as part of this qualification. You will be sent details about registration for the optional courses after you start your studies with us. 

Key features of the course

    • Flexibility to suit your needs – allowing you to study anytime, anywhere
    • An emphasis on personal and professional development through independent learning
    • Relevance of topics and practical examples to the context of your own professional practice
    • Illustrative practice activities with solutions, “test your understanding” activities and tutor-marked assignments, including a portfolio of financial models and programming code files, to reinforce learning
    • Advanced diploma from London School of Finance and Law upon course completion

This non-credit advanced diploma is primarily intended for IT staff working in the financial services sector as it explains the basics of economics and investment management and helps develop programming skills necessary to build and support information systems, IT architectures and applications in accounting, finance, banking and insurance. A strong focus on finance is a unique feature of this course as there is a growing need in programmers and data scientists with a deep understanding of the specificity of financial products and investment operations. 

Likewise, the course may be suitable for finance professionals who are thinking of changing their careers into financial software development and who are interested in upgrading their knowledge and skills in data science which examines how big data, 5G connectivity, Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Blockchain have advanced the way we do business and manage investments in the modern Fintech 3.0 era. The course programme is divided into three modules (economics and finance, data science and programming) that run parallel to ensure the acquisition of theoretical knowledge and practical programming skills in the shortest possible time. 

The course can be taken alongside your degree or professional qualification studies elsewhere or as part of your informal career development programme. Since this is a highly technical programme, you must be equipped with strong mathematical and programming skills. 


The Advanced Diploma in Computing and Data Science for Economics and Finance is awarded by London School of Finance and Law, allowing you to work as a software developer in an investment company in the UK or overseas.

You will also be awarded certificates of completion for the optional courses you will take as part of this qualification.

Learning outcomes

    • Knowledge and understanding
    • Key skills
    • Cognitive skills
    • Practical and professional skills
    • Transferable skills

Career relevance

    • Financial software engineering
    • IT support in financial services firms
    • Financial management
    • Investment analysis and management
    • Trading
    • Risk management
    • Business and financial journalism
    • Professional training

Study method

Online learning with tutor guidance and support

How long it takes

18 months (864 hours)

You need to be able to spend approximately 12 hours per week on studying this course.

Teaching and assessment

A tutor will guide you throughout the study process and mark and comment on your written work. You and your tutor will primarily communicate with each other through email.

The course work includes online practice tests, tutor-marked assignments and end-of-course assessment. The end-of-course assessment is a portfolio of financial models and programming code files.

You must use the online VLE-system to submit your tutor-marked assignments and end-of-course assessment.

The Pass mark for the course is 50%. 

Study materials

All study materials are provided on the course website.

Microsoft Office presentations and Adobe Portable Document Format (PDF) versions of study material are available.

A computer with a browser and broadband internet access is required for this course. Functionality may be limited on mobile or tablet devices.

If you have a disability or particular study requirements, please tell us as soon as possible.

Fees and funding

Course fees for the 2024/2025 academic year: £4,680

Course fees cover registration, course materials, tuition and assessment. Please note that you will also need to purchase a MATLAB licence for your personal use to complete programming tasks in MATLAB (£105 for UK-based students in 2024/2025).

LSFL course fees depend on the level and duration of courses: check all tuition fee rates for the current academic year here.

You may be eligible for tuition funding.


Applications for this course are now open for January 2025 start.

The module website will be available to registered students three days in advance of the module start. Module sessions will be opened every week or every two weeks to enable tutor-led, gradual progression through the study materials and continuous assessment.

Course registration is open, but please be aware that due to the increased demand it may take us longer to respond than usual.

Registration closes 10 September 2024 (places subject to availability)

Registration for current students:


Registration for new students:

You have to register as an LSFL student to study this course.


Future availability

Computing and Data Science for Economics and Finance starts three times a year – in January, May and September.

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English language requirements

There is no formal requirement to prove your English language proficiency to study our courses. If English is not your native or second language, or you would like to improve specialist language skills necessary for your profession, you may complete one of the following English language courses:  

English for Finance

Business English

A full range of our English language courses can be viewed here.

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