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Introduction to Financial Assets and Markets

Module description

This module is intended for Financial Services Professional Degree Apprenticeship students who would like an introduction to the role of financial assets and markets from the perspective of investment operations. The module introduces you to the financial services industry and examines the role of the industry and the main participants that are seen in financial centres around the globe. Some key measure of economic data and the role of central banks are discussed. The module also provides an overview of international regulation and a section on professional integrity and ethics.

Full module specification

Module title:Introduction to Financial Assets and Markets
Module code:BEF1001DA
Module level:1
Academic year:2021/2
Module lecturers:
Module credit:20
ECTS value:






Duration of module: Duration (weeks) - term 1:


Module aims

This module aims to equip students with a background in the financial assets and markets, the scope of financial services and tax regulation in the UK and the analysis of other financial products. The module provides an overview of financial assets and markets by looking at the characteristics of cash deposits, the money markets, property and the foreign exchange markets. A review of the other types of financial products, such as loans, mortgages and protection products including life assurance will also be discussed.


This module shows how an understanding of financial assets and markets can be provided to support an organisation’s management in investment decision-making and control. The overall aim is to give an introduction to financial assets and markets from a wider user perspective.

ILO: Module-specific skills

  • 1. Describe the role of the financial intermediaries within the financial services industry
  • 2. Analyse the function of and differences between retail and professional business
  • 3. Identify the role of the investment distribution channels
  • 4. Appraise the economic environment, function of central banks and operation of monetary policy
  • 5. Understand the features of financial assets and financial markets
  • 6. Apply key principles of financial services and tax regulation in the industry
  • 7. Distinguish the characteristics of other financial products

ILO: Discipline-specific skills

  • 8. Understand how financial data is used by diverse stakeholder groups
  • 9. Demonstrate a sound understanding of the structure of the industry, and in particular the role and purpose of markets
  • 10. Demonstrate a sound understanding of the financial services regulatory framework and ethics

ILO: Personal and key skills

  • 11. Demonstrate high quality written and verbal communication skills
  • 12. Apply knowledge of relevant rules and principles to their own role and within their team
  • 13. Identify and communicate perceived compliance risks to the relevant management

Learning activities and teaching methods (given in hours of study time)

Scheduled Learning and Teaching ActivitiesGuided independent studyPlacement / study abroad

Details of learning activities and teaching methods

CategoryHours of study timeDescription
Scheduled Learning & Teaching Activities14 hours (2 days)Masterclass/workshops
Scheduled Learning & Teaching activities30 hoursOnline lectures and webinars
Scheduled Learning & Teaching activities6 hoursRevision
Guided independent study150 hoursReading and research, web-based activities

Formative assessment

Form of assessmentSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
Mock Exam1-hour 50 MCQs1-7Marks and feedback
Online DiscussionOnline discussion contributions1-12Online discussion feedback from peers and lecturer
Weekly online quizzesFour quizzes, each taking about 20 minutes1-12Correct answers on ELE

Summative assessment (% of credit)

CourseworkWritten examsPractical exams

Details of summative assessment

Form of assessment% of creditSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
Exam501-hour 50 MCQs1-7
Applied Exercise/ Assignment (Essay, report, or other agreed material or artefact)502,000 words or equivalent total1-13

Details of re-assessment (where required by referral or deferral)

Original form of assessmentForm of re-assessmentILOs re-assessedTimescale for re-assessment
Exam50% 1-hour 50 MCQs1-7Next available opportunity
Applied Exercise/ Assignment (Essay, report, or other agreed material or artefact)50% 2,000 words or equivalent total1-13

Re-assessment notes

Defer – as first time

Refer – capped at 40%

Syllabus plan

  • Introduction to the Financial Services Industry
  • Role of Financial Intermediaries
  • Economic Environment
  • Role of Central Banks
  • Financial Assets and Markets
  • Financial Services Regulation
  • Financial Crime, Insider Dealing and Market Abuse
  • Other Financial Products

Indicative learning resources - Basic reading

Basic reading:

  • Brigham, E., and J. Houston (2010), Fundamentals of Financial Management. South Western Cengage.
  • Reilly, F.K. and Brown, K. (2009), Analysis of Investments and Portfolio Management, 9th edition, UK: South-Western.
  • Introduction to Securities and Investment, CISI Workbook Edition 34, the Chartered Institute for Securities and Investment.

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