MSc International Shipping and Finance

General information

The MSc International Shipping and Finance degree is only available on a full-time basis and is of 9-12 months duration. Students will be resident and under take full-time study in the UK and Athens, Greece.

The primary aim of the MSc in International Shipping and Finance (ISF) is to address the educational needs of the rapidly evolving, highly competitive and capital intensive shipping industry, by bridging the gap between academic theory and business practice.

The programme is designed to provide a unique educational experience that combines research-led, technically advanced teaching by world-renowned academic faculty and senior industry practitioners. The shipping industry itself is highly involved in shaping its structure and contributing to its delivery as well as the career development of its participants. The delivery of this programme is based on a practice centred, hands-on approach. The ultimate objective is to ensure that graduates are equipped with the knowledge, technical expertise and skills required by major employers in the sector. 

You will gain an in-depth understanding of how the shipping and financial markets interact and complement each other. You will specialise in the analysis of  shipping markets and cycles, maritime trade patterns and commodities carried by sea, chartering and ship-broking practices, maritime logistics systems, legal aspects in shipping, the selection of alternative shipping finance and investment methods as well as the development, implementation and appraisal of shipping related risk management strategies. You will also gain exposure to securities trading, corporate transactions, valuation,  investment strategies and quantitative techniques.

Students on the MSc ISF programme also benefit from our partnership with Spinnaker Global as well as memberships of Maritime London and the Baltic Exchange offering them the opportunity to register as associate members during their study.

You will benefit from:

  • Distinguished professors and guest speakers
  • Specialised master-classes and workshops
  • Hands-on sessions and bespoke simulations
  • Company visits and field trips
  • Careers development programme and networking events
  • Work placement opportunities available to outstanding graduates

Programme Overview
The programme usually lasts 10 months. There is however a new 12 month option that involves a compulsory 20 credit Research Project completed between June and September, which would also mean a 20 credit reduction in the number of taught modules taken in the spring term. Completing a 12 month degree can be important for students who wish to be able to demonstrate their ability to carry out independent research prior to application to a PhD programme or to show prospective employers as evidence of the quality of work they can produce.

Part 1 Modules Part 2 - ICMA Centre Part 2 - ALBA
Securities, futures and options Economic Modelling and Analysis of Shipping Markets Chartering and Charterparty Analysis
Fixed Income and Equity Investments Shipping Finance and Investment Derivatives and Risk Management in Shipping
Maritime Economics and Business Corporate Financial Management Shipping Strategy 
International Maritime Trade Ship-broking/Chartering Maritime Accounting
Introductory Quantitative Methods for Finance Optional modules  
Careers in Shipping Maritime Logistics Management  
Overview of Shipping Markets  Maritime Law and Marine Insurance  
Technical Aspects of Ships and Cargo Handling Commodity Derivatives  
  Fixed Income Cash and Derivative Markets  
  Mergers and Acquisitions  
  Research Project  

Learning options. Our master's in finance courses are available only  on a full-time basis with the option of studying for 9 or 12 months.

Full-time: 9 months Full-time: 12 months Students will be resident and undertake full-time study in the UK.  Under both, the 9 and 12-month programmes students take compulsory and/or elective modules in Part 2. The 12 month option involves taking an elective 20 credit module between July and August, which would also mean a 20 credit reduction in the number of taught modules taken in the spring term.

Learning outcome:

Careers in International Shipping and Finance. 
After completion of the programme you will be well equipped with the knowledge for a successful career in the shipping/ transportation industries, as well as in the wider finance sector.
On average more than 90% of our graduates are in work or further education 6 months after graduation.
Indicative career paths for our graduates are ship-owning and transportation companies, ship-broking/chartering firms, shipping divisions of investment banks, shipping analysis/consulting firms, ship-finance arrangers, port operators, and shipping-related investment funds, among others. The wide curriculum of the programme will also enable you to consider careers in the global investment banking and securities markets.

Contact Person: MSc ISF team (


The highlighted icons, represent the fields of education (in compliance with ISCED Classification) engaged during this course/programme.

0311 - Maritime economy", "0312 - Policy and governance", "0413 - Logistics and shipping operational management


Venue: Henley Business School (Contact University)
Henley-on-Thames, United Kingdom

Part 1 (October – December): ICMA Centre, Henley Business School, UK
Part 2 (January – March): ICMA Centre,  Henley Business School, UK
Part 2 (March – April): ALBA Business School, Athens, Greece
Exams (May – June): ICMA Centre, Henley Business School, UK



Full-time course fees: £21,900. 
Fees are the same for both EU and overseas students.Please note there is a one-off £30 application fee (one charge regardless of how many courses you apply for). You can pay this by credit/debit card at this link (please contact us if you require details of alternative payment methods). Living expenses are in addition to the above fees. Overseas full-time participants can expect to spend approximately £9,400 on additional living expenses during the course of their studies. Home/EU full-time participants can expect to spend approximately £8,000 on additional living expenses during the course of their studies.

  • Undergraduate Degree – Minimum 2:1 or the equivalent from an overseas institution*.
  • Degree Discipline – Any degree discipline, but must have a satisfactory existing level of numeracy.
  • GMAT – We may ask you to submit a GMAT score if we think it appropriate in your individual case. For example, if you have been out of education for more than a few years or have little evidence of any numerical ability.For information on the GMAT and the location of test centres worldwide, please visit

* Please note that due to increasing competition for places on our Masters programmes our entry requirements may change.

We operate a rolling admissions system and you are therefore advised to apply early in order to be sure of your place on our programmes. We experience high levels of demand, and it is possible we might have to close applications to some programmes once places are filled.

English requirements

If English is not your first language, you may be required to take one of the following:

  • TOEFL (Test of English as a foreign language): Overall score of 100 with no less than 20 in Listening, Writing and Reading and 21 in Speaking
  • IELTS (British Council International English Language Test): Score of 6.5 overall with no component less than 6 when attending the 6-week pre-sessional English course offered by the University of Reading. Entry to this pre-sessional course with a score of 6.5 fulfils your English language requirement.

Please note that students not attending a Pre-Sessional course will need to pass IELTS with an overall score of 7 and no component less than 6.0. For more options please see the International Study and Language Website or email a member of the Postgraduate Admissions team.

Application Procedure:

Apply online via the online application form of the University of Reading. This allows you to complete your application information, attach electronic copies of your academic transcripts, certificates and other supporting information and also provides a facility for an email request to be sent to your referees enabling them to send your supporting references (2 references required) directly to the University. There is a £30 application fee.

Application Deadline: there is a rolling admissions basis, meaning that prospective students can apply for the programme throughout the year. However, they are advised to apply early in the year.

Grant Opportunities:

If you are an EU/UK applicant with a minimum  2:1 or equivalent from an overseas institution for your bachelor’s degree you might be eligible for a 50% scholarship. We also offer a range of other scholarships for international students, as well as programme-specific awards for MSc International Securities, Investment and Banking, and MSc International Shipping and Finance.For a full list of scholarships, visit our scholarships webpage.

UK/European Union Postgraduate Loans

The UK Government has confirmed that non-means tested loans of up to £10,000 will be available to students studying for postgraduate masters courses from the 2016-2017 Academic year. To be eligible, students will need to be English domiciled.  EU students, and individuals falling within certain specified categories, may also be eligible. Full details of the loan, including how to apply, are due to be published this year.  You read more at Introduction of loans for postgraduate students and Government response to the Consultation on Support for Postgraduate Study.


Successful graduates will be awarded two full time MSc degrees in International Shipping and Finance, one from each institution.


Academic level: Master

Qualification: Master of Science

UK Credits
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