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MN10571: Introduction to finance

[Page last updated: 23 August 2022]

Academic Year: 2022/23
Owning Department/School: School of Management
Credits: 6 [equivalent to 12 CATS credits]
Notional Study Hours: 120
Level: Certificate (FHEQ level 4)
Semester 2
Assessment Summary: CW 20%, EX 80%
Assessment Detail:
  • Coursework (CW 20%)
  • Examination (EX 80%)
Supplementary Assessment:
Like-for-like reassessment (where allowed by programme regulations)
Requisites: In taking this module you cannot take MN10311 OR take MN10500
Before taking this module you must take MN10566
Learning Outcomes: On completion of this unit, students should be able, commensurate with their stage of study, to:
1. Describe, explain and illustrate: the business finance environment and the context of financial management; the capital investment decision; the financing decision and the capital structure question; the dividend policy question; rate setting; the role of financial intermediaries; and the basic value, return and risk characteristics of bond and equity instruments.
2. List, describe, explain, illustrate, compare and contrast: alternative techniques for investment appraisal; different sources of finance; different approaches to the capital structure question; various impactors on dividend policy; bonds versus equity instruments; and alternative perspectives on risk.
3. Cite, explain, select and apply appropriate theory and models to solve related questions and numerical problems.
4. Assess and criticize selected finance models.

Aims: As its name suggests, this unit is designed as a first course in finance. It provides a solid grounding across a number of finance topics; and is designed to be useful in its own right as well as providing preparation for more advanced studies of the subject.
The unit aims to provide students with a thorough first treatment of: the business finance environment; the arithmetic of finance and rates; investing the firm's resources; funding the firm's activities; and the management of financial relations with stakeholders. From a foundation in theory, we use discursive and numerical approaches to unlock these fascinating areas. The themes of value, return and risk run throughout the unit.

Skills: On completion of this unit, students should have developed, commensurate with their stage of study, in the following skills areas:
1. Problem Solving:
* Identify the precise problem to be solved
* Assess which data are pertinent to the problem
* Recognize that alternative solution methods might be available
* Select and apply appropriate methods for solving the problem
* Assess the reasonableness of problem solutions and interpret those solutions
2. Research skills: identify which information sources are available to facilitate module study (understanding, wider reading); and provide examples/illustration of unit topics in a real world context.
3. Communication:
* Develop confidence in and clarity of oral communication via tutorial participation
* Develop clarity and focus of written communication via development of answers to self-study questions
* Develop and use appropriate subject-specific vocabulary in oral and written communication
4. Information technology:
* Use a variety of electronic web- and library-based resources to review available information and retrieve pertinent information
* Use spreadsheet software to complete elements of the self-study (e.g., for ease of tabulated numerical calculations, production of summary statistics, etc.)
5. Application of number/mathematics:
* Develop an easy familiarity with numerical and financial data
* Develop competence in understanding and appropriately applying basic financial mathematics and financial mathematical formulae
* Apply numerical data to problem solving with care and accuracy
* Assess the reasonableness of and interpret numerical solutions
* Support assertions/arguments with appropriately developed and presented numerical data
* Calculate and use descriptive statistics
6. Personal development and career planning: develop an understanding of and skills in finance which are useful/essential in a number of different occupations; and in personal financial planning and management.

Content: 1. Appraisal of capital projects including financial/rate arithmetic
2. The business finance environment
3. Sources of finance and cost of capital
4. Capital structure
5. Dividend policy
6. Institutional aspects
7. Investor perspective on bonds and shares.

Programme availability:

MN10571 is Compulsory on the following programmes:

School of Management
  • UMMN-AYB06 : BSc(Hons) International Management with Year Abroad (Year 1)
  • UMMN-AFB04 : BSc(Hons) Management (Year 1)
  • UMMN-AKB04 : BSc(Hons) Management with Year long work placement (Year 1)
  • UMMN-AKB05 : BSc(Hons) Management with Marketing with Year long work placement (Year 1)


  • This unit catalogue is applicable for the 2022/23 academic year only. Students continuing their studies into 2023/24 and beyond should not assume that this unit will be available in future years in the format displayed here for 2022/23.
  • Programmes and units are subject to change in accordance with normal University procedures.
  • Availability of units will be subject to constraints such as staff availability, minimum and maximum group sizes, and timetabling factors as well as a student's ability to meet any pre-requisite rules.
  • Find out more about these and other important University terms and conditions here.