Surrey University Stag


Module code: MANM325

Module Overview

The module studies the various stages of the investment management process from the award of an investment sponsor’s mandate through investment manager selection to the portfolio and performance outcome of that selection. Consideration is made at each stage of who makes the decisions and what those decisions are based upon. This includes asset allocation, benchmarking, active versus passive investment, investment style and investment performance. Seminars investigate real asset allocation problems. The module is the lynchpin of an investment management programme. This module is particularly useful for students considering a career in finance; investment management, investment banking or investment consultancy but is also useful for those involved in other areas of the financial sector such as insurance and pensions; the main users of investment management services.

Module provider

Surrey Business School

Module Leader

ZHANG Hanxiong (SBS)

Number of Credits: 15

ECTS Credits: 7.5

Framework: FHEQ Level 7

JACs code: N321

Module cap (Maximum number of students): N/A

Overall student workload

Independent Learning Hours: 80

Lecture Hours: 20

Seminar Hours: 10

Guided Learning: 20

Captured Content: 20

Module Availability

Semester 2

Prerequisites / Co-requisites


Module content

Indicative content includes:

  • Overview of Investment Management: Investment Philosophies & the Investment Process

  • Asset Allocation: Which Asset Classes?

  • Alternative Investment and Financial Derivatives Portfolios

  • Fixed Income Investment Portfolios

  • Equity Investment Portfolios

  • Passive or Active Investment

  • Portfolio  Construction  and Portfolio Characteristics

  • Performance Evaluation

Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting
Online Scheduled Summative Class Test ONLINE TEST (50 min) 30
Examination Online ONLINE EXAM (2 hours ) within 4-hour window 70

Alternative Assessment

Not applicable

Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate

  • Knowledge of the decision making process that lies behind the formation of an investment management portfolio.

Thus, the summative assessment for this module consists of:

  • A mid-term open book online class test based on the first 6 weeks lectures material.

  • An open book online exam covering all topics will be held at the end of the module.

Formative assessment and feedback

Students will receive oral feedback during seminars.

Feedback and guidance will be given via SurreyLearn throughout the module.

The class test provides feedback on theoretical underpinnings and typical calculations giving students an early indication where more work may be required.

Module aims

  • The aim of the module is to break down what is often thought of as the 'investment decision' into its component parts and illustrate that the decision is comprised of several key stages which may or may not be taken by one individual.
  • The student will gain an understanding of the decisions made and the information they are based upon. Students will gain an insight into some behavioural aspects of investment including different investment styles.
  • Provide students with a thorough synthesis of the most important current research in portfolio theory.

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
001 Evaluate how investment mandates are awarded KP
002 Critically appraise the role of asset allocation and the decision to be a passive investor or active investor. Critically evaluate financial opportunities and be able to make appropriate investment decisions given the goals of the client P
003 Identify and critically appraise different investment styles and the investment criteria they use. Select a portfolio based on appropriate valuation methodologies and mandate objectives CPT
004 Understand and evaluate how style creates portfolio biases and affects performance- the behavioural aspect of investment P
005 Evaluate investment performance against a peer group or an investment benchmark such as an appropriate stock market index C

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

Methods of Teaching / Learning

The learning and teaching strategy is designed to:

The teaching and learning strategy is designed to facilitate students understanding of applied finance; how to form a portfolio of financial assets and how to assess the performance of that portfolio.

The learning and teaching methods include:

The teaching and learning methods includes lectures to establish key principles, seminars to focus on practical application and the use of SurreyLearn to facilitate discussion, guided learning and distribution of additional materials and data sources. 

Additional resources such as Company Accounts, Bloomberg and DataStream will be used where appropriate.

The material is organized into “topics” spread over the duration of the module. In lectures, key topics, themes and theories will be explored.  In seminars, students will practice the application of skills. The course concludes with a review session.

Indicated Lecture Hours (which may also include seminars, tutorials, workshops and other contact time) are approximate and may include in-class tests where one or more of these are an assessment on the module. In-class tests are scheduled/organised separately to taught content and will be published on to student personal timetables, where they apply to taken modules, as soon as they are finalised by central administration. This will usually be after the initial publication of the teaching timetable for the relevant semester.

Reading list
Upon accessing the reading list, please search for the module using the module code: MANM325

Other information

Employability: The contents of this module is largely consistent with the latest CFA Curriculum regarding portfolio management. In addition, the module provides a variety of tasks and assessments that mimic real professional life.

Global and Cultural Capabilities: This module offers a high level of international content drawn from lecture’s research activities and teaching strengths.

Digital Capabilities: Throughout the module, students learn to navigate and use the Virtual Learning Environment such as SurreyLearn, Zoom, and MS Teams.  Students will also learn Excel, Stata, Bloomberg, and other international databases, which provides students with access to the same working practices that investment professional’s use.

Resourcefulness & Resilience: The effectiveness of the Resourcefulness and Resilience will be inherent in assessments in the module.

Sustainability: The module aims at developing students’ understanding, awareness, and capability to develop innovative solutions to deal with key agendas related to sustainable investment conduct.

Programmes this module appears in

Programme Semester Classification Qualifying conditions
Investment Management MSc 2 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 50% is required to pass the module

Please note that the information detailed within this record is accurate at the time of publishing and may be subject to change. This record contains information for the most up to date version of the programme / module for the 2024/5 academic year.