Join an online corporate finance course you can study flexibly, 100% online.

Enhance your empirical and theoretical knowledge of modern corporate finance.

In this Masters-level online short course, you’ll investigate how the value of corporate liabilities, such as shares and bonds, is affected by corporate actions.

With expert guidance, you’ll also examine:

  • corporate “real” investment decisions, for example, when a company invests in a new plant, new machinery, or designs a new product
  • corporate “financing” decisions, for example, when companies choose capital structure
  • dividend payouts and debt policy, and
  • the impact of mergers and acquisitions on the value of corporations.

We’ll help you view and understand corporate actions in a global context, using many real-world examples to enhance your knowledge and expertise.

Who can join this online corporate finance course?

This course is ideal for anyone who wants to understand the workings of modern corporate finance.

It’s designed to help your career progression within finance, management, and development-related roles in companies.

Build credits towards a Masters degree

This course is part of our online:

You can use the credits you earn on this short course towards this MSc qualification.

What you’ll study

You’ll cover the following topics in this course:

  • Company valuation
  • Corporate financing
  • Capital structure
  • Debt policy
  • Mergers and acquisitions
  • Corporate governance
  • Financial puzzles.

By the end of this course, you’ll be able to...

  • Explain why it’s reasonable to assume that financial securities are fairly priced.
  • Describe the major types of financial securities that are issued by companies.
  • Explain payout policy and the differences between dividend payout and stock repurchases.
  • Understand how investors interpret information about changes to dividend payout, and why companies find stock repurchases more flexible.
  • Discuss why payout policy does not affect shareholder value when financial markets are perfectly competitive and informationally efficient.
  • Show how frictions in markets, such as the different tax treatment of dividends and capital gains, can influence corporate financing policy.
  • Identify the conditions under which change to capital structure does not increase total firm value when markets are perfectly competitive and informationally efficient.
  • Explain why the tax treatment of interest expense on debt affects the value of interest tax shields, and why this encourages mergers.
  • Analyse and calculate the weighted average cost of capital, with and without taxes, where the interest payment on debt is a tax-deductible expense.
  • Discuss and synthesise evidence on topics such as payout policy, debt policy, mergers and corporate governance.
  • Explain why corporations merge, and describe the gains and costs of mergers.

Choose the University of Aberdeen for online corporate finance courses

Top 7

7th in the UK

We ranked 7th in the UK for Accounting and Finance in the Guardian University Guide 2024.

We’re EQUIS accredited

Join a Business School that’s EFMD EQUIS accredited, placing it among a select group of globally recognised institutions.

Earn as you learn

We fit around full-time work, so you can earn qualifications while you keep earning a salary.

How you’ll study

Online learning

This distance-learning corporate finance course is delivered flexibly, 100% online.

You can learn anywhere, with no need for a study visa, and manage your hours to suit you.

Your teaching

This course is taught at Masters level.

Teaching is delivered through MyAberdeen, our online Virtual Learning Environment (VLE). It holds all the materials, tools and support you’ll need in your studies. Take a look around MyAberdeen.

Course materials are carefully planned and structured. You can access your learning materials on computer, smartphone and laptop, 24 hours a day. You’ll find a range of resources at your fingertips, including:

  • videos
  • video lectures
  • live online webinars
  • quizzes
  • reading materials
  • discussion forums with your peers and tutors
  • the online resources of our award-winning Sir Duncan Rice Library.

Live online webinars

Across the course, you’ll have eight live webinar sessions with academic staff. These live online webinars support the main learning material and are central to your learning. Your participation in them will count towards your final grades.

Ahead of each live webinar, you’ll be asked to study the online materials provided, post questions to your tutor online, undertake multiple-choice quizzes and other tasks. You may also be asked to work in small groups to prepare for some of the live sessions.

Your tutors

You’ll learn from experienced academics and researchers from the University of Aberdeen Business School.

This course is assessed online via:

  • your engagement in the online discussion forums (worth 5% of your final grade)
  • online quizzes that take place during the course (worth 20%)
  • an exam-style, open-book assessment at the end of your course (worth 75%).

There will be a one-week window in which you can complete this final exam-style assessment. It will take place at the end of the semester in which the course runs.

Live online webinars

This course features eight online webinars. Each webinar is live and scheduled to last for around one hour.

Webinar dates and times will be organised flexibly at the start of the course. Your course coordinator will consider everyone’s circumstances and time zones before setting up live webinar times.

Study hours

The course totals approximately 150 hours of teaching, private study, and assessment time. That’s around 10 – 15 hours per week.

This is an indicative guide to the time required for a typical student at this level to achieve the learning outcomes.

You can largely set your own study hours each week to cover the materials. MyAberdeen is available 24/7, so you can log in and study when it suits you.

Activities at fixed times

You’ll have live online webinars at fixed times, plus assessments with deadlines. But otherwise, you can access and work through your courses at your convenience.

Our first-class support structure will ensure that you aren’t alone in your studies. You’ll have contact with your coordinator via email, MyAberdeen and Microsoft Teams. You can use social media and discussion boards to chat with your fellow students too.

We provide a wide range of services to support you in your studies and beyond:

Wherever you are in the world, you’ll feel part of our very special Aberdeen learning community.

Your course coordinator

Dr Zeyu Zhang

Zeyu is a Lecturer in Finance in our Business School who focuses on financial markets. Zeyu’s research topics include market microstructure, high-frequency trading, dark pools, and frequent batch auctions.

View Zeyu’s profile

Where this will take you

Towards a Masters

You’ll earn 15 credits at Masters level (SCQF Level 11) with this course. You can use these credits towards our:

Online MSc Finance

Earn your Masters flexibly, online.

Gain a deeper knowledge of core financial theory.

Develop your skills in corporate finance, portfolio analysis, asset valuation, derivatives and risk management.

View MSc Finance


You’ll leave this course with enhanced:

  • knowledge of modern corporate finance
  • financial analysis skills, and
  • expertise in the use of financial statements.

In-demand skills for careers in finance

The skills you’ll build in this course are valuable for careers in:

  • finance
  • management, and
  • development-related roles in companies.

Academic pathways

Besides progression into our MSc Finance, this course can be helpful preparation for future Master of Research (MRes) and Doctoral (PhD) studies in finance or management.

Continuing Professional Development (CPD)

Your employer or professional institute may recognise this course for CPD hours. Talk to your employer or institute to find out more.

Free career support

Access our free careers service while you study.

  • 1:1 appointments
  • CV checks
  • Interview prep
  • Job opportunities

See how our careers service can help you.

Entry requirements

Entry requirements

We welcome students from all over the world.

This course has no formal entry requirements. You do not need to provide proof of your qualifications.

But you do need to check the entry guidance above to understand the level of teaching delivered, to decide if this course is right for you.

If you do not have qualifications from the UK, check the equivalent teaching level for your country.

Visa requirements

You do not need a student visa to study online with us.

English language requirements

Teaching is delivered in English.

You do not have to provide proof of your English language skills to join this course. But we want to make sure that you can use English well enough to study successfully.

Recommended level of English

This course uses our Postgraduate Higher level of English language proficiency.

These are our Postgraduate Higher requirements, and these are minimum scores.

IELTS Academic, IELTS UKVI Academic, and IELTS Online (not IELTS Indicator or IELTS General Training)

  • 6.5 overall
  • 5.5 for listening and speaking
  • 6.0 for reading and writing

TOEFL iBT and TOEFL iBT Home Edition

  • 90 overall
  • 17 for listening
  • 21 for reading
  • 20 for speaking
  • 21 for writing
  • TOEFL DI code is 0818

Cambridge English: B2 First, C1 Advanced, or C2 Proficiency

  • 176 overall
  • 162 for listening and speaking
  • 169 for reading and writing

LanguageCert Academic/LanguageCert Academic SELT

  • 70 overall
  • 60 for listening and speaking
  • 65 for reading and writing

LanguageCert International ESOL B2 Communicator (Written and Spoken) – Online / In-centre

  • Overall High Pass
  • 33 for listening, reading and speaking
  • 38 for writing

Oxford ELLT Digital – English Language Level Test Online

  • 7.0 overall
  • 5.0 for listening and speaking
  • 6.0 for reading and writing

PTE Academic (online test not accepted)

  • 62 overall
  • 59 for listening, reading, speaking and writing

For more information about language qualifications see our English Language Requirements page.

When you study with us, you can expect a first-class support structure so that you’re never alone in your studies.

But learning online does mean you have to motivate yourself and manage your own time.

Your most important commitment will be time – the time to work through, reflect on and understand your teaching materials.

Before you start a course that involves a high degree of independent study, we recommend looking at the time you will be able to devote to your studies each week:

  • Be realistic
  • Create a weekly schedule as a guide

If you have any questions about studying online, get in touch with our friendly team. We’re here to help.

You will need access to:

A computer (PC, laptop or Mac) operating on either:

  • Windows 10 or later
  • macOS 10.15 (Catalina) or later.

Most teaching materials are smartphone- and tablet-friendly. But we recommend a proper laptop or desktop for completing assignments comfortably.

Reliable internet access

We recommend:

  • a wired connection
  • a minimum download speed of 2 Mbps so you can take part fully in live sessions.

Speakers or headphones

  • We recommend a headset with built-in microphone and earphones if you’re likely to study in an environment with background noise.
  • A webcam is optional, but you may like to use one for some interactive sessions.


We’ll give you access to Office365 applications. This means you can use online versions of Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint and install these programs on up to five personal devices.

If your course requires specialist software, we’ll provide you with access to this and a licence that lasts throughout your studies.

See our detailed IT requirements for more information.

Fee payment

Your course fee needs to be paid in full before you start your course.

We accept payment via Visa Debit, Visa Credit and Mastercard.

Ways to save

You may be able to get help funding this course via:

  • discounts – if any discounts are available for this course, they’ll appear in the section below
  • employer sponsorship – we accept full and partial fee payments from sponsors.

Find out more about funding options.

Student card

All our students are entitled to a University of Aberdeen student card. This gives you access to a range of student discounts around the city and online.

Learning resources

Access to all the books and resources you need are included in your tuition fee. They’ll be made available to you online and you do not have to buy your own copies.


You may wish to set aside a small budget for printing, depending on how you like to work.

This course has no formal entry requirements. You decide if it’s suitable for you.

The course is delivered at Masters level. At this level, you’d usually have at least:

  • a 2:2 UK undergraduate degree (or equivalent), or
  • relevant experience that supports this level of study.

Apply for this course

Start date
23 September 2024
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