Durham University
Programme and Module Handbook

Postgraduate Programme and Module Handbook 2023-2024 (archived)

Module FINN43715: Financial Technologies 2

Department: Finance

FINN43715: Financial Technologies 2

Type Tied Level 4 Credits 15 Availability Available in 2023/24 Module Cap None.
Tied to N3K109
Tied to N3K209
Tied to N3K409
Tied to N3K709
Tied to N3KC09
Tied to N2P209
Tied to G5T209


  • None


  • None

Excluded Combination of Modules

  • None


  • Financial Technologies (FinTech) II takes examples and case studies from the nascent financial innovation landscape and is focused on how financial technologies are built and implemented in practice.
  • This is designed to be a hands-on course in FinTech that takes a diverse set of contemporary topics and areas to teach practical skills related to financial technologies and infrastructures.
  • The aim of this course is to conduct a deep dive into selected financial technologies and their design, including Decentralized Finance, markets and broader financial infrastructure.
  • Students will finish the course with a technical and practical understanding of financial technologies and will be able to analyse data from and implement simple designs of financial market infrastructure using programming languages such as Python or Solidity.
  • Students do not require any specific programming experience. This course will be self-contained in this respect and does not assume any prior knowledge.


  • Financial Technologies is a diverse, contemporary and evolving area for research and innovation. Therefore, specific lecture content will be updated with respect to current trends and the expertise of the module team. The following is an indicative list of potential topics:
  • Financial Cryptography & Distributed Ledger Technologies;
  • Electronic Ledgers & Payment Systems (Application programming interfaces, ZCASH technologies, Central Bank Digital Currencies);
  • Smart Contracts in Finance;
  • Token Engineering (e.g., non-fungible tokens, initial coin offerings, stablecoins, utility platform token);
  • Decentralized Exchanges & Lending Protocols;
  • Algorithmic Trading & Oracles.

Learning Outcomes

Subject-specific Knowledge:
  • By the end of the module students should be able to:
  • Identify core components of the new financial technologies and know how to implement them in practice.
  • Be able to sketch the design framework for new types of financial instruments and intermediation protocols.
  • Understand the role of cryptographic methods and analytics in financial services and be able to apply them.
  • Understand the underlying technical solutions to assess the risk of new financial products and infrastructures.
Subject-specific Skills:
  • Programming skills, scripts and infrastructure.
  • System architectures.
  • Applied modelling techniques.
  • Introductory cryptographic methods for finance.
Key Skills:
  • Financial modelling.
  • Group work.
  • Product design.

Modes of Teaching, Learning and Assessment and how these contribute to the learning outcomes of the module

  • Blended teaching model, with some in person lectures, video-based discussions and presentations.
  • Synchronous class blended in person and virtual classrooms with group discussions and presentations.
  • Seminar teaching in person or online with potentially asynchronous delivery.
  • Flipped classroom using the prepared materials to deliver summaries of financial technology designs and their implementation.

Teaching Methods and Learning Hours

Activity Number Frequency Duration Total/Hours
Lectures 10 1 per week 2 hours 20
Seminar 1 Once 4 hours 4
Preparation and Reading 126
Total 150

Summative Assessment

Component: Individual Assignment Component Weighting: 100%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
Individual Assignment 2500 words 100% same

Formative Assessment:

Coding assignments for the implementation of financial technologies designs in preparation for classes. Oral feedback and group discussions in a flipped classroom environment.

Attendance at all activities marked with this symbol will be monitored. Students who fail to attend these activities, or to complete the summative or formative assessment specified above, will be subject to the procedures defined in the University's General Regulation V, and may be required to leave the University