Best Free MOOCs In Business In October

Financial Engineering and Risk Management (Parts 1 and 2)

School: Columbia University

Platform: Coursera

Registration Links: REGISTER HERE (PART 1)


Start Date: October 9 (Part 1) and October 2 (Part 2)

Workload: Not Available

Instructors: Martin Haugh and Garud Iyengar

Credentials: Haugh is an associate professor of professional practice at Columbia University, where he also serves as the co-Director of the school’s Center for Financial Engineering. A true practitioner, Haugh spent four years as Elon Park and CQS as a Quantitative Analyst, where he specialized in equity and credit derivatives. He earned a Ph.D. in operations research from MIT. He currently teaches courses in Quantitative Risk Management, Advanced Programming for Financial Engineering, and Machine Learning. He also earned the Columbia Engineering School Alumni Association’s Distinguished Faculty Teaching Award in 2013.

Iyengar is the chair of Columbia’s industrial engineering and operations research department. A respected researcher whose work has been published in journals like IEEE Transactions on Information Theory and Mathematics of Operations Research, Iyengar focuses on areas like machine learning, risk management, financial engineering, asset pricing and allocation, and optimization. He holds a Ph.D. in electrical engineering from Stanford University.

Graded: The course does not offer any certificates

Description: The first part of this course will cover “simple stochastic models to price derivative securities in various asset classes including equities, fixed income, credit and mortgage-backed securities,” along with their role in the financial crisis. In the second half, the instructors will focus on asset allocation and portfolio optimization as well as other applications of financial engineering such as real options, commodity and energy derivatives and algorithmic trading.”

Review: “This is a course you will not soon forget, if you stick with it! I struggled a fair amount in the beginning, but over time I began to understand the fairly detailed mathematically intricate material. When you finish the course, you will have a much better understanding of important topics in financial engineering such as a wide variety option type products, term structures of interest rates, portfolio optimization, bonds, fixed instruments default mechanics, etc.

I can’t say enough about the instructors (Haugh and Iyengar) enthusiasm, active participation, and diligence, not to mention their broad knowledge of the topics covered. They were actively involved not only in designing the detailed spreadsheets used in the problem sets, but also providing a fair amount of mechanical guidance in the forums. This is a valuable and practical course and I can’t recommend it enough for those interested in learning some of the intricacies relevant to financial engineering.” For additional reviews, click here.

Additional Note: Students can choose to explore course videos, discussions, and ungraded assignments for free, but they won’t be able to submit graded assignments, earn a certificate, or complete a specialization without paying a $79 fee.