Financial Systems and Institutions

Universidad Carlos III de Madrid

Course Description

  • Course Name

    Financial Systems and Institutions

  • Host University

    Universidad Carlos III de Madrid

  • Location

    Madrid, Spain

  • Area of Study

    Accounting, Business Administration, Economics, Finance, Management

  • Language Level

    Taught In English

  • Prerequisites

    It is not necessary to cover any specific topic before doing this course.

  • Course Level Recommendations


    ISA offers course level recommendations in an effort to facilitate the determination of course levels by credential evaluators.We advice each institution to have their own credentials evaluator make the final decision regrading course levels.

    Hours & Credits

  • ECTS Credits

  • Recommended U.S. Semester Credits
  • Recommended U.S. Quarter Units
  • Overview

    This course's objective is to study the basic elements that make up the Spanish financial system,
    institutions, and markets. In order to achieve this objective the student is expected to acquire the following:


    - Basic structure, functions and characteristics of a financial system
    - the role of financial intermediaries and markets
    - Basic knowledge of financial instruments, transactions and financial terminology
    - the judicial context within which financial markets operate
    - a global view of the role of financial systems in the allocation of financial resources
    - Learn the functions, characteristics and classification of assets, intermediaries and financial markets
    - Interpret a financial market in terms of its architecture
    - Learn the importance of different trading systems and understand their functioning
    - Analyze the role of market markers
    - Be familiar with existing financial instruments


    - Present, discuss, explain and defend opinions in an efficient way both in formal and informal contexts, and both in written and oral form
    - The ability to look for, transmit, and discern what is the information that is relevant in a particular decision problem
    - Obtain results individually, in an autonomous fashion, while sharing them via personal relationships and discussion with fellow students
    - The ability to apply multidisciplinary knowledge to solving specific problems
    further more, the studens should be able to:
    - Establish criteria that will be useful to form a critical view of different market organizations
    - Have rigorous attitude to defend their own opinions
    - Have a colaborative attitude that will help obtain information and knowledge to solve complex tasks
    - Have a flexible attitude to make and change decisions
    - Have a solid ethical view and work commitment


    The content is divided into two major blocks.
    FIRST BLOCK: Introduction to te financial system, the role of credit institutions and their supervisors. Credit institutions and their role in economic development. Supervisors: the Bank of Spain, the Comisión Nacional del Mercado de Valores.
    SECOND BLOCK: The role of financial systems, their functions and specific characteristics. In both blocks, the students will study different types of financial instruments and assets


    Teaching methodology:
    (1) Lectures where the specific course contents will be presented. Students will receive class notes
    and references that help complete and expand on the topics covered
    (2) Case studies provided by the instructor. These case studies are related to the content of the
    course and the specific capabilities the students are to develop
    (3) Computer classes in corresponding classrooms. This will help them learn how to acquire
    information on assets and the functioning of financial markets. They will also access databases as well
    as webpages with relevant data and information
    (4) Exercises solved by the student as self-evaluation of acquired knowledge, capabilities and skills
    (5) Common discussion and correction of exercises to ground knowledge and develop analysis and
    communication skills in a problem-solving environment. In addition, these discussions help the
    exchange of critical opinion between student and instructor, and amongst students


    The term-based evaluation (continua) will be based on the following criteria:
    - Class participation: 5%. Values short, concise contributions made during class time that are
    related to the matter at hand, and add value to the discussion. To facilitate this, the instructor will open
    to discussion some of the following: theoretical matters, budgets, newspaper articles, cases, etc

    - Problems: 45%.

    Partial exam: 20%
    Individual and group exercises: 25%

    - Final exam: 50%. The students acquired knowledge and skills will be evaluated in this way. The
    minimum grade that is necessary to pass the subject is 4 over 10 in the final exam
    % end-of-term-examination: 50
    % of continuous assessment (assigments, laboratory, practicals?): 50

Course Disclaimer

Please note that there are no beginning level Spanish courses offered in this program.

Courses and course hours of instruction are subject to change.

Eligibility for courses may be subject to a placement exam and/or pre-requisites.

Credits earned vary according to the policies of the students' home institutions. According to ISA policy and possible visa requirements, students must maintain full-time enrollment status, as determined by their home institutions, for the duration of the program.

ECTS (European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System) credits are converted to semester credits/quarter units differently among U.S. universities. Students should confirm the conversion scale used at their home university when determining credit transfer.

Please reference fall and spring course lists as not all courses are taught during both semesters.

Availability of courses is based on enrollment numbers. All students should seek pre-approval for alternate courses in the event of last minute class cancellations

Please note that some courses with locals have recommended prerequisite courses. It is the student's responsibility to consult any recommended prerequisites prior to enrolling in their course.


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