Stirling Management School’s Amplify Trading Boot Camp has won the CFA Institute Innovative Delivery of Education Award (IDEA) for innovation in finance teaching and education. The Boot Camp enables students to trade financial instruments using live prices but with virtual money. Delivered by London-based firm Amplify, in collaboration with Stirling Management School’s Accounting and Finance Division, it provides students with invaluable practical experience before graduation of how financial markets function in practice.
The Boot Camp is provided to University of Stirling taught postgraduate students studying for a range of Masters degrees in finance-related disciplines. It is an integral part of their studies, taking place in an intensive one-week period following the completion of the taught component of their degrees and thus builds upon knowledge acquired in the classroom.
During the Boot Camp, students attend lectures each morning on trading strategy and psychology, and in the afternoon they become traders, using University computer labs on which Amplify's bespoke trading software is installed. The software is linked through the Internet to live market prices of futures contracts traded on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, enabling students to trade in real time, but with virtual money. The futures contracts provide exposure to stocks, bonds, currencies and commodities. Access to live market news feeds enables students to trade these assets in response to breaking market news.
Dr Kevin Campbell, Director of the MSc Investment Analysis (pictured second from right), picked up the Award at a ceremony on 17 April 2015 in Atlanta, Georgia.
Kevin Campbell said: “Winning this award is testament to the high standard of investment education at the University of Stirling. By bringing the experience of live trading into the classroom and teaching our students how to cope with volatile markets and how to deal with inevitable trading losses, the Boot Camp improves their ability to manage risk and to make decisions under pressure, leaving them better able to influence the future of finance in their professional careers.”
IDEA entries were judged on the quality of the innovation in teaching finance and investment concepts, its relevance to practice, its ability to pique students’ interest in finance as a career and its ability to be replicated at other educational institutions. Applications were received from all over the globe and judged by an international panel of experts representing academics and practicing industry professionals. In recognition of its winning innovation, the University of Stirling receives from CFA Institute a $1000 educational grant and five CFA Program Awareness Scholarships for students on its MSc Investment Analysis, a Program Partner of CFA Institute. These Scholarships allow students to register for CFA professional exams at discounted rates.
Pictured left to right are: Amanda Quinn, Program Manager, CFA Institute Research Challenge; Charles Appeadu, CFA, Head of University Relations at CFA Institute; Merridith Shifferdecker, CAE, Manager of University Relations Outreach at CFA Institute; Dr Kevin Campbell, MSc Investment Analysis Director, University of Stirling Management School; Will de Lucy, Managing Director of Amplify.
The Amplify Trading Boot Camp is provided free of charge. The first Boot Camp took place in May 2014 and the second Boot Camp ran from 13-17 April 2015. At the closing ceremony of the 2015 Boot Camp the five students with the best combination of trading performance and risk control received their ‘Top Trader’ awards.
Pictured left to right from back row: Professor Graeme Acheson, MSc Finance Director; Richeng Chen(China), MSc Investment Analysis; Duang Kamol Muenchit (Thailand), MSc International Accounting and Finance; Ndeendelelao Ndahambelela Elise Kambala (Namibia), MSc Investment Analysis; Piers Curran, Head of Trading, Amplify; Jintao Wang (China), MSc International Accounting and Finance; Xinyu Chen (China), MSc Investment Analysis.