FIN2704 / FIN2004 Finance

Module: FIN2704 / FIN2004 Finance

Semester taken: AY 2019/20 Special Term 2

Lecturer: No lecturer, module is sectional-based

Tutor: A/P Chen Renbao

Textbook: Fundamentals of Corporate Finance, 2nd Edition, S.A. Ross, R.W. Westerfield, B.D. Jordan, J. Lim and R. Tan (2016), McGraw-Hill Education

What it is about

This module introduces students to the world of finance, to understand the various concepts and instruments that are used in the financial industry (such as risk, bonds, stocks, options, etc.). It also builds upon the knowledge gained from ACC1701: Accounting for Decision Makers by understanding the various aspects of financial statements and how to interpret them.

In this particular iteration of the module, the class was conducted in a sectionals format rather than the usual lecture-tutorial format. This is mainly due to the small size of the class, and the class is really just a tutorial and lecture class being put together.

Assessment components

  • Class Participation: 10%

  • Mid-Term: 40%

  • Final Examination: 50%


Before even taking this module, I have heard from many of my peers that they were interested in taking the version for non-business students (FIN2704X), as they wanted to learn more about finance to dabble into investing. It is definitely a useful module to be exposed to the concepts and they would definitely come in handy when doing your due diligence as part of investing.

Additionally, the module requires you to get a financial calculator and recommends the Texas Instruments BAII Plus Financial Calculator. Unless you are intending to specialise in Finance, I would recommend just borrowing it from a friend, as it is really only useful for Finance-related modules.


As the module was held during the special term due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the lessons were structured as sectionals, rather than the use lecture-tutorial style. It is also partially because the size of the class is rather small and able to fit into a single sectional class. There were two 3-hour sectionals each week, back-to-back on Mondays, for the 6 weeks of the special term, which can be rather intense given the scope of the module.

As I was certain I would be taking the module during the special term (along with DAO2702), I spent the earlier part of the holidays preparing for the module and reading through the lecture notes sent by seniors. Luckily, the lecture notes were reused during this special term, so the lessons were more like recap for me. For normal semesters, the pace would be a lot slower, so there would not be a need to read up beforehand.

Since it is a sectional, it was structured as 1 hour for tutorial and 2 hours for lecture. We were tasked to prepare answers for a certain tutorial during the term, and then present the answers during the lesson. This is done as a group of about 4 to 5 people. Chen Renbao tends to have the habit of giving everyone very high marks, and subtracting one or two marks for some random mistake, probably to attempt differentiating between students so that grading is easier. Make sure to check your answers thoroughly beforehand before submitting, but understand that it is almost impossible to get full marks for this part.

Mid-term test

The mid-term test was a set of 30 MCQ questions delivered over Examplify, closed-book with two pages of A4 cheatsheet allowed, for a total of 85 minutes. The questions came from various topics and has a mix of theory and calculation questions.

I managed to score 24 out of 30, and the average was 21.47 out of 30. Nobody managed to score full marks, but the highest was 29. Definitely some of them prepared very well beforehand.


The final exam followed a similar format to the mid-term test, but there were 40 MCQ questions as the test is longer at 120 minutes. The questions mainly focused on the topics that were not tested for the mid-term test, but some of the concepts may be used. Due to the limited time, our class was not able to cover the topic on Options, which I was rather thankful for as the topic was notoriously difficult to understand. However, for people who are intending to specialise in Finance, this would definitely be a bummer.

Overall, the test is moderately difficult. It is mostly doable, although there are some questions that requires you to have a deeper understanding of the concepts. In short, keep practicing past year papers and other test banks that you are able to get your hands on. I did not practice any questions from the textbook, but I did hear that some of the questions came from there.

Other information

Assignment workload: There is one tutorial to be done in a group of 4-5 people.

Project workload: None

Readings: None

Recommended if: A compulsory module for Business students, but it is a very useful module if you are interested to dabble into investing in the future.

Rating: 4.0/5. The lecturer was okay but felt that the delivery of the content was not as well as I hoped.

Expected grade: A-

Actual grade: A-

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