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The University of Southampton

MANG3081 Alternative Investments

Module Overview

Alternative investment strategies became increasingly popular among investors to achieve better returns. This module looks beyond the traditional investments such as shares and bonds. It covers a range of topics that introduce the world of alternative investment strategies; in particular hedge funds, private equity and real estate investment trusts. Lectures are followed by in-depth practical examples using statistical packages, discussions and tools that show the real world implications.

Aims and Objectives

Module Aims

to introduce you to the basic concepts of alternative investments as opposed to traditional investments (i.e., stocks, bonds, and cash). You will explore a variety of alternative investments including hedge funds, private equity, commodity futures, real estate and structured debt investments. Furthermore, the module seeks to develop your understanding about and ability in evaluating the performance of alternative investment strategies using appropriate techniques.

Learning Outcomes

Knowledge and Understanding

Having successfully completed this module, you will be able to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of:

  • the concepts and market dynamics of hedge funds, commodity markets, private equity markets, real estate markets and responsible investing.
  • how to evaluate the performance of hedge funds and other alternative investments
  • how alternative investments can be employed by investment managers to the needs of investors
Subject Specific Intellectual and Research Skills

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • demonstrate an understanding of the theoretical concepts of alternative investments
  • demonstrate an appreciation for the importance of responsible investing
Transferable and Generic Skills

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • demonstrate competence generally in numerical analysis and problem solving;
  • identify appropriate techniques and apply them to particular investment decisions
  • demonstrate competence in written communication


Introduction to Alternative Investments Performance of Alternative Investments Hedge Funds I Hedge Funds II Commodities and Managed Futures Private Equity Real Estate Credit derivatives Responsible Investment Carbon Investment

Learning and Teaching

Teaching and learning methods

Weekly lectures will provide an overview of the main issues arising in the module. Weekly classes will supplement the lectures which will support student learning by providing opportunities for students to attempt, and gain feedback on, numerical and problem-solving exercises. You will also have the opportunity for both directed and non-directed independent reading.

Follow-up work49
Preparation for scheduled sessions10
Completion of assessment task30
Total study time150

Resources & Reading list

Anson, M. J. P., Fabozzi, F. J., and Jones, F. J. (2011). The Handbook of Traditional and Alternative Investment Vehicles: Investment Characteristics and Strategies. 

Anson, M. J. P. (2006). Handbook of Alternative Assets. 

Anson, M. J. P., Chambers, D. R., Black, K. H., and Kazemi, H. (2012). CAIA Level I: An Introduction to Core Topics in Alternative Investments. 



In-class activities


MethodPercentage contribution
Examination  (2 hours) 100%


MethodPercentage contribution
Examination  (2 hours) 100%


MethodPercentage contribution
Examination  (2 hours) 100%

Repeat Information

Repeat type: Internal & External


Costs associated with this module

Students are responsible for meeting the cost of essential textbooks, and of producing such essays, assignments, laboratory reports and dissertations as are required to fulfil the academic requirements for each programme of study.

In addition to this, students registered for this module typically also have to pay for:

Printing and Photocopying Costs

There will be additional costs for printing.


Recommended texts for this module may be available in limited supply in the University Library and students may wish to purchase the core/recommended text as appropriate

Please also ensure you read the section on additional costs in the University’s Fees, Charges and Expenses Regulations in the University Calendar available at

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