Other questions on the subject have been asked, and I am aware of them. However, what distinguishes this one is that I am certain that I want to be a quant, so it is about maximizing the optimality toward achieving this specific goal rather than wasting time on things that will not contribute to it. I'm interested in mathematical finance primarily because it combines three of my interests: finance, mathematics, and computer science.

I graduated from high school (if that matters, I'm from the EU), but due to severe depression in my final year, I decided to take a gap year. As a result, what should I do throughout it, aside from preparing to retake and ace the final exam? What should I self-study? Where should I look for work? After that, what should I study at university? And so forth...

  • You're young, one thing to consider is that people's interests can change over time. By no means do I mean don't pursue becoming a quant, but when I graduated high school I wanted to be a pilot, when I was halfway through college I wanted to be a teacher, when I graduated college I wanted to be an aerospace engineer, and 5 years later I now work as a web designer. Most of the reason I changed goals frequently was because I "wasted time on things" by pursing random interests, but I know I'm much happier now than I would be as a pilot or a teacher or an engineer. Commented Sep 19, 2022 at 17:33

1 Answer 1


A quantitative analyst requires a Master's Degree (2 years) in Finance / Financial Mathematics.

To get to this Master's, you need a Bachelor (3 years) in Mathematics/Economics.

So in your spare time you can learn :

  • Financial markets, macroeconomics, asset management, geopolitics
  • Econometrics, forecasting, basic Machine Learning principles
  • Programming in python, VBA, R
  • Probabilities, statistics, calculus, algebra
  • Soft skills : how to write a report, do an oral presentation of a complex topic to a non-tech public

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