Shanghai University of Finance and Economics is China's first authorized unit for doctoral and master's degrees since the establishment of the academic degree system in the country. In 1979, the university was granted permission to admit graduate students, and in 1981, the university was authorized to issue doctorates. In 2002, it set up a graduate center in Hong Kong, becoming the first mainland university to offer master's programs abroad, and establishing a graduate school in September 2011.

The university currently has 4 national key disciplines (including 1 training program), 2 Shanghai first-class disciplines of (type A), 4 Shanghai first-class disciplines (type B), 7 first-level doctoral programs, 1 second-level doctoral program, 12 first-level master's programs, 12 professional master's programs, and 4 post-doctoral programs. SUFE provides degree programs covering 7 types of disciplines, involving 16 first-level disciplines.

In recent years, the graduate school has focused closely on developing the university as an internationally renowned research university specializing in finance and economics. It adapts to the various requirements of social and economic development, and its fundamental mission for graduate education is to strengthen morality. The university adheres to connotative development and centers itself on improving the training of graduate students. It is motivated to deepen reform and internationalization by implementing the Opinions on Deepening the Reform of Graduate Education and deepening the reform of training innovative financial and economic talent, thereby promoting a comprehensive reform of graduate education. The graduate school strives to create outstanding educational conditions and an environment beneficial for high-level, practical, skilled, interdisciplinary, and innovative talent, and endeavors to improve the overall quality of graduate training.