This webpage is designed
with the intention of providing useful information for Undergraduate
and graduate students interested in pursuing a career in Actuarial
science.
The Society of Actuaries
has approved the following: Students who complete Stat 4510/7510 (old
Stat 385) AND Stat 4870/7870 (old Stat 386) with a grade of C or better
are eligible for VEE credit for Applied Statistical Methods. For more
information, click here.
Table of Contents
What is Actuarial science?
What is an Actuary?
What
are the society of actuaries exams?
How
should I prepare for the exams?
Which courses are helpful in preparing for SOA exam 1?
Professional opportunities
Useful Links and Contacts
What
is Actuarial science?
Actuarial
science is the science of applying mathematical and statistical
models to improve financial decisionmaking by evaluating the financial
implications of uncertain future events.
What
is an Actuary?
An actuary
is a professional concerned with the financial evaluation of risk.
They design and administer insurance programs, pensions,
government welfare plans and similar financial plans . The main
responsibility of actuaries is to ensure that these plans operate
on a sound financial basis. To do this they use many areas of
mathematics ( for example: probability theory, statistics, the
theory of interest) as well as general principles of economics and
finance.
Actuaries
are experts in risk management. In particular, actuaries are involved in
the design, pricing, financing, and operation of benefit plans which
protect people from risks of injury, illness, death, property damage,
and the loss of income due to unemployment or retirement. Actuaries use
mathematical skills to create and manage programs that reduce the
adverse financial impact of life's expected and unexpected events,
including financial risks from investment. For more information read the
definition of "Actuary" according to
the U.S. department of labor's occupational
outlook handbook.
What are
the society of actuaries exams?
You become
an actuary by passing a series of professional examinations conducted by
the Society of Actuaries
(SOA) and by developing your
professional skills while working at an insurance company, consulting
firm, or some other similar organization. A college degree is essential
in order to pass the actuarial professional
examinations. A mathematics or statistics major is highly
recommended, since passing the professional
examinations requires a thorough understanding of mathematics and
statistics. Also knowledge of finance, insurance and investments,
excellent communication skills and computer programming skills are
necessary.
The SOA
exams are offered two times each year, in Fall and Spring. University of
MissouriColumbia is a SOA examination center location. For more
information on the exams schedule, locations, registration procedures
and deadlines
click here.
How should I prepare for the exams?
here is
some information regarding the society of actuaries exam 1:
Exam 1
covers basic elements of Calculus, Probability and Interest Theory.
Basically the only statistics prerequisites are STAT 4750 (7750
Graduate) and STAT 4760 (7760 Graduate). Here is a more detailed list
of material you need to study:

Limits,
series, sequences and functions;

Derivatives
of single and multivariate functions (maximums, minimums,
constrained maximums and minimums, rate of change);

Integrals
of single and multivariate functions, simple differential equations;

Parameterized
curves;

General
probability (set functions, basic axioms, independence);

Bayes'
Theorem;

Univariate
probability distributions (probabilities, moments, variance, mode,
percentiles, transformations);

Multivariate
probability distributions (Central Limit Theorem; joint, conditional
and marginal distributionsprobabilities, moments, variance,
covariance).
For more
information on exams check
SOA website, where you can find
old exams, study material and a list of suggested textbooks.
Which courses are helpful in preparing for SOA exam 1?
Taking
the following courses are recommended:
STAT 4750
(7750 Graduate) : Introduction to Probability Theory
STAT 4760
(7760 Graduate) : Statistical Inference
MATH 1500 :
Calculus I
MATH 1700 :
Calculus II
MATH 2300 : Calculus III
FINANC
1000 : Principles of Finance
Professional Opportunities
Actuarial
employment opportunities are typically available in the following types
of organizations: health, life, property, and casualty insurance firms;
actuarial and employee benefit consulting firms; health service
organizations; insurance rating bureaus; large industrial corporations;
labor unions; federal government agencies; and state insurance
departments. You can find links to some of major actuarial firms in the
useful links and contacts section.
Useful
links and contacts
Here is a list of some
useful links and contacts:
Actuarial
organizations:
SOA,
CAS,
The Actuarial Foundation,
Midwest Actuarial Forum.
Actuarial
Firms
Hewitt
Associates,
PriceWaterhouseCoopers,
TillinghastTowers Perrin,
Buck Consultants (Mellon),
Watson Wyatt
Worldwide,
Trustmark Insurance,
William M. Mercer.
Actuarial
Recruiters
D.W.Simpson,
NAS,
The Emereald Group,
H&H Associates.
Other
sites
Actuary.com,
Be an actuary.org,
Graduate programs in Actuarial science.
