Actuarial Science is a lesser-known field of science that constitutes of mathematical and statistical concepts. In simple terms, Actuarial Science is the study of taking risks. It is a field that is comprised of accessing, predicting and controlling risks and understanding their significance in the functioning of an economy. Every business relies on risk management for making different decisions and ensuring its safety from different uncertainties. Actuarial science professionals or Actuaries identify possible catastrophes for a business and suggest respective solutions. They also analyse the losses of a company and find solutions to minimize the accompanying risks and reduce future losses. Let’s explore the Actuarial Science by understanding the key aspects of an Actuarial Science course and the colleges offering this course around the world.
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Why Pursue an Actuarial Science Course?
Emerging as an imperative field, Actuarial Science is becoming integral to industries, financial firms, insurance companies as well as the economy as a whole. Actuaries are considered as a versatile storehouse of knowledge. An Actuarial Science course equips students with a complete understanding of the applications of statistical and mathematical methods for analyzing and studying risk management in finance, insurance and other industries. The course is designed to help you learn and gather the essentials of risk management and its vital role in the commercial industry. It trains students for handling different risk situations in diverse scenarios from handling a company’s finances to grasping the fiscal conditions of an economy.
Actuarial Science Syllabus
Here is a list of all the subjects in the Actuarial Science Syllabus –
- Actuarial Statistics
- Risk Modelling and Survival Analysis
- Actuarial Mathematics
- Financial Engineering and Loss Reserving
- Business Finance
- Business Economics
- Business Management
- Actuarial Practice
- Communications Practice
- Enterprise Risk Management Specialist Principles
- General Insurance
- Health and Care
- Investment and Finance
- Life Insurance
- Modelling Practice
- Pension and other benefits
There are two famous institutes for Actuarial Science in India – IAI and IFOA.
For IAI, you need to keep in mind the following eligibility criteria –
- You have to clear an entrance exam ACET to get the membership of the institute.
- You must have knowledge of mathematics
For IFOA’s membership you have two options –
- You can get a direct membership if you have 85+ in Mathematics in class 12.
- You can sit for either CS1 or CM1 as a non-member and if you clear the paper, you get the membership.
Difference Between an Actuarial Science and a Chartered Accountancy Course
The job profile and the responsibilities of an actuary are quite similar to a chartered accountant. Therefore, you might get confused in understanding these fields. Comparing the skills and quality of work, both Actuarial Science and Chartered Accountancy are quite similar and at par with each other. The central difference is that actuaries deal with future risks and profits of an organisation while chartered accountants handle the present scenario of a company. An Actuarial Science course teaches you about risk assessment, financial modelling and future risk predictions. On the other hand, pursuing Chartered Accountancy you will learn about managing financial budgets, audits and providing financial advice. The career perspective and pay-scale are similar for both the courses, however, actuaries are assumed to get a better salary package than chartered accountants.
Also Read: MSc Computer Science
Difference Between an Actuarial Science and an MBA
You can explore slightly similar opportunities and job profiles after completing either an MBA or an Actuarial Science degree. But there are some major differences between the field of Actuarial Science and Management. Actuaries struggle in the initial stages of their career for finding specific job profiles while MBA students are able to secure well-paid job prospects from the beginning of their career. Mathematical and analytical skills are compulsory for an Actuarial Science Course whereas there are diverse specializations in MBA to explore different sectors and industries. Pursuing an MBA in Finance, students study consultation on investments, markets, regulations for businesses, etc. On the other hand, in an Actuarial Science course, students explore the aspects mentioned above along with financial modelling, pricing and risk management, among others.
There are various universities around the world that provide a wide range of Actuarial Programs (UCAP) with different Centers of Actuarial Excellence (CAE). You can pursue several degree courses like bachelor’s degree programs, master’s degree programs and diploma or certificate courses in Actuarial Science. Here is a list of the top global universities known for their Actuarial Science courses:
- Notre Dame University
- Boston University
- McMaster University
- Florida State University
- University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign
- University of Melbourne
- Australian National University
- Arizona State University
- Nanyang Technological University
- University of Michigan
- Macquarie University
Actuarial Science as a Career
There are currently only 439 Actuaries in the country which demonstrated the difficulty level of Actuarial Science. However, it is a growing profession and there is a lot of demand in the job market. With determination and hard-work you can complete this course and work in the industry.
Actuaries mainly work in the insurance industry, but there are other industries which employ actuaries as well such as financial institutions, banks etc. On average, it takes around 5-10 years to complete the course depending on the student’s capacity to clear exams. You can secure a job after clearing 4-5 papers and then continue studying for further exams.
The package for a qualified actuary can be anywhere between 30-50 lakhs, even more depending on your skills and the company. For freshers who have cleared 5-6 papers the average package is somewhere between 5-6 lakhs.
Thus, an Actuarial Science course will help you explore this field of Science that focuses on implementing mathematical and statistical methods for different industries and economical scenarios. If you are unsure about the right university for pursuing this course, Leverage Edu experts can assist you in finding an ideal university to provide you with the best knowledge and exposure in the field of Actuarial Science.