If you are contemplating the possibility of attending university in order to gain and pursue an actuarial science degree, it is strongly recommended in the most emphatic terms possible that you ensure that you are actually aware of the course load and the subjects that will be covered in the degree.
Why? To quote the Chinese martial artist and strategist, Sun Tzu: “Forewarned is forearmed.”
By being more aware of the typical course load that is included and covered during the course of an actuarial science degree (irrespective of what level it happens to be, whether it is undergraduate, postgraduate or Masters level) this means that you will be able to prepare in advance for said subjects. When it comes to studying and working at university level, it is never too early to begin studying or work.
What then is the typical composition of the average actuarial science degree?
One of the core modules that will be covered within such a degree is statistical theory, which itself is concerned with providing the student with the requisite skills and knowledge to be able to apply statistical theorem and principles to the situations that they will encounter during the course of their professional career.
The statistical theory component of the actuarial science degree course will teach how to collate statistics accurately and properly, in addition to the methods required to ensure that said statistics are processed in the most effective and appropriate manner.
The next mathematic component of the actuarial science degree that will be typically covered is what is known as “probability theory” which itself is the school of mathematics that is concerned with the identification of potential outcomes and how likely/unlikely they are to arise.
In essence then, the statistics component of the actuarial science degree is concerned with teaching and introducing the student as to the building blocks and raw materials that they will invariably encounter and utilize within the actuarial career.
The probability theory component of the module on the other hand seeks to teach the methodology used to process and refine said raw materials, into useful and salient information.
All actuarial science degree courses will involve an element of economics within it, this is specifically included in order to provide the student with the background and context in which they will be applying the other modules that they learn.
It should be noted that beyond these core modules, different universities and higher education institutions will offer and provide different perspectives within the courses. Some will seek to provide accountancy modules and elective as an appendage subject to the core, foundation material covered within the degree thus far.
Other faculties will seek to provide modern language facilities, and this is especially true of institutes which have a strong proportion of international students within the campus at large.
Finally, mathematical methods is the overarching module that will underpin all of the other modules; as this is the subject that will inform the student as to how to put the lesson learned into an actual, practical setting.
Here are some typical courses required for an Actuary Degree, from Drake University