Online Certificate in Actuarial Science
Actuaries were included as one of the top 50 best careers of 2010, according to U.S. News and World Report. Employment in the field of actuarial science is expected to grow significantly over the next few years. If you'd like to learn more about what an actuary does, keep reading! Schools offering Insurance & Risk Management degrees can also be found in these popular choices.
Can I Pursue an Online Certificate in Actuarial Science?
At this time, there are no degree or certificate programs in actuarial science offered via the Internet. However, some organizations do offer a Web-based actuarial science fundamentals course. This course is fully online and requires you to have a computer with Internet access. Included in the course are case studies, readings and activities, a resource library, practice exercises, tests and a discussion forum to communicate with fellow students. If you're interested in a certificate program in actuarial science, you'll need to pursue an on-campus program, which may be offered through a university's professional studies or continuing education department.
What Will I Learn?
Actuarial science relies heavily on economic theories and principles, mathematics and statistics. An online learning course in actuarial science may cover the following topics:
- Role of the professional actuary
- Risk in actuarial problems
- External forces
- Design and pricing
- Model selection and solution design
- Monitoring results
What Can I Do With a Certificate in Actuarial Science?
Professional actuaries calculate the cost of assuming risk. As an actuary, you may be self-employed, work with a large consulting firm that is contracted with many companies, or work exclusively for just one company. Primary employers include insurance companies, banks and investment firms. Sample actuary projects could include designing a pension plan, analyzing insurance rates, assisting in a merger or acquisition, or forecasting the potential impact of a negative future event. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), most employers prefer an applicant with a bachelor's degree in actuarial science, statistics, or a related field, but a certificate program or online courses are other education options (www.bls.gov).
Do I Need Certification?
According to the BLS, certification isn't required to work as an actuary, but it may lead to better employment opportunities or pay increases. Actuary certification is offered through the Casualty Actuarial Society (CAS) and the Society of Actuaries (SOA). Certification is mostly based on the passing of a series of exams, and students may choose to specialize in a specific area of actuarial science. Actuaries interested in working for the federal government need to fulfill additional certification requirements.
What Other Degrees Can I Pursue?
In addition to completing an online actuarial science course, you may want to consider enrolling in an on-campus degree program in this field. Undergraduate and graduate actuarial science degrees are offered at several colleges and universities throughout the United States. Be aware that an undergraduate degree in actuarial science or a related field, such as mathematics, finance or statistics, is a common prerequisite for a master's degree program.
To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below: