Actuarial Science - A Risk Worth Taking

Actuarial science is a niche study domain that deals with the management of financial risk through insurance. Find out how you can build a successful and future-proof career in actuarial sciences.

Created On: Aug 20, 2018 17:45 IST
A Risk Worth Taking
A Risk Worth Taking

Uncertainty is a part and parcel of the human life. You don't know how tomorrow is going to be. So, you plan for the future, hoping that you'd be prepared in the event of some unforeseen calamity. But, how do you prepare yourself for the unknown? How do you analyses the risks involved or the capital needed for recovering from such unfortunate events? Well, this is where an 'Actuary' steps in. Actuaries are business professionals who help in assessment, measurement and management of risk and uncertainty.

The study of applications that apply mathematical and statistical methods to assess risk management in insurance, finance and other industries is called 'Actuarial Sciences.' Given the great career opportunities that this field leads to, many students aspire to make a career as an 'actuary'. Hence, it is essential to know who can become an actuary.

Who can become an actuary?

Anyone with an interest in numbers, programming, likes solving complex problems, has a good sense of business and possesses good communication skills can become an actuary.

You would however, also need to meet certain other criteria such as

  • You must be 18 years or older.
  • You should have successfully passed your class 12th examination from a recognised education board or university.
  • Whether you’re a graduate or a postgraduate level student, you must have sound knowledge of Mathematics and Statistics.

You can become an actuary by studying an actuarial science course at the graduate or postgraduate level. But to actually work as an actuary you will have to pass a series of actuarial exams. Studying actuarial science only provides you with theoretical knowledge and conceptual clarity. But to be able to work as an actuary you'd need to enroll at the Institute of Actuaries of India and successfully clear the Actuarial Common Entrance Test (ACET). Once enrolled as a student actuary, you'll have to appear for 15 subject exams before you become eligible to be admitted as a Fellow Member of the Society and can use the credentials FSAI against your name as a recognised fellow.

Top Courses in Actuarial Sciences

While studying actuarial sciences might not give you the license to practice as an actuary, it will help you to clear the actuarial exams essential for becoming a Fellow Actuary of the society. Some of the popular actuarial courses taught at various colleges and universities across India are -

Graduate Level Courses

  • B.Sc in Actuarial science
  • BA (Hons.) in Insurance & Banking
  • Bachelor of Science (B.Sc) in Actuarial and Financial Mathematics

Post-Graduate Level 

  • M.Sc in Actuarial science
  • Master’s program in Insurance Business
  • MBA in Actuarial Science
  • Master of Science (M.Sc) in Statistics (Actuarial)

Post graduate diploma level

  • Post Graduate Diploma in Actuarial Science

Now let's have a look at some of the popular Institutes that offer Actuarial Courses in India -

  • Institute of Actuaries of India
  •  Amity School of Insurance and Actuarial Science, Noida
  • NMIMS University, Mumbai
  • Delhi University
  • The National Insurance Academy, Pune

Career Prospects

Having understood what are actuarial sciences, who are actuaries and how you can become one, let's move on to why you should become an actuary? There are some very attractive reasons to do so, namely high salary, job security and numerous work opportunities. Interestingly, actuaries enjoy job security in times of uncertainty. They are always in high demand as there is no shortage of risks experienced by different industries. They can work in almost any industry where there is a need for risk assessment or management. As for salary prospects, this is considered to be one of the highest paid jobs. As a fresher, you can earn about Rs. 3-5 Lakhs per annum. With a little more experience of say 3-5 years, you can earn about Rs. 10-15 lakhs per annum. And once you become a fellow actuary at the Institute of Actuaries of India you can earn about Rs. 20-30 lakhs per annum.

Today, actuaries work not just in the insurance companies but also at investment and management consultancies, financial services, banking, stock exchange, risk management, pension funds, academics and many other fields.

Top Recruiters for Actuaries

Some of the popular firms that recruit actuaries are -

  • WNS Global Services     
  • PwC Actuarial Services India
  • Milliman India Pvt. Ltd.
  • Future Generali Insurance
  • Max Bupa Health Insurance
  • IDBI Bank
  • McKinsey Advanced Healthcare Analytics
  • Willis Towers Watson
  • Mercer India
  • Directorate of Postal Life Insurance
  • Ernst and Young, India

So folks, now you know it all that there is to know and understand before you go on to choose your career as an actuary. You know what are actuarial sciences, what do actuaries do and how can you become one. We hope, that this information will help you determine whether actuarial sciences are the right career choice for you or not. For more such interesting videos related to career advice, please visit

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