Professional recognition success for actuarial sciences at UEA

A newly re-launched actuarial sciences course at the University of East Anglia (UEA) has been recognised by the UK’s only chartered professional body dedicated to educating and regulating actuaries in the UK and internationally.

The School of Computing Sciences and the Actuarial Science Group at UEA have announced the launch of their revised BSc Actuarial Sciences programme from September 2017. This follows the recent success of the revised programme in being re-awarded accreditation from the Institute and Faculty of Actuaries (IFoA),

Head of the School of Computing Science at UEA, Prof Gerard Parr, said: “We have a course offering here at UEA that is unique across the UK with fantastic engagement from one of the UK's largest companies, Aviva. Since the UEA programme’s inception there has been a close relationship with industry and practicing Actuaries from the Aviva offices in Norwich lecture on the programme which is unique in the UK.”

Alex Hamilton, head of Technical Pricing, Technical Pricing & Analytics, UK&I at Aviva, said: “The opportunity to hear directly from practising actuaries, through the lectures provided at the Aviva offices in Norwich, gives students an insight into the real-world application of actuarial techniques and practical realities of the insurance industry.”

The recent changes to the programme further embed the importance of employability for Actuarial Science graduates within the course. 

Esther Glover FIA, course director for the programme said: “It is our aim not just to produce technically excellent actuarial science graduates but well-rounded individuals who are ready to play a role in both actuarial and actuarially-related companies.”

Another exciting development within the programme is the recognition of the increasing overlap between Actuarial work and that of data scientists.  There is a strong history of research and work with ‘Big Data’ within the School of Computing Sciences and the revised programme allows undergraduate students the option to develop their skills in this area alongside the more traditional actuarial subjects. The close links with Computing Sciences makes this course unique in the UK and provides opportunities for students to gain exposure to the application of statistics, machine learning, AI and data analytics to industry.

The school will continue to offer both the traditional three-year undergraduate programme and a four-year programme including a year in industry. The IFoA has accredited the revised programme and so we continue to be able to offer exemptions from core technical subjects CT1 to CT8.  In addition to this, students will also gain exposure to material covered in some of the later professional exams relating to communication skills and model documentation and design.

Speaking of the panel results, Prof Parr said: “I am delighted with this result. The IFoA accreditation is a testament to the quality of the programme and also to the dedication and diligence of the team that have put together such a compelling programme.  The panel recognised the unique aspects of our course and its links with Computing Sciences and this offer great employment opportunities for graduate of this course.

“The financial world is changing fast and the team at UEA is aware and excited about the need for a dynamic approach to teaching such an applied subject.  These changes are just a first step along a path to producing a truly unique offering for students interested in both Actuarial and Data Science.”

People interested in applying for the course, or with questions about the programmes offered at UEA should contact Esther Glover, Senior Lecturer, School of Computing Sciences, UEA (e.glover@uea.ac.uk). 



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