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Educational opportunities (paid): frequently asked questions (FAQs)

The Institute and Faculty of Actuaries has a range of paid opportunities that both members and non-members can get involved in. We have opportunities for individuals starting out in their actuarial career, such as testing and providing feedback on exam papers; to more senior roles such as a Chief Examiner, who oversees the subject team and development of exam related materials or a partnership role such as Independent Examiner who ensures the quality of our partnership with universities meet the IFoA examination standards.

 

Quality teamWe would like to introduce ourselves, the team has five members who are responsible for numerous processes throughout the student journey. One of our biggest areas of responsibility is managing our self-employed contractors ensuring the recruitment, induction and training is delivered.  We work closely with our colleagues in the Assessment Team to manage this process effectively and to ensure our supporters from around the globe are given an opportunity to get involved. We are keen to hear from individuals with the relevant skills and experience to take on a particular role. We welcome expressions of interest throughout the year, however we do have two main recruitment periods, December and May which is one of our busiest periods.

The Quality team

Find out more about our roles

We have put together some frequently asked questions (FAQs) to provide more information about our roles.
 

View our paid opportunities now
 

FAQs


Application process

I have never been involved in the examination process before and I don’t know where to start?

We are here to assist you with any questions you may have.  Many newly qualified actuaries assist with the review of the examination papers by reviewing the content, grammar, questions and assess the length and difficulty, we call these positions Guinea Pigs.  The Guinea Pigs play a very important role to ensure that the paper is fit for purpose.

Review our supporting information document for full details

How do I register my expression of interest (EOI) for a role?

Fill in our EOI form to register your interest

Do I need my own laptop and is internet access required?

The IFoA does not provide a laptop or computer, you should ensure that you have access to the equipment and that all material can remain confidential and secure. Stable Internet access is required to fulfil the IFoA Paid Opportunity roles.


Marker applicants 

What are the technical requirements, do I need access to particular software?

The majority of the student exam scripts and related material are delivered via a secure online platform.  This mean to access them you will need a reliable internet connection. You should have Microsoft Excel and Work as well as Adobe reader installed. Some marking is carried out using an eMarking platform, the technical requirements are within the task and person document.

Will I automatically be selected to mark exam papers (marker role)?

We endeavour to allocate scripts to all available Markers in each session; we cannot however, guarantee this as the number of available scripts is dependent on the number of student entries. We will always contact you for your own availability beforehand.

How many scripts will you ask me to mark?

Script allocation will vary depending on the number of examination entries received.  Usually you will be asked to mark one ‘load’ a load is approximately 100 scripts.

Do I have to be available at the same time every year?

The exam sessions are twice a year, in April and September.  You will be contacted before each session to check your availability. Therefore, you would need to be available after the session if a Marker, Examiner and Chief Examiner and before the session if you are a Chief Examiner or Examiner as these roles are involved in the writing of the paper.  The IFoA will usually allow up to 4 weeks post exam for marking of papers.


CPD

Can I claim CPD for the role?

You can claim CPD hours for the marking/scrutiny meetings you are asked to attend. The Membership team are responsible for CPD hours and any queries should be directed to them.


Fees paid and contract length

How much will I be paid for the role?

The remuneration for each position varies depending on the role and work required. The fees are outlined in the Schedule of Service which is provided upon successful appointment. We understand that the fees paid do not reflect the market rate for Actuaries.  We do however recognise the dedication and inspiration to help others on their journey as Actuaries.

When will I get paid?

Payment will be made once the session is complete; this is usually after the issue or results. Detailed information is available on the individual schedule of services for each position. You will however be provided with an invoice template to use.

Do I pay tax?

Any payment received from the IFoA in relation to work undertaken should be declared as income, each individual’s tax arrangements vary and any advice should be sought from HMRC or your own tax adviser.( from the country in which you reside).  We are unable to give advice on tax issues.

If I apply for a role as an examiner, do I need to do any form of testing?

Applicants will be asked to write a specimen question on the subject chosen; it may also be necessary to undertake a test marking exercise for those who have no marking experience.

How long is my contract with the IFoA?

The tenure of the position is usually 2-3 years, we will however, discuss extensions to this with individuals at the time.


Role progression

I am currently a guinea pig, can I automatically move to a marker role?

Guinea Pigs do not automatically become Markers and should apply for available roles by completing the application form.

I am already a marker, how do I progress to the examiner position?

All available positions will always be advertised on the Paid Opportunities page, to become an Examiner, you should have already gained marking experience. The Examiners write the exam papers with a small team and they also undertake any review of marks awarded by the first two markers.


About the teams

Who are the Quality team?

The Quality team deal with the recruitment of paid and some volunteer positions, they are the first point of contact during the recruitment process. The Quality team work closely with the Assessment team; both teams are based in Oxford.

Who are the Assessment team?

The Assessment team work closely with the examination teams for all subjects. They are responsible for the relationship between the IFoA and the subject teams. They allocate the number of scripts for marking and arrange the marking and scrutiny meetings.

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Events calendar

  • Autumn Pension Seminar

    Grand Connaught Rooms, 61-65 Great Queen St, Holborn, London WC2B 5DA
    13 November 2019

    Spaces available

    Join us for this brand new seminar that brings together our Current Issues in Pensions, Pensions and the Law, and Investment for Pension Actuaries events. The seminar builds on the IFoA’s Annual Pension Conference with sessions covering CDC, TPR’s code of practice, investments, legal updates and Professional Skills Training with a focus on interactive discussion throughout.

  • KSS event: How is Scotland’s population changing and what are the implications?

    Barnett Waddingham, 163 West George Street, Glasgow, G2 2JJ
    14 November 2019

    Fully booked.

    The National Records of Scotland (NRS) collects, preserves and produces information about Scotland's people and history to inform current and future generations - work that underpins the fabric of Scottish society and tells the story of our nation. This KSS talk will explore the following and other areas impacting Scotland’s changing population, and assess the potential implications of the changes:

    • population statistics
    • life expectancy
    • changes in age structure
    • birth and death rates, including causes of death statistics.
  • Life Conference 2019

    The Convention Centre Dublin, Spencer Dock, North Wall Quay, Dublin 1
    20-22 November 2019
    Fully booked.

    The Life Conference is the premier event for professionals interested in life insurance.  Offering a wide range of workshops and plenary sessions it’s the perfect opportunity to discover what’s hot and current in life insurance ensuring you get up to date on the latest thinking and innovation whilst meeting and exchanging ideas with a broad range of professionals.

  • KSS event: Climate change, ESG and what it means for Insurers

    PwC Edinburgh, Atria 1, 144 Morrison St, Edinburgh
    2 December 2019

    Spaces available

    Speaker: Pallavi Konwar

    Pallavi has a background in banking and asset management as well as within government. She started her career at Wall Street in New York, where she worked for Citigroup on mortgage securitisations and collateral analysis. Before joining PwC, she worked within the Infrastructure UK team at HM Treasury. where she was responsible for contributing to the National Infrastructure Plan and reporting on the performance and delivery of nationally significant infrastructure projects.

  • ARC Workshop: Modelling Socio-Economic Differences in English Mortality

    Staple Inn Hall, High Holborn, London, WC1V 7QJ
    2 December 2019

    Spaces available

    Purpose
    The workshop will give participants detailed insights into how a large and detailed dataset can be used to assess levels of mortality inequality in England, using a number of novel statistical methods. We will also address the question: are regional variations in mortality real or imaginary?

  • Autumn Lecture 2019, London - Dr Kay Swinburne

    Lincoln's Inn The Treasury Office, London WC2A 3TL
    2 December 2019

    Spaces available

    We are delighted to announce that Dr Kay Swinburne will deliver this year’s lecture, "It’s not all about the numbers – regulatory challenges for UK financial services post-Brexit"

  • Professional Skills Training - Edinburgh (3 December 19)

    IFoA (Edinburgh), Level 2, Exchange Crescent 7 Conference Square Edinburgh EH3 8RA
    3 December 2019

    Spaces available

    A Trusted Profession

    A 2 hour CPD event designed to meet the IFoA’s Stage 3 Professional Skills Training under the IFoA’s CPD Scheme 2019/2020.  This session is suitable for actuaries working in any area (i.e. it is not specifically aimed at Pensions, GI or any other technical discipline) and is interactive, so you should come along prepared to take part in the discussions.

  • SIAS Event: Discount Rates are Flawed

    Staple Inn Hall, High Holborn, London, WC1V 7QJ
    3 December 2019

    Spaces available

    This talk will be given by Jon Spain who, as far back as 1983, has been working independently, trying to bring “long-term” back to UK actuarial thinking. His current focus is on discount rates (see discrate.com).

  • A Holistic Study into Cash flow Driven Investment

    Staple Inn, 4 High Holborn, Holborn, London WC1V 6DR, UK
    4 December 2019

    Spaces available

    Given that Cashflow Driven Investment strategy has attracted growing interests from pension funds and insurers at the backdrop of current market conditions and clients’ circumstances, the objective of this event is to gather thought leaders from asset managers, banks and insurers to offer attendees their perspectives and insights on main aspects of consideration when adopting this strategy.

  • Your Actuarial Career: Managing Career Breaks

    Staple Inn Hall, High Holborn, London, WC1V 7QJ
    5 December 2019

    Spaces available

    Maternity or paternity leave, sabbaticals to study or travel, managing care responsibilities or escaping unemployment – Join Chika Aghadiuno and a panel of IFoA guests to explore the issues around career breaks from the perspective of an employee and an employer. Supported by Ignata Actuarial & Investments

  • Sessional Meeting - Silent Cyber Assessment Framework

    Staple Inn Hall, High Holborn, London, WC1V 7QJ
    9 December 2019

    Spaces available

    The (re)insurance industry is faced with a growing risk related to the development of information technology (IT). This growth is creating an increasingly digitally interconnected world with more and more dependence being placed on IT systems to manage processes.

  • Professional Skills Training - London (10 December 2019)

    Staple Inn, High Holborn, London WC1V 7QJ  
    10 December 2019

    Spaces available

    This event will be of interest to students and recently qualified actuaries.

    A 2 hour CPD event designed to meet the IFoA’s Stage 3 Professional Skills Training under the IFoA’s CPD Scheme 2019/2020.  The content and discussion at this session is particularly tailored to actuarial students and newly qualified actuaries working in any area and the format is interactive, so you should come along prepared to take part in the discussions with your peers.

  • SIAS Event: My Journey to Data Science, Big Data and AI

    Staple Inn Hall, High Holborn, London, WC1V 7QJ
    7 January 2020

    Spaces available

    Patrick Lee is an actuary who has made the transition to working in software architecture and artificial intelligence (AI). He holds Microsoft Professional qualifications in Data Science, Big Data and AI and is currently working towards a DevOps (the automation of software testing and deployment) qualification. He is a member of the IFoA Council and is also President of the Wessex Actuarial Society. He is also a member of the IFoA and the RSS's joint Data Science Focus Group and will talk on the ethical use of AI. 

  • Spaces available

    This presentation covers the detail for how the matching adjustment is calculated. A small simple example spreadsheet is provided and discussed in detail.

    For actuaries wanting to get more involved with the matching adjustment, this is the opportunity to get a detailed description of the mechanics involved. This includes cashflows derisking, PRA tests as well as hypothecation.

    The presentation is provided by James Sharpe who has worked on a number of matching adjustment calculations with several firms.

  • IFoA Volunteer Recognition Reception

    Staple Inn, 4 High Holborn, Holborn, London WC1V 6DR, UK
    15 January 2020

    Spaces available

    As a thank you to all our Institute and Faculty of Actuaries (IFoA) volunteers, you are invited to join us at Staple Inn Hall, for an evening of drinks, canapes and networking, in London.

    IFoA President, John Taylor, will be attending and will make a speech

    If you support the IFoA as a volunteer (member or non-member), or in any other role, and you are going to be in London on 15 January, please book your place and join us at this reception.

     

  • Professional Skills Training - London (16 January 2020)

    Staple Inn, High Holborn, London WC1V 7QJ
    16 January 2020

    Spaces available

    A Trusted Profession

    A 2 hour CPD event designed to meet the IFoA’s Stage 3 Professional Skills Training under the IFoA’s CPD Scheme 2019/2020This session is suitable for actuaries working in any area (i.e. it is not specifically aimed at Pensions, GI or any other technical discipline) and is interactive, so you should come along prepared to take part in the discussions.

  • Sessional Meeting - Operational Risk Dependencies

    Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh 9 Queen St Edinburgh EH2 1JQ
    20 January 2020

    Spaces available

    The Operational Risk Working Party aims to assist actuaries and others in the modelling and management of operational risk. One of the key challenges in modelling operational risk is the modelling of dependencies between operational risks, and between operational and non-operational risks such as market, credit and insurance risk. Their paper seeks to assist in this regard, and help develop good practice in setting assumptions and modelling operational risk dependencies. 

  • Professional Skills Training - Edinburgh (23 January 2020)

    IFoA (Edinburgh), Level 2, Exchange Crescent 7 Conference Square Edinburgh EH3 8RA
    23 January 2020

    Spaces available

    A Trusted Profession

    A 2 hour CPD event designed to meet the IFoA’s Stage 3 Professional Skills Training under the IFoA’s CPD Scheme 2019/2020This session is suitable for actuaries working in any area (i.e. it is not specifically aimed at Pensions, GI or any other technical discipline) and is interactive, so you should come along prepared to take part in the discussions.

  • ARC Sessional Research Event

    Staple Inn Hall, High Holborn, London, WC1V 7QJ
    3 February 2020

    Spaces available

    This sessional will be delivered by members of the research team working on the ARC “Big Health & Actuarial Data’ research programme, led by Professor Elena Kulinskaya (University of East Anglia).

  • Professional Skills Training - London (11 February 2020)

    Staple Inn, High Holborn, London WC1V 7QJ         
    11 February 2020

    Spaces available

    A Trusted Profession

    A 2 hour CPD event designed to meet the IFoA’s Stage 3 Professional Skills Training under the IFoA’s CPD Scheme 2019/2020This session is suitable for actuaries working in any area (i.e. it is not specifically aimed at Pensions, GI or any other technical discipline) and is interactive, so you should come along prepared to take part in the discussions.

  • Sessional: Impact of E-cigarettes Working Party

    Royal College of Physicians, 9 Queen St, Edinburgh EH2 1JQ
    24 February 2020

    Spaces available

    This sessional meeting will be of direct interest to actuaries and others working in the in the Health and Care, Life or Pensions sectors or indeed actuaries with an interest in morbidity or mortality.

  • Professional Skills Training - Edinburgh (25 February 2020)

    IFoA (Edinburgh), Level 2, Exchange Crescent 7 Conference Square Edinburgh EH3 8RA
    25 February 2020

    Spaces available

    A Trusted Profession

    A 2 hour CPD event designed to meet the IFoA’s Stage 3 Professional Skills Training under the IFoA’s CPD Scheme 2019/2020This session is suitable for actuaries working in any area (i.e. it is not specifically aimed at Pensions, GI or any other technical discipline) and is interactive, so you should come along prepared to take part in the discussions.

  • IFoA Asia Conference 2020, Kuala Lumpur

    CCEC Nexus, 7, Jalan Kerinchi, Bangsar South, 59200 Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
    24-25 June 2020
    Spaces available

    The sixth annual Asia Conference once again offers a prestigious line-up of home and international speakers discussing the insurance and financial industry’s innovation and change in Asia. This year's conference in Kuala Lumpur will be hosted by Tan Suee Chieh, IFoA’s first Asian President. He will also make his Presidential address at this conference and will expand on the important elements of IFoA’s new strategy. 

    Additionally, this landmark conference will showcase how the IFoA is reinventing itself to support its members to succeed and thrive in a digital age, within traditional businesses and beyond, as a global organisation. 

    No tot be missed by international industry players, opinion formers, academic and industry leaders, actuaries and non-actuaries.