You are here

Student FAQ – Chartered Actuary proposal

Why are you proposing changes to the qualification framework?  

Council has been considering the ever increasing pace of change in the actuarial profession and how we can best support you.

We engaged with actuarial employers and other stakeholders who advised us that, in order to keep up with these challenges, we need to create a more contemporary, relevant qualification framework: one that ensures qualifiers are equipped to meet the changing priorities of employers and remain fit for the future. As a result of these conversations we have developed a proposal that will have the explicit aim of improving the long-term employability of those who qualify as actuaries through the IFoA.

What changes are being proposed?

The key features of the proposed framework would be:

  1. The level of Fellowship would remain unchanged
  2. Qualification as a recognised actuarial professional would focus initially on the generalist actuarial skills which are developed in the core part of our current and future Curriculum 2019
  3. This initial qualification would be established around the current IFoA Associate level
  4. The qualification would be re-titled 'Chartered Actuary' (CAct) 
  5. The curriculum for CAct would be aligned to the new International Actuarial Association (IAA) syllabus to ensure it is globally recognised, with the additional requirement for one year’s supervised work-based Personal and Professional Development (PPD): this PPD requirement would be identical to that currently required for IFoA Associateship
  6. After the launch date of the proposed framework, any new Student member would be required to complete the CAct qualification before taking any further examinations towards Fellowship. Current Student members who meet the CAct standard can, if they wish, transfer to this membership category.
  7. Chartered Actuaries would use the post-nominal ‘CAct’, with members who subsequently qualify as Fellows entitled to use both their Fellowship and CAct post-nominals.

Will it change the exams I am taking?

No changes are intended at this point. If you are a current Student of the IFoA then the changes will not be applicable to you; they will only apply to those Students who join the IFoA after the implementation date in 2018 if the proposal is agreed by our membership, Council and the Privy Council.

Current Student members who meet the CAct standard can, if they wish, transfer to this membership category.

What else is required of me aside from the exams I have to take to reach Chartered Actuary/Associate level?

It is important to note the Personal and Professional Development (PPD) and Professional Skills requirement that is needed alongside your exams.  

These elements develop your workplace skill-set to enable you to work effectively as an IFoA qualified actuary through:

  • Practical application of the knowledge and skills you have gained through the IFoA examinations
  • Developing your understanding of the business environment, and how to work within a professional and ethical framework
  • Understanding the need for continuing development of yourself and your skills, and to reflect on the quality of your work and how you can improve in the future
  • Ensuring you have a good understanding of the Actuaries' Code and your obligations under it as a member of a professional body.

Will it matter if I don’t become a Fellow?

No.  The Chartered Actuary qualification will be the initial qualification for fully qualified actuaries, enabling you to practice globally as a qualified actuary with the IFoA.

After the launch date of the proposed framework, any new Student member will be required to complete the CAct qualification before taking any further examinations towards Fellowship. Current Student members who meet the CAct standard can, if they wish, transfer to this membership category.

Our current framework trains people to be highly competent actuarial specialists. While it is clear from talking to businesses that there will always be a need for such specialists, they also need highly competent generalists with a core actuarial skill-set. 

Will the cost of qualifying change?

The cost of exams up to Chartered Actuary/Associate will remain consistent with the cost of the exams to the current Associate level.

Why is the Chartered Actuary qualification the new initial qualification? Why can’t I continue as a Student up to Fellowship?

Following discussions with our stakeholders, we understand that there will always be demand for the high levels of specialism demonstrated by Fellows; particularly in established areas of actuarial employment such as pensions and insurance. 

Yet in order to remain relevant and broaden the profession, the IFoA needs a qualification framework that responds to the changing needs of industry. We must develop actuaries with a broad generalist skill-set who can adapt to a wide range of corporate roles.

You can continue up to Fellowship if you wish to and it is necessary for your role. After the launch date of the proposed framework, any new Student member will be required to complete the CAct qualification before taking any further examinations towards Fellowship. Current Student members who meet the CAct standard can, if they wish, transfer to this membership category.

Would these changes impact on my exemptions?

No.  Students will still be able to apply for exemptions for their academic qualifications.

How is this going to improve my employment chances?

The proposal supports employers’ feedback that although there will always be a need for Fellows, companies also need highly competent generalists with a core actuarial skillset. This reflects the growing relevance of the actuarial skill set within the wider professional services and will enable actuaries to achieve a highly recognised qualification more quickly, enabling them to compete for non-specialist roles alongside other professionals.

Why won’t I get a vote on this change?

Under the current IFoA Bye-laws, Students do not have the right to vote. However, the IFoA is very keen to hear the views of current Student members during the formal consultation period.

What if I have already met/surpassed the new requirements of the proposed Associateship?

If you have already surpassed the requirements of the re-positioned qualification, you will be able to apply for the Chartered Actuary credential. 

What do I get if I was to qualify as a Chartered Actuary?

You will be invited to attend a Qualifiers ceremony, obtain a certificate and formal post-nominals to indicate that you have attained the status of a fully qualified actuary. 

Once qualified as a Chartered Actuary, will I still be able to use the Associate title?

Yes. Chartered Actuaries will still be able to refer to themselves as Associates to aid comparison with actuaries from other qualifying bodies.

Where can I find out more?

A dedicated email address (consultation@actuaries.org.uk) has been set up where you can send us any questions you might have about the proposal. We will respond to any queries within five working days, and will refresh the FAQ section on the website regularly in light of queries received.

Please also spend some time giving us your feedback via our consultation survey.  

We will also hold two interactive webinars during the consultation period on 11 December at 9.00 and 17.00 (GMT). You can register for the consultation webinars here.

Filter or search events

Start date
E.g., 11/07/2020
End date
E.g., 11/07/2020

Events calendar

  • Spaces available

    This webinar is intended to raise awareness of the shifting landscape of climate liability risk and what it means for actuaries, including how it impacts on their professional and legal duties. Presentations will cover the legal risks around climate change for investment consultants and actuaries advising DB pension schemes as well as consideration of climate risk for insurers.

  • Spaces available

    Climate change risks are likely to become material for many risk management and investment decisions. This will require to incorporate explicitly climate change in the tools used for risk management and investment decisions. At present existing climate change tools are often too crude for decision making.

  • Current Issues in Life Assurance (CILA) Webinar series

    Webinar Series
    15 July 2020 - 3 August 2020

    Spaces available

    CILA is one of the pre-eminent events in the annual 'Life' calendar. Due to COVID-19 we are running the programme as a series of webinars covering topics aimed at practicing life actuaries from life offices, consulting firms and other employers of actuaries and those who work in or advise on, the life assurance market in the UK and Europe.

  • Spaces available

    Current Issues in Life Assurance

    For annuity writers, a key challenge is the need to fund capital-consumptive new business strain (NBS) as a consequence of writing the business intended to fund future distributions.

    Reinsurance, investment strategy and capital provision all have roles to play. Here, we:

  • Spaces available

    Current Issues in Life Assurance

    Mortality in 2020 is now dominated by one thing, although – in our future-focused world – the pandemic is just one of many mortality considerations.  In this session, three well-regarded mortality/longevity specialists provide an overview of:

  • Spaces available

    Because of Covid-19, forecasters predict a severe recession in 2020, followed by a V or U-shaped recovery. This impacts both individuals and companies. However, compared to previous recessions, the impact on banks of higher credit losses should be mitigated to some extent by government actions. 

  • Spaces available

    Part of the Protection, Health and Care Conference 2020 webinar series

    This session will provide an overview of the Population Health Management Working Party's research including defining impactability and impactability modelling, discussing some examples of specific modelling approaches, considering the practical challenges across the NHS as well as wider public perception and ethical issues.

  • Spaces available

    Many actuaries consider career opportunities in the Finance and Investment practice area after having started off in more traditional actuarial roles such as valuations, capital management or pricing. This session is aimed at helping actuaries to better understand roles in Finance and Investment and how they can fine tune their skills to pursue such careers.

  • Mortality and Longevity Webinar Series 2020

    Webinar Series
    22 July 2020 - 10 August 2020

    Spaces available

    Due to COVID-19, we are running this programme via a series of webinars commencing 22nd July.

    This webinar series will provide topical and practical updates and discussion on the latest thinking and innovations in mortality and longevity, and is designed to be very accessible to a broad range of experience.

     

  • Spaces available

    Predictive risk assessment and risk stratification models based on postcode-level consumer classification are widely used for life insurance underwriting. However, these are socio-economic models not directly related to health information. Similar to precision medicine, precision life insurance should aim to tailor policy pricing/reserving to the individual health characteristics of each client.

  • Spaces available

    As insurers look towards their internal model calibration process for 2020 final year financials and statutory returns, actuaries need to deal with the complexity of adequately modelling their business in 2020 and beyond. This discussion will look at what poor model selection and calibration could look like – using inappropriate historical data; using incorrect 2020 mortality data; inappropriate stochastic model recalibration (or lack thereof). What about being prudent vs setting a best estimate? How do you allow for tail risks during a tail risk event?  This is the fourth webinar in the Extreme Mortality Events series presented by Chair of the Life Board of the Institute and Faculty of Actuaries, Colin Dutkiewicz. 

  • Spaces available

    This webinar has been re-scheduled from its original date of the 1st July. Although ESG has many buyers across the asset allocation community, from pension funds to sovereign wealth funds, it still hasn’t found its place within the core asset management strategy desks where the money is actually invested. The problem as well as the opportunity is Fixed Income. Plenty of strategies exist for incorporating ESG within Equities, from screening, integration to a combination. ESG has picked up relatively quickly within Equities with rating,indices created using ESG factors. This talk will discuss how we price a quantifiable ESG credit risk premium and make it alpha worthy in a strategy. 

  • Spaces available

    Part of the Protection, Health and Care Conference 2020 webinar series

    With the rising prevalence of dementia, how can we manage this risk effectively and can insurance do more? Matt Singleton, Ageing Lead at Swiss Re, will cover these topics and demonstrate how insurance could help people address their concerns.

  • Spaces available

    Current Issues in Life Assurance

    This talk will look at a range of such techniques (e.g. mass lapse risk transfer, contract boundaries, risk margin relief, non-standard longevity risk transfer) that have been applied or considered by UK and EU insurers, and the pros and cons of each.

     

  • Spaces available

    Current Issues in Life Assurance.

    The International Association of Insurance Supervisors announced on 14 November 2019 the adoption of v2.0 of the global Insurance Capital Standard (ICS) which will undergo confidential reporting for 5 years starting from 2020. This session will include specific experiences from Legal and General (L&G) as well as global industry perspectives from EY.

  • Spaces available

    Current Issues in Life Assurance

    This session will cover the PRA supervisory statement on financial impacts related to climate change, industry insights into PRA climate risk business plans, examples climate risk strategy setting out key workstreams and activity steps for successful execution, an overview of a climate risk strategy execution timeline and the future.     

  • Spaces available

    Part of the Protection, Health and Care Conference 2020 webinar series. Using new and unique research and data from the UK, US, Sweden and China, this presentation investigates how consumers use the internet through their insurance journey and analyzes the role culture and generation plays in their online behaviour. We use this research to show the online landscape for insurance sales in the UK and suggest ways to shape new products and effectively engage with the consumer who is buying them.

  • Spaces available

    Chief Medical Officer (CMO) for Gen Re Life/Health Research and Development, Dr John O'Brien, will discuss the impacts of Gene Modification for life/health insurance. 

  • Spaces available

    As an industry, it has been important to be able to look to the future to identify the next quantifiable risk. In this session, I will explore some of the less tangible, but none-the-less concerning risks to future health, such as the health risks associated with exposure to pesticides, ingestion of plastic in the food chain, and the hazards of indoor air pollution through exposure to volatile organic compounds.

  • Spaces available

    The working party will help the industry to update and enhance how potential risk from diabetes and excess mortality is considered, including the need to understand the underwriting implications as treatments improve, and potentially to develop new products that are tailored to those with diabetes.

  • Spaces available

    Part of the Protection, Health and Care Conference 2020 webinar series. Modelling the structure and trends of cancer morbidity risk is important for pricing and reserving in related health insurance fields such as critical illness insurance and care provision. We model the dynamics of cancer incidence over time in different regions in England, using 1981-2016 ONS data. The modelling allows estimation of cancer rates at various age, year, gender and region levels, following a Bayesian setting to account for statistical uncertainty. Our analysis indicates significant regional variation in cancer incidence rates. 

  • Spaces available

    Part of the Protection, Health and Care Conference 2020 webinar series. In this talk we will outline the steps Aviva took in pulling together our first large-scale disclosures on the exposure of our business to climate change published in March 2019; in line with the recommendations of the Taskforce on Climate-related Financial Disclosures. After touching on why insurers have such an important role in climate change, we'll cover a brief “how-to” guide for those who have not yet embarked on thinking about these topics before giving a case study of how the learnings from a TCFD disclosure exercise can be applied to investment portfolios.

  • Spaces available

    Part of the Protection, Health and Care Conference 2020 webinar series. 

    The insurance industry currently underwrites customers with diabetes based on a range of factors, medical expertise and various medical studies. The work undertaken by the Diabetes Working Party would help the industry to approach this using current research findings to update and enhance how potential risk from diabetes is considered. This includes the need to understand the underwriting implications as treatments improve, and potentially to develop new products that are tailored to those with diabetes. This webinar will present our latest findings in the management of this important chronic condition which will include research in collaboration with the ARC.