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The University of Southampton
Mathematical SciencesPostgraduate study

MSc/PG Dip in Actuarial Science (1 year)

Actuaries are highly skilled quantitative professionals who are primarily concerned with the identification, quantification, analysis, and management of various types of risk, particularly those with long-term financial consequences. Their expertise is essential to the proper management of life, general, and health insurance companies, pension funds, and investment firms, their skills are very highly regarded and valued throughout the financial services industry, and their opportunities to practise worldwide are strong and growing.

On satisfactory completion of the PgDip, students may elect to continue to the award of Master of Science (MSc) by undertaking an appropriate supervised programme of actuarial science research over a period of three months and submitting a corresponding Dissertation.

The University of Southampton is one of only three universities in England to offer such a professionally approved full-time postgraduate actuarial science programme, and is one of only two such within the Russell Group of elite UK universities.

Find out moreCome to our Postgrad LIVE! study fair: 20 February 2019

Introducing your course

This postgraduate degree programme provides quantitative graduates with an intensive and coherent programme of specialist education in actuarial science. MSc students also undertake a summer research project in actuarial science or a related discipline.

All of our actuarial science programmes provide students with a professionally recognised education. By doing sufficiently well in corresponding modules, you will kick-start your graduate career with exemption from Subjects CT1-CT8 of the Core Technical professional exams of the Institute and Faculty of Actuaries, which are internationally recognised. On graduation you’ll be well equipped to begin your actuarial career with advanced professional standing, or to follow many other careers that require high-level quantitative skills, including within the wider financial services industry.

This postgraduate degree programme is designed to provide quantitative graduates with the opportunity to undertake an intensive and coherent programme of specialist education in actuarial science, to gain exemptions from certain of the professional examinations of the Faculty and Institute of Actuaries, the UK professional actuarial body, and to thereby enable graduates of the programme to subsequently enter employment as actuarial analysts with advanced professional standing.

View the programme specification for this course for 2018/19 entrants

View the programme specification for this course for 2019/20 entrants

To Apply


Exemption Mapping

Professional Subject

University Module(s)


CT1 Financial Mathematics

MATH6131 Financial Mathematics


CT2 Finance and Financial Reporting

MANG6225 Accounting and Finance for Actuarial Science


CT3 Probability and Mathematical Statistics

MATH6122 Probability and Mathematical Statistics


CT4 Models

DEMO7001 Survival Models



MATH6128 Stochastic Processes


CT5 Contingencies

MATH6129 Actuarial Mathematics I



MATH6130 Actuarial Mathematics II


CT6 Statistical Methods

STAT7001 Statistical Models in Insurance


CT7 Economics

MATH6121 Economics


CT8 Financial Economics

MATH6127 Mathematical Finance



[1] The Faculty and Institute of Actuaries has approved exemption status for the programme in respect of CT1-CT8. Students may obtain these exemptions by performing sufficiently well in the corresponding modules, which are taught within the Postgraduate Diploma only.

Programme Structure

The structure of the programme is quite flexible and caters both for students who have no previous actuarial education or experience, and for students who may already have some prior actuarial education or professional actuarial examination passes or exemptions, and each entering student is advised regarding appropriate module selection, according to their individual circumstances. The Postgraduate Diploma (PgDip) programme, which contains all of the taught modules that give rise to professional examination exemptions, may be completed over a period of nine months by full-time study.

Key Facts

Assessment: Examination, coursework, dissertation

Start date: Late September

Applying: University application form with transcripts, two references

Closing date: None

Photo of Anvitha  Patalay
The university enables the organisation of a number of careers fairs targeting every department along with guest lectures and representatives which helps students network and get involved in their choice of careers thus building that bridge to the professional world.
Anvitha  PatalayPG Dip Actuarial Science,

Typical entry requirements

Selection process

Intake: 30

Average applications per place: 5

Admissions Criteria

First or upper second-class honours degree or equivalent, in a quantitative subject (mathematics, statistics, economics, etc)

IELTS score of at least 6.5 overall, with at least 6 in each component (intensive summer language course available if required).

This page contains specific entry requirements for this course. Find out about equivalent entry requirements and qualifications for your country.

Typical course content

PgDip Structure (9 Months: October – June)

Modules chosen from offerings below (each 15 CATS points) to total at least 120 CATS points. Up to 30 CATS points may be chosen from approved alternative modules in related cognate areas. Choice of modules dependent on entering knowledge, professional examination passes, or exemptions.

MSc Structure (Additional 3 Months: July – September)

Following the PgDip structure as above, there are then two distinct routes that you can take over the summer:


Route 1: You undertake MATH6159 Actuarial Science Case Study 1 over the first six weeks followed by MATH6160 Actuarial Science Case Study 2 over the second six weeks and complete the associated case study report for each module. There will normally be a choice of two investigation topics for each case study.

Route 2: You undertake MATH6132 Actuarial Science Project over the thirteen-week summer period and complete the corresponding dissertation. The availability of this option is conditional on the suitability and feasibility of the investigation formally proposed by the student, and the availability of suitable supervision resource.

Year 1

Students are required to choose a minimum of 4 modules each semester from the optional modules listed below. In addition, students are required to complete an Actuarial Science Project, which is core to their course.

Semester One
Credits are based on the Credit Accumulation and Transfer Scheme (CATS).
Credits are based on the Credit Accumulation and Transfer Scheme (CATS).
Credits are based on the Credit Accumulation and Transfer Scheme (CATS).
Credits are based on the Credit Accumulation and Transfer Scheme (CATS).
Credits are based on the Credit Accumulation and Transfer Scheme (CATS).
Semester Two
Credits are based on the Credit Accumulation and Transfer Scheme (CATS).
Credits are based on the Credit Accumulation and Transfer Scheme (CATS).
Credits are based on the Credit Accumulation and Transfer Scheme (CATS).
Credits are based on the Credit Accumulation and Transfer Scheme (CATS).
Credits are based on the Credit Accumulation and Transfer Scheme (CATS).

Please note: This specification provides a concise summary of the main features of the programme and the learning outcomes that a typical student might reasonably be expected to achieve and demonstrate if s/he takes full advantage of the learning opportunities that are provided. More detailed information can be found in the programme handbook (or other appropriate guide or website).

Tuition fees

List of tuition fees for this course and it's variations
Course TitleAwardYear of entryMode of studyUK/EUInternational
Actuarial ScienceMSc 2019Full-time£18,104£18,104
Actuarial ScienceMSc2019Part-time£9,055£9,055
Actuarial SciencePGDip 2019Full-time£14,995£14,995
Actuarial SciencePGDip 2019Part-time£7,355£7,355
View the full list of course fees


Scholarships, bursaries, sponsorships or grants may be available to support you through your course. Funding opportunities available to you are linked to your subject area and/or your country of origin. These can be from the University of Southampton or other sources.

Explore funding opportunities

Costs associated with this course

Students are responsible for meeting the cost of essential textbooks, and of producing such essays, assignments, laboratory reports and dissertations as are required to fulfil the academic requirements for each programme of study.

There will also be further costs for the following, not purchasable from the University:

EquipmentApproved Calculators: Candidates may use calculators in the examination room only as specified by the University and as permitted by the rubric of individual examination papers. The University approved model is Casio FX-570 This may be purchased from any source and no longer needs to carry the University logo.
StationeryYou will be expected to provide your own day-to-day stationery items, e.g. pens, pencils, notebooks, etc. Any specialist stationery items will be specified under the Additional Costs tab of the relevant module profile.
BooksWhere a module specifies core or required texts these should generally be available on the reserve list in the library. However due to demand, students may prefer to buy their own copies. These can be purchased from any source. Some modules may suggest certain reading texts as optional background reading. The library may hold copies of such texts, or alternatively you may wish to purchase your own copies. Although not essential reading, you may benefit from these additional reading materials for the module.
Printing and copyingIn some cases, coursework submissions, such as essays, projects, and dissertations, are likely to be submitted online. Where it is not possible to submit online, students will be required to provide a printed copy. For the MSc dissertation, two bound printed copies must be submitted, in addition to submission online. A list of the University printing costs can be found here: _for_students_and_visitors/faq.php#594
OtherProfessional Exams: Students who perform sufficiently well in relevant modules will receive recommendation for exemption from the corresponding professional exams of the Institute and Faculty of Actuaries (IFoA), at no cost to the student. Graduates who subsequently decide to join the IFoA and claim these exemptions must pay the relevant fees to the IFoA, details of which may be found here:

In some cases you'll be able to choose modules (which may have different costs associated with that module) which will change the overall cost of a programme to you. Please also ensure you read the section on additional costs in the University’s Fees, Charges and Expenses Regulations in the University Calendar available at

The programme is taught through a mixture of lectures, computer workshops, case studies and project work. Assessment is made using examinations, presentations, coursework assignments and a final dissertation.

Study locations

Highfield Campus

Highfield Campus

Mathematics is based on the University's Highfield Campus in Building ...Find out more

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