View Full Version : Course 8V Seminar

06-18-2002, 12:38 PM
In the Study note package from the SOA, there was an advertisement for the Temple Actuarial Institute Course 8V Seminar, taught by Frank Bensics, Richard Goldfarb, and Graham Lord. Has anyone taken this seminar, or heard of any of these people, or have any idea whether this seminar would be worth attending?


New at pd
06-18-2002, 12:40 PM
Bensics wrote an awful Actex Manual for Course 6, not that it's entirely relevant. Just giving you as much data as possible.

06-18-2002, 01:27 PM
Graham Lord (took him for several lower level exams) is very bright and is an excellent instructor. Bensics is just terrible (took him for C6). Never heard of the other guy.

06-18-2002, 06:16 PM
I took the seminar last year. The plan was first 3 days for Bensics and 2 last days for Lord. Well, the last day of the seminar was 9/11...
It seems like the consensus was (please, correct me if I'm wrong) that B. practically added no value. He did not cover completely scheduled parts of the syllabus, on many occasions couldn't answer the questions and seemed to have a "you figure it out" attitude (not the best for an instructor). On several occasions he was trying to understand his own notes and didn't seem to be ready for the seminar. Many people came to the seminar for the analysis of the case study. B. offered a lot of critique of the inconsistencies in the c.s. and the solutions, but several times (as it turned out) he missed some info and finally disproved his point. I had him for exam 210 and he was boring but at least could answer questions. This time it was pretty pathetic.
L. had a solid knowledge of the material he was presenting. Unfortunately, he shared about 50% of what he planned to do. He promised to send us his notes later and when I came back to the office after exam on Nov.1 I saw his e-mail with 2 pages of notes dated Oct. 31 (probably, not the best replacement for that missed day of the seminar). Except for the timing, I would say L. was a much better experience than B.
Somebody on this forum said that the seminar doesn't add any value because % passing was exactly the same. To me overall the seminar was money and time spent unwisely (one day of L. was good but $700 fee + hotel + travel is too much for that).
Anyway, that's my experience.

06-18-2002, 09:29 PM
I was there with you and you are being too kind. Bensics was awful. He spent a great portion of his time on "Not on the exam" issues. The general consensus was that he would not pass the exam himself. I learned nothing from him. G.L. was excellent, but he covered only a minimal portion of the material.

I may have been spoiled by JAM seminars, but this was disorganized, frustrating and Bensics taught me nothing.

If you feel so inclined to take a seminar, and your company pays for it, take it. Stay in your hotel room and study while Bensics presents.

06-19-2002, 08:46 AM
Does he atleast provide materials --- study summaries? Anything at all?

If this guy is that bad, how come noone hasn't given him feedback. I would be inclined to call him up and ask him to prepare handouts (or atleast ask him to give me a detailed description of his seminar outline)

Admittedly, it is tough to match the performance of Mike Carmody.

06-19-2002, 07:59 PM
Goldfarb teaches a seminar for CAS 8 (Investment) and has received really good reviews as I recall. I would ask in the CAS area about him.

06-20-2002, 06:53 PM
Axsuetarian, the material provided by B. was not worth much (unfortunately).

06-21-2002, 08:10 AM
What did he give out to the seminar enrollees?

How many people were there last year?