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ap07 02-14-2011 03:12 PM

Exam P advice
 
Hi guys,

I am an Economics/Finance major with an expected graduation date of May 2012. I have been considering taking exam P in May to show employers I am serious about the Actuarial profession. I have a decent math background having taken Intro to Statistics, Business Statistics, Mathematical Economics, Econometrics, and am currently taking Calculus. I was just wondering if I would have a pretty good chance of passing exam P in May (assuming I study my butt off for the next 2 months). I plan on buying the ACTEX study guide (since that seems to be the best one for exam P) and doing all of the free sample exams/problems you can find online. What do you guys think? Do you have any suggestions for me going forward? Any advice/input would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks guys

Fianchetto 02-14-2011 03:29 PM

You could definitely pass. Put in 100 - 300 hours (depending on how easily it turns out to be for you) and with your background you'll put yourself in prime position to pass.

Robot_Insurance 02-14-2011 04:47 PM

Yeah, you shouldn't have a problem but you have to prepare more than you think you have to. There WILL be topics that you have never seen before despite multiple stats classes (Gamma distribution, joint distributions, MGF functions come to mind) and there is no way around memorizing many formulas.

I would also be worried about "currently taking calculus." You have to be pretty comfortable with double integrals for any joint distribution problems. If you only have had single-variable calculus, then that will be another thing that will take a lot of time to learn.

mathmajor 02-14-2011 05:41 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Robot_Insurance (Post 5028944)
Yeah, you shouldn't have a problem but you have to prepare more than you think you have to. There WILL be topics that you have never seen before despite multiple stats classes (Gamma distribution, joint distributions, MGF functions come to mind) and there is no way around memorizing many formulas.

I would also be worried about "currently taking calculus." You have to be pretty comfortable with double integrals for any joint distribution problems. If you only have had single-variable calculus, then that will be another thing that will take a lot of time to learn.


Totally agree. P will not come as easy as, say, FM might. (I was a math major so it was opposite for me!) Even after completing your calc course, there will be more to learn. I would recommend before taking P to take 1) a calc-based stats course and 2) more advanced calculus.

However, you'll probably have an easy time with FM (interest, annuities, etc) and could take that first. It has basic stats and little calculus on it.

Noumenon84 02-15-2011 12:54 AM

I had only taken a calc 2 class when I passed P. The amount of "multi variable" calculus you need you can teach yourself. The application is limited to certain types of questions.

IMO, what makes these exams difficult is the amount of material on each exam and the unlimited ways they can test every topic more so than the material itself. Though, that's not to say the material is easy. Just put in your 100-300 study hours like someone else suggested and you'll have a good shot at passing.

Good luck!

herrMrtn 02-15-2011 01:24 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Noumenon84 (Post 5029707)
I had only taken a calc 2 class when I passed P. The amount of "multi variable" calculus you need you can teach yourself. The application is limited to certain types of questions.

:iatp:

The importance of multivariable calc is secondary.

mathmajor 02-15-2011 10:08 AM

I'm a bit surprised nobody else is advocating taking FM first and doing more coursework. Am I just crazy?

TheMJ 02-15-2011 10:14 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mathmajor (Post 5029996)
I'm a bit surprised nobody else is advocating taking FM first and doing more coursework. Am I just crazy?

No you're not. It might be true that the need for multivariable calc is limited to certain topics, but more knowledge wont hurt. Besides, the poster's situation makes it easier for him to sit for FM first since he has that info relatively fresh.

mathmajor 02-15-2011 12:32 PM

Well as I mentioned, it would be helpful to have a calc-based stats course (not just basic stats). Also I don't know about you, but I didn't learn the calculus involving e^x, a^x, and ln(x) until calc 2. Those are important.

TrueCaleb 02-15-2011 04:58 PM

I'd definitely recommend taking FM first. Get the ASM study manual for FM.


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