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Old 09-13-2018, 02:11 PM
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Adapt and Chill Adapt and Chill is online now
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Default December 2018 Exam PA Thread

This exam is markedly different from the other prelims and seems most similar to the FAP Final Assessment, with more of an emphasis on technical skills.

We're three months out, so there's still plenty of time until the December 13th sitting. How is everyone's progress so far? Have you done anything to prepare outside of the PA modules?
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  #2  
Old 09-15-2018, 06:40 PM
yahoowizard yahoowizard is offline
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Finishing up Module 3. Haven't done anything outside of the modules yet and don't really have too much prior R knowledge.
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Old 09-17-2018, 01:05 PM
kyotousa kyotousa is offline
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Did you guys buy the books?
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Old 09-17-2018, 01:11 PM
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Haven't bought any books. I'm about half way through Module 6 and so far everything has been (useful) review of R courses and regression courses in college. I like the content in the modules (despite the constant typos and other errors), but I wish the rmd files they provided would always have a blank area for you to try your solution, and then their solution somewhat hidden, rather than sometimes having space for your solution with no guidance, or always showing their solution and not giving you an opportunity to try it yourself. Would probably be smart to go back through the rmd's and delete all code to try to emulate an exam setting. Also, someone should make a cheat-sheet of important functions included in the available packages for the exam--if any of you run across one, please share with the class
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Old 09-17-2018, 01:44 PM
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I bought the two physical books (ISLR and Data Visualization are available online for free).

I think the modules do a decent job of covering the material, and many candidates will be fine without the required textbooks. I decided to go through the required material since there's no supplemental test prep material (e.g. coaching actuaries, TIA) and there's enough time left prior to December.

For what it's worth, I also thought that the required texts for the FAP modules were helpful on the IA and FA, but many candidates get through those without doing the readings.
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Old 09-17-2018, 01:45 PM
kyotousa kyotousa is offline
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Originally Posted by DjPim View Post
Haven't bought any books. I'm about half way through Module 6 and so far everything has been (useful) review of R courses and regression courses in college. I like the content in the modules (despite the constant typos and other errors), but I wish the rmd files they provided would always have a blank area for you to try your solution, and then their solution somewhat hidden, rather than sometimes having space for your solution with no guidance, or always showing their solution and not giving you an opportunity to try it yourself. Would probably be smart to go back through the rmd's and delete all code to try to emulate an exam setting. Also, someone should make a cheat-sheet of important functions included in the available packages for the exam--if any of you run across one, please share with the class
Just wondering if I'm reading this correctly
"Candidates will have 11 months from the date of the purchase of the PA e-Learning modules to register for the exam without incurring additional cost. As a reminder, the combined PA module and PA exam fee is paid at the time of initial registration and purchase of the PA e-Learning modules.
"

Does that mean in this 11 months period I could register the PA exam as many times as I want? Which means, 3 times max? Assuming 2 sittings per year?

Last edited by kyotousa; 09-17-2018 at 01:49 PM..
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Old 09-17-2018, 01:50 PM
kyotousa kyotousa is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Adapt and Chill View Post
I bought the two physical books (ISLR and Data Visualization are available online for free).

I think the modules do a decent job of covering the material, and many candidates will be fine without the required textbooks. I decided to go through the required material since there's no supplemental test prep material (e.g. coaching actuaries, TIA) and there's enough time left prior to December.

For what it's worth, I also thought that the required texts for the FAP modules were helpful on the IA and FA, but many candidates get through those without doing the readings.
The IA and FA text are helpful at coming up stuff to write about. Maybe I'll buy one and see how it goes. thanks
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Old 09-17-2018, 02:27 PM
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Originally Posted by kyotousa View Post
The IA and FA text are helpful at coming up stuff to write about. Maybe I'll buy one and see how it goes. thanks
I have limited experience with R, so I thought R for Everyone was more useful. I liked doing the guided programming exercises and learning about the R functions. You can pick up a lot of the programming syntax just going through the modules though.

Regression Modeling with Actuarial and Financial Applications is mostly for a deeper understanding of the technical aspects of GLMs and regression models. I'm not sure how necessary it will be for the exam.
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Old 09-17-2018, 02:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kyotousa View Post
Just wondering if I'm reading this correctly
"Candidates will have 11 months from the date of the purchase of the PA e-Learning modules to register for the exam without incurring additional cost. As a reminder, the combined PA module and PA exam fee is paid at the time of initial registration and purchase of the PA e-Learning modules.
"

Does that mean in this 11 months period I could register the PA exam as many times as I want? Which means, 3 times max? Assuming 2 sittings per year?
I could see that being slightly ambiguous. From what I understand, at registration ($1125) you get the modules for a year and you can register for an exam sitting. I assume that if you were to fail that sitting, you could pay to register for another sitting, but it would not be the full $1125 again. I doubt they would allow multiple sittings without charging extra.
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Old 09-18-2018, 12:11 PM
kyotousa kyotousa is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DjPim View Post
I could see that being slightly ambiguous. From what I understand, at registration ($1125) you get the modules for a year and you can register for an exam sitting. I assume that if you were to fail that sitting, you could pay to register for another sitting, but it would not be the full $1125 again. I doubt they would allow multiple sittings without charging extra.
In that case, I guess SOA haven't decide how much they will try to rip us off yet. Since the retake fee is not to be found anywhere on the site.
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