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View Poll Results: Choose Wisely
85% Pass Rates bother me - period. 33 32.35%
85% pass rates only bother me if education suffers 48 47.06%
85% pass rates don't bother me at all 11 10.78%
42% pass rates!! 10 9.80%
Voters: 102. You may not vote on this poll

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  #61  
Old 04-22-2007, 12:54 PM
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SirVLCIV SirVLCIV is offline
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If everyone who passed the FAP 1 Exam had the exact same knowledge and ability as those who have passed thus far, but there was a 35% pass rate, as opposed to an 85% pass rate, would everything be A-OK? Is it just the P(passing exam|taking exam) that has people upset, and they want it lower?
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  #62  
Old 04-22-2007, 12:58 PM
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They proved that they know the material on which what we tested them. ASAs have the mathematical grounding in actuarial science and an introduction to actuarial practice and professionalism. That's it. If you want them to know even more (as I did in 1993 when I was part of a group that recommended changing the ASA level), that's fine. But it's not where we are today.

Bruce
I want a work experience so I know when I talk to an actuary that they have been in the business for at least a couple years. Under the old system I had much more of a chance that it would be true than under the new.

Under the new system the ASA is a joke to many people. Many more people than under the old system. That's not good.

There was talk at my work the other day (we have both life and P&C actuaries) that the average new ACAS makes as much as an average new FSA. ACAS is holding its ground in travel time while FSA is going to decrease. It's unfortunate for the life actuaries when a new FCAS gets you 120-150 and the FSA gets you significantly less (and dropping).
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  #63  
Old 04-22-2007, 01:01 PM
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Originally Posted by SirVLCIV View Post
If everyone who passed the FAP 1 Exam had the exact same knowledge and ability as those who have passed thus far, but there was a 35% pass rate, as opposed to an 85% pass rate, would everything be A-OK? Is it just the P(passing exam|taking exam) that has people upset, and they want it lower?
In my opinion it's truly a debate of average experience for a newly credentialed actuary. Exams should always be more relevant and that is independent of difficulty (unless the life actuarial profession is a walk in the park which I highly doubt it is)

New system: plenty of Waterloo grads coming out with ASA
Old system: plenty of Waterloo grads coming out with 4 exams, but very very few as credentialed actuaries

I'd be happy with New system + work experience requirement.
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  #64  
Old 04-22-2007, 01:03 PM
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I want a work experience so I know when I talk to an actuary that they have been in the business for at least a couple years. Under the old system I had much more of a chance that it would be true than under the new.

Under the new system the ASA is a joke to many people. Many more people than under the old system. That's not good.

There was talk at my work the other day (we have both life and P&C actuaries) that the average new ACAS makes as much as an average new FSA. ACAS is holding its ground in travel time while FSA is going to decrease. It's unfortunate for the life actuaries when a new FCAS gets you 120-150 and the FSA gets you significantly less (and dropping).
These statistics are rather useless when comparing salary. Removing the subjective bias of how much experience a credentialed actuary should have, it would not surprise me in the least if an ACAS with x years experience made the same as an FSA with x years experience. The information tells me nothing.
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  #65  
Old 04-22-2007, 01:04 PM
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Originally Posted by Danny Boy View Post
In my opinion it's truly a debate of average experience for a newly credentialed actuary. Exams should always be more relevant and that is independent of difficulty (unless the life actuarial profession is a walk in the park which I highly doubt it is)

New system: plenty of Waterloo grads coming out with ASA
Old system: plenty of Waterloo grads coming out with 4 exams, but very very few as credentialed actuaries

I'd be happy with New system + work experience requirement.
Gotcha. Then the question becomes 'How much experience should an ASA, ACAS, FSA, or FCAS have?'
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  #66  
Old 04-22-2007, 01:08 PM
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Gotcha. Then the question becomes 'How much experience should an ASA, ACAS, FSA, or FCAS have?'
I think that's a great question. If I was running an organization then I would personally set it at least at 3 years. The CFA is 4, the MAAA is 3 I believe (and you get legal power).

I'm sure the response for the reason that the SOA doesn't have a work experience requirement is going to be "because the MAAA requires one." IMO that's a copout. The SOA is its own organization and it should set its standards to produce actuaries who are competent... I just don't think an "actuary"/ASA without any work experience is a competent "actuary."
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  #67  
Old 04-22-2007, 01:08 PM
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The current ASA is quite similar to the pre-1995 ASA. That wasn't a problem for 4 decades or so. Why should it be such a problem now? As long as everybody -- candidates, actuaries, employers, regulators and the public -- know what an ASA represents, then no misunderstanding can occur. The SOA is not saying that a brand-new ASA can do anything an experienced FSA can do. That would be a lie. And as far as experience requirements are concerned, the AAA has one. In addition, the AAA's Committee on Qualifications has standards that actuaries must meet before they can practice in an area. That should address your concerns.

Bruce
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  #68  
Old 04-22-2007, 01:12 PM
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Originally Posted by bdschobel View Post
The current ASA is quite similar to the pre-1995 ASA. That wasn't a problem for 4 decades or so. Why should it be such a problem now? As long as everybody -- candidates, actuaries, employers, regulators and the public -- know what an ASA represents, then no misunderstanding can occur. The SOA is not saying that a brand-new ASA can do anything an experienced FSA can do. That would be a lie. And as far as experience requirements are concerned, the AAA has one. In addition, the AAA's Committee on Qualifications has standards that actuaries must meet before they can practice in an area. That should address your concerns.

Bruce
The ouside world typically hears actuary, not ASA or ASA, MAAA, or FCAS, MAAA, or anything else.

If you want the actuarial profession to branch out of its non traditional routes then I don't understand the logic of giving the term "actuary" to someone without experience.
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  #69  
Old 04-22-2007, 01:18 PM
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The CAS considered eliminating the ACAS designation last year but backed away from that idea. The SOA regards the ASA as a signpost along the road to FSA. Don't make more of it than we do. And don't imagine that thousands of inexperienced ASAs are presenting themselves to the world as fully qualified actuaries. They aren't. This "problem" exists only in your own mind, not in the real world.

Bruce
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  #70  
Old 04-22-2007, 01:24 PM
Danny Boy Danny Boy is offline
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Don't make more of it than we do. And don't imagine that thousands of inexperienced ASAs are presenting themselves to the world as fully qualified actuaries. They aren't. This "problem" exists only in your own mind, not in the real world.
I'm sure it's not "thousands" considering the size of our profession, but I'd be extremely surprised if most with an ASA don't believe they are a fully qualified actuary (after all, the SOA told them they were... if you can't believe the SOA, then who can you believe?)
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