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  #1  
Old 03-02-2018, 09:51 PM
IacceptTheTerms IacceptTheTerms is offline
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Default Is ACAS harder than ASA?

I'm trying to decide whether to go CAS or SOA route. I've always been good at using computers and have decent programming skills. I passed C exam and it was more interesting than any exam I took until now. I was wondering if going CAS is a smart move for me since I didn't make my mind yet. I heard from some people that CAS exams are harder than SOA exams, is this true? I know there are more exams to pass but are there actually harder? What about the long term job market for both societies?

Thanks
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Old 03-03-2018, 08:11 PM
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trueblade trueblade is offline
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I'll try to answer this question objectively...

I have not taken any FSA level exams so I can't comment on the difficulty of SOA Upper, but on CAS side, there's a very bulky exam 6 which tests legal cases and insurance accounting...this is not a quantitative exam at all and a lot of people get stuck on it forever

(I do not know if SOA has a exam similar in scale/topic, maybe it's their 8 FAP courses combined?)

And then there's exam 7,8,9...all of them are offered (only) once a year...
So it's fair to say travel time to FCAS is longer than FSA
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Old 03-03-2018, 08:12 PM
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ACAS was more difficult than ASA prior to the changes probably. We'll have to wait and see how the exam changes from both societies shake things up.
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Old 03-03-2018, 09:53 PM
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It's hard not to be biased answering your question.

I will say that I think you shouldn't decide one vs the other and just wait to see what job you get. Unless you love property and casualty and would not like to work in other areas, I would suggest applying to everything (except for pensions).

To pass any set of actuarial examinations will require a significant amount of dedication even the easier FSA exams . Ha jk. I have never taken an FSA exam so I have no idea how hard they are. The upper level CAS exams are ridiculously hard.
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Old 03-03-2018, 10:09 PM
CuriousGeorge CuriousGeorge is offline
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Neither is so much harder that it should be a driving factor in which side to pursue.
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Old 03-04-2018, 10:11 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IacceptTheTerms View Post
I'm trying to decide whether to go CAS or SOA route. I've always been good at using computers and have decent programming skills. I passed C exam and it was more interesting than any exam I took until now. I was wondering if going CAS is a smart move for me since I didn't make my mind yet. I heard from some people that CAS exams are harder than SOA exams, is this true? I know there are more exams to pass but are there actually harder? What about the long term job market for both societies?

Thanks
Do you have a job now?
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Old 03-04-2018, 10:25 AM
Jonnyb373 Jonnyb373 is offline
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Having done both, I found ACAS to be harder but YMMV. Agree with other posts that it should be about your job not which is harder.
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Old 03-04-2018, 12:58 PM
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Neither is so much harder that it should be a driving factor in which side to pursue.
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Old 03-04-2018, 02:17 PM
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ACAS is def harder
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Old 03-06-2018, 12:02 AM
WhiteVeil WhiteVeil is offline
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ACAS is much harder, it's not even close. I'll admit these are my thoughts before the new requirements, but from what I've seen, it still doesn't look like the ASA is as difficult.

I can be a little more objective as I started on the SOA track and was nearly ASA before switching to CAS. The main difference was FAP vs Exams 5 and 6. FAP was really not hard at all, with the IA being the only real form of difficulty (and is actually pretty easy if you are motivated and pace yourself well.

Just Exam 5 alone on the other hand was so hard and required so much more. Not that the material is hard, but the way the exam is tested just made it so hard that even years of experience in the industry only helped so much. And it doesn't get any easier after that. Whereas I see my friends at Life/Health companies who became FSA really quickly due to the shorter and easier exam track.
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