- This topic has 328 replies, 41 voices, and was last updated 2 years, 3 months ago by Olmstead.
January 11, 2021 at 4:06 pm #1991
That last response was meant for a different thread and I can’t seem to delete it. Sorry about that.January 11, 2021 at 6:10 pm #1995
3 days till MAS results. and 3 weeks or so for exams 5-9January 11, 2021 at 6:11 pm #1996
I lied. I just checked the SOA website and their fellowship exams from October/November get results on 1/15.January 11, 2021 at 6:13 pm #1997
Yes they have to wait around 11 weeks.January 11, 2021 at 6:35 pm #2000
I’m impressed that SOA has stayed on schedule.
Switched over to CAS a few years ago, was excited for a faster grading timeline. Sat for Exam 5 in Spring 2018 (TBE nightmare and delayed results), and now this. I know it’s a first world problem but still sort of disappointing.January 11, 2021 at 6:37 pm #2001TryhardActuaryParticipant
Are upper level SOA exams also written based? I wonder how hard SOA tries to put a ceiling on the number of admitted FSA’s.
Something tells me they don’tJanuary 11, 2021 at 6:54 pm #2002Tigger0209Participant
Here’s the thing, there is no more snail mail in the equation. So in theory, this should reduce grading by a few weeks.January 11, 2021 at 6:55 pm #2003
I’m convinced they are dragging their feet.January 11, 2021 at 6:58 pm #2004
SOA fellowship exams are all written, and they’re also longer. 5 hours total of actual exam time – 3 hours in the morning, 2 hours after a lunch break.
I would say they’re not as aggressive, though there have been patches where an exam or two suddenly have significantly lower-than-usual pass rates.January 11, 2021 at 7:10 pm #2005
SOA in general (as I understand it) has a much more competent education process run by trained educators and I assume that their exam committee would be more competent as well. I would expect the SOA pass rates to be higher given how well thought out their exams are. The CAS on the other hand – don’t even get me started. You have to bear with me – I’ve been in the pipeline for 10+ years and this seems like a never-ending nightmare. At the end of the day, I can’t walk away empty handed though so I plan on hanging in there.January 11, 2021 at 7:23 pm #2006act_123Participant
The SOA exams seem to have fairer standards. The CAS standards are kinda crazy. The CAS questions don’t really accomplish what they try to set out.January 11, 2021 at 11:11 pm #2008
While SOA does think through the process differently, I would be remiss if I didn’t also call out the not-so-great things too.
- Pass marks are never released, so there’s a little less transparency there.
- The appeals process is close to non-existent. 3 years ago, there was an outdated page that was very difficult to find on their website (and most importantly, it didn’t tell you how to appeal).
- Fail reports do not break down performance by part, only the entire question. So one number for question 1, no split out by 1a, 1b, 1c, …
So you essentially have to trust that SOA will be fair, but if you suspect that they are not there’s not much you can do. There will always be a “grass is always greener” moment whichever side you’re on.January 11, 2021 at 11:26 pm #2009
Af this point, the fail report issue is a moot point given that the CAS no longer releases questions. Not sure how the SOA handles that. Also, I’m not sure how much it mattered before because you never got your paper back anyway so it’s not like you know what your response was.January 11, 2021 at 11:39 pm #2010
That’s fair. I don’t quite recall the timelines for everything, but I think it might help with appeals if you do decide to e-mail SOA with one. I agree that it won’t help in the general case though.January 12, 2021 at 2:37 am #2014OlmsteadParticipant
I think SOA actually wants to grow not cap new fellowsJanuary 12, 2021 at 3:18 am #2015
I remember speaking to a mentor a few years ago who told me he was grading one of the fellowship exams (Exam 8 I think). He was asking the committee why they demanded a certain response to get credit (it was some typical BS) and told me he asked, “Haven’t these people proven they’re serious about the actuarial profession by this point?”
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