The BSc Actuarial Science and Risk Management programme has been designed by qualified Actuaries to enable students to develop the theoretical and practical skills required to pursue a career as an Actuary or as a professional in the financial industry. In addition, students may gain up to eight exemptions from the professional exams required to qualify as an Actuary via our accreditation with the Institute and Faculty of Actuaries.
Actuarial Science and Risk Management Degree highlights
Actuary at Queen's is ranked 2nd in the UK based on student satisfaction.
- There is also the opportunity to study or work abroad, supported by schemes such as Erasmus and Study USA. Many topics include an international dimension which reflects the globalisation of the accounting profession and financial markets.
- Subject to academic performance, students can gain various exemptions from the Institute and Faculty of Actuaries (IFoA) professional exams.
- The Society of Northern Ireland Actuaries (SoNIA) is a regional society for local actuaries. It aims to offer a forum for Northern Ireland based actuaries and student actuaries to share opinions on actuarial topics, providing a networking opportunity.
- During the third year of the degree, students complete a 9 to 12 month placement with an actuarial firm. These placements are usually in Belfast, Dublin, London or the Isle of Man. Example placements include Aviva, Irish Life, Kerr Henderson, Spence & Partners, SCOR, The Pension Protection Fund and Pramerica. There are three dedicated placement officers in the Management School who will help you to prepare for placement, and obtain positions of the highest quality.
- The Placement Office also helps in the recruitment of first-year students for the popular City Scholarship Programme - a summer internship with a company in New York, Dublin, London, Liverpool or Edinburgh. Students can also apply to take part in the Business and Finance Study Tour, which allows participants to meet senior employees from leading financial institutions.
World Class Facilities
- Students on the course will be given the opportunity to develop their modelling skills and will use software such as Model Risk and the Bloomberg terminals in the Trading Room.
Internationally Renowned Experts
- Students have the opportunity to hear from industry professionals who regularly deliver guest lectures. Students have the opportunity to network afterwards.
- Students may wish to join the Queen's University Trading and Investment Club, a student run organisation which aims to educate its members on trading and investing through guest speakers,competitions and educational seminars. The Student Managed Fund, currently securing real money, gives students the opportunityto be part of an investment management process. The Finance & Actuary society runs social and educational events for members, such as the end of year formal.Students on the course will be given the opportunity to develop theirmodelling skills and will use software such as Model Risk and the Bloomberg terminals in the Trading Room.
'The course is widely regarded and respected, and has opened many doors personally in relation to 'Insight' visits in Belfast, Glasgow, Edinburgh and London.'
Samuel Stewart, BSc Actuarial Science and Risk Management Student
Students pursuing a career in Actuarial Science should enjoy working with numbers, be effective communicators and work well with people as they will have to analyse and interpret financial and other information to meet the needs of different users, including managers and investors.
Employment after the Course
The traditional areas in which actuaries are employed include:
Actuarial Consultancies - clients are provided with advice on mergers, corporate recovery and the management of occupational pension schemes
Insurance Industry - actuaries in insurance design new insurance policies and calculate premium rates and reserving requirements
Pensions Industry - here actuaries are involved in the management and valuation of pension scheme liabilities (for regulatory and expensing purposes). They are also involved in new design and restructuring of pension schemes, deficit management and any requirements of regulatory change on pension scheme.
Investment Industry - in this instance actuaries are involved in a wide variety of work such as pricing financial derivatives, working in fund management or working in quantitative investment research.
Graduate employers include: Kerr Henderson, Spence & Partners, NFU Mutual, Invesco, Boal & Co, Towers Watson, Allianz Insurance, Mercer, AXA Insurance, Deloitte, Capita, Liberty Mutual Insurance, PwC, Pramerica, Metlife, Xafinity.
"Queen's gave me the tools to succeed, such as the ability to solve problems and analyse complex situations. It helped me develop strong communication and presentation skills as well as a commercial awareness of the financial industry. I now work as a Commercial Actuary at Allianz which involves estimating the value of claims and premiums to ensure solvency and profitability. I am also involved in pricing work for our main property and small business accounts and through building actuarial models I advise the underwriters on how they should determine technical premiums for customers. I hope to further develop my leadership skills to accompany my technical knowledge and move into more senior roles, gaining experience across a wide range of areas such as reserving, pricing and capital modelling.'
Kevin O'Reilly, Commercial Actuary at Allianz Insurance
Recent placement providers have included Aviva, Irish Life, Kerr Henderson, Spence & Partners, SCOR, The Pension Protection Fund and Pramerica.
What employers say
Additional Awards Gained
Year in Industry
Prizes and Awards
A number of local employers and professional bodies sponsor prizes on an annual basis for best students in their level, module or category.
These include Invesco, The Company of Actuaries Charitable Trust Fund, Buck Consultants, SCOR Global Life, Mercer, Pramerica, Spence and Partners, Acumen Resources, Xafinity Consulting, and Allianz Re Dublin.
Degree plus award for extra-curricular skills
In addition to your degree programme, at Queen's you can have the opportunity to gain wider life, academic and employability skills. For example, placements, voluntary work, clubs, societies, sports and lots more. So not only do you graduate with a degree recognised from a world leading university, you'll have practical national and international experience plus a wider exposure to life overall. We call this Degree Plus. It's what makes studying at Queen's University Belfast special.