Actuarial Science

Actuarial Science

The department of Mathematics and Computer Science is thrilled to introduce a mathematics major with an emphasis in actuarial science.  According to the Society of Actuaries, an actuary is “a business professional who analyzes the financial consequences of risk.” The career is consistently ranked as one of the best for overall job satisfaction (CNN, Forbes, Wall Street Journal, careercast.com, monster.com, etc.).  This interdisciplinary program will help to develop the skill set and background needed to successfully pursue careers in the actuarial field.

This program will provide thorough mathematical background that emphasizes topics relative to risk management.  Accompanying the mathematics courses, students will take economics and business courses that will further prepare them for actuarial careers.  The course structure was developed through recommendations from the Society of Actuaries.

Actuaries must take a series of professional exams.  The coursework in this program will fully prepare students for the first actuarial exam in probability (SOA exam P), and provide much of the background needed for the second exam in financial mathematics (SOA exam FM).  Students are also encouraged to seek summer internship opportunities while completing the major.  After graduation, students will be well-positioned to seek employment as actuaries or elsewhere in the field of risk management.

 

 Faculty Contacts:

  • Dr. Bob Cohen, Mathematics
  • Dr. Andy Keck, Mathematics

Mathematics Core

       CIS 190  Computer Science I ............................................................................................................................ 3 cr
       MATH 151  Calculus I ....................................................................................................................................... 4 cr
       MATH 220  Introduction to Advanced Mathematics ................................................................................  3 cr
       MATH 251  Calculus II...................................................................................................................................... 4 cr
       MATH 260  Applied Linear Algebra ...............................................................................................................  3 cr
       MATH 451  Analysis I ....................................................................................................................................... 3 cr
       MATH 471  Abstract Algebra I ........................................................................................................................ 3 cr
       MATH 495  Senior Seminar .............................................................................................................................. 2 cr
 

Mathematics Major: Comprehensive Programs actuarial science emphasis

A minimum of 56 credits is required, including the 25-credit Mathematics Core and the following:

  

       BUAD 311  Essential Excel Skills for the Workplace ..................................................................................  1 cr
       BUAD 312  Advanced Excel Applications ....................................................................................................  2 cr
       ECON 201  Macroeconomics ..........................................................................................................................  3 cr
       ECON 202  Microeconomics ............................................................................................................................  3 cr
       ECON 316  Econometrics .................................................................................................................................  3 cr
       ECON 361  Money, Banking, and Financial Markets .................................................................................. 3 cr
       MATH 213 Probability and Statistics .............................................................................................................  3 cr
       MATH 252  Calculus III ...................................................................................................................................  4 cr
       MATH 313  Statistical Modeling and Simulation ........................................................................................  3 cr
       MATH 314  Applied Probability ......................................................................................................................  3 cr
       MATH 414  Actuarial Mathematics ...............................................................................................................  3 cr

Courses

FOR REQUIRED COURSES AND DEGREE PLANS, VISIT THE OFFICIAL UNIVERSITY CATALOG. This is a sample of courses offered by Western State Colorado University. To ensure the courses you need are offered during the current semester, please visit the university course search.

 BUAD 311 - Essentials Excel Skills for the Workplace (1 credits)

This course prepares the student for Microsoft Excel Office Specialist certification. This course covers all of the topics tested by the certifying examination including managing worksheets and workbooks, applying formulas and functions, analyzing and organizing data, visual presentation of data, and sharing worksheet data with others. Prerequisites: college-level mathematics requirement with a minimum grade of "C-" or instructor permission

 BUAD 312 - Advanced Excel Applications (2 credits)

This course emphasizes the use of computer spreadsheets to organize, analyze and present quantitative information to aid managerial decision-making. The course exercises include examples from several disciplines including business, energy and environmental impact analysis, natural sciences, and social sciences. Specific topics will include business planning and budgeting, capital budgeting and net present value analysis, time value of money, cost / benefit analysis, goal seeking, scenario planning and pivot tables.Prerequisites: BUAD 311, Excel Office Specialist certification or instructor permission.

 ECON 201 - Macroeconomics (3 credits)

An introduction to the methods, models, and approaches used by economists to analyze and interpret events and policies related to the overall operation of the economy. The course endeavors to make sense of unemployment, inflation, recessions, debt and deficits, economic growth, the expanding role of the Federal Reserve, and policies to provide stability to the economy. Additional attention is given to the making of economic policy in an era of globalization. Finally, students are exposed to multiple schools of thought regarding macroeconomic reasoning. Prerequisite: ACT math score of 19 or above; SAT math score of 500 or above; pass MATH 099; or Accuplacer Elementary Algebra test score of 85 or higher, or university-level math requirement with a minimum grade of C-. Prerequisite or corequisite: ENG 102.

 ECON 202 - Microeconomics (3 credits)

The theory of microeconomics makes use of the tools of marginal cost-benefit analysis to provide a framework for the economic analysis of decision-making. The focus is on the choices of individual firms and consumers, and the resultant outcomes in individual markets. The social implications of the functioning of competitive markets are examined, as well as the causes of market failure and the potential roles of government in correcting them. Prerequisite: ACT math score of 19 or above; SAT math score of 500 or above; pass MATH 099; or Accuplacer Elementary Algebra test score of 85 or higher, or college-level math requirement with a minimum grade of "C-."

 ECON 316 - Econometrics (3 credits)

The application of advanced statistical methods and modeling to an empirical understanding of economic issues. Combines elements of statistical reasoning with economic theory and provides an excellent opportunity to combine concepts learned in previous economics courses. Topics covered include multiple regression analysis, model specification, dummy variables, multicollinearity, heteroscedasticity, autocorrelation, limited dependent variables, simultaneity, time series, forecasting, and methodological issues. Prerequisites: ECON 201or ECON 202; and ECON 216 or MATH 213.

 ECON 361 - Money, Banking and Financial Markets (3 credits)

A survey of the core topics relating to the monetary sector of the economy. This includes an examination of the role and nature of money, financial institutions and markets, banking structure and regulation, determinants of interest rates, central bank policy, exchange rates, and the international monetary system. Attention is also given to particular monetary episodes such as the Great Depression, the Latin American debt crisis, the collapse of the Mexican Peso, and the Asian monetary collapse. Prerequisites: MATH 140, MATH 141, or MATH 151 with a minimum grade of ÒC-Ó; ECON 201.

 MATH 213 - Probability and Statistics (3 credits)

A course in the use of statistical techniques to draw knowledge from data. Topics include exploratory data analysis, descriptive statistics, t-procedures, ANOVA, chi squared procedures, regression, and non-parametric tests. Statistical software is used extensively to analyze real data sets. Prerequisite: MATH 141 with a minimum grade of C-, or Accuplacer university-level mathematics test score of 85 or above; or instructor permission. GT-MA1

 MATH 252 - Calculus III (4 credits)

Topics include calculus of functions of several variables, differentiation and elementary integration, vectors in the plane and space. Prerequisite: MATH 251 with a minimum grade of "C-."

 MATH 313 - Statistical Modeling and Simulation (3 credits)

A study of statistical techniques used to model and simulate stochastic processes. The core topics include linear and nonlinear multivariate models, generalized additive models, time series models with auto-correlated error, and mixed effects models. Emphasis is placed on computational techniques appropriate to large data sets and data visualization. Prerequisites: MATH 213 or ECON 216, MATH 260, CS190.

 MATH 314 - Applied Probability (3 credits)

A study of the basic principles of probability theory and their applications. Topics include combinational analysis, conditional probabilities, descrete and continuous random variables, and measures of centrality and variance. Emphasis is placed on applications using probability distributions (including binomial, geometric, Poisson, uniform, exponential, and normal distributions) to assess and manage risk in the fields of finance, insurnace, medicine, and quality control. Prerequsite: MATH 251 with a grade C- or better.

 MATH 414 - Actuarial Mathematics (3 credits)

A study of mathematical concepts useful in risk management, including multivariate probability and interest theory. Topics include the Central Limit Theorem, joint distributions, combinations of distributions, conditional and marginal probabilities, time value of money, annuities, and loans. Emphasis is placed on solving problems from the actuarial field, including applications to insurance and business. Prerequisites: MATH 252 with a minimum grade of ÒC-Ò; MATH 314 with a minimum grade of ÒC-.Ó

Faculty & Staff