Your Guide to an Actuarial Science Course in Malaysia

Actuarial Science - Feature Image

Do you absolutely LOVE and excel in mathematics, especially probability and statistics? Enjoy solving problems and want the challenge of an intellectually demanding course? Perhaps Actuarial Science could be a good choice for you!

But before you dive straight into this degree, have you found out all there is to know about Actuarial Science and what it takes to be a certified actuary?

This guide will help you answer many of your questions about studying an Actuarial Science course in Malaysia, from what you will learn and what this course is all about, to your career options as an Actuarial Science graduate.


The Basics of Actuarial Science

What is Actuarial Science

Actuarial Science - What is Actuarial Science

Actuarial Science is about calculating money-related risks through probability, statistics and knowledge of business and economics. Many industries, such as insurance and pension funds (like EPF), rely on Actuarial Science in order to make sound business and budgetary decisions.

For example, if you have an insurance policy, ever wondered who calculates the amount of insurance premiums (the amount that you must pay for your insurance plan)?

Well, it’s the work of an actuary! Actuaries ensure that insurance companies are able to pay out insurance claims in the event something bad happens.


Studying an Actuarial Science Degree

What Qualifications Do You Need?

In order to pursue a degree in Actuarial Science, you will generally need:

(1) SPM / O-Level Qualification

  • Minimum of 5 credits, with good grades in Mathematics & Additional Mathematics


(2) Pre-University Qualification

Entry requirements may vary depending on university, so make sure you do your research!

Important Note: Maths is absolutely critical in Actuarial Science, so make sure you do well!

How Does Your Education Pathway Look Like?

A degree in Actuarial Science is usually 3 years long.

But wait, you’re not done yet! Graduating with an undergraduate degree in Actuarial Science does NOT mean that you are a qualified actuary.

In order to be a certified actuary, you will need to further your studies by taking professional exams. The process of becoming a certified actuary can be 3 – 7 years long.

Some of the institutions that provide professional exams are:

Actuarial Science - Education Pathway

Pro Tip: Some Actuarial Science degrees will offer subjects that can give you exemptions for your professional papers. Check with your university to find out what exemptions you can get.

What Will You Study in an Actuarial Science Degree?

In an Actuarial Science degree, you will learn plenty of subjects that involve applying mathematical and statistical techniques.

Here are some of the subjects you may learn in an Actuarial Science degree:

  • Actuarial & Financial Mathematics
  • Probability & Statistics
  • Economics
  • Life Insurance Mathematics
  • Survival Models
  • Risk Theory
  • Time Series & Forecasting

As this degree involves A LOT of calculations, proficiency in Maths (especially statistics) is a must.


By the end of your Actuarial Science degree, you will have in-depth knowledge on assessing risks and how you can minimise the costs associated with these risks.

Why Should You Study Actuarial Science?

Actuarial Science - Why Actuarial Science

Here are some great reasons why you should choose an Actuarial Science degree.

(1) You want to study an intellectually challenging degree

An Actuarial Science degree will have a fair amount of interrelated subjects, including probability, statistics, finance, economics and computer programming. Subjects in an Actuarial Science degree are often intellectually stimulating and by no means a walk in the park!

(2) Make a difference to the world through numbers

An Actuarial Science course will give you the knowledge and skills to create sophisticated financial, risk and statistical models to reduce the risks faced by individuals, organisations and governments. From life insurance to retirement plans, actuaries help the world manage risk through numbers.

(3) Real life application with great impact

Actuarial Science has a huge impact on many aspects of the world. Many sectors requires risk modelling and risk management, from insurance and financial services to transportation and environment. As an actuary, your responsibilities are never insignificant.

What Skills Do You Need to Study Actuarial Science?

Actuarial Science - Key Skills

Here are some of the key qualities and skills that you will need to develop in order to do well in an Actuarial Science course.

(1) A strong foundation in mathematics

An Actuarial Science course demands you to be strong in mathematics, as you will find yourself calculating probability & risks, as well as dealing with statistical models. In particular, you must be extremely comfortable (and have a huge love!) for probability and calculus.

(2) Keen analytical and problem-solving skills

Part of Actuarial Science requires you to analyse huge sets of statistical data in order to perform calculations and modelling. Many factors and assumptions could impact your calculations and solutions, so if you like solving complex problems, you could do well in Actuarial Science!

(3) Ability to communicate effectively

This industry doesn’t just involve calculations! You will also need to be able to communicate effectively in order to present your findings and reports, and explain the risks and implications in simple terms to non-specialists who are not in your field.

(4) Strong computing skills and a desire to learn programming

Actuaries use lots of spreadsheets and various software programmes to analyse and crunch data. As such, you must be comfortable with using the computer, and have a keen interest in learning programming languages.

Don’t worry if you haven’t mastered all these skills yet. A degree in Actuarial Science will help you hone & develop these skills! Just make sure you’re prepared for what’s ahead.

What Career Options Do You Have with an Actuarial Science Degree?

Completing a degree in Actuarial Science will prepare you for a career in insurance, banking & finance and financial planning.

Here are some jobs that are highly related to Actuarial Science.

  • Actuarial Pricing & Risk Analyst
  • Catastrophe Risk Analyst
  • Insurance Actuarial Analyst
  • Financial Risk Analyst
  • Financial Planning Advisor
  • Pension / Retirement Plan Actuarial Analyst
  • Underwriting Auditor

Where Can You Study Actuarial Science in Malaysia?

Here are some of the most popular universities for Actuarial Science in Malaysia.


Heriot-Watt University Malaysia

Bachelor of Science (Hons) Actuarial Science

Quick Facts

Campus: Putrajaya
Intakes: Sep
Estimated Fees: RM132,260
Scholarships: Up to 35% tuition fee waiver

Key Highlights

Exemptions from professional papers (CT1 to CT8, or Modules 1 to 4) from Institute and Faculty of Actuaries (IFoA), UK
Mirrors the BSc Actuarial Science degree offered in Heriot-Watt UK, which is accredited by the UK Actuarial Profession
Diverse international mix of students, providing you with a global perspective and experience

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UCSI University

Bachelor Science (Hons) Actuarial Science

Quick Facts

Campus: Cheras, Kuala Lumpur
Intakes: Jan, May & Sep
Estimated Fees: RM63,480
Scholarships: Up to 100% tuition fee waiver

Key Highlights

Exemptions from professional papers (VEE) from Society of Actuaries (SOA), USA
Prepares students to pass the first 5 preliminary professional papers from SOA while studying at UCSI


Asia Pacific University

BSc (Hons) in Actuarial Studies

Quick Facts

Campus: Bukit Jalil
Intakes: Feb, Apr & Sep
Estimated Fees: RM77,800
Scholarships: Up to 50% tuition fee waiver

Key Highlights

Students are awarded dual awards from APU and Staffordshire University, UK
Students will also receive credits for all the 3 Validated by Educational Experience (VEE) papers from Society of Actuaries
Rated Tier 5 (Excellent) out of 6 overall by the Ministry of Education (MQA SETARA 2017)


Universiti Tunku Abdul Rahman (UTAR)

Bachelor of Science (Hons) Actuarial Science

Quick Facts

Campus: Kajang, Selangor
Intakes: Jan, May & Oct
Estimated Fees: RM40,160
Scholarships: Up to 100% tuition fee waiver

Key Highlights

The ONLY university in Malaysia that gives students practical experience using Prophet, a widely-used risk management software
Exemptions from professional papers (VEE) from Society of Actuaries (SOA), USA
Affordable tuition fees

Where else can you study Actuarial Science in Malaysia? Check out our comprehensive comparison table for Actuarial Science degrees! You can also compare institutions for Foundation in Science.

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